FrameMaker 7.0 Tutorial:
Introduction and Basic Tasks
FrameMaker version 9 tutorials are now available.
This tutorial is provided for advanced documentation students on a free, as-is
basis, without guarantee of accuracy. If you find any errors or think we should
include other tasks, let us know!
This tutorial discusses the following topics:
Subsequent tutorials focus on tags, tables,
anchored frames, graphics,
pages, reference pages, cross-references,
tables of contents, indexes,
variable text, book
building, conversion techniques, and
structured documents. These tutorials provide an overview of each topic
discussed. If you required information about advanced FrameMaker topics, refer
to the Adobe FrameMaker User Guide or Adobe FrameMaker Classroom in
a Book for the current version of FrameMaker.
||Note: For the sake of brevity, we use an abbreviated
style for menu commands throughout this lesson. For example, "Select File
> New" means "Select New from the File menu."
To open the FrameMaker program:
- Click Start located on the Windows taskbar.
- Select Programs > Adobe.
- Select FrameMaker 7.0 > Adobe FrameMaker 7.0.
Creating and Saving New Files
To create and save a new FrameMaker document:
- Select File > New > Document.
||Tip: You can also press CTRL+N on your keyboard
to create a new document.
- From the New dialog box, click Portrait.
A new document is created based on the default FrameMaker template.
||Note: A template is a FrameMaker document with
a predefined set of formats and page layouts. After you finish this
lesson, you may want to explore the standard templates included with
FrameMaker. To explore the standard templates, click Explore Standard
Templates from the New dialog box.
- To save the file, select File > Save.
- In the File name text box, type Intro, and click Save.
||Note: If you are working in the TCM computer
lab, save the file to your lab account. If you do not have a lab account,
please contact your instructor.
Changing Simple Text Characteristics
To change text characteristics:
- Within your document, type some text.
- Change a portion of the text to bold and another to italic.
To do this, select the text and do one of the following:
You will now create a heading with a different font, a larger type size, and
a different font weight and variation.
- Press Ctrl + I for italics or Ctrl + B for bold.
- Click the or
button on the toolbar.
- Select Format > Style, and then select Bold or
You may be thinking that this process is pretty time consuming, and you would
be right! Fortunately, FrameMaker provides a convenient and efficient way
of recreating the changes you just made through paragraph tags. Paragraph
tags make the process of formatting text faster, easier, and more organized.
For more information about paragraph tags, see Using Paragraph
and Character Tags to Format Text.
- Press Enter to start a new paragraph.
- Type the words Example Heading, and press Enter.
- Select the text you just typed, and select Format > Font
(If you don't have Arial, select Helvetica or another similar font.)
- Select Format > Size > 18 pt to increase the
point size of the text.
- Make the heading bold and italic using one of the methods described in Step
Changing the Display of the Page
There are various ways to change the display of the page in FrameMaker. You
can change the magnification and show or hide various guides and symbols.
To enlarge or reduce the size of the page in the FrameMaker window, use one
of the following Zoom buttons located in the lower-right corner of the document
||Click the Zoom in icon to reduce the magnification.
||Click the Zoom out icon to increase the magnification.
||Click the Zoom icon, and select the desired magnification. You
can reduce or enlarge the view of the page from 25% to 400%.
||Note: When you change the magnification, only the
display changes not the actual size of the document.
To display or hide symbols and guides, select one of the following options from
the View menu:
|Borders include the boundaries for text areas, such as the body of the
document, headers, and footers. Borders are represented as dotted lines.
|Text symbols include ¶ (paragraph symbols),
(tab symbols), and other symbols, such as cross-reference markers.
|Rulers appear at the top and on the left side of the document. Rulers
provide guides for placing items, such as images and diagrams, on the page.
A checkmark beside the menu item indicates that the item is currently displayed;
for now, leave them displayed.
Using Paragraph and Character Tags to Format Text
Paragraph and character tags are essential to the professional technical writer.
This section provides an introduction to paragraph and character tags; for a
more advanced discussion, see Paragraph & Character
Paragraph tags allow you to format a paragraph of text and assign it a name
so that you can use the same format on other paragraphs in your document. This
is very similar to the concept of styles in other desktop publishing
applications. It allows for greater consistency and ease of formatting when
working within large documents. Paragraph tags affect an entire paragraph, and
every paragraph must have a tag associated with it.
Character tags, on the other hand, allow you to format a character or characters
within a paragraph without changing the entire paragraph. For example, you can
use 11-point Courier New to differentiate example text
from body text. It is much easier to select a character tag called Examples
than to select Courier New and then select 11 point for each occurrence of example
text. Character tags affect only the selected text.
You can use some of the existing tags to format the text in your document.
To format text using paragraph and character tags:
- Open the Paragraph Catalog by clicking the
(Paragraph Catalog) icon located in the top-right corner of the document window.
You will see approximately 14 paragraph tags including three levels of headings,
a bulleted list tag, as well as two numbered list tags.
- Within your document, type several paragraphs of text. (Remember a "paragraph"
is any chunk of text followed by a ¶ (paragraph symbol). A paragraph
can be one word, or even one letter.)
- Click in one of the paragraphs, and select Heading1 from the Paragraph
Catalog. Notice that you do not have to select the entire paragraph to apply
the paragraph format; you only need to place your cursor within the paragraph.
- Press Enter to create a new paragraph.
