IDC DFD - Format Expression Question

We’ve never used Format Expression for any DFD fields in our DocStar IDC environment until now.
After watching a brief ancora training video on Format Expression, I successfully applied a simple Format Expression against a Autocalculated field to enforce that the field value only be uppercase letters [A-Z] and have a length of 4.

Syntax successfully used against an Autocalculated field: ^([A-Z]{4})$

My question for this topic: Does the Format Expression work for an IDC DFD field that is Assignable but not Autocalculated?

I tried to add a Format Expression to an Assignable field. No error when I saved the DFD with that change. But the field in Data Capture stayed Red even though the captured value met the Format Expression.

Additional question: I understand that Field Expressions validate the field value. But do Field Expressions also help IDC’s capture process to look for values that conform to the Field Expression when trying to capture data from a PDF?

@JerseyEric This blurb is taken straight form the Ancora docs on DFD creation

“The Format Expression section makes use of Regular Expressions in two ways. First, it is used to influence which data is captured from the document. Second, it requires that data captured for the configured field must comply with the Regular Expression in order for the field to be considered valid.”

Sounds like it should be working for you because the first part says ‘data is captured’ which I equate to an Assignable field. that same bit also answers your second question the way I read it. However “influence” may not be enough in your case, or at least not enough until the document is fully trained?

Mike, thanks for the fast response.

Sorry, I had read the same excerpt from the Ancora docs webpage yesterday. But I got distracted by the Format Expression video provided with that excerpt. So I forgot what I had read!

I noticed that the Format Expression video from the Ancora docs starts off with a DFD example where a Format Expression is applied to an Assignable field!


Not sure why my attempt to add a Format Expression to an Assignable field resulted in a field error (Red!) when I opened the PDF in Data Verification. I’ll play around with that some more.


No worries!! Nobody creates the perfect (and consistent) documentation - we all just wade through it hoping to absorb the answer we’re looking for!

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