Author Topic: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates  (Read 3397 times)

Michael Proske

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Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« on: July 30, 2011, 02:50:05 am »
I just wanted to write down my frustration with the Update Style feature in EA 9. I have twenty of RTF Templates and there was no the task to change it to a new company style.
First task:
Change the page size and change borders. I tried to change the size in the normal.rtf file but this only works for new documents. Update style does not update the page size and borders. By that i was wondering why page size stil was the same even if i changed it under Program Files\Sparx Systems\EA\DocTemplates\Normal.rtf. I found out that EA always generates a copy of this file under C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Application Data\Sparx Systems\EA\RTF Templates and only use this one for update style but does not change it when i edit the one under the program directory. Caused a lot of trouble so when you change the styles always delete the one in %APPDATA% it will be created immediately when style info is needed.

Second problem i had was that even i have changed Normal Style to Arial 10 after update style it was changed to Arial 10. This problem was solved after i changed the default paragraph font also and gave hime a concrete Font and size information. {\cs1\f0\fs20\cf0\sa120\sl240 Default Paragraph Font;} and here is the font definition {\fonttbl{\f0 \fswiss Arial;}{\f1 \fswiss \fcharset2 Symbol;}{\f2 \froman Lucida Sans;}}

Third problem is that after update style all font information like Bold or colored text is changed to standard normal style. Also Headings are resetted to normal but they keep their style information. You have to set the style again and also switch on numbering.  Didn't find a solution for that.

Fourth problem i had was that the table size was greater than the page size. I exported the document to an rtf file and changed the table site manually in the rtf file what was eays. Then import the file again and ... nothing changed. I found out that you have to close the rtf template and import only works when is open without any change. Could be a memory problem. So any change to the rtf file should be imported only to a newly open template otherwise it fails.

I still have some bugs in when generating documents with the new templates. One is that text in color will not generated when displaying a tagged value (ValueOf(...)). Also sometimes the style of a figure note ist not centrally but left but this happens only ion MS Mode not in Open Office mode. I made the experience that most errors appear in MS mode.

On the other hand style usage is much bette in EA 9. Where i had before hundered of styles in my word doc because very size change of normal style generated a new style this is gone so i have only the styles that i have defined in my word doc.

Hopes information helps somebody out there wis the same problem.

RoyC

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2011, 05:01:41 pm »
If you have not already submitted these points as a bug report to Sparx Support, please do so using the Report a Bug link at the foot of the page.  Thanks.
Best Regards, Roy

Graham_Moir

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2011, 08:22:21 pm »
Quote
Change the page size and change borders. I tried to change the size in the normal.rtf file but this only works for new documents.

I raised this formally as a bug in October 2009.   Shame it still hasn't been fixed.

Simon M

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2011, 08:47:03 am »
Quote
Quote
Change the page size and change borders. I tried to change the size in the normal.rtf file but this only works for new documents.

I raised this formally as a bug in October 2009.   Shame it still hasn't been fixed.
That's because normal.rtf is used for creation of new documents. It is not, and was never intended to be a global settings override.
Simon

support@sparxsystems.com

Graham_Moir

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2011, 06:39:48 pm »
Quote
Quote
Quote
Change the page size and change borders. I tried to change the size in the normal.rtf file but this only works for new documents.

I raised this formally as a bug in October 2009.   Shame it still hasn't been fixed.
That's because normal.rtf is used for creation of new documents. It is not, and was never intended to be a global settings override.

Well, that's interesting.  In Oct 2009 the issue was accepted as a bug (by Dermot) with the implication it would be fixed.  In terms of usability, there are quite a few people who would like to be able to modify a style once and apply that style to all existing templates,  AND the EA help at that time said that you should be able to do this :

"Enterprise Architect supports a system template file: Normal.rtf.
This allows users to define and edit default styles and numbering,
etc.  Any styles modified in this file will reflect in newly created
templates. Existing templates can also be updated to reflect changes to
the Normal.rtf, using a feature in the RTF editor: File | Update Styles"

Even the help in EA 9 states this is available functionality

"A related feature in the RTF Style Template Editor is the File | Update Styles menu option, which enables you to update existing templates to reflect any changes to Normal.rtf."

So how can you say it was never intended to provide an override ?   :-[
Finally is Sparx going to change the help to reflect the actual functionality, or is this going to be fixed ?


Michael Proske

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2011, 07:29:09 pm »
Interesting information Raymond.  I agree with you like normal.dot in MS Word a template should provide all style information not only the paragraph styles.

I have tried to solve the problem that after update style heading numbering is lost. It could be written in the rtf documentation of the paragraph style but EA does not analyze it correctly.

