13 Replies Latest reply on Jan 4, 2012 7:59 AM by MW Design

    OLE option in Indesign CS5

    Mohan B S

      We are mainly doing charts and table in Excel. How to import Excel Graphs in Indesign CS5?

       

      I know how to import Graphs and Table in the below give list of format

       

      1. Drag and drop into Indesign File.

      2. Copy and paste Excel graphs into indesign.

      3. Copy the graph and paste in Illustrator save as eps format and then import like place object in Indesign.

      4. Create a PDF and import in Indesign

       

      These options are very long process.

       

      Can we have any solution for this problem?

       

      We need OLE option - If we create a graph or table in excel, we should have insert object option in Indesign.

        • 1. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
          Dov Isaacs Adobe Employee

          The only Adobe application that supports Microsoft's OLE technology is Adobe FrameMaker and that support is somewhat iffy. The problem with Microsoft's OLE is that the “receiving application” (in this case InDesign) must use an imaging model that is fully compatible with the “sending application” (in this case, Microsoft Excel). With OLE, the sending application effectively “takes over” for display, print, etc. of its own content in the receiving application. This is difficult enough to do when the applications are both Windows GDI application (FrameMaker  under Windows is for the most part, GDI-based). But none of the Creative Suite applications use that brain-dead GDI imaging model. And even if InDesign, for example, was able to intercept and convert the GDI to Adobe imaging model elements, the results would certainly not measure up to the typographical, graphics, and color quality of “native content” in InDesign or at least content converted into an InDesign document.

           

          Having said that, the idea behind OLE is great and potentially very useful. In the past I had some FrameMaker documents that made extensive use of Excel OLE objects. But the glitches were exceptionally frustrating and it required that anyone who received my source documents not only had my Excel files in the designated directory, but also had the exact same version of Excel and be on the same platform as I was.

           

          You should assume that Adobe will likely never implement OLE for InDesign.

           

                    - Dov

          • 2. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
            BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

            Dov Isaacs wrote:

             

            You should assume that Adobe will likely never implement OLE for InDesign.

            Having lived through Pagemaker's implementation, this is the best news I've heard all day.

             

            Bob

            • 3. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
              John Hawkinson Level 5

              We need OLE option - If we create a graph or table in excel, we should have insert object option in Indesign.

              So, there are ways to achieve this without OLE.

               

              For instance, for a table (not a graph), you can place an Excel spreadsheet (or rectangular subset range thereof) as a Link (requires turning on a non-default option in Preferences, quite confusingly). Then, when the Excel document is changed, InDesign will notice the change and you can click "update link" and it will update to the new Excel source.

               

              That's not quite live. You can make it live with the scripting interface, though. I have a script (kind of in beta testing now) that notices when this condition occurs and autoupdates the link. That's not quite live either, but it's really really close. FIve second delay?

               

              On the other hand, graphs are a harder problem. InDesign can do the above for an image file, but you have to get the image out of Excel. Usually those images look so bad that I don't know why you'd want to anyhow. Perhaps you can solve this problem with VB on the Excel side, ensuring that an image file is regularly exported whenever its linked content changes.

               

              I suppose there might be 3rd party plugins that handle an OLE interface...

              • 4. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                Actually, I’ve had success with copy/paste from Excel to ID on Windows. I haven’t tried it on Mac in quite some time, but back in earlier versions it was horrible.

                 

                 

                 

                Bob

                • 5. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                  [Jongware] Most Valuable Participant

                  Since Excel's graphic improvements towards shades, gradients, and shadows, all you get nowadays is a butt-ugly lo-res PNG image no matter what. I'd have to check but I think the only way to get something resembling the original graphic is to 'save as PDF' from within Excel.

                  • 6. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                    BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                    Just tried a copy/paste from Excel 2010 to InDesign CS5.5 on Windows.

                     

                     

                     

                    The result is fine. Looks great even zoomed way in.

                     

                     

                     

                    Not sure I’d go to press with that but I don’t do much press work anymore anyway.

                     

                     

                     

                    Bob

                    • 7. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                      enstrom1

                      Re: Copy Paste from Excel

                       

                      I've tried that a number of times and with our excel tables it just doesn't work without spending a very long time reformatting the cells, columns, rows, shading etc..  If I try any of the importing of a table then I am always missing several lines of data from the bottom of the table no matter how small I make the rest that did come into ID.  Another of our tech writers found a process which is extensive, hard to remember and includes roughly 8 different steps and windows that is not acceptable.  So far the best I've found it item 4 from the first post here which is making a pdf from Excel then importing that.  While it is easier than the next best thing that we have been able to figure out it still is a poor system at best.  It probably hurts so much because PageMaker is much simpler even though it does use the OLE process.   I would be happy to send one of you experts a copy of one of our excel tables to see what you can do along with a pdf so you can see what it is supposed to look like when done right.

                       

                      thanks,

                      • 8. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                        BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                        This was about charts, not table.

                         

                        If your tables are fully formatting in Excel then use the file place command and browse to the Excel file. In the options dialog choose formatted table.

                         

                        Bob

                        • 9. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                          enstrom1 Level 1

                          Thanks Bob, sorry for my misreading that but Mohan had stated "they were doing charts and tables".

                           

                          I've tried the "File Place" process many times and it doesn't bring in all the table information or keep the formatting for all of what it does bring in. Would you like a copy of one of my excel sheets to take a look at it yourself?  I would love for someone to figure out what we are doing wrong.  It might even be in our multi formula excel sheet that is the ultimate problem.  ???

                           

                          thanks,

                           

                           

                           

                           

                           

                          • 10. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                            BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                            What version of Excel are you using? Are you saving as XLS or XLSX?

                             

                             

                             

                            Bob

                            • 11. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                              enstrom1 Level 1

                              These are all done/saved as .xls.

                              • 12. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                                BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                                You can email me the file and I’ll take a look.

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                Bob (bob AT theindesignguy DOT com)

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                Note to lurkers, please do not send me unsolicited requests for help. Keep it in this forum.

                                • 13. Re: OLE option in Indesign CS5
                                  MW Design Level 4

                                  While maybe not a great solution, when I was doing reports for an insurance company using their spreadsheets back in the early 1990s, we just ouput them to PDF and placed them. Because we were doing so many reports at the time, we wrote some VB script to semi-automate the process.We pushed the filename + sheet name into the PDF filename in the process. I don't have access to those scripts anymore due to selling the company, but I suspect one of the Excel forums has examples.

                                   

                                  The PDFs obviously retain everything well. Print very nicely and save a lot of faffing about. Especially if there are charts involved.

                                   

                                  Take care, Mike