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Multiple problems with custom template RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am having numerous issues with a template I have created.  I've tried google searches, looking through various blogs and even bought a few books but can't seem to pinpoint the problems.  Basically, I have a template I created and saved in a shared network folder that users double click on to create a new working document.  The template is saved as a .dotm file because I added a few macros to help with some repetitive calculations in tables.  In this template I have about 6 macros, many quick tables and quick part building blocks, many building blocks in the building block gallery and I have also linked some plain text control contents through an add-on called "Word 2007 Content Control Toolkit".  The control contents are linked so that when "Company Name" is changed in one part of the document, all the other "Company Names" are changed simultaneously.  So with that said, here's what I have been experiencing:

    1) Some users weren't able to view the macros, quick parts, building blocks or quick tables.  This was especially true if they weren't the one who initially created the document.  I think I have fixed this by adding the shared folder where the template is stored to the workgroup template file locations.  I am still noticing that when we move an old template out of the shared folder and add a newer updated version, the documents created from the older template lose their quick parts and macros.  The different versions of the template have the date in the file name so their names are unique.

     

    2) The table of contents is acting strangely.  When toggling from Print Layout View to Print Preview, the page numbers change to all 4's then back to normal sequence.  It seems to print properly but not sure what is going on with the print preview.

     

    3) We have multiple styles defined for text and text in tables but they seem to be behaving somewhat erratically.  SOMETIMES when we try to add or remove bullets or bold text, everything throughout the document defined as what we refer to as "Main Text" will change to bold or bullets or whatever.  When we "Undo", it reverts back to main text and the bold will be where we originally tried to put it.  We have also noticed that the text alignment in tables has inexplicably changed from left alignment to right.  Another time, all of the main text, for no known reason, changed to center justified.  With all these weird things occurring, I am planning to make the file read only and also turn on the protection in the file, but I can't help but wonder if there is a setting or a better way to store and share the template than just have it in a folder to double click.  Just recently I got a message asking if I wanted to save the changes made in the "Document" to the "Template".  I have never seen this message and am wondering what may have prompted it.

     

    4) In addition to the above style issues we have had some issues with a change in one table effecting other tables throughout the document.  If there was a cell where the alignment was off a bit, a minor change would result in the table on the next page changing font color and certain rows going from left align to center.  We seemed to fix this by assigning specific styles to each row in all the different tables.  Wondering if there is a reason these tables were linked like this.  They were all defined as "Normal Text"

     

    5) I am wondering since I have macros saved to the template as a .dotm file, do the documents created from the template need to be save as .docm?  Right now I am having the users save the files as .docx and all the macros are in the file and work.  Wondering if this is effecting the integrity of the file?

     

    6)  With all of these issues, we have had to make multiple, multiple, multiple revisions.  When users are working in a document based on the template, the template is locked.  Sometimes I get a message saying it is locked for editing by "specific user", other times it just opens as a read-only template, and other times it has said that it is locked by me and I have nothing open.  I may get a request from a user to update a typo in a building block and I will have to wait until the end of the day when everyone has closed out of all of the documents before I can move a new one in.  Wondering if there is a better way to do this.

     

    Thats most of it.  I have learned a lot about Word 2007 since starting this project but seem to be stuck with these "Weird" issues.  I am hoping there is an obvious fix for some of this stuff, but I would appreciate any additional resources, ideas, suggestions, etc.

     

    Many thanks in advance,

    Adam 
    Thursday, October 6, 2011 10:08 PM

Answers

  • 1) Some users weren't able to view the macros, quick parts, building blocks or quick tables.  This was especially true if they weren't the one who initially created the document.  I think I have fixed this by adding the shared folder where the template is stored to the workgroup template file locations.  I am still noticing that when we move an old template out of the shared folder and add a newer updated version, the documents created from the older template lose their quick parts and macros.  The different versions of the template have the date in the file name so their names are unique.

    If you want the older documents to have access to the template features, you must keep the same name.  Perhaps you could put the revision information in the document properties.

     

    3) We have multiple styles defined for text and text in tables but they seem to be behaving somewhat erratically.  SOMETIMES when we try to add or remove bullets or bold text, everything throughout the document defined as what we refer to as "Main Text" will change to bold or bullets or whatever.  When we "Undo", it reverts back to main text and the bold will be where we originally tried to put it.  We have also noticed that the text alignment in tables has inexplicably changed from left alignment to right.  Another time, all of the main text, for no known reason, changed to center justified.  With all these weird things occurring, I am planning to make the file read only and also turn on the protection in the file, but I can't help but wonder if there is a setting or a better way to store and share the template than just have it in a folder to double click.  Just recently I got a message asking if I wanted to save the changes made in the "Document" to the "Template".  I have never seen this message and am wondering what may have prompted it.

    The problem you describe in your first two sentences happens when the Automatically update box  is checked in the modify styles dialog.  Clear that checkbox for  all your styles in the template (to prevent this in new documents) and in all documents based on you template (to eliminate the problem in existing docs).  A macro could speed this up.

    Though your symptoms don't seem related to the Templates & Add-ins dialog's  Automatically update document styles, just for the heck of it, be sure that the checkbox before it is empty in the template and in all the docs based on it.

    It is not likely to be the template that is causing these problems, but the styles it contributed, as I mentioned.   If you modified a style and clicked New documents based on this template,  Word will prompt you to  OK the save.  Add-ons, other programs, users, even Word itself, may try to change the template.  If you don't remember clicking that box, say  No.     I don't have any recent experience working with protected templates.  I hope someone else can help you there.

