How's your experience with MadCap Flare?


#1

Is it worth jumping through the hoops to get it to run on our Mac computers? We’re looking to redesign our self-service help documentation, which lives on the same site as our marketing and developers’ portal. I’ll appreciate any feedback!


#2

Our admin doc team uses VMWare virtual machine to run MadCap.
Haven’t heard of any problems. I use VMWare VM to run a linux environment, seldom have trouble with it (the platform doc uses markdown, hosted on github). They like MadCap, I like not having it, so it’s just a matter of which features you want. Platform doc needs to be open, so authoring in a tech-writer-only tool isn’t an option.


#3

Thanks, MystiAnne! Could you share more about why certain docs such as platform in your case need to be open? Is it specific to your organization? I’m revamping the entire help documentation for our product users. We need robust single-sourcing capabilities.


#4

We have a lot of people writing and editing content for the platform; only a few of us are professional technical writers, the rest are developers or architects with fantastic writing skills. Most of our content creators and reviewers “live” on github. And of course we want our customers and partners to be able to suggest doc changes via github/git.

We don’t reuse content between platform and product, though we do link between the two sets of docs and our search will find things in both places.


#5

The end-user and admin doc isn’t in open repositories, fyi. Just the platform content for developers, architects, partners, etc.


#6

If I may suggest, take a look at Paligo. It’s cloud based, so your Mac and Windows issue becomes irrelevant. You certainly don’t need VM solutions. You also don’t need an extra backend, such as github, to hold your content. Paligo takes care of the authoring and delivery. It’s also collaborative - so reviewers make their comments in the system and engineers can write directly into Paligo (using Markup).
(We are Paligo resellers so take my words with a pinch of salt if you like, but check for yourself anyway).
I know this is a Flare post but I believe my answer is relevant in relation to the flow of comments.


#8

A key point is that one won’t need to “jump through hoops” to run Flare on a Mac. See, among others:

There are related discussions on the Madcap Software Forum as wel…


#9

It’s a powerful tool as file-based, single-user installed software goes, but having used Confluence + Scroll plugins and Paligo for the past few years, I can’t imagine going back to that old model.

It seems like MadCap is moving in the direction of hosted multiuser software with integrated CMS and so on, but they have a ways to go.