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[Solved] Sharing document text into multiple documents

PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2016 12:46 pm
by gplowther
We are writing a few manuals for our product and have some common text/sections that we'd like to reference in multiple manuals, for example, how to drive the website needs to be in a configuration manual, but also in a user manual.

Looking at master documents this seems to be the idea of using multiple documents to create a single large document. Does anyone know though if you can use the single documents in more than one master document.

Ideally I'd like the text in all the documents more than a reference to a different manual, so as an example the 'How to drive the website' would have the text in 'website.odt' but then would be seen as flowing text (that is, not a link, but the actual text) as section x of the configuration manual and section y of the user manual.

If I then updated the text in website.odt, it would 'automagically' update the text seen in both the configuration and user manuals next time they were opened.

Any ideas/pointers greatly received!

Re: Sharing document text into multiple documents

PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2016 1:48 pm
by acknak
Greetings and welcome to the community forum!

I would manage this using sections: Insert > Section ...

OO Writer document sections can take their content from another document, or from a section in another document. A "section" in OO Writer has nothing to do with the document structure; it's just a set of paragraphs.

Insert > Section > Section ... tick Link:ON, select a file (and optionally a section name from the file), and confirm. Voila, the linked text appears in the document.

The updating is not automatic; every time you open the document, you'll be prompted to "Update all links?". If you confirm the prompt, the linked content will be refreshed. The individual links can be updated manually as well.

I'm not 100% sure but you may have to work in OO's native ODF document (file) format to get this feature. Best practice is to work in ODF anyway.

I expect combining content from different files will pretty much require using styles, or you'll soon go mad trying to keep the formatting consistent.

Re: Sharing document text into multiple documents

PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2016 10:43 am
by gplowther
That does exactly what I was looking for - Many thanks

Re: [Solved] Sharing document text into multiple documents

PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2016 10:55 am
by floris v
Foxcole used to say that you can use multiple master documents to publish the same child documents with a different formatting - use the same names for all styles you use in your child documents and override the settings for those styles in the master documents. Before you start doing this with a serious project, you should first play with some sandbox files.