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Numbering Script

This form generates a csv datamerge file for use with Adobe InDesign, or any other datamerge capable program, for serial numbering multiple up tickets etc.. After cutting, the numbers run sequentially.

Just 'select all' and 'copy' the output from your web browser then 'paste' it into a text file with a name ending .csv on your desktop. Perform InDesign datamerge in the usual way using the .csv file as data source.

Using data-merge as the mechanism for numbering provides greater flexibility in numbering than incrementing in InDesign itself. Because this technique employs the standard datamerge interface, regular numberers also become comfortable with datamerge procedure, and regular datamergers are immediately familiar with the numbering process.

Link to Peter's step by step help page for doing the data merge using the output of this numbering script.

Classic numbering script




Counterfoil numbers too?:


Numbering script FAQ

How do I do data-merge in InDesign? - Read this documentation.

Can I run the script from a customised form on my own website? - No.

Do you have any instructions for doing data-merge in Microsoft Word? - No.

When I merge a job with lots of pages, InDesign crashes. Help? - Open a new doc; add a filled white box with no border the size of your individual artwork; position the No. 0000 where you want it and after you merge data, place the main artwork on the Master Page. Thanks Joyce.

When I merge a job with complex forms, InDesign displays the merged material fine, but when printed some of the numbers are substituted by 'invalid character' boxes. What can I do? - Try printing the merged job as a pdf file to flatten it and then print the pdf file.

Change log

January 2009 - First version of script.

February 2009 - Tidied up input form page and added link to crib sheet for data merge.

February 2009 - Put 'pre' tags into output so that multiple spaces in number strings are supported directly.

April 2009 - Modified loops to remove the excess carriage return that had creeped in at the end of the output and properly closed the 'pre' block for reverse page order option (there had been a typing error in the code).

January 2010 - Extended documentation so that it explains general mail merge as well as merge from numbering datasets created from this page.

March 2010 - Expanded the explanatory text on the face of the form for clarity.

April 2010 - Added windscreen numbering option. Also some considerable refactoring of existing code that was getting a bit obscure to maintain.

May 2010 - Added debug option which reinstates pre February 2009 output to examine a situation where XP/IE7 spirals into a loop rendering the output. Debug output works fine provided there are no commas in the prefix or suffix text. Maybe I should have that as default behaviour, reserving the current default behaviour for the specific, tested and detected comma special case?

August 2010 - Moved documentation about what the form entry fields do into tooltips. Just hover over the field for helpful, or otherwise, comments. Made the main interface two column for clarity and better use of screen. Debug renamed 'simplified output' and moved down form. Changed button text to 'Generate numbers' instead of 'Submit'. On load set focus to top of form so that the page can be easily navigated just by keyboard. Grouped standard and advanced form fields separately in group boxes. Tidied up tab order and added horizontal rule bar to separate form and change log sections of page. Advanced options are hidden by default and only made visible when user clicks 'More options' button. Refactored this page with more re-use of CSS to make the thing maintainable in future.

August 2010 - Added a note to the end of the documentation about numbering strategies to use when stapling numbered tickets in booklets when the stapling is done before cutting into individual booklets

August 2010 - Moved hint help off data entry fields onto adjacent information hover points. Provided extra clarification of some hint help, especially 'simplified output'. Altered form group box widths to ensure widths are the same for basic and advanced option group boxes. Tidied up form presentation for Internet Explorer users. Underlying number generator scripts have not changed since May. It is just the data entry fields that are altered.

September 2010 - Provided basic FAQ on page. Made form button text blue and less jarring.

September 2010 - Put button style into a single class declaration and stopped IE messing up the alignment of the non form text.

September 2010 - Linked form labels to form inputs to conform accessibility etc..

9 August 2012 - Disabled insertion of <pre> and matching closing tags. Some browsers have started to put in extra carriage returns. I will be monitoring the result. Let me know any comments. In case of difficulty use simplified output on the 'more options' section of the form.

20 August 2012 - Altered documentation slightly to mention an issue with some browsers now adding an extra leading space that can be deleted manually after pasting generated material to merge file.

2 January 2013 - Support duplicate sheets for NCR jobs or similar.

17 July 2013 - Form data input validation applied.

14 January 2014 - Bug included. A few minor spelling errors fixed and ambiguities clarified in the text.

4 March 2014 - De loused.

Cheers, Edward -

Thornton's Printers

Thornton's Printers 01845 525033