I work in Prepress on a fast 8 core Mac Pro with 8GB DDR3 RAM.
Doing a Data Merge using InDesign CS4 - here are the details:
Blank document (setup as #10 envelope)
One text box with 10 fields:
FirstName LastName TrayNumber SortPosition
City State Zip
Intelligent Mail Barcode
8500 records in CSV file - no other data fields - just those placed in document
When merging 200 records, the merge is successfully done in around 3 seconds.
When trying to merge all 8500, the merge never completes - it takes about 15 minutes just to get to the "finding overset text...", and then I must close InDesign because it quits responding.
I tested doing a mail merge with the same data in Microsoft Word and it was done in a less than 2 minutes.
I tried this on 2 different Macs with the same non-results and can't believe InDesign's data merge functionality is this poor or inept.
Please - any insights?
It sounds like the merge is completeing OK, but it's failing when checking for oversets. I would say you have two options, do the merge in blocks, or uncheck the overset report druing the merge and use Live preflight to find the oversets instead.
Thanks for the tips Peter.
We did try splitting the files up by mailing tray (the 200 record merge I mentioned) and each smaller document ran very fast.
It is discouraging however, that lowly Microsoft Word's Mail Merge kicks the stuffing out of InDesign's Data Merge, albeit without InDesign's ability to handle variable graphics.
By the way, we are considering the subscription method of CS licensing. Do you know if the newer versions (CS5, 5.5 or 6) handle Data Merging any better?
Most people don't seem to have a problem with data merge at all ( or maybe it just doesn't get used that much) as we don't see hege numbers of posts about it here. I've never tried a merg of more than about 200 records, and I don't think I've done any in CS6. I will say that my memory is that CS4 was more flakey than CS5, though with regard to Data Merge.
I'm using CS6 and having the same problem described above. No problems with short merges, but trying to merge 7600 records with only 4 fields and no images Indesign freezes and becomes unresponsive. I've turned off the check for overset text, and still get the failure.
I'm running CS6 on the new Macbook Pro Retina w/ 16GB RAM, it seems that I should have adequate system resources. I can't image trying to actually do a catalog with more than a few hundred products with this software, talk about frustrating (oh wait, it already is frustrating).
I have the same problem on CS6, but mine IS a short merge (~120 records, 2 fields). It takes a while on the merge, but not unusual I thought. It freezes on creating the new document - have turned overset text report off and limited the number of records with the same freeze result.
On a Mac 10.5.8 running CS5.5 I am able to data merge 18,000+ records in one go without an issue. It takes about 30 minutes and the dialog box sits on the end part for ages, but for me it is a case of "be patient" and eventually the dialog "no overset text found" comes up and voila, PDF made. As for CS6, I can't say.
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