A variable in FrameMaker allows you to define a name-value pair of data that can then be reused across a document. For example, you can create a variable author_name that defines the name of the document author. If the value of the variable is changed, this change is reflected across the occur­rences of that variable in the document.

System variables

FrameMaker provides a set of pre-defined system variables. You use system variables to add information to a document that is specific to the FrameMaker or current computer environ­ment. For example, the Chapter Number variable, if included in a page, displays the chapter number to which the page belongs. The Modification Date (Long) variable that displays the last date the document was modified.

User variables

You can also create user variables to define custom values. For example, you can create a user variable, author_name for the name of the document author. Besides the value that you assign to a user variable, you can also assign a character format to display variable value. For details, see Creating user variables.

To open the Variables pod:

From the View menu, choose Pods > Variables.

Alternatively, from the Special menu, choose Variables.

Variables pod


The Variables pod displays the list of system and user variables that you can add to the current docu­ment.

To sort the list, click a column header in the list. The list is sorted by the header that you click.

To resize a column:

1)Hover the mouse between two columns until the cursor is a bi-directional arrow.

2)Hold down the left mouse button, drag, and release the mouse button when the column is sized as required.

Use the Variables pod to:

A (Select):

Select from the list of open documents to display the variables available in that document.

important:   You can use variables at a document level. This implies that variables available in one document can be used in that document. However, you can import variables from one docu­ment to another. For details, see Importing variables from one document to another.

B (Create New user Variable):

Open the Add/Edit Variable dialog to create a user variable. See Creating user variables.

C (Edit):

To edit the selected variable, open the Add/Edit Variable dialog (for user variables) or Edit System Variables dialog (for system variables). See Editing user and system variables.

D (Delete user variable):

Delete a selected user variable. See To delete a user variable.

note:    You cannot delete a system variable.

E (Insert):

Insert the selected variable at the insertion point in the current document. See Insert variables.

To insert a variable, you can also double-click the variable in the pod.

F (Update System Variables):

If you edit the definition of a system variable, use this command to update the definitions of the variables used in the current document. For details, see Editing user and system variables.

G (Convert to Text):

Convert the variable to text. In the Convert Variables to Text dialog, you can choose to convert the selected variable, named variables, or all variables to text. See Converting variables to text.

H (Refresh):

Refresh the list of available variables.

I (Search text):

Search for a variable.

I (Search text):

Search for a variable in the list. The SAYT (search as you type) functionality works on all the columns in the variable list.

J (blue icon)

The blue icon indicates a user variable.

K (red icon)

The red icon indicates a system variable.

September 30, 2016

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