Forms Alignment

Adjusting for Pre-Printed Forms

Not all printers are created equal. There are two main factors that can cause the pre-printed forms defined in the APPX Financial Applications to print incorrectly. If your forms do not print in the proper columns or boxes try these steps to correct the problem.

The first is Acrobat Reader. There are three options that must be set to prevent Acrobat from altering the form as it prints. Print an APPX PDF form to the screen, making sure that no other Acrobat Reader sessions are open. When the output is displayed select the File pull-down menu and then select the Print option. This will open the print dialog box. In the Print Handling area on the lower left of the dialog box set the following options:

              Page Scaling Set to None
Auto-rotate and Center Set to No
Choose Paper Source by PDF Page Size Set to Yes

These options may need to be set on each desktop that will be used to locally print PDF documents created by APPX. If not set Acrobat Reader will scale the output images with default margin settings and page sizes that will cause the text to no longer fit properly onto the form. Make sure these options are set before making any of the following adjustments.

The second cause is the difference in the paper path and alignment of laser and ink jet printers. It may be necessary to adjust the alignment of the pre-printed forms in the APPX Financial applications to fit into the proper columns and boxes. Minor alignment can be accomplished by adjusting the form definition in the System Administration section of APPX.

To do so log into APPX as an APPX administrator. This is a login that will allow you access to the set up functions in System Administration. You should be on the main APPX menu. If you are first taken to the Financial Applications main menu, or any other menu, end out of the menu until you are on the main APPX menu. The APPX main menu has selections for Design an Application, Run an Application, System Administration, and Exit APPX. If you cannot get to this menu your login is not set up as an APPX administrator and you will need to login under a different user ID.

From the APPX main menu select System Administration. This will display the System Administration menu. Select Configuration, then from the Configuration menu select Forms under the left column, labeled File Maintenance. A list of the forms defined in APPX will be displayed. Find the form that needs adjustment either by the form id (name) or description. If you are not sure of the form name it is identified in the Form ID field on the disposition screen displayed when the print job is run. If the form is not listed on the first page you can page down to the next screen or move the mouse to the right side of the scrolling area and use the docking scroll bar that will appear to move to the next page.

Click on the line for the proper form or place the cursor on that line and press Enter. The current mode is displayed in the lower right corner of the APPX screen on the status line. If the mode is not Chg, select Change mode by clicking on the Change icon (folder with the pencil) on the tool bar, or press the F12 key. Once in Change mode move to the form detail screen by pressing the Enter key. This screen defines the page size and margins that delineate the print area for the form.

Minor adjustments to move the form left or right, and up or down can be made on this screen by adjusting the margins. When adjusting a margin it is important to adjust the opposite margin by the same amount in order to keep the same printable area. In other words, if the left margin is set to .2" and the right margin is set to .3" and you need to adjust the left margin so that the form prints .1" farther right you can increase the left margin to .3". At the same time you must set the right margin value to .2". This must be done in order to keep the calculations for the font's pitch consistent within the form.

The difference between the width of the form and the margins indicates the width of the print area. The number of columns entered in the Form Width on the first page is used to determine the characters per inch that will fit into the printable area. On a form 8.5" wide with left margin of .2" and a right margin of .3" allows for 8" of printable area. 96 columns will result in 12 characters per inch (96 / 8). If the left margin is changed to .3" and the right margin is left at .3" the printable area is now 7.9" and the cpi is recalculated to 12.15 characters.

Changing the top and bottom margin values will affect the calculation for lines per inch on the form in the same manner. The form height minus the top and bottom margins is divided by the form length (lines) entered on the first screen to determine the lines per inch for the print area. Each pre-defined form in APPX has been defined to print accurately on most laser and ink jet printers. Adjusting one margin without adjusting the opposite margin will change the aspect of the form and cause the pre-printed forms to no longer fit properly.