One of the longest standing wishes for RPE was to be able to generate documents where the Table of Contents and other fields are immediately visible (or calculated). For a very long time this was not possible and macros were required to finalize the documents by updating their fields. With RPE 1.2.1 is now possible to generate documents that have all their content calculated without needing macros.
This functionality is controlled by the new “update fields” property of the Word output in RPE. For more information see Infocenter: what’s new in RPE 1.2.1 and Microsoft Word output properties reference for document specifications.
By default “update fields” is set to false and to enable it you need to change it to “true” or “progressive”.
- true : all the fields are updated at the end of the document generation.
- progressive: RPE will update all fields other then TOC/TOT/TOF as it encounters them. TOC/TOT/TOF are updated as the last step of the document generation. This is the most efficient choice.
Typical scenarios where this property is very useful is:
- generating documents with the TOCs/TOTs/TOFs updated
- generating documents from DOORS with the OLEs included
- resolving included files
See Table of tables with section numbers for an example of using this capability.
Performance: enabling the field update in RPE will result in a longer document generation but usually “RPE with field update” is faster than the RPE+macro combination. The performance is increased when field update is combined with performance enhancing features in RPE such as data read ahead since RPE is able to update the fields while reading the data for the rest of the report.
Scalability: updating the fields in RPE has a high memory cost so trying to do so for large documents with result in Out of Memory errors.
Exclude fields: there are scenarios where you do not want to update all the fields. For example if you expect further content will be added via post-processing operation then updating the TOC in RPE is useless as the TOC will become outdated. So to avoid RPE doing unnecessary work you can specify TOC in the “exclude fields” property. You can exclude multiple fields if you separate them by commas.
Supported fields: RPE currently supports updating the following fields. If you are using a field that is not in the list below you will need to use a prost processing macro in Word to have it calculated/updated.
- = (formula field)
- TOC (including TOT and TOF)