[Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

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[Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby Glutanimate » Thu Oct 25, 2012 2:48 pm

Hi there,

I am developing a template for a series of textbooks I will be writing. There were many problems I came across but managed to solve on my own. With this last one, however, I am completely lost. I have no idea if what I am facing is my fault or a bug.

This is what my TOC looks like at the moment:
wiEH3.png

Something is interfering with the formatting of the TOC's left column and I have no idea what.

I would be eternally grateful if someone could take a look and tell me what's going on.
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TOC_Bug_Sample.odt
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Last edited by Glutanimate on Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:17 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design [Sampl

Postby RoryOF » Thu Oct 25, 2012 2:52 pm

We need to have access to a small sample .odt file, which you can upload using the tab under the Submit button on the Full Editor of the Forum.
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design [Sampl

Postby Glutanimate » Thu Oct 25, 2012 4:02 pm

RoryOF wrote:We need to have access to a small sample .odt file, which you can upload using the tab under the Submit button on the Full Editor of the Forum.


Sorry, my fault. I had uploaded the wrong version initially and it took me some time to find the right sample. It's attached now.
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design [Sampl

Postby RoryOF » Thu Oct 25, 2012 5:11 pm

A quick analysis, but no cure yet: it is to do with where it thinks the rightmost tab is set. If you rebuild the ToC, selecting Tab position relative to Paragraph indent, both columns go wrong, which I suppose is progress!
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby Hagar Delest » Thu Oct 25, 2012 9:41 pm

It opens fine with LibO 3.6.2.2 (on Ubuntu 12.10)...

As for AOO 3.4.1, indeed, no way. Or you've to set the tab to something like 7cm instead of right aligned.
NB: if you set 3 columns, only the left one is wrong.
I think there is a bug in the way the ToC is displayed. I've changed the fill character, the right column is correct but the dash is not at the right place in the left column (and there is no dot before the page number:
TOC.png

Worth a bug report (if not yet reported already): [Tutorial] Reporting bugs or suggestions.
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby peterroots » Thu Oct 25, 2012 9:49 pm

Odd I can confirm your problem and Rory's experience in LO 3.5 as well. I thought your 171mm right hand tab might be the problem but setting to 50mm does not change what happens neither does removing all tabs (I thought this would break it).
The contents 1 2 and 3 styles have the same problem as your Kursverzeichnis 1 2 and 3 styles and the problem is the same with 3 columns as well as 2.
your left/right page style is not the problem as the default page style does not correct the problem.
No solution yet, sorry, just observations so far
(wrote this while Hagar was posting his comments :-) )
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby Glutanimate » Fri Oct 26, 2012 6:34 pm

Thank you guys for taking a look at this. I followed Hagar Delest's advice and filed a bug report with libreoffice. It would be great if you could post your findings there as well. Let's get this fixed.
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby RoryOF » Fri Oct 26, 2012 7:10 pm

OK, I think I have it sorted! Delete and remake your ToC. Look at the attached file, which is nearly what you want; I leave it to you to fine tune (I've to go cook dinner),

What seems to be happening with your ToC file is that the two columns are not taking the full half width of the page, for reasons I don't understand. Deleting and remaking seemed to cure this problem.
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TOC_Bug_Sample_ROF.odt
(30.82 KiB) Downloaded 48 times
Last edited by RoryOF on Tue May 26, 2015 11:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Reason: Removed personal metadata from uploaded file at OP's request [RoryOF, Moderator]
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby RoryOF » Fri Oct 26, 2012 7:33 pm

I'll be back later - more tweaks needed.
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby RoryOF » Fri Oct 26, 2012 8:42 pm

Try this file.

The situation seems to be that one can define the Table of Contents all at one time, inserting the tabs, the columns, the column spacing etc, and it is more or less correct. At that time note particularly the automatic column widths, which are approximately half the page width (~8 cm). Now right click on the ToC and select Edit ToC, Go to the Columns tab and observe the column widths - they have now reduced to 3.9 cm or thereabouts. If you OK out of Edit, or make any changes by way of fine tweaks, the ToC will display as your initial example. So if you need to tweak, you must remake your ToC completely, including all desired alterations at that time.

