Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index item

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Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index item

Postby awinnefeld on Tue May 28, 2019 12:52 am

Dear Flare community,

I'm building a two-column layout for the index in our pdf output. I've created a dedicated Page Layout for the index; it starts with a title page containing the heading in a decoration frame and two body columns, then continues with a page only containing the columns. In the page layout, the body columns seem to be perfectly aligned, but for some reason my output starts like that:

index-columns-1.png


Does anyone of you have an idea where the margin/padding before the start of the left column might come from? This only occurs on the first page of the index, all following pages are ok. At first I thought it might be coming from MadCap:indexProxy, but this does not seem to be the case (margin-top and padding-top of this element only affect the spacing between the text of the index and the black line, which apparently is the border-top of the MadCap:indexProxy). The margin also doesn't come from the index topic - the body section of the topic only consists of <MadCap:indexProxy style="mc-index-headings: true;" />, there is nothing else there. Any suggestions where I should be looking? :)
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Re: Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index ite

Postby SKamprowski on Tue May 28, 2019 1:04 am

Hello,

I would search for it...
1. in the page layout
2. in stylesheet for the style that is used for your heading, i.e. Index
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Re: Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index ite

Postby awinnefeld on Tue May 28, 2019 1:39 am

Thanks for your reply :)

I don't think either of the two is the root of the problem. This is what the relevant parts of the page layout look like:

page-layout.png


The positioning of the two body frames seems to be ok to me. They seem to be aligned and I couldn't find any settings that were different from the columns in the "normal" page layout for the following pages of the index, apart from the added decoration frame for the heading (as I said, everything looks good on the following pages of the index).

The heading is in a decoration frame, not in the body of the layout. If there was a margin coming from there, it shouldn't affect the left and only the left body column. I tried it out anyway and stripped away the padding-/margin-bottom of the heading and gave the heading a border-bottom to see what that looked like. This is the result:

index columns-heading-border.png


There must be something else going on, but I can't figure out what :?

Edit: Spelling.
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Re: Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index ite

Postby SKamprowski on Wed May 29, 2019 4:36 am

My next idea: do you have a blank paragraph before the Index Proxy?
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Re: Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index ite

Postby awinnefeld on Wed May 29, 2019 6:28 am

At first, I also thought these might be the case, but in the body section of the topic there is only the index proxy, nothing else.

Im pretty sure by now that the strange margin has something to do with the proxy itself. It apparently can not be regulated by styling MadCap:indexProxy though. I tried the following:
- I set the margin and padding for MadCap|indexProxy to zero.
- In the index topic, I added a blue horizontal row element before the proxy. I gave the hr a margin and padding of zero.

This is the result:
index-columns-hr.png


You can see two things here:
- The blue horizontal row aligns perfectly with the right index column
- Though the hr has a padding and margin-bottom of zero, and the indexProxy has a padding and margin-top of zero, there is still whitespace between the two.

I guess there must be something inserted there when the index is built, and this something causes the whitespace. Any ideas how to get rid of this mysterious something?
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Re: Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index ite

Postby Psider on Wed May 29, 2019 5:45 pm

I remember there are p.TOC1 styles to style the look of TOC entries in the output. Perhaps there are similar styles for index entries and the index heading?

So perhaps check the stylesheet for something like p.IndexHeading? If it doesn't exist you could try adding it with a wacky font-color to see if it takes effect. :)
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Re: Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index ite

Postby doc_guy on Wed May 29, 2019 8:10 pm

When you look at the temporary files in the output folder, you can see some interim files that Flare generates before it makes the PDF. Sometimes these are helpful in troubleshooting what is happening.

When I looked at my index file in that temporary folder, I found that it just showed the index proxy, which isn't surprising. But then I went into my style sheet and I looked at the index proxy settings, and I noticed that I have a default 10px padding and 10px margin on top of my index proxy:

Image

Look there, and make sure both those values are 0, then see if that helps. (Make sure you do it in the PRINT medium section of your style sheet!)

But now that I read your post more carefully, you already checked that (make sure your print style sheet was affected as well. Also, don't just remove the value, set it to 0, so it isn't inheriting something from somewhere else).

My next guess is that you should check the value of this setting (p class IndexHeading):

Image
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Re: Two-column layout in pdf - margin before first index ite

Postby awinnefeld on Fri May 31, 2019 12:41 am

Thank you, doc_guy and Psider! It was indeed the p.IndexHeading. Seems like it is automatically inserted at the beginning of the index in the build process. I set its margin and padding to 0, and everything looks fine now :)
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