Ben Langhinrichs

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Perils of PDF 2: Doclinks

Thu 5 Sep 2019, 10:25 AM

by Ben Langhinrichs
Yesterday, I started a series about certain constraints on exporting or archiving Notes data to PDF. There has been more chatter recently about exporting to PDF, a feature that may be supported natively in HCL Notes V11, and that is offered as an archiving solution by some consultants and vendors. 
To reiterate, the PDF format itself is great for certain use cases, but has certain limitations by its nature. It is page based unlike both Notes and the web, and it is more of an image of a document than the document itself. That played a role in the first post which showed how attachments appear to be there in the PDF, but are not clickable or launchable, and require a separate process to save at all. Today's peril is similar with a Notes feature that is widely depended upon, the doclink.
This is the second of eight primary issues. Depending on what vendor or driver you use, a few of these may have at least a partial solution, but they are good items to check when validating your approach. The table of contents of all issues will be at the bottom of this post.
2) Doclinks not clickable at all, or go to the original source
Original Notes rich text field. A table of doclinks (from 2008 BP forum) showing original hierarchy in view.
Inline JPEG image
and if we follow one of the links, we get to
Inline JPEG image
PDF rendering. The doclinks look like they are there, but you can't follow them, making them both useless and frustrating
Inline JPEG image
Rendered by the Midas LSX to HTML. You can seem them, you can click them, you can configure where they'll be resolved (in this case, to other local HTML files)
Inline JPEG image
and if we follow one of the links, we get to
Inline JPEG image
Table of Contents (will be updated as the blog series continues)
Perils of PDF 1: Attachments
Perils of PDF 2: Doclinks
Perils of PDF 3: Wide Tables and data loss
Perils of PDF 4: Missing and obscured data
Perils of PDF 5: Data Confusion
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