View Full Version : RTF import in word processor, strange behaviour

24 August 2005, 06:59 AM
Question for the more 'technical' Mac/Reunionusers (or perhaps Leister ?)
One of the Dutch Reunion users want (for special reason and editing) an export the whole content of his familyfile (as Family Group Sheets) in a Wordprocessor, but he experienced a problem with importing in different wordprocessors and asked me for help and I can reproduce his problems.
Using a wordprocessor with Dutch language support is a big wish.

- Importing in MS Word, no problems and not related with the (rtf) filesize (but only available in English)
- Importing in AppleWorks (v.6.2.9), relative small file sizes are imported without problems, (of course larger files are more time-consuming), but large file sizes (about 45 MB) give a continues spinning CD sign, waited for more than an hour ! (and can only stopped with Forced Quit).
It looks that the conversion is going in a loop.

Looking at Activity Monitor (when importing .rtf):
A. there is still a lot of processor activity (ca 90%) and the programm name 'AppleWorks (does not respond)' is in red. (btw the memory should be sufficient with 1 Gb.
- the virtual memory is rising very high (I forced quit the process when it reached 2.5 Gb ! ! (the file size to import is 'only 45 Mb)
B. looking at special programm proces activity (Info in the Activity panel) the Mach system calls and Unix system calls are still growing and growing (but I do not know the meaning of this)

I first blamed AppleWorks, (because there where problems with the rtf converter in the past), then experimenting with other programms.

But ... the same results with Mellel, Pages and even with (Apple's TextEditor)

My questions:
- is there a limitation in a rtf file size that can be imported in a wordprocessor (or is it ONLY memory/Ram related)
- might be the .rtf file, that Reunion produce, does not fit the demands of several wordprocessor (but Word works and imports ok, so this is unlikely)

Btw: Powerbook G4 with OS X (10.4.2) and Reunion 8.06 (eMac with OS X (10.3.9) same results as above).

Steve W. Jackson
24 August 2005, 06:14 PM
While it's possible that Leister could have a problem they'll ultimately correct, I suspect that the bulk of this problem centers around RTF itself. The RTF spec was written by Microsoft. It's continued to have some minor changes made to it with each successive new release of Word (on the PC side), so that new features added in Word will be supported in RTF as well. Despite these "updates", the spec is still at some odd version number -- never having been advanced to 2.0. The trouble I've often seen claimed is that Microsoft supposedly doesn't always follow their own rules. Likewise, AppleWorks -- not having been updated in quite some time -- doesn't handle all the capabilities of RTF. No program likely does except Word itself. And Apple's applications have also been accused of not adhering entirely to the spec.

I suspect that support in AppleWorks and Pages is more an afterthought aimed at "sort of" handling the supposedly cross-application nature of RTF. You might also check to see what happens if you attempt to open one of those larger RTF documents in TextEdit, which is included with OS X. I believe I remember reading that it's the default handler for RTF files in Tiger.

= Steve =

26 August 2005, 05:00 AM
Thanks for your answer, but it remains strange.
I'l try to contact AppleWorks and/or Pages and hope to receive an answer.
Let you know.