FW: Word's "Insert/File, link to file" safe?

Subject: FW: Word's "Insert/File, link to file" safe?
From: David Chisma <dchisma -at- retaildir -dot- com -dot- au>
To: "TECHWR-L (E-mail)" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2000 15:23:37 +1100

Dave Chisma wrote:

I've had to assemble a 'manual' in Word 97 (now in Word 2000) using about 20
included documents. The included files are are dog's breakfast of other
people's work using a random assortment of templates and styles (and, of
course, the ubiguitous 'normal' style formatted in 100 different ways). The
manual now has at least a common set of page headers and footers, plus an
automated TOC and index (I did have to edit the chapters enough to give them
headings). The field code for including the chapters is { INCLUDETEXT
"chap_01.doc" } and so on.

The only error that Word makes is to randomly insert, for no apparent
reason, the 'mergeformat' switch. This makes the entire house of cards fall
apart until I go in a delete all instances of the mergeformat switch. With
even one mergeformat, the styles go completely feral.

The document works pretty good. I can edit chapters either as stand-alone
'source' documents or as part of the 'master' document (in which case I
would use the Ctrl+Shift+F7 key combination to update the source file).

David Chisma
Technical Writer
Retail Directions Group
dchisma -at- retaildir -dot- com -dot- au

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill [mailto:billross -at- nombas -dot- com]
Sent: Tuesday, 7 March 2000 4:16
Subject: Word's "Insert/File, link to file" safe?

Has anyone worked with Word's insert-a-linked-file "function"?
(This may or may not be OLE; you rearrange the links with the
EDIT/Links command.) Can it be trusted? I'm working with a
manual I inherited in the form of 15 chapter files, which would be
nice to preserve in that structure since it contains some sections
shared with other manuals.

I do know that their "master/subdocs" is faux functionality (even
in Word 2000! That's according to some responses I saw in the
microsoft.public.word.formatting.longdocs forum), and I'm not
talking about hyperlinks, either. I'm using RD fields now, but
you have to manually set the starting page number of each
individual file, and my boss is a programmer who has decreed the
manuals must be generated Automagically.

As a longtime sufferer of our beloved standard WP, I know from
hard experience that just because a command is there on the menu
doesn't mean it won't bite you, and usually not until you're
irrecoverably deep into a project.

So, has anyone given inserted linked files enough of a workout to
flash a Red, Yellow, or even Green light for it? I've already
found one page-breaky problem which I'll detail if anybody's
interested (only because it's one of those if-if-if-if's).

Bill Ross
Technical Communications Mgr.
Nombas, Inc., Medford, Mass.
bill -at- nombas -dot- com

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