Issue 41413 - Mail Merge salutation preview is incorrect
Summary: Mail Merge salutation preview is incorrect
Alias: None
Product: Writer
Classification: Application
Component: ui (show other issues)
Version: OOo 2.0
Hardware: All All
: P4 Trivial with 1 vote (vote)
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: h.ilter
QA Contact: issues@sw
: 61595 107581 107589 (view as issue list)
Depends on:
Reported: 2005-01-26 21:33 UTC by cairnlin
Modified: 2017-05-20 11:41 UTC (History)
3 users (show)

See Also:
Issue Type: DEFECT
Latest Confirmation in: ---
Developer Difficulty: ---


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Description cairnlin 2005-01-26 21:33:09 UTC
In Mail Merge Wizard step 4, 

i) The preview pane at the bottom sees to show both Dear Mr X and Dear Mrs X,
regardless of what the value should be.  It prints the correct one later on when
the letters are generated, but the preview is wrong.  It does this even when
"Enter personalized salutation" is deselected.  The thing is, it will *always*
be wrong to have both the male and female : the real letter is always going to
need one or the other and surely the preview should show what will actually end
up on the letter.

ii) By the Female and Male salutation boxes are "New" buttons to create custom
salutations.  The custom salutation dialog is poor.  The obvious thing I want to
do is type in free text.  For example, I might want the female salutation to be
"Hi Babe" or "Hi there, Mrs <Name>".  I can't see any way to type in text in the
dialog, only positioning fields from the data source.
Comment 1 michael.ruess 2005-01-27 09:28:48 UTC
Reassigned to HI.
Comment 2 csonnenb 2005-02-06 23:40:27 UTC
Test and confirmed on the following system:
   Operating System: Windows XP Home Edition (5.1, Build 2600) Service Pack 2 
   System Model: Dell Dimension 4300               
   Processor: Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 2.80GHz
   Memory: 1024MB RAM

The Mail Merge wizard does show both Mr. and Mrs. Salutations despite the fact 
that the end product will only have one of these options shown. This does not 
directly effect the output, but might confuse some users as to nature of the 

As for the custom name dialog, this surely does need a more intuitive 
interface. However, this might be more properly classified 
under “enhancements†as it is an improvement on the existing functional 
structure. I have shown the interface 
Comment 3 h.ilter 2005-02-07 10:03:16 UTC
AFAIK there is a technical reason for that.
HI->OS: Please comment.
Comment 4 Oliver Specht 2005-05-23 13:06:32 UTC
1.) It's wrong that the preview shows the personalized greeting if the option is
deselected. But it's not wrong to show them both. The preview has no current
data to decide which is the right one to select. The resulting page hides the
wrong paragraphs but the preview cannot do this. 
Maybe we should use some sample line that does not refer to the current settings. 

2.) You're partially right. The reason is that we wanted to prevent illegal
commands like "Hi Mr. Lastname" Or "Hi <Mr.> Name>" that cannot be evaluated
afterwards. But you can not only insert database elements but also select a
salutation, interpunction and text. 
Comment 5 darford 2009-07-12 18:04:48 UTC
Still a serious usability problem in 3.1.0.  From the user's point of view, it 
is not at all obvious which will salutation will really be used in the letter.  
When I got to the "edit draft" stage, I had three saluations (male, female, and 
generic) - this is clearly inappropriate.  It seems like the salutation block is 
appended, not cleared if I uncheck one option and check another...

It is also far from clear what will happen if I didn't fill out the Gender 

All I really want my form letter to do is to say "Dear <Title> <Lastname>" 
regardless of the recipient's actual gender, or whether I've filled out the 
database gender field.  This is almost always the right thing to do, and the 
present UI seems to make it harder instead of easier.  [Overall, I'd rate ease 
of use in 3.1.0 as easier than raw Tex, but harder than LaTeX, and harder than 
the StarOffice/OpenOffice earlier releases.]
Comment 6 darford 2009-07-15 04:55:16 UTC
a)Looking at this more closely, there are three salutations shown in the "Edit 
Document" phase.  This is very confusing...  In hindsight, if I ignore the 
(apparent) problem and proceed straight to "Personalize Document", the 
salutations are edited down to one per letter.

b) It still makes no sense to force me to fill out a gender field for everyone 
in order to use a gender neutral customized greeting such as "Dear <Title> 
<Lastname>".  However, if I check "Insert Personalized Salutation" with the 
default settings (female is indicated by Gender field with value blank), the 
"female" setting is used for everyone, which can be configured to produce the 
correct functional result in this case. 

c)I also had a crash after deleting what appeared to be "extra" text in the 
"edit document" stage; will submit a separate bug report when I can explain how 
to reproduce it efficiently.
Comment 7 Oliver Specht 2009-07-15 06:48:37 UTC
->darford: It might be confusing to see three paragraphs with three types of
greeting lines. But I can't see an alternative. Depending on the gender field
one of the greetings is actually used for each address. And you don't have to
define the gender field if you switch off the "Insert personalized salutation"

The issues I can see are: 
- the general salutation does not contain and cannot handle data base fields.
There should be a dialog to define this greeting line in a similar way as it is
done for the personalized greetings.
- The preview doesn't actually evaluate the gender field for each document
although you can iterate over the data.My last comment was obviously wrong.
Comment 8 Oliver Specht 2009-07-23 11:21:06 UTC
Fixed in cws os133 in 

The preview now processes the data the same way as the document does.

The neutral greeting is active if the column assigned to "Last Name" is empty. 

Comment 9 Oliver Specht 2009-07-23 12:26:41 UTC
*** Issue 61595 has been marked as a duplicate of this issue. ***
Comment 10 Oliver Specht 2009-08-07 13:46:48 UTC
Reassigned for verification
Comment 11 Oliver-Rainer Wittmann 2009-08-17 09:56:55 UTC
reopened, because fix cause crash in case that no mapping for the <last name> exist.
Comment 12 Oliver-Rainer Wittmann 2009-08-17 09:57:26 UTC
fix in progress in cws os133
Comment 13 Oliver-Rainer Wittmann 2009-08-17 09:59:58 UTC
forgot to take over
Comment 14 Oliver-Rainer Wittmann 2009-08-17 11:04:51 UTC
fix causes crash, because on accessing <Last Name> in database it is not
checked, if a corresponding assignment exists.

correct fix - changed file:
/sw/source/ui/dbui/mmgreetingspage.cxx, rev. 275041
Comment 15 Oliver-Rainer Wittmann 2009-08-17 12:30:09 UTC
OD->HI: Checked correction of crash - please verify.
Comment 16 h.ilter 2009-08-19 10:38:08 UTC
Verified with cws os133 = ok
Comment 17 michael.ruess 2009-09-15 11:20:41 UTC
*** Issue 104993 has been marked as a duplicate of this issue. ***
Comment 18 h.ilter 2009-12-11 12:53:06 UTC
*** Issue 107589 has been marked as a duplicate of this issue. ***
Comment 19 h.ilter 2010-01-12 09:05:27 UTC
*** Issue 107581 has been marked as a duplicate of this issue. ***