5 Replies Latest reply on Jul 15, 2011 4:59 AM by Peter Spier

    Change default tab stops to every 10mm (instead of 1/2in)

    Francis Devereux Level 1

      Hi,

       

      I'm working on a project that involves migrating thousands of PageMaker documents to InDesign.

       

      We've noticed that some of the documents have the wrong layout after being imported into InDesign. I've tracked down some of these layout problems to tabs - it seems that in PageMaker the default tab stops are every 10mm, but in InDesign they are every 1/2 inch, which obviously affects the look of documents that use tabs.

       

      Is there any way to change the default tab stops in InDesign to be every 10mm? I am going to have to script this with ExtendScript or do it in InDesign Server eventually, so I can easily apply it to lots of documents, but if someone can show me how to do it through the user interface I should be able to work out how to script it.

       

      Thanks,

       

      Francis

        • 1. Re: Change default tab stops to every 10mm (instead of 1/2in)
          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

          I can't answer your question directly, but my gut says this is a styles issue, and my guess is that your Pagemaker users didn't use them. I also would guess that if you manage to change the default tab stop in ID, you'll wind up with OTHER files that don't convert correctly in some other way, but I'd love to here from someone with a better memeory of PM and some scripting skills.

           

          I think it's probably unrealistic to think you are going to migrate ten PM docs, let alone thousands, without having to do a lot of manual cleanup in ID. The formats are quite different, and the quality of conversions is highly dependent on the quality and type of construction in PM. One of the biggest obstacles, by the way, is embedded images in the PM files. ID can't read them and only uses the preview. If you need the images, you must open every file and unembed everything before converting (I have no idea if THAT'S scriptable). Missing PM links are also a problem.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Change default tab stops to every 10mm (instead of 1/2in)
            Francis Devereux Level 1

            Yes, I am coming to the realisation that its unrealistic to expect that we'll be able to migrate thousands of documents without manual cleanup. What I am trying to do at the moment is to see whether there any "quick wins" that we can automate that will reduce the amount of manual cleanup we have to do.

             

            With this particular tab stop issue there are many documents with the same issue that look like they've been created by copying an existing document and editing. So if it turns out that changing the default tab stops messes up other documents I can try to detect this "family" of documents and only change the tab stops for them.

             

            I wonder whether the default tab stops in PageMaker are always 10mm, or whether they are sometimes different.

             

            Thanks for the tip about embedded images, I've some strange things happening with them (they have a filename associated with them in PageMaker but this gets lost and changed to something like Image1234.TIF in InDesign - possibly only when the original file can't be found at the time of conversion).

            • 3. Re: Change default tab stops to every 10mm (instead of 1/2in)
              Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

              In my US version of PM7 the default tabs are at .5" intervals.

              • 4. Re: Change default tab stops to every 10mm (instead of 1/2in)
                Francis Devereux Level 1

                Thanks. I also have the US version of PageMaker 7.0 (it says "North America" on the box) but my OS locale is set to English (United Kingdom), which specifies Metric measurement units. I get 10mm tab stops by default.

                • 5. Re: Change default tab stops to every 10mm (instead of 1/2in)
                  Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                  My guess would be that there's some hard coded defaults that change with Locale so if you have a way of determining that from the PM file, you have a basis for sorting to run your script.