Create a conref in the XMetaL editor

This procedure lets you automatically display text from one topic in another. Whenever the first topic is updated, the second updates automatically.

Referenced topics must be in the Authoring or Published cycle (or its equivalent in your workflow).

Use a conref when you want to display a block of text in another topic, or perhaps in several other topics. Conrefs are particularly handy if you know that a specific phrase or paragraph is likely to change. When you edit the source text in a conref, it will automatically be updated in all the other topics that reference it.

  1. Open the source document in the XMetaL editor.
  2. Place the cursor in the element you want to use as a conref.
  3. If necessary, assign a value to the ID attribute of the element that contains the source text.
    Note: The ID must be unique within the topic.
  4. Save the source file.
  5. Right-click in the source element, then select Copy as Reference from the menu.
    Tip: If you have referable-content topics set up in your repository, you can right-click one of their names in the Search Results view and then use Copy Reference to acquire the conref.
  6. Open the target document in the XMetaL editor.
  7. Place your cursor in the target document at or before the point where you want the conref to appear.
  8. Right-click, then select Insert Reference.
    The text from your conref source appears in the target document at the first valid place below the cursor position.

    The XMetaL editor checks the target document for a valid insertion point for the element type you are trying to conref. If there’s no valid place for your conref, you won’t be able to insert it.

    Tip: You can see the source file’s ID in the Attribute Inspector when you place your cursor in the target text.
You must release the source file to the repository before you release the target file.
Note: If you edit a conref and you have a target file for that conref open in your machine, you must reload the target file in order to see your changes. Right-click, then select Reload from the menu.