Enable Windows Help Files (*.HLP) in Windows 10 (64-bit)

The first step is to download Windows8.1-KB917607-x64.msu.
Next, open a PowerShell prompt with Administrator access and change to your download location.
From the command prompt, extract the contents of the Microsoft Software Update (MSU) to a new folder:

md ContentMSU
expand Windows8.1-KB917607-x64.msu -F:* ContentMSU

Next, expand the contents of the Cabinet (CAB) file to its own folder:

md ContentMSU\ContentCAB
expand ContentMSU\Windows8.1-KB917607-x64.cab -F:* ContentMSU\ContentCAB

If you’re curious, get a directory listing of the existing files before replacing them:

dir "$ENV:SystemRoot\winhlp32*", "$ENV:SystemRoot\en-us\winhlp32*"

Take ownership of the original MultiLanguage User Interface (MUI) file and rename it so you have a backup:

takeown /f "$ENV:SystemRoot\en-us\winhlp32.exe.mui"
icacls "$ENV:SystemRoot\en-us\winhlp32.exe.mui" /grant Administrators:F
ren "$ENV:SystemRoot\en-us\winhlp32.exe.mui" winhlp32.exe.mui.w10

Copy the replacement MUI file from the Cabinet to it’s new location:

cd ContentMSU\ContentCAB\amd64_microsoft-windows-winhstb.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_6.3.9600.20470_en-us_c3a9a33a1aee3495
copy -Force winhlp32.exe.mui "$ENV:SystemRoot\en-us\winhlp32.exe.mui"

Repeat the same steps for the Windows Help executable:

takeown /f "$ENV:SystemRoot\winhlp32.exe"
icacls "$ENV:SystemRoot\winhlp32.exe" /grant Administrators:F
ren "$ENV:SystemRoot\winhlp32.exe" winhlp32.exe.w10

cd ..\amd64_microsoft-windows-winhstb_31bf3856ad364e35_6.3.9600.20470_none_1a54d9f2f676f6c2
copy -Force winhlp32.exe "$ENV:SystemRoot\winhlp32.exe"

Take a look at the new and old files:

dir "$ENV:SystemRoot\winhlp32*", "$ENV:SystemRoot\en-us\winhlp32*"

Now you can open Windows Help files in Windows 10.

~ by bwsd on March 16, 2021.

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