I have not registeded all as bugs but i will do so.

skiwi

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2011, 11:17:35 am »
Michael

you would be doing us all a significant favour if you do register these bugs.
The things you have identified impact negatively on construction of documents,
and on the ability of new comers to use generated documentation.

Absolutely I want the ability to update (overwrite) from normal.rtf the styles in document templates.
I'd also like the page margins to be updated from normal.rtf.

Simon
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RoyC

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2011, 02:50:37 pm »
Setting aside most of the specific issues (which we look forward to seeing described in the bug reports), let me clarify - I hope! - the role of the Normal.rtf file.

As Simon says, Normal.rtf is used for the creation of new templates. It is not, and was never intended to be, a global settings override. You create a new template, which is based on the current Normal.rtf. If you want to change the Normal.rtf styles, you specifically import it into the new template and edit it, then export it back to the %APPDATA% location to apply next time you want to create a new template.

The Update Styles option is a more recent and separate facility, but it enables you to open ONE existing template and update the styles from the Normal.RTF file. If you want to reflect template changes across all of your RTF templates, you have to open each template separately and use the menu option each time. Just make sure that you want to apply all updates to Normal.rtf to all of your existing templates.

If Update Styles does not work as expected in the context explained above, then there might still be a bug in it (we thought all reported bugs had been fixed). Please submit another bug report if that is the case.

I hope that helps - I have tightened the description in the Help to say that Update Styles enables you to update "an existing template" rather than "existing templates"; the latter words were probably giving the wrong impression. But you do have to be inside a specific template before the File | Update option is available.
Best Regards, Roy

Graham_Moir

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2011, 07:54:45 pm »
Thanks for the clarification Roy.  What you describe is in fact how I understood it was supposed to work - namely template by template.  

In terms of a bug,  it looks to me that if you use Update Styles, that  you get any new styles - that is those that didn't exist in the template before - but existing styles in the template are not changed/updated with the definition from normal.rtf


skiwi

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2011, 08:01:46 pm »
Roy

this may be a feature request, but I'd like to option to update ALL templates from normal.rtf.
We know from long and hard experience that strange and inexplicable things happen if styles get out of sync across document model templates.
We want to maintain the same model document templates and normal.rtf across a number of users and models, anything Sparx can do to make this easier would be of value to us.

Also, you have muddied the waters by mentioning the APPDATA normal.rtf.

Its bad enough normal.rtf being installed into the "Program Files" directory, but now I'm learning a copy is kept elsewhere?
Did I miss this in the documentation? Is this copy read every time EA opens, or what?

It seems to me there is not much clarity (as evidenced from the questions above), on how normal.rtf actually affects documents.

Perhaps <feature request on> there should be an option for normal.rtf to autoupdate (cf Word).

chao

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RoyC

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #10 on: August 08, 2011, 09:54:50 am »
EA Versions 7.5 and later use Windows 7. Windows 7, with dash and aplomb, locks the Program Files directory and makes it read only. So we stopped installing the Normal.rtf file into the Program Files directory and stored it as an external file in  %APPDATA%\Sparx Systems\EA\RTF Templates.

The first line of the topic that describes Normal.rtf, the RTF Templates topic, states:

"In versions of Enterprise Architect later than 7.1, a Normal.rtf template is provided as a system template, as an external file stored in:
        %APPDATA%\Sparx Systems\EA\RTF Templates"

I believe that this was in the Release Notes for version 7.5 too.

Please do submit your feature request.  Also, I can't comment on Graham's report that Update Styles does not update existing styles that have been changed; a casual query resulted in a couple of puzzled frowns, so resubmit the bug report and Support should either resolve the issue or explain why it isn't an issue.
Best Regards, Roy

Michael Proske

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2011, 01:50:05 am »
That is the behaviour but if no normal.rtf is located in the program files directory ea is giving an error message that normal.rtf is not available. If you only install it under APPDATA then please remove it under the prgram file directory. Otherwise it copies the first time the normal.rtf under the APPDATA path

skiwi

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #12 on: September 29, 2011, 05:09:10 am »
Bump!

Any joy with bug reports?
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Graham_Moir

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2011, 11:10:44 pm »
I just re-submitted a bug report regarding "Update styles" failing to update existing styles in a template - reference 11101317 has been provided.    As I think I mentioned, I originally submitted this formally in October 2009.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2011, 07:15:51 pm by Graham_Moir »

Michael Proske

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Re: Experiences with Update Style in RTF Templates
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2011, 06:12:18 pm »
I have asked for the status of my bug report but it is still not scheduled. We have to wait.