First steps in resolving your output

You can run into a lot of issues with your ePublisher-generated output, ranging from warnings and errors in the log to content that isn't updated to unexpected formatting or worse. It's hard to write up a list that covers every reason you might not get the output you're expecting; there are so many factors to consider. It could be: a. An ePublisher software bug b. A problem with the source documents (when confused, Word or FrameMaker can send some bad code to the WIF) c. An incompatible third-party application (typically virus scan or security-related) d. A corrupt file (Frame, Word, ePublisher, Rasterizer, etc.) e. A browser-related problem (CSS/HTML limitations, unsupported images, security issues) f. System-specific problems (insufficient memory, overworked processors, slow network or local drives, Windows glitches, etc.) g. User error (bad content, bad installation, bad ePublisher usage) h. Simple temporary issues (file caches, network congestion, file access permissions, etc.)

Now, I've been doing this long enough to develop a general understanding of these effects and the types of problems each one typically causes. But troubleshooting ePublisher output issues is never a simple job. I wanted to write this article, though, to give you a few tips for figuring things out on your own.

Tip 1: If you're getting formatting or image problems (things aren't updating or an image isn't being rendered correctly), try clearning the cache. Close all your open files and folders (except for the main project folder), and then delete the Data and Output directories. Choose Regenerate All from the Project menu to complete the entire conversion process from scratch. If some changes you made still don't appear, try clearing your browser's cache (temporary files) or test the output with a different browser.

Tip 2: Image problems. Issues affecting images in ePublisher output range from blurry, distorted graphics to missing images or red PostScript errors in the log. There are innumerable causes. First, check your images. Best practice recommends that you import by reference at 96dpi; use only JPG, GIF, or PNG formats; and resize your images or add any callouts or annotations in a third-party graphics application (e.g., the free Paint.Net). In FrameMaker, use one image per anchored frame, and shrink wrap your frames (esc+m+p). It's best if images (and source documents) are stored locally. Try disabling the "By reference graphics use document dimensions" option for the Default Graphic Style in the Style Designer.

Don't use graphics from your FrameMaker Master or Reference Pages. It's best to build a table in the Body page, or to use an image as the Bullet property for a paragraph.

If you can narrow down the problem to one error-prone image, try deleting it from your source and replacing it. Also try opening it in a third-party application and re-saving it in the chosen format (be sure the format and extension match). The delete the cache (Data directory) and regenerate all. Additionally, you can try reinstalling the Rasterizer by deleting it from your system's Printers folder, and then running the ePublisher Pro installation MSI (choose 'Repair').

Tip 3: The best thing to do when troubleshooting a problem with your project is to cut down the project as much as possible, removing all content other than the lines or elements that is causing the issue. You might discover inconsistent or illegal cross-references, unnamed character styles (The ePublisher Styles Report will also point these out), or other problems in the source documents. Once you can nail down the source of the problem and reproduce it in other contexts, you're well on your way to correcting and eliminating it.

I hope this serves as a helpful first step in troubleshooting issues with your ePublisher output. Before you submit a support request, try to solve the problem on your own. Narrow it down to a particular document, page, or paragraph. Delete your cache and regenerate all. Uninstall and reinstall the Rasterizer, the authoring application, or any/all of the ePublisher components, if necessary.

If you still can't resolve the issue, let us know, and we'll be happy to take a look at it for you. Include as many details as you can, including the nature of the problem, the steps already taken, and the project files that are causing the error.


Permalinks/Solutions/Graphics/ResolvingOutput (last edited 2009-04-14 19:18:43 by LaurenLever)