TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Subject:Distributing DOT files via the intranet (take 3) From:Jeroen Hendrix <jhe -at- POLYDOC -dot- COM> Date:Wed, 24 Feb 1999 10:54:41 +0100
Thanks to all you who responded, some sound advice but let me just clarify
things a little further (the original message is below).
We (or better our client) do not want users to download the templates to
their p.c. for several reasons:
Not every user has his or her own PC. It is possible that someone will work
on a department's PC or the PC of a colleague. This way you can never be
sure everyone will treat the templates in the same way. This can create
confusion and existence of multiple versions.
The other thing is that when we let users download the dot files (protected
or not) we can never be sure they use the latest version. And, once the
files have been installed, you can never be sure whether they will be
replaced with any new version.
Furthermore, the intranet will be the starting point for everything, from
there all other actions will be taken, such as writing a report. The
templates do make use of the intranet as well, macros extract data from
html-pages to fill combo boxes or list boxes in userforms with the latest
Mapping a drive, or creating a virtual directory on a server, isn't a
solution either I'm afraid. Not everyone within the organisation is nor
will be connected to a single dedicated machine or network. There are
locations abroad with their own network, people will dial in from all over
the world etc. The only shared access is through http, everyone can access
the intranet. That's why we want them to go to a website, click on the
desired template which opens Word with that template.
There was also the suggestion that users could open the .dot file and then
save it as a .doc file. The problem with this is that we can never be sure
that each and every user will do this, and that the included macros will
not always work. Some dialog boxes for instance only pop up when opening
the document, not on opening the template.
That's about it, I hope this extra information helps, again thanks for all
the responses so far.
Mail to: jhe -at- polydoc -dot- com
A few weeks ago, I posted a question on how to distribute DOT-files via a
company Intranet. Unfortunately no-one replied, but perhaps this time
someone out there has an answer. The problem is the following:
Every employee in the organisation should be able to have access to the
latest versions of company templates. We do not want to distribute the
files physically to everyone because of version control and possible
(human) errors. A major problem is that not everyone in the organisation
can connect to the same dedicated server, but everyone can connect to the
Intranet. Therefore we want to distribute the Word 97 templates via this
intranet. Users should be able to surf to a site, click the template of
their choice, upon which Microsoft Word opens with this template.
We found out that we have to specify the proper MIME type (dot) and
Application Type (MSWord) on both the Client's browser and on the Server.
When this is done, MSWord is started all right, but with the template
itself, not wit a new document based on that template.
Now how can we get Word to open a new document based on that template? Is
this even possible?
I hope someone in that vast community of tech writers knows of a simple
solution to this problem, or even of a complex one. I would be obliged if
you'd share it with me (and 4000 others)