New document from template

Hello all,

this might be a dumb question, but I haven’t been able to find the solution:
When I make a new document from a template, the template is filled with example text. How can I clear all of this this text? I don’t feel like going into each and every paragraph and delete it manually before I can start typing my own text?

Thanks, and shame on me (probably),


Edit your template and remove the text that you don’t want to see.

In Yosemite, the template file should be in the Templates folder which might be found at this location: ~/Library/Containers/com.omnigroup.OmniOutliner4/Data/Library/Application Support/The Omni Group/OmniOutliner/Templates/

Open the one that you want to clean up and edit it, deleting the bad text. Once it looks the way you want it to, save the file. If it was already a template and in the correct location, when you save it, the file will remain a template. Done. The next time you create a new document from that template, it will have only whatever text you left in the file.

Hope this helps.

Thanks Mockman,

they way I know templates I open them from a “New” menu and start right away, without having to remove items from it, especially when they are not so easy to remove. How are those OO templates meant to be used? I don’t get it… For example that tin placeholder text in "“Class Notes” is useless, and in addition to this it is hard to empty the text from the document.

There should be a way of removing that placeholder text in a single keystroke or so. Is there such a way? Or how do you guys use those templates?


I think that the provided templates are really intended as examples of what can be done, and to provide us with starting points.

You need to open the original template and not create a new document based on it. Whatever text is in the template document that’s stored in that folder will show up in your new document.

  1. So first… File > Open and then navigate to the Class Notes template and open it.
  2. Next… Edit > Select All. This should select the entire document. If instead it selects just the entire topic (i.e. a single cell), then hit the esc key. This will highlight the entire row (not merely the text in the row). Then Select All again. At this point, the entire document should be highlighted.
  3. Hit the delete key. The document should be complete void of text now.
  4. If there is any text that you want in every document you create, enter it now. Everything that’s in this document, will show up in any new document that you create based on it.
  5. Save. You don’t need to change anything else (e.g. filename, location, file type).
  6. Close the document

At this point, when you create a new document based on the Class Notes template, it will be just like the textless template you just saved. It will keep all of the levels, including their styles. Then type away as you normally would. You can promote and demote lines as per normal.

Ultimately, you can empty the text with two keystrokes… Select All, Delete. You just need to do this with the actual template.

Hope this helps,

Thanks a lot - I really never could select all of the document, always only one item. But now it works, thanks to your hint. thanks again.
Now if I only could export the outline to Keynote, OO would be such a timesaver!!!


PS.: Keynote export by that script doesn’t work because I use a German version of Keynote, by the way. Don’t bother :-)

Have you tried switching your Mac to English, running the script, and then switching back to German?

On a whim, I switched to German (System Preferences > Language & Region > Preferred Language)… hit the + sign and chose German. Rebooted the computer. Launched the sample doc in OO4 and ran the script. At this point, it failed. A single slide was generated.

I then reversed the process and went back to English and re-ran the script. There was some goofiness with Keynote, which alas, has regressed in recent years. I had to open it twice and run the script twice. It did work though.

Once done, you can switch back to German. Obviously, this isn’t a great option but if your outline is complex enough, or long enough, it might be worth the effort. Having said all that, I can’t replicate your situation exactly as my Keynote came from the Canadian store and I’m not sure that the code is identical. Based on something that KyleS wrote however, I thought I’d try it out and see, and it worked. It might for you, too.

Thanks Mockman,

I haven’t tried to switch the system language, but I am aware of this possibility. I have looked at the export script and can’t find the part that would stop it from working. But I will continue looking and eventually, if I find the solution, pot it here…

Well, hopefully it will get resolved soon.

I totally agree with Jelden. It’s very confusing trying to understand how these templates are supposed to be used. I understand that they’re they to show us how various templates could be styled. But why not have an easy way to delete the content of each item or row in the template with one click but preserve the formatting so that if we then start typing to enter content, and hitting tab (or whatever) to indent an item, it will look just like the initial template but now with the content we’re entering. This would be much more intuitive.