Table of Content


InDesign Settings is where you set up the Path ConfigurationsRulesets, and other Preferences based on your specific setup and configuration.  InDesign Settings are also where you set the settings specific to your setup that InDesign will use during Page Creation.  Once these are set during the install process, you likely won't ever need to touch them again unless there is a server upgrade for example.

Accessing InDesign Settings

InDesign Settings are found in the Total CMS Admin; both Hosted (Blue) and Appliance (Gray).  From the dropdown menu in the upper left corner, go to Settings / InDesign / Page Creation Settings.  Your system may differ from these examples depending on the software you have installed.

Page Creation Settings

This is where Publications are created and all of the elements for them.  


Publications options are:

  • Add - Add another publication to the system.
  • Edit - Edit an existing publication on the system.
  • Set Deadlines - A way to identify when pages are due-in when examining the Edition View in Page Tracker. Many sites, not all pages have the same due time. Deadlines can vary by publication code, day of week, and section. In addition, some individual pages might have exceptionally late deadlines.  This helps you manage that.
  • Set as Default - Selecting a specific publication and making it the default publication.
  • Remove - Removes an existing publication.

Add a Publication

Click on Add to set up a new publication.

  • Code - Create a code to identify this publication with.  It can be numeric, alphanumeric, or alpha but no special characters or spaces.

Best Practice:  Use a 3-digit code. This is part of the overall naming convention that will be used and using a 3-digit code that best describes the publication helps keep the name to a manageable length.

Note: Page Creation Settings uses a Code for various elements of the Page. The Codes are used in the Naming Convention creation process. In addition, some of these elements also ask for a Symbol. Symbols are typically the same as the Code for simplicity reasons but are used to be referenced when called upon in the page creation process.

  • Description - Provide a description of the publication.  This is typically the name of the publication.
  • Symbol - This can be the same as the Code or something unique.  The Symbol is used as a variable to associate or apply Output Methods (and other elements) to the publication.
  • Volume Start - Select the date the volume for this publication is to begin.
  • Volume Num - Enter a numeric value to identify this volume.
  • Publication Days - Select the publication days for the publication you're adding.  Other options are Monthly and Yearly.

Edit the Publication

Edit an existing publication.  The editing window is the same as the Add Publication window.


Set Deadlines

This tool gives you the ability to manage your Deadlines for all of your publications.  Each publication likely has a different deadline (in some cases, perhaps not depending on your specific operation).  To do this, set the Default Deadline (time) and the Default Offset (Days).  You can also override the publications deadline by checking the Override checkbox next to the day of the week and selecting a different deadline (time) and how many days to offset that by.  These two are optional, if they are not set, then the default settings will be used.

The remaining columns are the Sections of your paper (yours may be different than the example below).  In the sections field, you can set how many minutes (accepts both positive and negative numbers) you want that section to offset based on the deadline (time).

Note:  The only rows that are active are those that are listed in the Publication Days column for the publication (ie: If you have Mon, Wed, Fri, then only the rows for Monday, Wednesday, and Friday will be active).

  • Content Types - This is categorizing content.  A Type would be News, or Comics, Obituaries, Sports, etc. The system recognizes Content Types when PDF's upload to the Live e-Edition.  Section Tags are applied to assets based on Content Types.  The Navigation Bar then organizes the content based on Content Types/Section Tags.
  • Click on Add for each Type and enter the Type and give it a Description.  The Type must be one word (lower case).  The Description can be upper/lower case.
  • Index - Folio creation can be put into Pages, Issues, or Volumes.  Enter the maximum number (if desired) of pages of the publication you want Index set at.  By default, the maximum number of pages that TownNews will set this to is 24 (pending individual sites needs) but this is not an arbitrary number.

Note:  The default number of 24 is what is used during the initial setup.  It can be modified higher or lower depending on the individual sites needs.

  • Colors - Using color codes sets the color for pages when the publication goes to print.

Setting a color As Default, the publication will use that color scheme for all print runs.  Checking the Required checkbox indicates that using a Color scheme is required and will come up as an option that must be used in the page creation process.  Black & White, Color, and Spot are set up by default.  If you wish to add another, click Add to add a color code and give it a description.

  • Sections - These are the sections of the paper (ie: Section A might be news, D might be Sports, etc.).
  • Click Add to add a section to your publication.  All fields are required.
    • Code - Is the code for the section.
    • Description - Is a word or two for the section (typically the section title).
    • Symbol - This is used for Folio Creations - putting together the naming convention and the symbol is used in the name to refer to the section it corresponds with.
  • Editions - Editions are used for publications that print more than one "Edition" of their publication.  (ie: Morning Edition, Afternoon Edition, etc.).
  • Click Add to add an Edition to your publication.
  • Zones - These are Zoned Editions in your publication and are also used for creating Zones in the Live e-Edition.  Zones are a way to organize pages in an Edition / e-Edition.
  • Click Add to add a zone to your publications edition(s).  The Code should be a two-digit number, the Description can be a combination of characters and spaces, and the Symbol usually matches the Code but it does not have to.  The Code and the Symbol are references drawn upon by the publication when using Zones.

