3 Replies Latest reply on May 17, 2013 12:16 PM by peter minneapolis

    Are existing documents able to reference Template files?

    CDunc76

      Hello,

       

      I am still trying to get a grasp on using template files in InDesign so forgive me if this is more simple than I make it out to be.

       

      I have created a new Template file in InDesign CS6 with all of my Styles built in. I am trying to find out if I can actually "Apply" that template to another InDesign file that I have been working on for a while. I know I can Copy/Paste that content into the template but I am really hoping that there is a way to more or less have multiple Document files reference a single Template file, so if I make updates to the Styles in the Template file the other files will update automatically. I have researched utilizing the Book feature but that won't work for what I need to do. Any help you could offer would be greatly appreciated!

        • 1. Re: Are existing documents able to reference Template files?
          BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

          No. It doesn't work that way. You can't connect an INDD file to an

          external template.

           

          Bob

          • 2. Re: Are existing documents able to reference Template files?
            Joel Cherney Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            All a Template file is in InDesign is a normal InDesign file that has a read-only attribute applied to it. You open up an INDT file and start working, and when you whack control+s or command+s to save, it brings up the Save As dialog. That's it.

             

            When I want the styles in one document to appear in other documents, I go to the target documents and Load All Text Styles. It's kind of a manual version of style sync in Book files. You get a dialog where you can have all of the styles in your open document overwritten with the styles from the template, or you can pick and choose which ones come in.

             

            I am really hoping that there is a way to more or less have multiple Document files reference a single Template file, so if I make updates to the Styles in the Template file the other files will update automatically.

             

            This isn't generally the way that InDesign works - and the tools that do work this way are part of the Book feature, which you've already identified as unsuitable. It sounds to me like you are maybe waving the baton for a bunch of other designers or graphics producers or whatever, and you want them all to be forced to use the "approved" styles in a template. Maybe I'm wrong - in which case, we might be able to help you if you tell us more about what you're trying to do.

             

            But when I have to wave the baton for a bunch of other people, I just say "Every day, before you start work, import the styles from JoelWavesTheBaton.indd." Said style-source document's only graphical content is a picture of me looking aggravated with the caption "Pink slips come to those who ignore style guide rules." (This mostly works because we all know that it's a joke. Your mileage may vary.)

             

            Maybe a library would work for you.

             

            This plugin from Woodwing is often mentioned when this question comes up.

            • 3. Re: Are existing documents able to reference Template files?
              peter minneapolis Level 4

              The ".dot" files in Microsoft Word act the way you're describing. Word documents are linked to the .dot file (template) from which they were created. If you're familiar with MS Word, perhaps this is the feature you're hoping to find in InDesign.

               

              As others have noted here, InDesign template documents do not have any ongoing connection to the documents created from them, and the documents have no ongoing connection to the templates from which they were created.

               

              However, if you're thinking of something like text and graphics content that's been created in a "parent" document, that is pulled into other "child" documents, so that when the content in a parent is changed, the child content also changes, then InDesign's Linked Stories may work for you. Search Google for terms like "InDesign linked stories" without quotes for details.

               

              HTH

               

               

              Regards,

               

               

              Peter

              _______________________

              Peter Gold

              KnowHow ProServices

               

              CDunc76 wrote:

              ...

              I am really hoping that there is a way to more or less have multiple Document files reference a single Template file, so if I make updates to the Styles in the Template file the other files will update automatically.