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FM2DITA - FrameMaker Plugin

I made the case for this purchase [FM2DITA site license] by tracking the hours it took us to manually migrate about 1100 pages with conversion tables and script-based automation for some of the tasks, and comparing that metric to our beta-test experience to come up with an ROI. In our case, it's humongous--to migrate about 3000 pages using manual methods with scripts and conversion tables would have taken nearly 65 person-weeks, and we're hoping to get that down to 16 person-weeks with the plugin.

Sarah Lee Hauslinger
Technical Publications Manager
Brion, a division of ASML

FM2DITA is a FrameMaker plugin that provides numerous tools and utilities that assist in the process of converting unstructured FrameMaker files to DITA XML.

Most of the tools provided by this plugin are designed for use with the FrameMaker conversion table method for converting from FM to DITA, however, the preconversion tools may be beneficial regardless of the overall conversion method. Also, many of these tools can be used for projects based on structured models other than DITA.

FM2DITA commands can be run interactively or through an API, on books or files and provides the following:

  • Document analysis
  • Preconversion cleanup
  • Conversion automation and cleanup
  • Generation of DITA maps and topics from structured FM files

FM2DITA does not currently provide assistance in the actual creation of conversion tables. A working sample conversion table is provided, as well as documentation that may be helpful for those learning to create conversion tables.

If you're using conversion tables to convert your unstructured FrameMaker files to DITA, FM2DITA will likely save you considerable time and will help to ensure that the resulting DITA files are ready to use with little or no post-conversion cleanup. Download the 30-day trial and give it a test drive!

» Try or Buy FM2DITA

Additional commands will be added to FM2DITA over time. If you have specific needs or ideas for commands that would be helpful in your conversion, feel free to make suggestions. It may be something we're already working on, or it may be easy to add.

Feature highlights

Some of the more beneficial FM2DITA commands are listed below. Please refer to the documentation for a detailed list of all commands and features.

  • Topic Report - counts the number of "topics" in a book based on specified heading styles .. a quick, pre-conversion analysis tool.
  • Catalog/Condition Reports - provides a list of all styles and objects used in the book or file.
  • Tag Cleanup - provides a modeless dialog that lets you review inline tagging (style-based or overrides) and assign a new tag.
  • Tables to Text - converts tables of a specified format to text.
  • Retag Paras - lets you apply prefixes to existing paragraph tag names based on previous tag names or based on a sequence of tags that follow. This is a big help for a pre-conversion retagging effort to create new tag names that will convert properly into the different topic type models (concept, task, reference).
  • Delete Extra Cross-Ref Markers - fixes a common conversion problem of unresolved cross-refs. If a target heading has multiple Cross-Ref markers, often times the wrong one is used and the resulting xref will be unresolved.
  • AFrame to Raster - converts graphic and textual content in anchored frames to a referenced raster graphic.
  • Condition to Attribute - assigns block-level conditional tagging to the corresponding elements.
  • Fix Images - cleans up odd figure structures that result from a typical conversion, including moving bottom-figure-titles to the proper location for DITA. Also, transfers the appropriate properties from FM images to image attributes.
  • Fix Tables - cleans up odd table structures that result from a typical conversion, including moving table titles to the proper location for DITA. Also, retags the sub-elements of alternate (simpletable, etc.) table types.
  • Fix/Flatten Cross-Refs - relinks cross-refs to point to the new (yet to be created), XML file targets rather than the current FM file targets.
  • Move Markers - relocates Index (or other) markers to the start or end of the current paragraph, or alternatively moves them into the current topic's prolog.
  • Variables to Conrefs - creates conrefs (both the reference and the source file) from specially identified variables.
  • Build Menucascades - creates a proper "menucascade" structure from a character-delimited sequence of elements.
  • Merge Code Lines - combines instances of sequential elements (typically preformatted elements like codeblock) into a single element, preserving the leading spaces and line breaks.
  • Tab to Spaces - replaces tabs with a predefined number of spaces.
  • Write ... Maps - generates one or more map files from a book and/or documents, preserving the hierarchy, and using the file names as defined by the file name templates.
  • Write XML Topics - splits the structured chapter FM files into individual XML topics, preserving all references and using a file naming method based on building blocks you specify in a template.


FM2DITA menu

Buy FM2DITA v.1.03 (Windows; FrameMaker v.7,8,9,10,11,12,13)

» FM2DITA Revision History