9 Replies Latest reply on May 29, 2009 3:39 PM by FlyFisher

    Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right

    FlyFisher

      Title

      Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right

      Post

       

      Printing files converted from the Mac to the  PC version results in the page overflowing the borders with the print chopped off from the right side. 

       

      The records for our adult students are  in a pair of linked FileMaker filesMac version 4.0v3., customized  in the mid-1990s by a developer who volunteered his services.

       

      The data is stored in two separate files “Students” and “Categories” that link up via the student ID number and that must be kept in the same folder. Opening “Students” simultaneously opens “Categories.” The consultant designed the files with scripts, so they would layout and print the data to match up with a paper form we had been using. The “Students” file contains student information (name, address, phone, etc.) and the “Categories” file contains various categories of work completed by the student. Two quirks that came with the customized Mac version: 1. Files are saved by selecting “Quit” rather than “Save.” 2. The developer put a “Huge Monitor” and “Powerbook” option.. Switching views sometimes meant opening both files and setting the page setup to 93% print reduction or we would have the current printing problem.

       

      After converting our files to v10, when we tried to print using  the “Print all found students” script, the text appeared larger and the right side of the page was cut off. I thought I would be able to fix the problem by adjusting print size, so we purchased two copies of FileMaker. Help!  We need to do our student write-ups in May, so students our students can graduate in June.

       

      Specs

       

      Dell Optiplex GX270

      Intel(R)

      Pentium(R) 4 CPU 2.8 GHz

      2.79 GHz, 1.25 GB RAM

       

      Printer:  HP LaserJet 4700 PCL 6

       Driver:  HPZSS41A.DLL 60.52.262.32

      - on City of Cambridge intranet; printer network also used by others; printer options do not include print reduction

       

      OS :  Windows XP Professional

      Build 2600.xpsp_sp3_gdr.080814-1236 (Service Pack 3)

       

      Filemaker Pro 10.0v1

       

       What options are selected in the print setup?  That is, page size, scaled percentage, orientation, etc.

      Page setting is for normal 8.5 x11” paper. The printer setting does not have a % print reduction option. This might be part of the problem, but I’m not sure. I tried connecting with an older printer (no longer available) with a % option, when I set the option for 93% on one file, the setting would disappear after I saved it, closed the file and then opened the other one to set it for 93%.  

      Files converted from:FileMaker Pro Mac version 4.0v3 (7/8/99) with Y2K updates on a Mac G3 OS 8.6

       

       

      Saving the files to PDF and then printing doesn't’t help.

       

      I have screen snapshots of all of the scripts and what the file looks like when open if that will help..

       

      Thanks.

        • 1. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
          philmodjunk
            

          I'm a little confused here. Did you see the problem appear when you switched from Mac to PC, when you upgraded to version 10 or did both changes take place simultaneously?

           

          Windows machines do use a little more space to display the same text than Macs. Thus, this difference could explain the problem you are reporting. If the original database used fonts that aren't installed on your windows computer, a different font is substituted and this could produce the problem you are seeing also.

           

          Are you able to enter layout mode and adjust your layouts?

           

          The simplest fix I can suggest is to enter layout mode and select a slightly smaller font size for the text and fields in your layout. This is a quick and easy adjustment that you can make. You may also be able to adjust your layouts by changing margin settings on the layouts. If the layouts have been set with fixed margins of 1 inch, for example, you may be able to get usable output by changing the margins to 0.75 inches.

           

          To change font size:

          Enter layout mode, right-click the field or layout text and choose "text format". From here you can select smaller sizes or a different font.

           

          To change margins:

          Enter layout mode and select layouts | Layout Settings... | Printing

          • 2. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
            FlyFisher
              

            The font on the Mac and PC versions is 9 point Arial, which should be compatible. The problem used to occur sometimes on the Macs when we switched the files from a PowerBook to a desktop Mac. There were even two settings in Layout, one for PowerBook and one for "Huge Monitor." The printing problem would sometimes show up when working on one computer and then printing from disks on the other, but it was solvable by going to page setup on both linked files and saving the settings for a 93% page reduction. Just after we got the PC Filemaker 10, I tested setting page reduction on both files, but the program wouldn't save the settings in either file. Then IT switched our older HP printers out for newer ones, and new HP printer page setups don't even offer a page reduction option. 

             

            I have been afraid to change the layout, since the consultant who set up the files made it extremely clear that we should not change anything. He even left a message in the "Categories" file which says: "If you see this message, close the document immediately and do not, under any circumstances, use it!!!"  To experiment, I copied both files to a new folder and set up sample files to experiment with layout and font settings as you suggested.

