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Pilif Nudd Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Have recently installed 10.6.5 (Combo) and am now getting strange behaviour with Help Viewer. Entering a search term lists standard help items and support articles, as normal. However, clicking on any item under Support Articles yields an error: "The requested resource (/kb//apps/helpviewer/index) is not available". Anybody any ideas? I have already repaired permissions as well as my boot disk (which was one file / folder in error on the volume count) but the problem remains.

iMac 21.5" (late 2009), Mac OS X (10.6.5)
  • Pilif Nudd Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I have realized that this message is coming from Apple's web site - copying a link from the list of Support Articles & pasting it into a browser results in the same message. So is it a problem with Apple's links - if so, why isn't anyone else complaining?
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,945 points)
    Most likely because they're getting to Apple's other servers. Since you have the URL, open Network Utility, select traceroute, enter the URL, and click the trace button.
  • Pilif Nudd Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for the suggestion, but it didn't work (URL too long).
    The URL in question is: http://helpviewer.apple.com/kb/index?page=answerlink&url=http%3A%2F%2Fsupport.ap ple.com%2Fkb%2Findex%3Fpage%3Dhvkb%26id%3DTA25535%26agent%3Dhelpviewer&answerid= 16777216
    which resolves to: http://support.apple.com/kb/index?page=hvkb&id=TA25535&agent=helpviewer when pasted into a browser (and results in the missing resource message). If I truncate the article id stuff, I just end up at the support home page, as expected. If I put these shorter URLs into traceroute, it says 'unknown host' (although I have no problem putting them into a browser)! Could there be some sort of DNS problem? (Limited knowledge in this area!).
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,945 points)
    Actually, with a little bit of finagling, the article's at http://support.apple.com/kb/TA25535 This is what you should tracing: http://support.apple.com/
  • Pilif Nudd Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Afraid traceroute came up with unknown host for that, too.

    A couple more clues:
    1) I booted from a system backup made at the beginning of the month (on 10.6.4) - exactly the same problem, so can't blame 10.6.5 or even some recent file change (admittedly, I might well not have tried accessing support articles in Help Viewer since then, anyway).
    2) I emailed those links above to my wife's Windows laptop - exactly the same messages about missing resources. Only common factors are my router and ISP - otherwise, Help Viewer must be generating false links?

    Message was edited by: Pilif Nudd
  • Pilif Nudd Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Something I forgot to mention: problem exists for all users, including newly created users, so presumably isn't related to corrupt preference or cache files, at least in the user area. I discovered a previous posting (actually from you, baltwo) which pointed to thexlab.com re problems with help viewer. This mentions various caches but, for leopard, refers to a hidden Help Viewer cache folder which you can only find out about in the book! Is this cache folder at system level or, again, in the user area? Grateful for all help.
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,945 points)
    The only caches I'm familiar with are those in your /Library/Caches/with com.apple.help… in their title. Dump those and any plist files in your Preferences folder, then restart. If that doesn't do the trick, reinstall the OS and run Software Update.
  • etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (26,415 points)
    It is something going on with Apple's servers. I get the same thing in both 10.6.5 and 10.6.4. I will report this up the latter.
  • R C-R Level 6 Level 6 (15,205 points)
    Pilif Nudd wrote:
    Afraid traceroute came up with unknown host for that, too.


    FWIW, if you are using the Snow Leopard Network Utility app to do a traceroute, you need to enter "support.apple.com" in the box, not "http://support.apple.com/."

    As I understand it (which may well be wrong), traceroute expects a host domain name or IP address, so the protocol part (the "http://" prefix) that tells a web browser what protocols to use to render a page is interpreted as part of that, & thus it fails to find a host with that name. Likewise, any trailing "/" suffixes that delineate some host-side location are also interpreted as part of the host name itself.
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,945 points)
    Thanks for the clarification. Mucked up the copy & paste.
  • Pilif Nudd Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks but, as mentioned, user preferences aren't going to work as the problem affects all users, so it would have to be something global. As far as reinstalling the OS goes, I thought of that but will bide my time, especially as someone else now says they have the same problem.
  • Pilif Nudd Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks RC-R, that did make a difference! After entering "support.apple.com" my trace now goes through 8 relays, ending with "9 amsix-ams5.netarch.akamai.com (195.69.144.168) 25.628 ms 25.580 ms 26.085 ms" and after that it just shows three asterisks against each step - trouble is, I've no idea what that means!
  • R C-R Level 6 Level 6 (15,205 points)
    Basically, it just means that the packet containing the info about the specific IP address at that hop in the route hasn't been received by the computer running the traceroute routine (IOW, your Mac) in the time allocated for that.

    For a more technical explanation, you might try reading the Wikipedia traceroute entry or something similar, but (in my limited understanding of it) it doesn't indicate a problem with the route or endpoint server. As the "Security Concerns" section of the Wikipedia entry mentions, some networks are apparently intentionally set up to hide their internal routing architecture from traceroute.

    Message was edited by: R C-R
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,945 points)
    After further testing, it appears that the servers hosting the help files are down. Might have something to do with Apple getting it's new North Carolina Data Center up and running correctly.
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