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Word 2002: suddenly, I cannot create a forward text box link

Posted on 2011-02-25
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I was adjusting some text boxes and broke the forward link between two boxes (txtb A and txtb C) in order to add one in between the two (txtb B).

Now when I select txtb A, right click, and try to "Create forward text box link" it gives me the pitcher icon; when I float it over txt B it turns into the pouring pitcher icon, but when I click to confirm, it doesn't create the link.

(The text does not flow into B, Right Clicking on A does not now offer the option "Next Text Box", In Undo, it does not offer the option "Undo Text Box Linking" as it does when it has successfully created a text box...)  
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Question by:Dsastray
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Expert Comment

by:SiddharthRout
ID: 34986202
May I see the document?

Sid
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Author Comment

by:Dsastray
ID: 35023393
Sorry, it's a work document and I'm not confident that distributing it outside of the usual channels will fly...
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by:SiddharthRout
ID: 35023410
>>> Sorry, it's a work document and I'm not confident that distributing it outside of the usual channels will fly...

Just delete the text in the document but keep the textboxes there so that I can test it. When I create a demo version here on my laptop, it works flawlessly.

Sid
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Author Comment

by:Dsastray
ID: 35023494
Well, I was also hedging because I was able to work around it... but I found a backup and was able to recreate the file.

Note, there are several single line text boxes. I broke the link between one 2/3 of the way through, to add an additional text box in the middle (the one with the outline). Note, that the final third of the text boxes, while difficult to see and select, are there, and if you successfully link to one of them, their forward links are preserved.
Bad-Link.doc
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by:SiddharthRout
ID: 35023534
I just delete all the text and recreated the link. It is working fine now? Or am I missing a point? If I am then set the borders of the relevant textboxes and upload the file back.

Don't worry, we will sort this out :)

Sid
Bad-Link-1.doc
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Author Comment

by:Dsastray
ID: 35023559
Oops, ignore that header box, that's unrelated. The box I am trying to link to has the thin outline and is about 2/3rds of the way down the page.

I want text to flow into that box, and then subsequently into the several boxes below it (hard to see, trust me, they are there).
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Expert Comment

by:GrahamSkan
ID: 35024375
When I try that (in Word 2003), I cannot find another empty text box to link to.
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Author Comment

by:Dsastray
ID: 35029071
Are you able to link to the box 2/3rds of the way down the page (with the outline)?
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by:SiddharthRout
ID: 35030584
Dsastray: Could you do me a small favor. There are so many text boxes, it is so confusing :)

Can you right click on the relevant textboxes and format then to have borders so I know which ones you are referring at?

Sid
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by:GrahamSkan
ID: 35030890
The last (easily visible) box is No 38 and is empty. It nearly covers box No 37 which is also empty, By empty, I mean that they only contain the mandatory paragraph mark.

However I have examined the boxes programatically, and neither is reported as a valid link target. I am working to discover why this is so.
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Author Comment

by:Dsastray
ID: 35040998
Well, SiddharthRout, one of the interesting problems is that once the link is broken I cannot seem to  select the empty ones to format them. Perhaps they can be cycled through programatically and set the outline? (Alternately, out of curiousity, if you create brand new, easy-to-track text boxes, do they work? What about copies of existing ones?)

I am in the middle of a deadline, so even though it's probably easy, I don't have the time at the moment to puzzle that out :(   (I'm not very familiar with the text box and text flow object models.)

As I mention above, I was able to solve this in a roundabout way - I think I deleted a few text boxes (working my way up the queue) until they stopped acting up, and then was able to relink to the existing ones. Unfortunately it was a solution borne under pressure... and I didn't note exactly how I got it to work again.

I feel like GrahamSkan was on to something when he was checking whether the boxes were truly empty... but then again, doesn't trying to link to a non-empty text box generate an specific error message?

I really appreciate your collective persistence - I love a good mystery. I've spent too long on this message, but I will check back soon.

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Expert Comment

by:GrahamSkan
ID: 35044178
Actually, the mystery to me is what you are trying to achieve with so many text boxes so close to each other.

Today I have been working on writing some code to find the unlinked boxes, delete them and to then add new boxes in their place. I am having some trouble in getting them positioned accurately, so it would be helpful to know what your objective is.
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Author Comment

by:Dsastray
ID: 35070360
I am probably mis-using word, but I despise using text "in the document" - I find it way too unpredictable. So for reasons to do with knowledge of VBA and ease of linking excel charts, I use Word more like indesign.

All pages are blank.
If I want text, it goes in floating do-not-move-object-with-text positioned-relative-to-page text boxes.
All pictures are floating do-not-move-object-with-text positioned-relative-to-page pictures,

This works great for me, mostly. I never get text mysteriously jumping to another page, I can place it exactly where I need it, unrelated text sections do not affect one another.

In this one section, I need the text to wrap around what you might guess is a series of circular blobs. This is where text boxes fail me. As far as I can tell, there is no easy way to wrap text in text boxes around unusually shaped object. (Text in text boxes being impervious to wrap points.)

So I have created an unusually unwieldy system of DIY text wrapping - each text box is the height of one line of text. The left edge of the text boxes are all aligned. The right edge is adjusted to the far edge of the shape, to conform as if wrapping.
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Accepted Solution

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Dsastray earned 0 total points
ID: 35070371
It should probably read "... I [still] use Word, [albeit] more like InDesign."
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Author Closing Comment

by:Dsastray
ID: 35714882
Never did figure out a solution.
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