5 Replies Latest reply on Jun 9, 2015 5:28 AM by owenv1983

    Auto table of contents update




      I'm adding content to a user manual.  The manual already has a table of contents which interacts with the corresponding figures (images) it relates to in the PDF.


      The content I need to add goes between the TOC and the start of the instructions in the manual.  The figure numbers in the main content of the manual for the existing images update automatically when new images are added but not in the TOC.  Is there any way I can get the figure number in the TOC to change automatically when the number changes in the image it relates to.  It would be handy if there is a way for the page number it's on to update too if anyone know how to do this?


      The manual I'm adding to wasn't started by me so I don't know how the figure numbers change automatically, any advice on how the original author may have done this would be greatly appreciated.

        • 1. Re: Auto table of contents update
          John Mensinger Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Of course you understand that we who don't have access to the file could only make educated guesses with respect to the methods employed by the original designer.


          The automatic figure numbering may be a numbered list threaded through the caption frames of the figures.


          For anything in the TOC to be automatic, it would have to be set up to capture Paragraph styles, and may already be done that way. However, even a properly done TOC doesn't update in real time, so you'd have to investigate. To do that, click an active insertion point anywhere in the existing TOC and then open the Layout menu. If the Layout menu presents an active Update Table of Contents item, the TOC is linked and ready to update. If Update Table of Contents is inactive, then the existing TOC was built manually, or has since been broken.

          • 2. Re: Auto table of contents update
            owenv1983 Level 1

            Thanks for the quick resposne.  I appreciate any advice given on the figure numbering would be a guess but it gives me a direction to go in.


            I'm actually fairly new to InDesign so I've got a lot to learn.  I'm not a designer, I'm a tech support engineer, but part of my role involves updating user manuals so I need to get stuck in!


            The 'Update Table of Contents' isn't active.  If it's been broken is there a standard way to fix it?  Or am I better off setting it up from scratch so it updates in future?

            • 3. Re: Auto table of contents update
              John Mensinger Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              owenv91556786 wrote:

              If it's been broken is there a standard way to fix it?  Or am I better off setting it up from scratch so it updates in future?

              Either way, you'll be starting over with it, in a sense. InDesign's TOC feature has a sort of "one-off" nature. You generate it one time; and after that, you update as the document changes. If sweeping structural changes are desired, it's is sometimes best to delete the existing TOC and generate a new one.


              A TOC workflow:

              1. Setup and/or identify one or more Paragraph styles to be captured to one or more levels of the TOC; usually heading/sub-heading styles, but any styles could be used.
              2. With nothing selected, navigate to the page where the TOC is to appear and choose Layout > Table of Contents to launch the Table of Contents dialog
              3. At the very top, you have options for loading previously saved TOC styles (which presumably you wouldn't have until after you save one or more), setting a title that will appear at the top of the page, and assigning a paragraph style to that title.
              4. The Styles in Table of Contents section is where you choose which styles to target as TOC entries, choosing them from those that exist in the document, shown in the Other Styles list, and adding them so they appear in the Include Paragraph Styles list.
              5. Then, with a style selected in the Include Paragraph Styles list, set options for entries based on that style in the Style section below.
                1. To apply styling that differs from the target style (you may not want the TOC to list Section Headings with the same formatting as they carry in the document, for instance), you can apply or set up a dedicated paragraph style for the entry. (I strongly recommend you take the time to set up TOC entry styles even if the formatting isn't different initially. That way, you have future re-styling control independent of the "interior" styles.)

              That should be enough to get you started. After you've finished with the dialog and you click OK, you're left with a loaded cursor. Click it on the page to place the TOC text frame.

              • 4. Re: Auto table of contents update
                Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                If the numbers are updating in Real Time the original designer most likely seti it up manually using Cross-References....

                • 5. Re: Auto table of contents update
                  owenv1983 Level 1

                  Many thanks for all your help gents.


                  The TOC workflow seems failrly in depth for my current level of InDesign ability so I better get stuck in!