The FFMERGE process creates a fax-format image file and normally also an FS (fax send) control file which causes the CopiaFacts fax server to schedule the fax transmission.  For e-mail transmissions, the image file can either be sent as a TIF attachment or after conversion to PDF.

The process occurs in two phases:

first, the driver receives each document printed to the FFMERGE printer, interprets the action line and writes it to a file with extension .ffmerge in a pre-defined local folder (default C:\FFMERGE) along with the .TIF file containing the document pages.  The filename is formed uniquely from the current date and time.

secondly, the FFMRGMV program monitors the FFMERGE folder for .ffmerge files, reads each one, and processes the .TIF in accordance with the content of the action line.  The processing also uses an FS template file (which defaults to \FFMERGE\TASKS\DEFAULT.FST) when it needs to create an FS file to transmit the document.

There are two basic operations controlled by the action line:

If you specify a filename with fn= on the FFMERGE action line. no FS file is generated and all other data on the action line is ignored. Only a TIF file is created and FFMRGMV moves it to the specified location.  The specified file extension is ignored and the filename always has extension .TIF.

If you specify a fax number or e-mail address on the FFMERGE action line, FFMERGE will produce both a fax-format image file (which is moved to the CALLBACK\TEMP folder with the same basename as the FS file) and an FS file (in the CALLBACK\TOSENDx) directory.  You can specify both a fax phone number and an e-mail address, separated by a semi-colon, and both sets of commands will be added to the file.  The name of the TIF file appears in the FS file as $fax_filename or $email_attach (or both).

The new Template File feature to select task settings is described separately in the next sub-topic.  In summary: if you use FFMERGE for multiple applications on the same machine, or for multiple Terminal Services users, you can use T=taskname on the action line to select a set of specific task parameters from a file taskname.FST in the \FFMERGE\TASKS folder.  To conserve space on the action line, you can use single-letter task names.  When you specify a taskname on the action line, you can be processing operations with different task parameters concurrently.  If the corresponding FST file is not found, DEFAULT.FST is used instead.  If you have upgraded from FFMERGE version 7, the settings from your old FFMRGNT program will be used to populate DEFAULT.FST when you first run the version 8 FFMRGNT.

FFMERGE Trace Files

Trace files from the driver are useful to track down problems with the formatting of the action line (see FFMERGE Tips).  To obtain Trace output:

On XP/2003 you need to right-click FFTRACE and run as adminstrator. and leave it running, with FFMERGE and FFMRGMV enabled under File / Applications.

On Windows Vista, Windows 7 or 8, or Windows Server 2008 or 2012, you need to right-click FFTRACE and run as adminstrator to enable FFMERGE and FFMRGMV under File / Applications.  After this you can close FFTRACE and the output will be written to the file in the FFMERGE folder specified by FFMRGNT.  Note that trace output is not written to the FFTRACE window on Vista, Server 2008 and later.

It may also help to shut down FFMRGMV temporarily, so that the TIF file (from which the action line will have been stripped) is retained in the FFMERGE folder.

These files can be viewed as usual in TRCVIEW.