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February 13, 2006


Just wanted to say that I love your work, I hope to attend one of your classes someday. Thank you very much. Keep up the great work!!


Thanks for your kind comment! I do enjoy showing how useful and slick the program can be. If you're in one of my classes someday, please let me know you're the one who posted. ;>

~ Solveig

Is there a way to tell OpenOffice to save the document in such a way as that it essentially "exports" it to another OpenOffice document that isn't attached to the data source, so that you can hand-edit the labels? The only way I found to do it was to save it as a Word document and then re-save _that_ as a standard OOo text document. Is there a more direct way?

# Chris

I'm using OOo v.1.0. Is there a way to toggle back and forth between the view and a view of the document with fields filled in a'la M$Words Merge Toolbar


Hi Pat,

"I'm using OOo v.1.0. Is there a way to toggle back and forth between the view and a view of the document with fields filled in a'la M$Words Merge Toolbar"

Sorry for the delay in responding. No, I'm sorry I don't know of one. I've looked for that feature too. I would defiinitely download 2.0.2, though, just on general principle--it rocks!


Hi Solveig,

thanks for your article - one question though: do you know how to add label templates to the standard list so that they become selectable. We here in Europe use other formats than the standard ones in OO. Worldlabel has done a good job in creating templates but it is not entirely clear to me how to add label formats to the drop down list in OO.

thanks in advance

I thought your notes on labels in OO2 were really helpful - I'd been struggling with it for a day or so! Just one question - do you know how to suppress blank lines in the addresses?

Can labels be made right out of a csv table. Right now i have to open the csv file and transform it into an open office spreadsheet (ods) then open a database and transform it into a database, then open writer and do the label thing. I find this too complicated: i can do it, but the people i work for cant.

In MS word i can at least make the labels out of a spreadsheet which reduces the number of steps.

Okay, this doesn't work so well for me. It seems that openoffice only creates labels for # / 3! So for every three rows of data, only one shows up in the document.

I guess I'm upgrading to 2.0.2 to see if it's fixed. :/

You quote:
In the Type dropdown list, scroll through the billions of labels. Select the type of label you're using, 8160 Inkjet Address. The label type is on the label sheet or box of labels.

On my machine this dropdown list is empty, how do I populate it?

Thanks for your tutorial it was very helpful. When I try to print out a list of about 20 addresses only the last 5 addresses in the list are displayed. Should all the labels show or will it only show the last labels in the database. I have set up the labels as in the tutorial above.

I hope that you are able to advise




I'd love to be able to make labels with this feature. I have several existing spreadsheets with data, and have successfully set up a database using that existing spreadsheet data. However, these data sources do not show up in the dropdown list of data sources on the Labels form. So, this feature is useless to me.

I do most of the computer work for our eaa chapter and intend to use your article to set up a membership roster from which I can print mailing lables. Some members do not have a computer and we snail mail their news letters each month.
Is there a flag I can set in one of the columns of calc to indicate that the member does not have email so the application would only print labels for those without email address. Also, If anyone is aware of a tutorial for exporting email address to evolution for the remaining members I would appreciate a response.


Thank you for the wald through. I was banging my head against a wall on this one!

these are good instructions, and I've done it before, but now I want to print to pdf creator, is that a problem?
The problem now is that labels will not synch.
thank you

never mind, I'd forgotten to tick the sync contents box in options.

I have folloved your instructions (OOo 3.0 on Mac), but when printing I get only first line of lebels. On following lines are yust fild names.
Thanke You

Thanks this has been very helpful.... a question about envelopes. When I want to print envelopes instead of the labels, I can't find a place to select options. (From step 9 and down.) can you advise?

Great tutorial. But I have a question. Is there anyway to get the labels to automatically ignore any empty fields? My address label database has empty fields, such as 'Country' which only need to be printed for overseas addresses. There was a way of igoring these fields in MS Access and it would be great if it worked in OO.

