8 Replies Latest reply on Oct 17, 2012 2:45 PM by jerrytuker

    intermittent preview and print issue

    jerrytuker

      Hope someone can point me in the right direction.

      I have a simple form letter that displays field info into a letter. Here's the line I am using:

      The vehicle will be sold <<Auction Date>> at <<Auction Time>> at the

      <<Auction Location>>.


      Here's the problem: On some records this will print just fine. On others it will appear blank. This seems to be random. I have not found a pattern between the ones that do not print. All other lines in the same letter will pull the data and print just fine. I have checked the size of the box and that is ok. I have verified that it happens on both mac and windows. Any ideas?

      Thanks

      Jerry

        • 1. Re: intermittent preview and print issue
          sporobolus

          on 2012-10-16 18:05 jerrytuker wrote

          I have a simple form letter that displays field info into a letter.  Here's the line I am using:

          The vehicle will be sold <<Auction Date>> at <<Auction Time>> at the

          <<Auction Location>>.

          *

          *

          Here's the problem:  On some records this will print just fine.  On others it will appear blank.  This seems to be random.  I have not found a pattern between the ones that do not print.  All other lines in the same letter will pull the data and print just fine.  I have checked the size of the box and that is ok.  I have verified that it happens on both mac and windows.   Any ideas?

           

          need more context to diagnose this — which version of FileMaker? does the data

          display in browse mode but not in Preview? have you checked for conditional

          formatting? do the values display as regular fields but not as merge fields?

          does the layout use summary parts? when you say it seems random do you mean

          that a particular record will display the fields sometimes and the same record

          won't display the fields other times? ...

          • 2. Re: intermittent preview and print issue
            jerrytuker

            Thanks for the response.  Here's more info for the context.  The database is on our located on our server (FMS 11) and our clients use FM 11 Pro.  The data does display in browse mode and there is no coditional formatting. The values do display as a regular field and when the form letter is pulled up, the value will show.  However, If it hit preview or print the values disappear.  There are no summary parts on the layout, if you mean summary of calculations.  By random, I mean that one record will print it but another record will not.  It will consistently perform on one record while consistently not performing on another record. Hopes this helps.  THanks again for your help.

             

            Jerry

            • 3. Re: intermittent preview and print issue
              jerrytuker

              Should have proof read my info.  Sorry for the difficult reading. For clarity: [3rd sentence should read] The database is located on our server (FMS 11) and our client computers use FM 11 pro.  ..... [the sixth sentence should read] However, if I hit preview or print the values disappear.

               

              Jerry

              • 4. Re: intermittent preview and print issue
                sporobolus

                on 2012-10-17 14:23 jerrytuker wrote

                The data does display in browse mode and there is no coditional formatting. The values do display as a regular field and when the form letter is pulled up, the value will show.  However, If it hit preview or print the values disappear.

                 

                so on a record with the undesired behavior, the values in a regular field, as

                well as in a merge field, will display in Browse disappear when you go into

                Preview mode?

                 

                There are no summary parts on the layout, if you mean summary of calculations.

                 

                parts are what you manage with Layout > Part Setup … (sounds like you aren't

                using summary parts)

                 

                By random, I mean that one record will print it but another record will not.  It will consistently perform on one record while consistently not performing on another record.

                 

                do all fields in a given record either display or not display, or do some

                display but not others?

                 

                have you tried creating a new layout from scratch and starting with just one of

                the field and working up?

                 

                was the data imported or entered? if entered was it by you or someone else (who

                may have applied formatting to the text)?

                 

                i still feel like a clue is missing, but one possibility is that the data in

                one of the fields has special characters (or returns) or unusual formatting

                (such as a space or return character formatted to a very large font size); you

                could try TextStyleRemove() on the fields to test this theory

                • 5. Re: intermittent preview and print issue
                  jerrytuker

                  "so on a record with the undesired behavior, the values in a regular field, as

                  well as in a merge field, will display in Browse disappear when you go into

                  Preview mode?"

                   

                  Yes, that is correct.

                   

                   

                  do all fields in a given record either display or not display, or do some

                  display but not others?

                   

                  No.  On the records that do not display the values, there are 5 other merged values that do display just fine.

                   

                  have you tried creating a new layout from scratch and starting with just one of

                  the field and working up?

                   

                  No, I will try that.

                   

                  was the data imported or entered? if entered was it by you or someone else (who

                  may have applied formatting to the text)? 

                   

                  It is entered by a secretary who is also the end user for the form letter.

                   

                  i still feel like a clue is missing, but one possibility is that the data in

                  one of the fields has special characters (or returns) or unusual formatting

                  (such as a space or return character formatted to a very large font size); you

                  could try TextStyleRemove() on the fields to test this theory

                   

                  I will reexamine the text to see.  Not sure I follow the "TextStyleRemove()" instruction. 

                   

                  Thanks

                  • 6. Re: intermittent preview and print issue
                    sporobolus

                    on 2012-10-17 15:18 jerrytuker wrote

                    It is entered by a secretary who is also the end user for the form letter.

                     

                    if it was cut & pasted from some other application, it may carry formatting

                    that is causing the problem; a common way to prevent this is detailed here:

                     

                    <http://help.filemaker.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/5674/~/removing-text-formatting-from-a-field-in-filemaker-pro

                    • 7. Re: intermittent preview and print issue
                      Stephen Huston

                      In addition to a pasted format, I have encountered pasted invisible characters which caused preview to fail. In a couple of cases, the only solution was to clear the field and re-enter the data without using paste (even paste without format failed) to avoid getting the rogue ascii character.

                       

                      One option might be to use an auto-enter-by-calculation to clearn out on wanted characters, by filtering for only those characters to be allowed, thus causing all others to drop out.

                       

                      If one also uses Custom Menus to cause the Paste-command keyboard shortcut to actually Paste-without-style, I think the problem will go away.

                      • 8. Re: intermittent preview and print issue
                        jerrytuker

                        good info.  I will try all of these ideas tonight.  Thanks again.  I will repost and let you know what worked. 

                         

                        Jerry