The intercolumn spacing is unreliable - best to use a line divider. Irregularities in the numbering, and possibly in the spacing (tabs?) to the next entry may be caused by some earlier tweaking in the numbering section - as I never use 1.2.3 etc section numbering I cannot say.

I think you may have to compromise slightly on your desired ToC style, but what I'm getting is much nearer than your original sample. Now I turn the problem over to others to brood upon.
Attachments
TOC_Bug_Sample_ROF2.odt
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Last edited by RoryOF on Wed May 27, 2015 12:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Removed personal metadata from uploaded file at OP's request [RoryOF, Moderator]
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby Hagar Delest » Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:00 pm

Glutanimate wrote:I followed Hagar Delest's advice and filed a bug report with libreoffice.

You should have reported it to the Apache OpenOffice bugzilla, not LibreOffice one! It works fine under LibO (even if we tweak the ToC).
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby Bill » Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:14 pm

It's an old OOo bug. The recommended workarounds are to replace the first tab with a space or turn off align right and use a left-aligned tab stop:

Bug 29920 -Alignment error in table of content with 2 columns
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Re: Very strange TOC behaviour with two column design

Postby Bill » Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:49 pm

Hagar Delest wrote:
Glutanimate wrote:I followed Hagar Delest's advice and filed a bug report with libreoffice.

You should have reported it to the Apache OpenOffice bugzilla, not LibreOffice one! It works fine under LibO (even if we tweak the ToC).

It doesn't work for me using LibO 3.6.2.2 portable on Vista. The left column is misaligned exactly the same as the left column in AOO 3.4.1.
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Re: [Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column desig

Postby Hagar Delest » Fri Oct 26, 2012 10:05 pm

ToC LibO.png

What is strange is that at opening, the ToC looks wrong (same as AOO) but after a short while (repagination?), then it looks fine as shown above.
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Re: [Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column desig

Postby Glutanimate » Sat Oct 27, 2012 7:58 pm

RoryOF wrote:Try this file.

The situation seems to be that one can define the Table of Contents all at one time, inserting the tabs, the columns, the column spacing etc, and it is more or less correct. At that time note particularly the automatic column widths, which are approximately half the page width (~8 cm). Now right click on the ToC and select Edit ToC, Go to the Columns tab and observe the column widths - they have now reduced to 3.9 cm or thereabouts. If you OK out of Edit, or make any changes by way of fine tweaks, the ToC will display as your initial example. So if you need to tweak, you must remake your ToC completely, including all desired alterations at that time.

The intercolumn spacing is unreliable - best to use a line divider. Irregularities in the numbering, and possibly in the spacing (tabs?) to the next entry may be caused by some earlier tweaking in the numbering section - as I never use 1.2.3 etc section numbering I cannot say.

I think you may have to compromise slightly on your desired ToC style, but what I'm getting is much nearer than your original sample. Now I turn the problem over to others to brood upon.


Thank you for trying to find a workaround, but even with your version the problem still persists. This is what the TOC looks like when opening the document:

2012-10-27-180038_644x663_scrot.png


Updating the TOC restores it to its original format. WIth my original TOC design I experienced the same issue before it started going completely awry.

Also, there seems to be a connection between the bug and indentation as setting hanging indents for the TOC's paragraph styles causes it to lose its rightmost tab in all columns. This applies both to your TOC design and the original one:

2012-10-27-190504_641x654_scrot.png


I attached a modified version of your document with hanging indents enabled.

Hagar Delest wrote:What is strange is that at opening, the ToC looks wrong (same as AOO) but after a short while (repagination?), then it looks fine as shown above.


Yes, exactly, same experience here. Only that the behaviour is completely unpredictable. Creating a new document from a template that includes the TOC, for instance, results in the wrong formatting again. So this bug definitely persists in the newest LO release.

