Joining two outlines with different columns

Hi there,

I have two outlines with vocabulary-lists and want to join them (outline 1 with the columns “language 1” and “language 2”, outline 2 with the columns “language 1” and “language 3”).

I want to copy-paste the content of outline 2 bit by bit to outline 1 because there is a lot of finetuning to be done after pasting.

Therefore in both outlines I added all three columns “language 1”, “language 2” and “language 3”. (In outline 1 language 3 is empty and in outline language 2 is empty.)

The problem is: Whenever I copy-paste text from outline 2 to outline 1 the text which should be pasted in the column “language 3” in outline 1 is pasted to “language 2”. It doesn’t matter if all columns are shown or not.

If all three columns contain information befor copying the information within “language 2” is lost after pasting to outline 1.

If someone has any good idea how to solve this problem I would be glad to hear.

Thanks in advance!

Try removing the empty “language 2” column from outline 2. Then in outline 1 where you have all 3 columns, hide “language 2” since that doesn’t exist in the other file. When you paste it should just add to the visible ones. Or alternatively you can reorder the columns so that the one that should stay empty is on the far right.

If you’re still having trouble with this please let me know what version of OmniOutliner you’re using and what happens when you try both methods.

Hope this helps!

Hi Derek,

thanks for your answer. I already did both what you suggested and now tried it again.

removing language 2 from outline 2 and hiding language 2 in outline 1: when I paste things to outline 1 the contents is pasted in the hidden column. order of the columns doesn’t play a role, also not if they are hidden or not. I’m not sure if column names are kind of “hard coded”?

I tried it on iOS 10 with OmniOutliner 2.10 as well as with 5.0.2 on macOS 10.12

Thanks for any further hints.

Oh, I think I know what’s going on. Was one of these files creating by duplicating the other? That would explain what you’re seeing. This behavior is to deal with copying and pasting content within the same document. If you copy/cut and paste a row while a column is hidden, we want to make sure all the data of the row is preserved. We can do that by matching up the IDs of each column (the ID is stored as a randomly generated string in the XML). If you make a duplicate of a file, it has identical IDs for the columns and rows that exist at the time the duplicate is made. So your pasted data is always being added to the language 2 column because the IDs are matching, it thinks it came from the same document.

So… without knowing exactly what the contents of your files are, one possible solution that doesn’t involve editing the XML by hand would be to copy and paste all the contents of outline 2 to a brand new file created from scratch. You’ll need to match the column structure of outline 2 before pasting to get all the data to appear. Then if you copy and paste from the new document to outline 1, it will no longer have matching IDs so the method of hiding a column will work.


Hi Derek,

that’s the solution. Thank you very much!

Indeed I created the second file by duplicating the first one.

Best Regards.