             

            The pages look normal on the screen, but, when printing using the script, look almost like they were zoomed to 115-125% which chops off the right side of the page. Changing to 8 point made no difference in the printout. The printer would not print when I changed the size to 6 point.

             

            Margin settings were already .17" and the text prints almost to the very edge of the page.

             

            Other suggestions?

             

             

            • 3. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
              philmodjunk
                

              "I tested setting page reduction on both files, but the program wouldn't save the settings in either file."

              This is a known issue. You can learn more about in the "Printing Challenges" forum.

               

              The pages look normal on the screen, ...

              In Browse or Preview mode? Checking the appearance in preview mode might tell us something.

               

              ...but, when printing using the script, look almost like they were zoomed to 115-125% which chops off the right side of the page. Changing to 8 point made no difference in the printout. The printer would not print when I changed the size to 6 point.

              Is there any chance that the script switches to a different layout to print? If so, then you may be editing the format of the wrong layout.

               

              Try printing from the layout by choosing print from the file menu. Does that produce the same results?

               

              If you created completely new layouts, do you see the same behavior?

              • 4. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
                RayMentor
                   Frustrating, I know. Could you work around the need to reduce by distributing the fields so you could have them on one page?
                • 5. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
                  philmodjunk
                     Yeah but text should not be printing as "125%" larger, that suggests a problem that can be fixed.
                  • 6. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
                    FlyFisher
                      

                    To answer the queries from Raymentor and PhiModJunk-

                     

                    Could you work around the need to reduce by distributing the fields so you could have them on one page? /If you created completely new layouts, do you see the same behavior? I don't know how to set up a paired file like the ones we are trying to print. A simple single file prints okay. I am afraid to mess around with resetting the real files due to the warning the consultants left in the "Categories" file. (see my preceding message 4).

                     

                    Try printing from the layout by choosing print from the file menu. Does that produce the same results?  Printing from the file menu produces a normal sized page but any long fields (3-17 lines) are cut off.

                     

                     

                    In Browse or Preview mode? Checking the appearance in preview mode might tell us something.  Browse and preview look the same. Neither mode shows all of the files. You have to select the entry area of a field to see the whole thing if it is longer than 3 lines. However, when printed properly the page shows all lines of each field.

                     

                    Since our HP printers no longer have a page reduction option, is there someway to do it via scripting? (Note that I know beans about scripting)?

                    • 7. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
                      philmodjunk
                        

                      "I don't know how to set up a paired file like the ones we are trying to print"

                      And I have know idea what you mean by a "paired file".

                       

                      "You have to select the entry area of a field to see the whole thing if it is longer than 3 lines. However, when printed properly the page shows all lines of each field."

                      This gives me the key clue. Your script is switching to a different layout customized for printing. Since you are not modifying that layout, you won't see any changes to your printed output. I can tell this because Filemaker Fields can be set to shrink but they can't be set to "grow". If you are seeing text in your print out that is not visible on your layout in browse mode, then your system must have another layout with larger fields.

                       

                      Either you or a consultant should be able to fix the problem by making adjustments to the print layout that your script is using. Enter layout mode and then pull down the layouts menu to search for this layout.

                      • 8. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
                        FlyFisher
                          

                        I think you are right PhilModJunk. Any developers in the Boston/Cambridge, MA area on this forum?

                         

                        There are two files. They are linked together via a student ID number. One file contains student personal data ("Students") and the data on the other file  ("Categories") contains a record of the student's work. When you open "Students," the data on "Categories" also appears. They print via a script, "Print all found students."

                        • 9. Re: Printer or Script Problem? Converted old Mac files to PC FM10 don't print right
                          FlyFisher
                            

                          :smileyhappy:  Solved!  However, a caution for anyone converting old FileMaker Mac files to the pc version if they count on scaling in the pc.

                           

                          PhilModJunk was right. The layout needed to be modified. It turns out that Office just won't scale properly the way Macs do. Since the layout mode isn't wysiwyg, I don't think it is something I could have figured out. I was afraid of losing al lot of student records if did something wrong while trying to change the layout. We hired a local consultant who very quickly fixed the layout problem, so now we can finally print.

                           

                          I do wish that FileMaker could put something about this potential problem in their handbook or other documentation, so others could avoid the same problem by fixing the layout at the beginning of the transition.