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We’re implementing a different form of web filtering at work using a proxy. After adding the proxy config to IE, my Visual Studio Help Viewer (v2.1) refused to download content off the Internet.
It would only show the currently installed offline content and wouldn’t show what was available to add or update. I’m sharing the fix in case it helps someone else. Here’s the initial error I got:
An error occurred while determining the list of available content: The web server has reported an error for http://services.mtps.microsoft.com/ServiceAPI/catalogs/VisualStudio12/en-US: ProtocolError/ProxyAuthenticationRequired
I found the following link to the issue in an older version of the Help Viewer.

Given that, I edited the file C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Help Viewer\v2.1\HlpViewer.exe.config
I changed its contents from:

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<configuration>
	<startup>
		<supportedRuntime version="v4.0" sku=".NETFramework,Version=v4.0"/>
	</startup>
	<appSettings>
	</appSettings>
</configuration>

to

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<configuration>
	<startup>
		<supportedRuntime version="v4.0" sku=".NETFramework,Version=v4.0"/>
	</startup>
	<appSettings>
	</appSettings>
	<system.net>
		<defaultProxy useDefaultCredentials="true">
		</defaultProxy>
	</system.net>
</configuration>

That then enabled me to see the list of books available. When I tried to download one, I got this error:
An error occurred while updating content: The web server has reported an error for http://services.mtps.microsoft.com/ServiceAPI/catalogs/VisualStudio12/en-US: ProtocolError/ProxyAuthenticationRequired
I then created the file HlpCtntMgr.exe.config in the same folder as the other .config file and gave it the exact same content as the one above.
Now when trying to download, I got this final error:
An error occurred while updating content: An error occurred while the BITS service was transferring to Error context: RemoteFile Error code: 0x80190197 BITS message: HTTP status 407: Proxy authentication is required.
The last step was to open the BITS Registry key here: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\BITS
Unlike in the article I linked above, I already had the DWORD value “UseLmCompat”. It was set to 2. I changed it to 0 and restarted the BITS service.
The problem was now fixed 🙂

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