Quick FrameMaker tips

Here’s a running list of FrameMaker tips I am compiling. I shall continue to update these, so feel free to bookmark and keep visiting this post 🙂

These are quick to read and are an immense productivity boosters. Happy authoring!

  • Refresh the display by pressing Ctrl+L, if the display doesn’t seem correct while authoring.
  • Create a new table row by hitting Ctrl+Enter.
  • Add a tab inside a table cell by pressing Esc+Tab.
  • Use FluidView format to preview documents. More info here.
  • Modify the ClipboardFormatsPriorities property in the maker.ini file, to change the order of Paste Special options or the default paste option. Use this Google search to find the relevant information.
  • Open the Paste Special dialog box, when pasting, by pressing Ctrl + Shift + V.
  • Apply character formats using Ctrl+8 or F8. See a demo here.
  • Apply paragraph formats using Ctrl+9 or F9. See a demo here.
  • Create a site dictionary containing organization-wide terms like, product names, company name, and so on. It helps all your writers use spell checking effectively. More info is here.
  • Run advanced searches in FrameMaker search window by using wildcards and some regular expressions. A list of wildcards is here.
  • Jump to hyperlinks and cross-reference destinations in a FM doc by holding down Alt and Ctrl while clicking an xref.
  • Lock or unlock a FM document using the shortcut Esc F l k. Or you can use the lock icon in the toolbar for Toggle View Only. Try this option if you suddenly cannot edit a document  in spite of having edit permissions on the file.
  • Use this desk pinup to quickly refer to keyboard shortcuts in Structured FM.
  • Use this mind map to quickly refer to keyboard shortcuts in Structured FM.

What quick tips do you have under your belt? Share them in the comments below. Feel free to add a link (or two!) for more details.

FrameMaker tools, utilities, and resources

Below is a running list of FrameMaker utilities, tools, add-ins, extensions, templates, and so on. Some are free, some paid. Some are recent and maintained, some outdated. Nevertheless, a big thanks to all the creators for providing these.

  1. Compilation of FM tools at http://www.techknowledgecorp.com/help/tools.html
  2. FM tools offered by Leximation at http://www.leximation.com/tools/
  3. A bit outdated compilation of sites offering FM tools at http://www.jeanweber.com/newsite/?page_id=73
  4. Translators for FM around MIF, LaTeX, BibTeX, et al at http://www.cs.stir.ac.uk/~kjt/software/framemaker/framemaker.html
  5. Adobe FrameMaker tutorials, training, and templates on about.com at http://desktoppub.about.com/od/framemaker/Adobe_FrameMaker_Tutorials_and_Training.htm

Share the links to free or commercial FrameMaker resources in the comments section.

Create custom menus to personlize FrameMaker

I blogged on my team blog here about how to create menus in FrameMaker.

FrameMaker lets you do the following with no coding involved!

  • Create new menus.
  • Add tags as menus.
  • Modify existing menu commands.

How does it help you?

  • Remove options to edit template components, from an author’s FrameMaker installation.
  • Personalize the existing FrameMaker menus by rearranging commands on menus or moving out a sub-menu command that you use frequently.
  • Shorten FrameMaker menus by removing distracting (for you) options.

Let me know how and why you use FrameMaker menu customization, in the comments section.

How to easily manage formats in FrameMaker

  • You want to see which formats are currently in use?
  • You want to see only the relevant formats in the catalog to quickly format a document?
  • You imported formats from a different document and want to delete the unused ones?
  • You want to bring up a format in the list temporarily to be able to apply formats using keyboard shortcuts?
  • You want your settings to be applicable to all documents you edit on your machine?

The answer to all your questions are the new paragraph, character, and table catalogs in FrameMaker 10. Watch the video demo below to figure.

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