4 Replies Latest reply on Apr 18, 2014 8:51 AM by sprynmd

    Excel chart: Copy as picture does not paste in FM container as picture

    sprynmd

      When someone copies a MSExcel chart and pastes it into a FileMaker container, it goes in as a WMF file. This works OK for Windows users, but Mac users can not see the chart. Even using the MSExcel option to "copy as picture" results in a WMF file when pasted into the FMP container. The Mac user sees only the top-left corner of the chart extremely zoomed in.

       

      We're trying to make it as easy as possible for the predominant PC users to copy a chart to the database. We can get it to work by copying as picture, pasting into Paint, saving, inserting. Our users will not put up with that many steps.

       

      Is there a way to make sure the paste goes in as a picture (preferrably JPG)?

       

      Details:

      FileMaker 13 server-hosted database (but happens with local file, too)

      FMP 13.0v2 on both Mac and PC

      Container data options: Reduce or enlarge..., maintain original proportions, Optimize for images

      MSExcel 2010 14.0.7116.5000 (32-bit)

      Windows: Microsoft Windows 7 Enterprise 6.1.7601 SP1

      Mac: OS X 10.9.2

       

      ...Mike

        • 1. Re: Excel chart: Copy as picture does not paste in FM container as picture
          Stephen Huston

          I believe the problem in x-platform support is that the clipboards in Mac/Win worlds are quite different in capabilities.

           

          On windows, the OS clipboard recognizes the WMF content as a file, and will paste it. On Mac, the Excel content being copied is not recognized as a complete known file type, so it doesn't behave the same.

           

          If you want JPEG files, you are going to need some type of plugin or scripted action to create the JPEG file, or run the users through the necessary hoops with second application.

           

          I prefer to use a utility which allows grabbing a screen selection, saving it to image format (JPEG or PNG) and then copy/paste or insert the file rather than having to paste content into another program. On Macs, the Grab utility does this fairly simply, though it generally defaults to TIFF files, and it is still more steps than a simple copy/paste of content.

          • 2. Re: Excel chart: Copy as picture does not paste in FM container as picture
            user19752

            I tested it on Win7/Excel2007 and MacOSX10.8 with FM12v4 and result no problem.

            Seems to be a displaying bug of FM13v2 on Mac.

            • 3. Re: Excel chart: Copy as picture does not paste in FM container as picture
              sprynmd

              I did some more testing.  All these tests are in the Windows environment in my original post.  In these tests I made use of the MSWord "Paste special" to help me see what all was available on the system clipboard.

               

              Senario 1 - MSExcel copy regular

              If I:

              1. In MSExcel, perform regular copy of chart

              2. In MSWord, perform "Paste special"

               

              I get the following format choices:

              - Microsoft Excel Chart Object

              - Bitmap

              - Picture (Enhanced Metafile)

              - Picture (GIF)

              - Picture (PNG)

              - Picture (JPEG)

              - Microsoft Office Graphic Object

               

              3. In MSWord, paste as Picture (JPEG)

              4. In MSWord, clear clipboard (just to make sure)

              5. In MSWord, perform regular copy of image just pasted

              6. In MSWord, perform "Paste special"

               

              I get the following format choices:

              - Bitmap

              - Picture (Enhanced Metafile)

              - Picture (GIF)

              - Picture (PNG)

              - Picture (JPEG)

              - Microsoft Office Graphic Object

              (chart object no longer available)

               

              Scenario 2 - MSExcel copy as picture

              If I:

              1 In MSExcel, perform "Copy as Picture"

              2. In MSWord, perform "Paste special"

               

              I get one choice:

              - Picture (Enhanced Metafile)

               

              Scenario 3 - Paste/copy from FileMaker

              If I:

              1. In MSExcel, perform regular copy of chart

              2. In FileMaker, paste into a container

              3. In FileMaker, copy from the container

              4. In MSWord, perform "Paste special"

               

              I get the following format choices:

              - Bitmap

              - Device Independent Bitmap

              - Picture (Enhanced Metafile)

               

              Conclusions

              This leads me to the following conclusions:

               

              • A MSExcel regular copy can put onto the system clipboard multiple object formats which would allow a paste into various applications.  An application would make use of the format which best matches its situation.

               

              • The "Paste special" is a way that Microsoft allows a user to have control over which format gets pasted.

               

              • But, it still appears that in MSWord, most formats are preserved because a subsequent copy from MSWord still shows all but the chart object.

               

              • The MSExcel "Copy as Picture" option only puts one format on the clipboard.

               

              • The "Picture (Enhanced Metafile)" format appears to be type WMF

               

              • Since FileMaker in a Windows environment doesn't give the user a choice, FileMaker defaults to the WMF format even if the others (like JPEG) are available.  This default is not compatible with the Mac.  I don't know enough to understand what the Bitmap and Device Independent Bitmap formats are.  Since the Mac displays an extremely cropped piece of the original chart, these bitmaps may be one of those bitmats which are poor image copies of the meta file.

               

              Does anyone have any corrections to these conlusions?

               

               

              ...Mike

              • 4. Re: Excel chart: Copy as picture does not paste in FM container as picture
                sprynmd

                In the upgrade from FMP12 to FMP13 I did notice a change in how the containers handle images.  This affected our compatibiity in Mac/PC and FMP/Go sharing.  Under 12 on a PC, people were finding that after a copy from Excel to FMP there were long waits for images to be displayed when viewing the record.  So I optimized the container for PDF instead of image to speed that up.  But then on the PC images would not stretch when resizing.  The change to 13 helped with issues like that.  What did break in 13 is the PC to Mac compatibility.  In 12 our PC users were pasting images which Macs could see.  No longer true in 13.