RPE 1.3 Output Enhancements

Following RPE 1.3 New and Noteworthy  I’ve received the “what are the output enhancements” question from multiple sources which I address in this article.  Additionally you should check the RPE 1.3 Fix List for details on the output related defects addressed by this release.

With RPE 1.3 we have upgraded the component used to produce the Word and PDF output. This provides overall improvements in the quality of the documents. Not all the improvements are visible to the naked eye however, some being about better compatibility with various Office versions, improved performance or reduce memory consumption in some scenarios.

RPE 1.3 has significantly improved the support for Word documents containing BiDi data . For the best results you also need the latest version ( or in some cases upcoming version) of the point products. More here: Advanced BiDi support

Document break is a new template element that allows splitting the output documents dynamically. A single RPE report can now produce multiple outputs at the same time. The screenshot  below shows how to generate one .doc file per requirement. More here: Document Break Properties


Text Orientation is a new property for table cells that allows to control the way text is rendered ( text rotation). Note that you must explicitly set the row height or otherwise the text will be wrapped to fit the default text height.


HTML navigation improvements

  • breadcrumbs – provides context to where you are in the the HTML document
  • navigate to TOC – allows easy navigation from the current location to the appropriate entry in the TOC


XHTML support – improvements made to RPE’s support for rich text coming as XHTML (DNG, RQM etc). Previously some of these features were incorrectly rendered or completely ignored: text highlight, hyperlink font properties, image size etc.

List improvements extend the rendering of lists from RPE templates as well as lists coming in the rich text:

  • list alignment – you can now specify if the list elements are left, right or center aligned through the “Paragraph alignment” property available for list items.
  • support for colored bullets. See Numbering Properties in List Properties
  • support for restarting numbering. See Numbering Properties in List Item Properties


OLEs in XHTML is a future facing feature to support rendering OLEs from data sources that expose their rich text as XHTML. At this time no Rational product supports this.


Author: Dragos Cojocari

Architect for Rational Publishing Engine

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