Bug 74097 - Title field in Writer document properties not updated for new or changed filenames
Summary: Title field in Writer document properties not updated for new or changed file...
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Writer (show other bugs)
Version:
(earliest affected)
Inherited From OOo
Hardware: x86 (IA32) Windows (All)
: medium enhancement
Assignee: Not Assigned
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Reported: 2014-01-26 23:19 UTC by Tim Deaton
Modified: 2014-08-12 17:18 UTC (History)
5 users (show)

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Description Tim Deaton 2014-01-26 23:19:09 UTC
I'm using LO v4.0.6.2 on Windows 7, but this issue has been around since I first started using OpenOffice back in 2008.

When I start a new document using a template I created in Writer, the "Title" field in the Description tab of the Document Properties is filled with the name of the template file.  When I first save that document as a new file, the template filename stays in that "Title" field.  

Then, if I save the document to a pdf file, the "Title" field of the .odt file's properties is carried over into the .pdf file.  The problem becomes worse there, because the "Title" field of the .pdf file is then displayed in the Title bar across the top of the .pdf window instead of the actual file name.  [This is true using Adobe Reader 9.5, Nuance PDF Converter Pro 7.2 (my default), and Foxit Reader 6.0.  (PDF Archetect 1.1 displays the actual filename instead of the "Title".)]

This is what I think SHOULD happen:
A. The "Title" field of the file's properties should automatically 
   be updated to the new filename (including extension) if:
     1. The document is a new file, either started from scratch or 
        by choosing a template.
     2. An existing document is saved to a new filename and the 
        previous "Title" was:
          a. the same as the previous filename.
          b. the same (without the extension) as the previous 
             filename.
B. In the case of existing documents with "Title" fields that are 
   already different from the filename, then saving the file to a 
   new filename should cause the Document Properties window to 
   open so the "Title" can be updated if the user wishes.
Comment 1 Yousuf Philips (jay) (retired) 2014-06-07 22:04:36 UTC
I see the problem that your addressing, but it is really up to the user to change the document properties provided through a template if that is something they wish to do, as most regular users wouldnt care much about setting document properties.

If a user doesnt want the pdf to show the document properties title, then they could simply go into File > Export to PDF and in the 'User Interface' tab, they can uncheck 'display document title'.

@iplaw67 & @qubit: what is your opinion of this?
Comment 2 Robinson Tryon (qubit) 2014-06-07 23:32:18 UTC
(In reply to comment #1)
> I see the problem that your addressing, but it is really up to the user to
> change the document properties provided through a template if that is
> something they wish to do, as most regular users wouldnt care much about
> setting document properties.

If a field in metadata is set automatically, I don't see a big problem with updating it automatically (provided that the user has not edited the field manually).

Consider how text layers are handled in the GIMP:
- When text layers are created, they initially use the first few words of their text contents as a label
- If the text contents are updated, the label updates
- If the text label is ever set manually, then the label will only change with future manual edits

I'm sure we could find similar examples in other software.


It's possible that there are users relying on the current behavior, but that seems rather unlikely. For now I'll categorize as an 'enhancement', and let Joel chime-in here.

Severity -> Enhancement
Comment 3 Yousuf Philips (jay) (retired) 2014-06-08 07:35:44 UTC
(In reply to comment #2)
> Consider how text layers are handled in the GIMP:
> - When text layers are created, they initially use the first few words of
> their text contents as a label
> - If the text contents are updated, the label updates
> - If the text label is ever set manually, then the label will only change
> with future manual edits

Well with layers in gimp, layers is a primary feature that most people use which is always visible to a user in the interface and having text layers change its layer label makes it easier to find that layer in the list of layers. This isnt really the case for document properties as its a hidden feature most people dont really pay attention to or even know exists.

The other thing to consider is that if it is automatically set according to the filename if it isnt manually edited, what happens when a user doesnt use a filename that is useful as a title, as many documents i get from others are like this. Maybe the best thing would be that if a user uses a template that before its saved, the user is promoted to set the document title.

> 
> It's possible that there are users relying on the current behavior, but that
> seems rather unlikely. For now I'll categorize as an 'enhancement', and let
> Joel chime-in here.

@Joel: whats your take on this.
Comment 4 Yousuf Philips (jay) (retired) 2014-06-08 09:53:33 UTC
Bug 72012 seems to be quite similar.
Comment 5 Tim Deaton 2014-08-12 16:53:50 UTC
Sorry to be so slow in coming back here.  Other things were consuming my energies.

Bug 72012 is similar - at least enough so to remind me how I first discovered this problem.  Back in my OOo days, I had a letterhead template that I decided to change.  I opened that template for editing, made my changes, then saved it as a NEW template with a different filename.  (I didn't want to lose the original; just wanted the new one for different purposes.)

But the next time I wanted to USE a template, I discovered my NEW template didn't show up.  Using Windows Explorer, I could go to the proper folder and both the old and new templates were there.  But in OOo only the old one appeared.  HOWEVER, when I finally clicked on the old one to use it, the NEW one was loaded!

What I finally discovered is that both the OLD and the NEW still had the OLD template's filename in the "Title" field of the document properties, and the window that allowed me to choose a template was pulling from that "Title" field and not showing the real filename.  When two templates had the same "Title", it apparently just showed the newer template.

I believe THAT PARTICULAR behavior has now been fixed in LO.  (I think I tested for it before entering my first post here.)  But that testing is what also revealed the pdf-related problem I described in my first post.  That's why I consider it a bug and why I started this thread. 

Thank you both for your comments, and especially Robinson for your understanding of where I'm coming from.

-- Tim Deaton
Comment 6 Robinson Tryon (qubit) 2014-08-12 17:18:44 UTC
Looks like we have agreement that the topic is quite relevant (even if we don't yet have consensus on a solution :-).

Status -> NEW.