Bill wrote:It's an old OOo bug. The recommended workarounds are to replace the first tab with a space or turn off align right and use a left-aligned tab stop:

Bug 29920 -Alignment error in table of content with 2 columns


Thank you for the bug report. It certainly does appear to be the same bug. The workarounds, however, do not really help. Replacing the first tab with a space will not work reliably as long as hanging indents are active. The same problem also appears with workaround number two.

Another workaround described in the bug report makes use of a right aligned character style for the page numbers. This is what it looks like with hanging indents enabled. The distance between the entry and page number is generated by the font used in the character style, not by an actual space. Is there some way I can extend this to make the page numbers actually be aligned right? Here's a sample file with the workaround in action..

As it stands I have to choose between page numbers correctly aligned to the right, but still buggy, and working hanging indents. Is there no way I can use both at the same time without any issues?

I would also greatly appreciate your input on my bug report. A simple "confirmed" would help in increasing its visibility. Given that this bug apparently has been in OOo and now LO for over 8 years, I think it's time to push for a fix.
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TOC_Bug_Sample_ROF2_hanging indents.odt
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Re: [Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column desig

Postby RGB » Sat Oct 27, 2012 10:06 pm

As commented on BZ, if I start from scratch on a new document using the default heading stiles everything work without problems and the two column TOC render perfectly (AOO 3.4.1). Your document have some problems that I cannot spot: it loads really slow, too slow for a sixty page document that's only text. IMO, it is better to start from zero with a new document.
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Re: [Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column desig

Postby Glutanimate » Mon Oct 29, 2012 5:19 pm

RGB wrote:Your document have some problems that I cannot spot: it loads really slow, too slow for a sixty page document that's only text. IMO, it is better to start from zero with a new document.


That might be because I created it in LO 3.6.2.2.

RGB wrote:As commented on BZ, if I start from scratch on a new document using the default heading stiles everything work without problems and the two column TOC render perfectly (AOO 3.4.1)


Whatever I do, it doesn't work for me. I just created a new document from scratch, using a completely different template (one that LO is shipped with) and still the same result (see attached file).

This is definitely a bug in LO, one that has existed since 2004 apparently. For the time being to I'll have live with it, I guess, and hope that it will be fixed before I publish my book.
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TOC_Bug_Sample_alternate_template.odt
Sample file based on alternate template displaying the same issue
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Re: [Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column desig

Postby acknak » Mon Oct 29, 2012 6:59 pm

Here's one you can try. It may not show proper formatting when first loaded, but (right-click) > Update Index should fix it. It exports correctly to pdf for me as well.

What I did:

With the ToC paragraph styles:
• Set all paragraph indents to zero
• Delete the tab stop

With the ToC entry structures:
• Make the first tab wider than the widest numbering
• Set a value for the second tab (page number), rather than zero, even though the number is grayed out if you also select "align right"

I don't know if all these are necessary or whether the problem is triggered by one (or some subset) of the settings.

Interesting that the pdf export takes several minutes. No idea what makes it so slow.
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TOC_Bug_Sample_acknak.odt
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Re: [Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column desig

Postby acknak » Mon Oct 29, 2012 10:20 pm

Very odd. Now, trying one or two changes to see if I can narrow down the critical setting(s), I can't even reproduce my previous success. Ugh.
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Re: [Issue] Very strange TOC behaviour with two column desig

Postby Glutanimate » Wed Nov 07, 2012 6:02 am

acknak wrote:Very odd. Now, trying one or two changes to see if I can narrow down the critical setting(s), I can't even reproduce my previous success. Ugh.


The TOC in your document worked fine for me up to an hour ago. After restarting my system it's now back to its original buggy state.

This is definitely a bug and a pretty upredictable one at that. Tabulated two-column TOCs are not a rarity but common practice with many publications. This is an issue that could potentially affect a significant part of the LO/OO user base. Given that it has existed for more than 7 years I think it's time to push for a fix.

There are two bugreports, one on AOO's bugzilla and one with LO, as its an upstream bug that affects both office suites. To everyone who assisted in finding a solution to this issue: If you have an account on either of these platforms, please consider leaving a short comment to confirm the bug.

Thank you for your help!
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