    4) In addition to the above style issues we have had some issues with a change in one table effecting other tables throughout the document.  If there was a cell where the alignment was off a bit, a minor change would result in the table on the next page changing font color and certain rows going from left align to center.  We seemed to fix this by assigning specific styles to each row in all the different tables.  Wondering if there is a reason these tables were linked like this.  They were all defined as "Normal Text"

    I think this is the same problem as 3)

     5) I am wondering since I have macros saved to the template as a .dotm file, do the documents created from the template need to be save as .docm?  Right now I am having the users save the files as .docx and all the macros are in the file and work.  Wondering if this is effecting the integrity of the file?

    A file only needs to be "-m" if it contains macros.   All of your macros appear to be in the template.

     6)  With all of these issues, we have had to make multiple, multiple, multiple revisions.  When users are working in a document based on the template, the template is locked.  Sometimes I get a message saying it is locked for editing by "specific user", other times it just opens as a read-only template, and other times it has said that it is locked by me and I have nothing open.  I may get a request from a user to update a typo in a building block and I will have to wait until the end of the day when everyone has closed out of all of the documents before I can move a new one in.  Wondering if there is a better way to do this.

     


    I have to handle template updates the same way you do.  I keep a version  on my computer, make the changes there, and overwrite the one on the server when it's available.

     

    Pam


    • Marked as answer by Rex Zhang Wednesday, October 12, 2011 1:31 AM
    • Edited by PamCaswell Wednesday, October 12, 2011 3:52 AM readability
    Friday, October 7, 2011 12:01 AM

All replies

  • 1) Some users weren't able to view the macros, quick parts, building blocks or quick tables.  This was especially true if they weren't the one who initially created the document.  I think I have fixed this by adding the shared folder where the template is stored to the workgroup template file locations.  I am still noticing that when we move an old template out of the shared folder and add a newer updated version, the documents created from the older template lose their quick parts and macros.  The different versions of the template have the date in the file name so their names are unique.

    If you want the older documents to have access to the template features, you must keep the same name.  Perhaps you could put the revision information in the document properties.

     

    3) We have multiple styles defined for text and text in tables but they seem to be behaving somewhat erratically.  SOMETIMES when we try to add or remove bullets or bold text, everything throughout the document defined as what we refer to as "Main Text" will change to bold or bullets or whatever.  When we "Undo", it reverts back to main text and the bold will be where we originally tried to put it.  We have also noticed that the text alignment in tables has inexplicably changed from left alignment to right.  Another time, all of the main text, for no known reason, changed to center justified.  With all these weird things occurring, I am planning to make the file read only and also turn on the protection in the file, but I can't help but wonder if there is a setting or a better way to store and share the template than just have it in a folder to double click.  Just recently I got a message asking if I wanted to save the changes made in the "Document" to the "Template".  I have never seen this message and am wondering what may have prompted it.

    The problem you describe in your first two sentences happens when the Automatically update box  is checked in the modify styles dialog.  Clear that checkbox for  all your styles in the template (to prevent this in new documents) and in all documents based on you template (to eliminate the problem in existing docs).  A macro could speed this up.

    Though your symptoms don't seem related to the Templates & Add-ins dialog's  Automatically update document styles, just for the heck of it, be sure that the checkbox before it is empty in the template and in all the docs based on it.

    It is not likely to be the template that is causing these problems, but the styles it contributed, as I mentioned.   If you modified a style and clicked New documents based on this template,  Word will prompt you to  OK the save.  Add-ons, other programs, users, even Word itself, may try to change the template.  If you don't remember clicking that box, say  No.     I don't have any recent experience working with protected templates.  I hope someone else can help you there.

    4) In addition to the above style issues we have had some issues with a change in one table effecting other tables throughout the document.  If there was a cell where the alignment was off a bit, a minor change would result in the table on the next page changing font color and certain rows going from left align to center.  We seemed to fix this by assigning specific styles to each row in all the different tables.  Wondering if there is a reason these tables were linked like this.  They were all defined as "Normal Text"

    I think this is the same problem as 3)

     5) I am wondering since I have macros saved to the template as a .dotm file, do the documents created from the template need to be save as .docm?  Right now I am having the users save the files as .docx and all the macros are in the file and work.  Wondering if this is effecting the integrity of the file?

    A file only needs to be "-m" if it contains macros.   All of your macros appear to be in the template.

     6)  With all of these issues, we have had to make multiple, multiple, multiple revisions.  When users are working in a document based on the template, the template is locked.  Sometimes I get a message saying it is locked for editing by "specific user", other times it just opens as a read-only template, and other times it has said that it is locked by me and I have nothing open.  I may get a request from a user to update a typo in a building block and I will have to wait until the end of the day when everyone has closed out of all of the documents before I can move a new one in.  Wondering if there is a better way to do this.

     


    I have to handle template updates the same way you do.  I keep a version  on my computer, make the changes there, and overwrite the one on the server when it's available.

     

    Pam


    • Marked as answer by Rex Zhang Wednesday, October 12, 2011 1:31 AM
    • Edited by PamCaswell Wednesday, October 12, 2011 3:52 AM readability
    Friday, October 7, 2011 12:01 AM
  • Thanks so much Pam.  I have been struggling with this for awhile and been taking a lot of heat at work when things don't act as they should.  These fixes will surely avert many headache.

    Adam

    Friday, October 7, 2011 7:33 PM
  • You are very welcome. 

    But I see I left a thought  dangling--because I was dithering whether to include it. I should have written:  Though your symptoms don't seem related to the Templates & Add-ins dialog's  Automatically update document styles, just for the heck of it, be sure that the checkbox before it is empty in the template and in all the docs based on it.

    Good luck with your documents.  Hopefully, you'll  also be able to reduce the number of styles used in those tables and help simplify your users lives.

    Pam


    • Edited by PamCaswell Friday, October 7, 2011 8:36 PM
    Friday, October 7, 2011 8:19 PM