IPF is the source format for helpfiles under IBM's operating system OS/2 Warp (and IBM PC-DOS 7).
The IPF format is a text format. It is documented in the "IBM OS/2 Warp IPF Programming Guide" (Publication Number G25H-7110-00). You can read this documentation online on http://publibfp.boulder.ibm.com/cgi-bin/bookmgr/BOOKS/ej6c2b00/CCONTENTS or download it as a bookmanager file. You can read bookmanager files using the IBM Library Reader for Windows or the java-based IBM Softcopy Reader.
An IPFC documentation comes also with the online help of the IPFC program.
For producing help files from the IPF-files, you need the IPF-compiler (IPFC.EXE) which is part of (commercial) IBM developer products (e.g. OS/2 Developers Toolkit, Visual-Age Compiler, IBM Set C++). The OS/2 executable IPFC is downloadable on http://www.m-petz.de/Download/Download.htm (topic "IPFC-Zubehör") or http://www.goellnitz-online.de/os2/infseite/ipfc.htm.
Helpfiles under OS/2 are existing as HLP- or INF-files. HLP-files are used together with executable programs, where INF-files may be viewed standalone by doubleclicking on the Workplace Shell or using the commandline program VIEW.
Please note: the OS/2 HLP format has nothing in common with the Windows HLP format!
Another INF viewer for OS/2 is NewView. INF-viewer for Win32 or DOS can be downloaded on http://www.labyrinth.net.au/ dbareis/swrecom.htm or http://www.goellnitz-online.de/os2/infseite/xview/xview.htm.
IBM provided an older 16-bit windows viewer for INF and HLP-files
which is part of the
Just Add Warp package. You can download it
on ftp://ftp.software.ibm.com/ps/products/os2/tools/jaow/jaow.zip or ftp://ftp.leo.org/pub/comp/os/os2/leo/windows/justaddwarp.zip (approx. 3.4MB). After installing, you need only
the following files from the directory
XVIEW.PAL (all other files from this
package are not relevant).