Notice that the new paragraph is not another heading, but a paragraph called
Body. This is just one of many properties you can apply to a paragraph
tag. For a heading, you typically want a body paragraph to follow. For a bulleted
list item, you would want another bulleted list item, and so on. The tabs
(shown below) represent the various property groups available within the Paragraph
- Next, open the Character Catalog by clicking
(Character Catalog) located in the top-right corner of the document window.
- Select any word in your document, and then select Emphasis from the
This tag makes the selected text italic. Notice that the status bar at the
bottom of the document window displays the paragraph and character format
of the text that is currently selected.
- With the text still selected, click Default ¶ Font from the
Character Catalog. This tag returns the text to the regular formats of the
Creating Numbered Lists
To create a numbered list:
- Within your document, type eight lines of text ending each line with a ¶
(paragraph return ).
- Select the eight lines of text.
- Select Numbered from the Paragraph Catalog.
||Note: To prevent the numbering from continuing
through subsequent numbered list, you must start each list with the Numbered1
paragraph tag. To demonstrate this, place your cursor on the sixth line
of your numbered list, and select Numbered1 from the Paragraph
Catalog. The numbering starts over at that point.
Using Tabs and Indents
To use tabs:
- Place your cursor within one of the Numbered paragraphs.
Notice the symbols that appear on the ruler. The downward-pointing triangles
represent indents (first line and left indent), and the upward-pointing arrow
represents a left tab.
- Click the left tab symbol, and drag the symbol slightly to the right.
Notice that the paragraph text moves as well.
- Open the Paragraph Designer (CTRL + M), and click Update All.
Every paragraph with the tag Numbered is updated to reflect the change.
The previous procedure is a quick way to adjust tabs. However, you may want
to adjust the numerical value of the tab. The following steps show you how to
adjust the tab's numerical value:
- Place your cursor within one of the Numbered paragraphs.
- In the Paragraph Designer, click the Basic tab.
In the Tab Stops area, you should see an entry for the left (L) tab you modified
earlier. Now, you must return the left tab to its normal position.
- In the Paragraph Designer, click the left tab in the Tab Stops area.
- Click Edit.
The Edit Tab Stop dialog box appears.
- In the New Position text box, type 0.25, and click Continue.
- In the Paragraph Designer, click Update All.
This procedure is a more exact way to adjust tab properties in your paragraph
tags. If you wish, you can experiment with the other tabs; the other tabs
include the following: centered [
], right [
], and decimal alignment [
To use indents:
- Place you cursor within one of the paragraphs that is formatted with the
Body paragraph tag.
- In the Paragraph Designer, click the Basic tab.
- In the First: field (located in the Indents: column), type 0.5.
- Click Update All.
||Tip: You can also adjust indents by sliding to the
left or to the right the indent symbols located on the ruler.
Pagination controls the location in the document at which a page starts. To
- Place your cursor within one the paragraphs that you created earlier.
- In the Paragraph Designer, click the Pagination tab.
- Select Top of Page from the Start: pull-down menu, and click Apply.
If you clicked Update All instead of Apply, all paragraphs
with that tag would start at the top of a new page. This is useful for chapter
headings and the like, but in most cases, you just want a certain paragraph
to start at the top of the next page. Experiment with the other options, such
as Top of Left Page or Top of Right Page.
- To close the Paragraph Designer, click
located in the upper-right corner.
Inserting Page Numbers
To insert a page number:
- Select View > Master Pages.
- Scroll to the footer frame at the bottom of the master page, and click within
- Select Format > Headers & Footers > Insert Page#.
The number symbol appears on the master page (this is the location that the
page number will appear on the body page). For more information about master
pages, see Master Pages.
- Select View > Body Pages, and then scroll through your
document to see how the page numbers increment.
||Tip: You can apply paragraph and character tags
to page numbers by selecting the # symbol on the master page and applying
the chosen format.
Tips and Pointers
Here are some more tips and pointers:
- On the FrameMaker toolbar (to the right of the alignment and tab options),
you will see a pull-down menu that displays the current paragraph tag. When
an asterisk appears next to the paragraph format, it means that you have altered
the format or style of that paragraph. This alteration is called an override.
Overrides apply only to the paragraph in which your cursor is currently placed.
Other paragraphs with this same format are not affected. To apply the override
to all paragraph formats, click Update All within the Paragraph Designer.
- Within the Edit menu, you will find useful tools, such as Find/Change, Find
Next, Spell Checker, and Thesaurus.
- You can insert a symbol that is available with any font on your system.
In Windows 98, select Start > Programs > Accessories
> System Tools > CharacterMap. After you find the symbol
you want, make a note of the keystroke code that is shown in the bottom right
corner of the Character Map window (for symbols, this is usually Alt plus
a four digit number). Go back to FrameMaker and insert the symbol by performing
the keystroke. For example, to create the trademark symbol (™), select the
Arial font, and then apply the keystroke Alt+0153 (that is, hold down Alt,
type 0153, and then release Alt).
- FrameMaker makes it easy to change case by using the case icons located
on the toolbar:
||Changes the text to lowercase.
||Changes the text to initial capital letters.
||Changes the text to uppercase.
Place your cursor within a word (you do not have to select the entire word),
and experiment with the different options.
- FrameMaker offers a number of toolbars. To scroll through the toolbars,
click the downward- or upward-pointing arrows located in the middle portion
of the toolbar. The toolbar options that are located to the right of the arrows
That's it for this introduction to FrameMaker. If you have time, go back and
explore the different tags in the standard FrameMaker templates.
Information and programs provided by firstname.lastname@example.org.