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Thankfully my son had pulled my Ford Heim CD Manual from the old computer. Dodged a bullet.

Running on Windows 10 without issues.





 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Thankfully my son had pulled my Ford Heim CD Manual from the old computer. Dodged a bullet.

Running on Windows 10 without issues.
Yes, it would appear that you are. And just out of the box, no BS of installing the additional old viewers or anything? Which model year is your CD?
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Well, I have a line on an external CD/DVD drive for sale locally on Kijiji. Seller claims it's not been used and the price is about 15% of new. If all goes well I'll pick that up some time next week then see if I can't get the wiring diagrams working on my own W10 laptop with the CD inserted.


After that I may follow it up more, but that's really the beauty of copy protection - sure you may be able to beat it but the time you spend doing it isn't worth it. It's very unfortunate that Ford is stuck in the 90's with this content delivery method, but so long as I can get it to work at least it _is_ provided. Also, I do hope that my assumption of there being more/better information than the Chilton/Haynes offerings is valid.
 

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At the time I bought my Transit Service Manual from Helm, I had a Macbook Pro. I used VMWare Fusion to create a VM with whatever crusty old version of Windows was required and an external DVD drive to access it. Eventually, I got tired of digging out the DVD, so I used a tool to create a .iso file from the physical DVD (the tool could have been built into OSX - I can't quite remember). From there, VMWare has an option to associate a .iso file with a DVD drive emulator and drive letter. That allows my VM to access the DVD image without having the physical drive and DVD. Since that time, I switched back to a Windows laptop (needed more power to run 3D CAD). I planned to run VMWare on my Windows laptop and have copied over the VM files, but I've only need the service manual once or twice since then and I still have the Macbook, so I just ran it there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
At the time I bought my Transit Service Manual from Helm, I had a Macbook Pro. I used VMWare Fusion to create a VM with whatever crusty old version of Windows was required and an external DVD drive to access it. Eventually, I got tired of digging out the DVD, so I used a tool to create a .iso file from the physical DVD (the tool could have been built into OSX - I can't quite remember). From there, VMWare has an option to associate a .iso file with a DVD drive emulator and drive letter. That allows my VM to access the DVD image without having the physical drive and DVD. Since that time, I switched back to a Windows laptop (needed more power to run 3D CAD). I planned to run VMWare on my Windows laptop and have copied over the VM files, but I've only need the service manual once or twice since then and I still have the Macbook, so I just ran it there.

Perhaps they improved their security after you did this. Standard disc imaging tools haven't worked for me - and consider that I've done without physical discs for a number of years now. There is copy protection on the disc, as I've previously mentioned, and I have yet to find something that will easily circumvent this.


Stay tuned though, as I HAVE found a stupidly simple way to run without the disc after it's been installed on a computer. I'll detail this procedure after I've obtained my own external optical drive and have it working on my laptop.
 
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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Also, I should add that on the other computer I've been using as a test platform, a laptop with an optical drive, I installed all the extras included on the disc (Geriatric Acrobat & SVG Viewer). I am now able to view the wiring diagrams, but the program crashes and shuts down almost at random when I try to view connector information from the wiring diagram. Less frequently it crashes at other places too. Once I get my "no disc" solution worked out, I'm going to try an emulated older version of Windows to see if that can solve the crashing issue.


Boy, for how much I paid for this dammn CD they should be paying ME for all the time I'm spending getting it to work!


I do thank everyone for their input though. The quality of the replies to this thread has improved dramatically over the first few.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
...snip... prior to install, I manually changed the drive letter of my DVD drive to Z. Did the install, and verified it worked. Renamed the DVD drive back original default letter. Copied all DVD content over to a folder on the hard disk. Mapped that folder as drive Z. And... it works! Much faster at data access! But, drive needs to be mapped after each reboot. I wrote a 1-line batch file to auto-run at startup, to take care of that.

I think I have a simpler solution to this, and I'm willing to bet that your method had the same results but with more effort than the process I will be detailing soon. I may not have noticed it when I saw it though if you hadn't mentioned this already, and for that I thank you.
 

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Boy, for how much I paid for this dammn CD they should be paying ME for all the time I'm spending getting it to work!


I do thank everyone for their input though. The quality of the replies to this thread has improved dramatically over the first few.
I thought you were a computer expert or something using Cad software just to cut a piece of plywood for the floor...

Any purchase over $100.00 I at least do basic research, And basic research for the service manual would be searching the Transit forum to see what problems others before me have had with it.
And yes all of this really has been discussed before, More then once.

I know, The forum search is broken, And yet search seems to work just fine for the 1,000s of people who use this forum every day and never ask a question, They just get what they need and move on. (At the the moment at 4 AM central time there are 2.346 forum members and non-forum members us the forum right now, All of them using search.) It Has been my experience after 4 years on this forum that the only ones who say that search is broken are the ones too lazy to even try, The ones who want to be Told what to do instead of figuring things out for them selves.

I know there always going to be some the that need a little extra help because the internet is a scary place with so much information on it.
But you made it clear from the beginning that you are not one of those people. And hear you are, whining because something did not work the way you that thought it would.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
And hear you are, whining because something did not work the way you that thought it would.
Ok, now you really do get the prize for most helpful response. You're right. I should have done more research before hand. Then when I inevitably learned it's all there is and taken the plunge regardless, I should have quietly gotten to work solving the issues for myself and never shared anything I learned that might be new and helpful to others.

Congratulations.
 

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I thought you were a computer expert or something using Cad software just to cut a piece of plywood for the floor...

