Extensive help is available for Chimera; the User's Guide and Programmer's Guide are written in HTML and can be displayed using the web browser of choice. This HTML documentation is bundled with a Chimera download and can be accessed from the Chimera Help menu. Use of the bundled documentation is recommended because it is synchronized with the locally installed version of Chimera. (The development version of the User's Guide is available online for viewing, but may describe features that have not yet been released.)

Help menu contents:

To call up the manual page for a specific command, type into the Command Line:

help command
whereas the following will show the entire Commands Index:
help commands
The help command without any arguments calls up the documentation search dialog.

Many of the tools and interfaces have Help buttons that open their respective manual pages. Some tools and interfaces also supply balloon help, explanatory text that pops up when the cursor is paused over some relevant part of a dialog. Whether to show balloon help can be set in the Messages preferences.

When the graphics window has mouse focus, pausing the cursor over an atom or bond (without clicking any buttons) shows an atomspec balloon with information such as atom name, residue number, and bond length. The style of atomspec balloons and whether they should be shown can be set in the Labels preferences.

UCSF Computer Graphics Laboratory / October 2013