Mail Merge

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Mail Merge

Postby Modelgliding » Mon Oct 10, 2016 10:08 am

I am new to Open Office.

Is there a mail merge option, if so, how do I get at it.

Thanks in advance for any help.

BC
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby John_Ha » Mon Oct 10, 2016 10:32 am

Welcome to the forum.

See Chapter 11 - Using Mail Merge in the OOo v3.3 Writer Manual.

Search this forum with mail merge or labels for many posts.

There is also much useful information in the Writer FAQ, the Writer Tutorials, the up to date Writer guide.

When a pop-up window opens, click the Help button for extensive help on that function - it is often more comprehensive than the manual.

If this solves the problem, please click the Edit button on your original post and add [Solved] in front of your subject.
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See the Writer Guide, the Writer FAQ, the Writer Tutorials and Writer for students.

Remember: Always save your Writer files as .odt files. - see here for the many reasons why.
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Modelgliding » Mon Oct 10, 2016 11:41 am

Thanks for that.

I keep getting a message that I need a JRE, Java I have java installed, but I still get the message.

Any thoughts please.
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby John_Ha » Mon Oct 10, 2016 11:47 am

You need to install Java 32 bit.

You probably already have Java 64 bit installed as your PC is probably 64 bit, but AOO needs the 32 bit version, so you have to install it as well.

My Tools > Options > OpenOffice > Java ..., is as below.
Attachments
Clipboard01.png
32 bit Java installation
AOO 4.1.6, Windows 7 Home 64 bit

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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Villeroy » Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:35 pm

You can merge mail without any Java if the source list does not depend on Java and if you abstain from the stupid wizard. Insert>Fields>Other [Ctrl+F2], tab "Database" lets you insert mail merge fields easily.
Spreadsheets, plain text files (*.csv), dBase and various ODBC databases do not require any Java. dBase is the best choice for simple mail merge list.

Troubleshooting Open/LibreOffice and Java
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Modelgliding » Fri Oct 21, 2016 4:09 pm

OK, I am not getting very far with this.

I am trying to print sheets of address labels, for envelopes.

This year I have changed from Word. I have the addresses in the old word document, can I use this, and if so how.

I anyone is willing to talk me through this on Skype, please let me know.

As ever, thanks for your help.

BC
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Villeroy » Fri Oct 21, 2016 4:47 pm

What is the address list? A spreadsheet, a text file, a dBase file or something else?
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Modelgliding » Fri Oct 21, 2016 5:23 pm

It's a doc file. (Sorry for swearing)

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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Villeroy » Sat Oct 22, 2016 9:20 am

You have the addresses in a table within a doc file?
The table has columns of names, surnames, address, city, zip code etc?
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Modelgliding » Sat Oct 22, 2016 9:32 am

Yes.
The titles are:-
Title
LastName
Address1
Address2
City
PostalCode
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Villeroy » Sat Oct 22, 2016 12:31 pm

OK, click somewhere in the table
menu:Table>Select>Table
menu:Edit>Copy [Ctrl+C]
menu:File>New>Spreadsheet
menu:Edit>PasteSpecial... [Ctrl+Shift+V]
Choose <Rich Text Format (RTF)>
menu:File>SaveAs...
Somewhere on the save dialog you find a button to create a new directory. Create a new directory, name it anyhow and navigate into the blank directory.
Choose file type <dBase (.dbf)>
Check "Automatic file name extension"
[OK]
menu:File>New>Database...
[X] Connect to existing database
Type: dBase
[X] Register this database
Save the database (.odb) somewhere, for instance in the same directory as the .dbf
So far we converted the Word table into a usable table format (dBase) and connected a so called "database document" to it.
Your address data are still in the dBase file and in your doc. The so called "database document" is just a "connector" with no data.
You may close all documents now if you want.
#############################################################################
Open your letter or your preferred template for letters.
menu:View>DataSources or hit F4 to show the data sources.
Double-click your database name, then [Tables] and click the one table in that database to show your data.
Notice that you can edit, insert, remove, filter and sort address data in this little window without opening any file.
Grab grey column headers one by one and drag them into your letter where needed. Alternatively: menu:Insert>Fields>Other...[Database]. The grey placeholders will be substituted with the actual table data when printing.
menu:File>Print... to start a test print into a document so we don't waste any ink and paper.
Confirm that you are going to print a serial letter.
Another dialog pops up. In the upper part you can filter and sort your addresses, choose if you want to print all of them or selected records only. In the lower part you can specify where to print to.
Print everything and choose <File> output into one document.
When you are done with the letter, remove any text that is specific to this particular letter and call
menu:File>Templates>Save... in order to save the serial letter for reuse.
############################################################################
Having a valid data source and a prepared letter template you open the template (menu:File>New>From Template) add your letter text, print, confirm the serial letter print, choose the right records and print.
If you want a new letter from scratch rather than template, write it down, hit F4 and drag column headers into the document.
############################################################################
If you want to add a new dBase table to the database, you can save a spreadsheet table with column headers as dBase file into the same directory or you can open the database document (.odb), switch to the tables section and let a wizard create the table for you.
The database document offers a lot more options which could be useful with many thousands of addresses.

P.S.
One more trick if you want to address a letter to one person:
Open your letter template, hit F4, select the person's address clicking the grey row header left of the first column and click the "data to fields" button on the toolbar above the data grid.
Please, edit this topic's initial post and add "[Solved]" to the subject line if your problem has been solved.
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Modelgliding » Sat Oct 22, 2016 4:53 pm

Ok, Thanks for that. I will go through it over the next few days.

Not sure if it makes a difference, but this is a list of address, that I want to print on adhesive address labels, on an A4 sheet.

Thanks for your time and help.

BC
Last edited by Modelgliding on Sun Oct 23, 2016 10:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Villeroy » Sat Oct 22, 2016 5:32 pm

Yes, it makes a difference and you should tell us all technical details in the first place.
You did not even mention what you actually did when you encountered the JRE error. I assumed that you tried to use the letter wizard for a serial letter which in fact requires a JRE.
Use a spreadsheet to convert your doc table to a dBase file in a separate directory and connect a database to that directory as described above.
This takes no more than one minute or maybe two.
Call menu:File>New>Labels... The label wizard works without JRE.
Choose the prepared database, the table and then add the reqired database fields to the label box together with some line breaks and spaces.
Choose the right type of label or enter the sizes into the second tab.
Choose the "synchronize" option on the options tab.
When the label sheet has been created with the database fields and everything, you can edit the top-left label manually and hit a [Synchronize] button to copy everything to the other labels on the sheet.
Please, edit this topic's initial post and add "[Solved]" to the subject line if your problem has been solved.
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Re: Mail Merge

Postby Villeroy » Sat Oct 22, 2016 6:02 pm

Alternatively, you can download an OpenOffice template for your label sheets from http://www.worldlabel.com/
It will be a blank table with the right sizes of table cells and margins.
Fill one cell to your liking as described in my long text about serial letters. Finally add a special field via menu:Insert>Fields>Other>[Database]>"Next record" at the end of the table cell. Then copy the cell content to the other cells. Without this field you get a pages with equal content on each label.
Then save this via menu:File>Template>Save...
Please, edit this topic's initial post and add "[Solved]" to the subject line if your problem has been solved.
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