Any purchase over $100.00 I at least do basic research, And basic research for the service manual would be searching the Transit forum to see what problems others before me have had with it.
And yes all of this really has been discussed before, More then once.

I know, The forum search is broken, And yet search seems to work just fine for the 1,000s of people who use this forum every day and never ask a question, They just get what they need and move on. (At the the moment at 4 AM central time there are 2.346 forum members and non-forum members us the forum right now, All of them using search.) It Has been my experience after 4 years on this forum that the only ones who say that search is broken are the ones too lazy to even try, The ones who want to be Told what to do instead of figuring things out for them selves.

I know there always going to be some the that need a little extra help because the internet is a scary place with so much information on it.
But you made it clear from the beginning that you are not one of those people. And hear you are, whining because something did not work the way you that thought it would.

This has been a great thread, in spite of your contributions. Don't be such a whinging boor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Thank you both, @orton and @EddieZ . For a short while I was actually considering just leaving this thread a cliff hanger. I'm glad that others have been getting something out of it. I definitely have been.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 · (Edited)
Alright, for all of you who have been losing sleep in great anticipation of the next installment of this thread....... oh who am I kidding? Just read below if you give a sh*t and pass on by quietly if you don't. :p


------------------------------

These instructions appear long, but only to be thorough. This is very, very simple.


This applies to Windows 10 Home, up to date as of 2019-03-04

1. Insert CD and run "Setup.exe". Follow prompts and install normally.

2. Run program, make sure everything works. This may also contribute to creating files we'll need later so don't skip it.

3. Copy contents of the CD into a newly created empty folder on your hard drive. I chose "C:\TSO\CD_CONTENTS" to keep related things together.

4. Install the required stone age software from "C:\TSO\CD_CONTENTS\tools" :
Code:
    SVG Viewer --> C:\TSO\CD_CONTENTS\tools\adobe\win2k\SVGView.exe
    Adobe Acrobat 6 --> C:\TSO\CD_CONTENTS\tools\adobe\win2k\ar600enu.exe (there are some references to 5.0 but mine included 6.0 and worked fine)
     Visual C Runtime Library --> C:\TSO\CD_CONTENTS\tools\vc\VCREDIST.EXE (may not be needed but likely won't hurt either)
5. Remove the CD and put it somewhere safe but pray to whatever deity you believe in that you'll never need it again because Helm Inc finally made it to the age of online software delivery and/or solid state storage media.

6. Open the file "C:\TSO\tsobrowser.ini" in a text editor (if you don't know the difference between a word processor and text editor, stop now before you hurt yourself!).

7. Change the following line:
Code:
    FROM --> "18SJX=1~3~D:~stock\home.htm~2018 Transit~October 2017"
     TO ----> "18SJX=1~1~C:\TSO\CD_CONTENTS~stock\home.htm~Helm Inc Sucks Big Time~It's 2019, not 1920!"
(Where you may need to replace "C:\TSO\CD_CONTENTS" with your folder of choice, and you can pick whatever customized title/message you want if you don't agree that my suggestion rocks. If you can't figure out whether or not to include the quotation marks, stop before you hurt yourself or someone else!)

8. Save and close the modified file and you're done. Enjoy the electronic manual that Helm Inc charged you way too much money for at greater speed and without the hassle of requiring the CD every time you use it.

*** BONUS ASSIGNMENT ***

9. If you're a real keener and have more time to waste than I do, figure out what all happens on installation in the registry or elsewhere. Make a simple script that updates the registry with these things, and now you can move the software to any computer you want. Share it with your friends at work, share it online, share it with the homeless person down the street. Helm Inc has made enough money from this horrible antiquity.
 
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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
P.S.


Installing Acrobat might give an error saying a "more functional version" is already installed. I received this message. I don't know yet whether this is a problem or not but everything seems to be working despite the "Adobe Acrobat 5.0 is not installed" message.
 

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Sparky, that's an admirable effort (nice to see another approach), but, I'm not so sure it's easier than my drive letter re-mapping technique.

So, you did wind up getting an external DVD drive? You'll appreciate this: I go to Goodwill and other charity stores regularly. When I bought my first laptop that had no CD-ROM drive, I started keeping an eye out for an external drive. Took a couple of months, but, I got a nice one for $5. It's been great, since I also purchase used music CDs for $2 and under (low risk to trying music I wouldn't ordinarily have bought)... use the external drive to rip the CDs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
P.P.S.


It seems the random crashing is non-existent with the installation on my own laptop using the above method. I can view connector information linked from the wiring diagram no problem!
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
Sparky, that's an admirable effort (nice to see another approach), but, I'm not so sure it's easier than my drive letter re-mapping technique.

Maybe not, but it may be easier for some to copy the contents and change one line in a text file. I'd be interested to see what your "tsobrowser.ini" contains. I suspect that the sequence you did things in resulted in that file pointing to your remapped copy.


So, you did wind up getting an external DVD drive?.

I did. I picked up one of these for $15 second hand but likely unused:


https://www.amazon.ca/Lite-Corporation-Optical-Drives-EBAU108-01/dp/B00AWS6CNY


This is a compromise between having the capability to read/write optical discs still and having to cart it around with the rest of my electronic menagerie.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
Adobe Acrobat reader is a bag of crap. Use Sumatra PDF or something else that is actually functional.
Great, if that works.

I was trying to provide the easiest method least likely to fail. I'm assuming it's only to view PDF documents linked from various places, but you never know when they may have used a library call or something else Acrobat specific that wouldn't work with another PDF viewer.
 
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