- I don't know much about how Acrobat handles custom properties, but I'd guess that you need to create a java script in the document to copy the custom properties to your form's fields. VB using Acrobat's API might be another way. Hopefully, someone has some examples or better ideas that they can post.
- Haven't tried it yet, but I'm curious to see what everyone says about it. Thanks for posting on this topic, John.
- If I recall correctly, The 256 character limit is not file specific, but has more to do with the interaction of the data cards and custom properties of any file. I just noticed that the SWW 2016 top ten list (SOLIDWORKS World 2016 Top Ten List: Now Open For Idea Submission) is now open for (supposedly) ideas. This would be a great one to add to it.
I recently saw an article (and am frantically searching for it again) that talked about using XML documents for ECx's. The article explained how you could leverage the file metadata directly in the XML along with a CSS to format the output. In the end, your ECx documents are much smaller in size and are immediately printable from wherever they reside. This also eliminates the limitations of using the 256 characters and allows a much longer field.
I will continue to look for this post and should I happen across it, I will post the link here. But hopefully this also gives you enough to start also searching this out.
@Jeremiah Davis, I was talking with a past co worker (@Steven Tietz) about this issue and he sent me a video of something like you are talking about.
After more research, the PDF option seems like it was added just for the adding of custom properties to help with search-ability of the PDFs and variable. So I am now leaning more towards the XML path. Just have some little wrinkles that I have to iron out before making the switch.