The CopiaFacts Document Converter is fully integrated with Job Administration, so that a broadcast document can be specified as any of the document file types supported on your system.  The document conversion is done just before the job is launched, once for the whole job.  (If a Word document is supplied as a broadcast master document, the conversion can also be done individually to customize the output for each recipient: see the Word Merge topic for details.)

If the $job_options keyword HtmlExpandVars is given and the job document is an HTML file which contains `BCF variables, the pre-conversion will not be performed and conversion of each document will need to be done.

There are three pre-requisites for operating Job Admin and Document Converter together:

The $convert_types command in FAXFACTS.CFG must specify the types of conversion to be performed.

FFEXTERN should be running, on any node(s) in the system which can access the CopiaFacts common data area. It should have a preprocess for queue 0 defined in the usual way with all the necessary document types checked, and with all the necessary applications installed to perform the conversions.

Each job for which you select documents that are to be converted must have the $job_options keyword PreConvert specified.  If PreConvert is not specified, FFEXTERN would be called to process the same documents for every item in the job; this is not recommended.

If the same $job_document item is to be used for both fax and e-mail, the pre-conversion will be done for both.

If the TIFF keyword on $convert_types is used, non-faxable TIF files which are fixable on-the-fly in the engine will be candidates for pre-conversion, avoiding the need to convert each document even when this can be done in the COPIAFACTS engine.  All instances of FFEXTERN are capable of doing this conversion and no special checkbox in FFEXTERN setup need be selected.

A Launch operation in JOBADMIN, 'Launch Preview' can be used to perform an explicit conversion.  All steps specified and necessary for Document Conversion, HTML variable expansion and Word Merge are carried out up to the point at which a call would be dialed. Instead of transmitting a fax, a file is created named JOBn_PVW.TIF (where n is the job instance number) in the same folder as the instance UJP file.  Data for the preview is taken from the first item in the first job broadcast list.  In addition, the PREVIEW_FORMAT variable, if set, can be used to specify that the preview is also to be produced in PDF format (JOBn_PVW.PDF), or in PNG, GIF or JPG format (one file per page, for example JOBn_PVW_xx.PNG where xx is the page number).  GIF and JPG are not recommended formats because they will be larger and of poorer quality than the originals.

When a normal proof, or a full job launch, is initiated for a job with document(s) that require conversion, and if job option PreConvert is set, a 'document conversion proof' will first be generated automatically if necessary. This proof step is skipped if the job's converted TIF files exist and are both later than the corresponding source document and later than the timestamp of the job instance properties (UJP) file.  The latter test ensures that the job documents have not been changed since the document conversion was first done.  However if you replace a source document with one of the same name and an earlier date/time, the conversion will not automatically be re-done.  To be safe, you should delete the JOBnnnnn_Cxx.TIF file(s) if you change job documents which require conversion after a conversion has taken place.

It is very important to time-synchronize your machine(s) running Document Converter with the machine launching a job.  If the Document Converter finds a file with a future timestamp it will fail the conversion, because otherwise the output file would have an earlier time than the source file, leading to an attempt (which would fail) to reconvert.

When a job-originated document conversion is successfully completed, FFEXTERN will automatically request either another proof or the launch of the job as appropriate. This time, the 'document conversion proof' step will be skipped because the converted files will already exist, and the proof or launch will proceed in the normal way.

If a job-originated document conversion fails, the FS file will be passed on to the COPIAFACTS engine in the normal way; this will record the failure and change the job status to Proof Failed.