Export IDTT from InDesign

Follow this procedure to export IDTT files from an InDesign project.

This procedure is useful for bringing non-ScML typeset files into Scribe’s Well-Formed Document Workflow.


Install or Update Scribe Tools for InDesign.


Prepare InDesign Document

1. Duplicate Files

Duplicate the files. Do not perform this procedure on live files. This procedure will change the INDD files in a fundamental way. Perform the entire procedure on each InDesign file individually.

2. Vet Document

a. Images or Embedded Footnotes

Note whether the file contains images or embedded footnotes. Images without callouts will not be represented in the IDTT.

b. PDF

Compare with the print PDF. There should be no differences caused by reflow (due to missing fonts, for example).

c. Fonts

Check that all fonts are active.

d. Master Page Items

Check for master page items that have been adjusted manually, thus becoming live content. The most common example would be a running head like “Notes to pages ##–##” in back matter. Delete such text boxes before running the tools.


Delete all running heads from master pages to avoid the possibility that they come through in the export.

e. Nested Styles

Select Scribe Tools > Prepare for Export > Review Nested Styles. If another character style has been applied on top of a nested style (for example, the i style applied to a GREP number style), resolve this prior to running the rest of the tools. This tool will not reveal text that has a combination of nested, line, or GREP styles applied simultaneously. Resolve any such style constructions prior to exporting content, either by removing the nested style completely or by removing it and reapplying it as a regular style.

This tool will make minor changes to some rarely used style properties, then reverse those changes, and will unbase character styles. Because of this, the file will appear to have unsaved changes after running the tool.

Export with Scribe Tools

Select Scribe Tools > Prepare for Export > Export IDTT > Run All or Scribe Tools > Prepare for Export > Export IDTT > Run All - Export IDTT without Page Indicators depending on whether page numbers should be retained.

After starting “Run All,” the process cannot be stopped. As an alternative, each tool can be run individually. The tools included in the Scribe Tools Export are as follows:

1. Accept All Changes

Accepts any tracked changes in a document. To ensure correct output, track changes should be addressed and accepted prior to running Export, but this cleans them up to avoid processing errors if they have not.

2. Ungroup Paragraph/Character Styles

Moves any styles from groups into the main style area and deletes the groups. Alerts the user if any styles appear in more than one group. Also available from the Styles Panel menus.

3. Convert Numbers and Bullets to Text

Converts any automatic list numbers or bullets to text so that they will be properly included in the export.

4. Insert Page Indicators

This tool will go backward through the document, adding an invisible InDesign note (similar to the comment feature in Microsoft Word) at the top of each text box. Any existing notes of this type will be deleted prior to processing. Retaining the page numbering in this way will make it easier to link indexes. The tool will also remove anything in the pasteboard so that unwanted content will not get included when mapping styles or anchoring images.

5. Unbase All Styles

Removes the “based on” connections between styles so that changes made to one no longer affect others.

6. Make Nested Styles Local

This tool will localize any nested styles. This will prevent nested, GREP, and line styles from being incorrectly applied as content shifts during the export process.

7. Convert Page Indicators to Text

This tool will convert the inserted page indicator notes to literal text. Text in the document will shift, but the page indicators will mark the positions of the original page breaks.

8. Apply Page Style to Indicators

This tool will apply the page character style to the page indicators. Tops of pages will be indicated with the @ symbol. Other items on the page will have the % symbol.

9. Convert Footnotes

This tool will remove InDesign’s automated (dynamic) footnotes and place them at the end of the document. It will apply the fnref character style to the number in the main text and the fnnum character style to the number in the footnote itself.

10. Remove Auto-Generated Table Headers and Footers

This tool will remove repeating table headers and footers that were created using InDesign’s header and footer cell settings.

11. Export IDTT

This tool will export each story as an IDTT text file and will save it to a newly-created “eidtt” subfolder. Each file will be named based on its initial page number at the time of export (in some cases, this may be slightly different than the actual page number, but the general order should be correct).

Spot Check the IDTT Output

Before proceeding to conversion from IDTT to sam, spot check the results to confirm all content exported as expected.

Search across files for page IDs to identify if any are missing.

Find: \{~\?~PG: @([a-z0-9]+)@\}