Fred, I have a similar but not identical situation. (FM 9) I have two versions of the same product; one is cut down from the other. There are roughly 100 components to the large manual I inherited, which is a reference guide. These are currently grouped into 7 sections. The smaller version of the document will use components from different sections mixed together. All 100 pieces undergo revision about every 4 months.
What I'm thinking is that I should break out each component from its section, and have 100 pieces that I can mix and match as needed. About 90 pieces will be in the same position within both manuals, and in fact the sections that contain these would remain unchanged. My idea is to include a nested book as an alternate section for my combined pieces destined for the small guide, and exclude it when generating the large manual. I would have another book for the parallel section of the large guide, and exclude it when generating the small manual. Does this make sense? I do have the separate versions of front matter as you and Richard suggest. I would appreciate any input. I am still in the planning stage. Jack D Fred Ridder wrote: > The question I answered did not deal with multi-level (nested?) books. > It was a simple question about building two different deliverables > from a mostly shared set of component files. The answer to that > question is that the method for excluding one chapter from one > deliverable while including in the other deliverable is to construct > two different book files from the same set of chapters (except the one > to be excluded, of course). > Richard Combs recommended using separate cover pages that contain the > version-specific values of user variables (e.g. document ID and book > title for headers/footers), which is also my practice. I also use the > cover page to contain the version-specific conditional text settings > which I import along with the variables into the chapters when I'm > preparing to publish the individual versions. I also keep separate > sets of book-specific generated files (TOC, LOF, LOT, Index) for each > variant just to make the publishing process more foolproof. > > -Fred Ridder