Hi colin,

It does ignore blank fields, just not the associated carriage returns, which is the tricky part. However, if you're on Linux, Glabels does a marvelous job.


Most of my data isn't making it to the printed sheet from the database for the spreadsheet; when I print, it literally prints "First", "Last", "Address", "City", "State" etc (and the less-than and greater-than characters), rather than the actual first and last names, etc, from the spreadsheet. A very, very few of the zipcodes ("Zip") made it to paper, the rest are all blank.

If I open View/DataSources, the first names ("First") are all there, as are the last names ("Last"), etc. Most of the zip codes that are in the spreadsheet do not appear in the View/DataSources display ("Zip"), and any that do not appear in View/DataSources are not printing.

What am I missing?

I found that this modified procedure worked; all of the values added get printed:
1. Open the .ods spreadsheet file.
2. Delete the old database.
3. Delete all of the database fields that I created using Data/DefineRange.
4. Save and quit.
5. Re-open the .ods file.
6. From the menu, select File/Wizards/AdddressDataSource to create the database ...
6.1. Select "Other external data source", then hit "Next>>".
6.2 Hit "Settings".
6.3 For "Database type", select "Spreadsheet", then hit "Next>>".
6.4 Browse to the .ods file that you have open (it would be nice if this was the default).
6.5 Hit "Test Connection" to make sure the wizard sees the file you have open.
6.6 Hit "Finish".
6.7 Ignore "Field Assignment", and hit "Next>>".
6.8 Put in the path you want for the .odb database file. In order to keep track of the
bits and pieces, I make the path and root name the same as the .ods file, adding the
the .odb extension. For "Address book name", I used the filename minus the extension.
6.9 Hit finish.
7. From the menu, select File/New/Labels to create the template for the labels.
7.1. For "Brand", select the label brand and sheet size. For Avery 8162 labels on an
8.5 x 11 sheet, this is "Avery Letter Size".
7.2 For "Type", select the Avery product number. For Avery 8162, this is "8162 Ink Jet
7.3 Leave "Address" unchecked.
7.4 For "Database", select the "Address book name" assigned above.
7.5 For "Table", select "Sheet1".
7.6 For each field in the label, select the field from "Database field", then hit the
left arrow pointing to "Label text". Hit Enter or Space to get things aligned
correctly, but _not_ within the "<>" brackets.
7.7 When all the fields are ready, hit "New document".
8. In the new label document.
8.1 The fields appear with the last portion of the database field name, rather than the
content of the field, so you'll see (for example), "" instead of "Fred".
8.2 From the menu, select View/DataSources, then locate the "Sheet1" entry and click on it.
8.3 Figure out how many entries there are for a label page (eg, for Avery 8162, it was 14).
8.4 If you have a printer that gracefully handles a stack of Avery labels, load the printer
with labels, then select File/Print, hit "Yes" to print a form letter (ie, take data
from the spreadsheet database and print it), then hit "OK", and it will print
8.5 If your printer is like my HP6940, you'll need to feed each label individually. Before
hitting "OK" in the print dialog, for "Records" select "From", then enter the record
numbers you want printed. Click on the first entry you want on the sheet in the
View/DataSources display, get the number next to "Record" at the bottom of that display,
and put it to the right of "From". then add 1 less than the number of labels on the
sheet to the "From" value, and put in in "To". For example, to print the first 14
labels, enter "1" for "From" and 1+14-1 = "14" for "To". For the next 14, enter
"15 for "From", and 15+14-1 = 28 for "To". If "To" - "From" + 1 is not the number of
labels on the sheet, the sheet will either have one or more blank labels, or the printer
will attempt to print another sheet with a small number of labels. This would have been
much less tedious if the dialog had an option of stating "From" and "Number of labels to print" instead.
8.6 Repeat the single-sheet step until you've printed all the labels.

great post about Mail Merge Labels in OpenOffice 2.0 thanks for sharing!!

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