Best Practice:  Use a 2-digit numeric code. This is an industry standard practice.    

  • Plates - In printing terms, an inked image is transferred from a plate to a rubber blanket, then to a printing surface.  In Total CMS, Plates are templates used to format certain sections/pages of the publication (ie: Sports, Lifestyles, News, etc.).  Checking Required, means that when setting up the publication, it requires the use of Plates.
  • Click Add to add a plate to the publication.  The Code cannot exceed a maximum of four letters, and must be all caps, while the Description can be upper/lower case and multiple words.
  • Naming - This is the InDesign Filename naming convention.  This drives everything in BLOX Total CMS.  Use upper case letters only.  The example in the following screen shot, BBBBBBBB_YYYY_MM_DD_S_GGG is broken down like this:
    • Publication Code = BBBBBBBB
    • Year Code = YYYY (4-digit)
    • Month Code = MM (2-digit)
    • Date Code = DD (2-digit)
    • Section Letter Code = S
    • Page Number code = GGG
  • Subfolders - Create subfolders to organize the pages of your publication.  This is necessary for Live e-Editions.  Organizing your pages using Subfolders allows you to reference them and/or find them easier/quicker (ie: Pub Code, Date, Section, etc.) when you are creating a new page.  You can use up to five Subfolder codes.  In the subfolder example below, /B/D/S, is:
    • B = Publication Code
    • D = Date
    • S = Section Letter
  • This is set up during the initial Total CMS setup by TownNews prior to going live.

Path Configuration

Path Configuration is where the paths (locations) are set to folders (storage) that contain code, scripts, templates, etc. that pertain to each category listed. 

Warning:  These are set up during the BLOX Total CMS Appliance installation process and you should not have to touch them again (except in rare circumstances - Network Reconfiguration, new server install/upgrades, etc.). 

If you need to Edit a path, click on the Edit Checkbox to expose the path for editing.  These are initially set up during the Total CMS initial install setup by TownNews.  There are three tabs used to organize various path types:

  • General - These are paths to the location for various elements needed for page creation, such as articles, images, various snippets, output preferences, etc.  These apply to all platforms.
  • Windows - Windows path configurations are based on how Ads are path'd for the Windows platform.
  • OS X -   OS X path configurations are based on how Ads are path'd for the OS X platform.  







Show Resolved Paths

Clicking on the Show Resolved Paths button, shows the full relative path for the path's configured directly underneath each.



Preferences are set during the installation process. 

Note:  These are set specifically to support the way BLOX Total CMS is setup and installed.

These are different facets of BLOX Total CMS that a site can choose:  Enable or not, Set Extension Types, Page/Section Naming Mode, and/or Send Ad Status to Page Tracker, just to name a few.  


Translate RuleSets

Rulesets trigger off a variety of "things," such as Section Tags, Slugs, and Publication Codes.    

Rulesets are set up during the initial Total CMS installation setup by TownNews.  Ruleset examples include Hyperlinks, ExportStyles, Images and Child Images, FontStyles, and LettersToTheEditor.  Within each Ruleset, are properties to define how the Rulesets are used in the print publication. 

How This Works:

When the user selects an asset to place on a page, the Client Code (stored on a file server - the Path to it is defined in the Path Configuration) does a Webservice Call to get the asset. That information is returned as a .json file and temporarily stored in %userprofile%  as JSONtempfile.json.

The code translates that to a format that InDesign scripts can work with – converting .json tags to human tags such as <print_headline> </print_headline>, <byline></byline>, etc. and it is that file that is used with the Rulesets.

Every asset placed goes through the Rulesets.  Think of Rulesets as Adobe InDesign’s way to “find/change.”  For example, Find this tag, do that, such as, find “<byline>” and content through until </byline> is found.  Then the Ruleset says to apply the byline paragraph style to that graph, strip out the tags, and move on.  Another example, Find the  tags for print_headline, the associated Ruleset moves Print_Headline to its own frame and then removes <p> tags which have appeared from time to time.

The First Ruleset set is the one named “Default_Ruleset” -  This does some cleanup but think of it more-so as the switchboard operator that directs the text to the proper set of Rulesets For Processing, such as find a tag of <flags:agate> and send it to through the Ruleset for sports agate which applies agate paragraph/character styles and sets tabs to column width.

For assistance in modifying a Ruleset, contact TownNews Customer Service - (800) 293-9576.


There are a few options in managing a Ruleset.  Highlight the Ruleset and then click on the Ruleset dropdown button in the upper right corner.  Options are:

  • Edit - Make changes to the Ruleset.
  • Duplicate - Make a copy of an existing Ruleset.
  • Set as Default - This is defined during the installation and setup.  It is the primary Ruleset that will be followed.
  • Delete Rulesets - Remove a Ruleset.
  • Export Rulesets - Download a Ruleset for use on another system or a local backup.  Backups are automatic on the server end.

In this example, the Ruleset "LettersToTheEditor," gives you an idea of how specific each Ruleset can be defined.