[oXygen-user] Docbench

Barton Wright
Mon Nov 5 14:18:02 CST 2007

If you don't have either a XEP or oXygen license, RenderX's DocBench bundle is a screaming bargain. For US$100 over the base price of XEP Desktop, you get both. As I remember, what DocBench provides is the standard oXygen Professional release, plus XEP in a directory parallel to the FOP directory. There is very little integration, but then, not much is needed. You run the standard oXygen, and can invoke a menu function to generate output through XEP in addition to FOP. One minor disadvantage is that DocBench starts oXygen from its own batch file, not from the clean oxygen.exe executable (for Windows). The startup is a little messy, and leaves a Command Prompt window hanging around.
I no longer run DocBench per se, but instead have separate oXygen and XEP installations, and I call XEP from command-line build scripts. 
As for FOP vs XEP, I can only speak to FOP 0.92 vs XEP 4.10. The winner then was XEP by a mile. FOP-generated PDFs had trouble with long tables over page breaks, and other problems that XEP sailed through. I hear the FOP guys have made great strides since 0.92, and I plan to give 0.94 another look. But here's a strong hint as to which one's better: the PDF for Bob Stayton's DocBook XSL book is generated with XEP. 
That said, I caution you that there's just no way the RenderX guys have caught up the latest oXygen 9.0 release, which only occurred a few days ago.  If you buy DocBench today, you will almost certainly get oXygen 8.2 in the bundle. However, the oXygen guys are very good about sending you the latest license file, even for DocBench users.


From:  [mailto:] On Behalf Of Khaled Aly
Sent: Monday, November 05, 2007 2:09 PM
Subject: [oXygen-user] Docbench


Would oXygen or users on list have more information about this bundle: http://www.renderx.com/tools/docbench.html? Advantages it may offer over standalone oXygen 9 for purpose of technical authoring. It refers to DocBook/TEI, but not DITA, which is supported by oXygen 9. In which ways may XEP (one of the main bundle components, which can also be integrated with oXygen 9) be distinct from or advantageous to FOP .94? And otherwise, would the added value be mainly the offered stylesheets? And would it be the same oXygen UI?

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