Monday, August 20, 2018

Well, Well, Wel! - PDF Production now fixed

Hot on the heels of my last blog about Microsoft breaking how FrameMaker prouduces PDF file I can now report that the latest Windows Update on my machine has fixed the problem.

On Thursday last week when I shut my machine down I noticed that there was a windows updated in the offing. So, full of anticipation, I started my machine this morning and immediately went to FrameMaker 11 to produce a pdf file of an S1000D Data Module from the Bike Pack.

I have not been dissappointed.

I can now produce PDF files with the earlier versions of FrameMaker. I only intended to try FM11 and FM12 however,on the strength of those findings I installed our S1000D application on FrameMaker 7.2 (yes we have some clients sitll using this version) and I am pleased to report that that venerable application also produces PDF files.

I hope that our friends at Microsoft don't introduce another little problem like that.

Thank you Microsoft for fixing the problem. Also thank you Adobe for letting us have patches for the two latest versions of FrameMaker.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Windows Update and FrameMaker

Some of you who are using Windows 10, and I understand that this is an increasing number, may have been afflicted by the Windows Update in June this year.

FrameMaker is an application which is much used in the Technical Publications industry. In it unstructured form this has been in use for many years mainly because its design enables large publications to be written and published. The functionality allows for the document to divided into separate files which can then be brought together via a 'Book'. This allows cross referencing across the whole book, updating of variables, and printing as a complete publication, usually through the excellent PDF output mechanism. With the advent of SGML and XML the functionality was increased to handle this markup method so with the advent of S1000D what better tool to use when it has been configured correctly to handle the numerous data module types now available (Issue 1 change 6 through to Issue 4.2).

Imagine the alarm and consternation when we discovered that the June Windows 10 update introduced a 'bug' which prevented FrameMaker from printing to PDF. An increasing number of reports of the FrameMaker message "Cannot print because the selected default printer is not compatible with FrameMaker (Cannot query escape 768.)" I understand that there was a problem in getting Microsoft to understand that there was actually a problem. The July Windows 10 Update has come and gone without a fix. Thankfully Adobe did some work on this and had provided patches for its last two FrameMaker versions. That does mean and FrameMaker prior to version 2015 are still without the ability to output to pdf. This 'bug' also prevented using the alternative 'Save As PDF' option although this route did not offer the error message.

Here we are in August, waiting for the next Windows 10 Update to see if Microsoft have acknowledged that there is a problem and done something about it. Don't hold your breath!