Previewing DITA Views

Users can preview DITA content views within the DITA Preview tab.

To preview DITA content:

  1. Navigate to Assets > Assets Tree.
  2. Select a DITA map or topic in the Assets Tree.

    The DITA content displays in the main Assets pane.

  3. Select the DITA Preview tab.

    The Select DITA Preview Generation Scope dialog displays.

    Select DITA Preview Generation Scope Dialog

  4. Select a DITA map scope option for your preview.

    This selection determines which maps that the DITA-OT includes in the transformation process for the DITA preview generation. The DITA map scope list includes the following details.

    Data Type


    Map Scope

    The top-level map that will undergo the DITA-OT process for the preview generation. The DITA-OT executes the transformation process on all descendent content dependencies referenced within this map.


    Generating the preview from the top-level DITA map will generate the most accurate preview, as the top map covers the most dependencies. However, the completion time for the DITA-OT process takes longer.

    If you generate the preview from ancestor maps closer (in dependency distance) to the currently selected asset, the process will take less time.


    The total amount of dependencies within the respective DITA map. When the map undergoes the DITA-OT preview transformation, the system processes all the descendent content referenced within this map.


    The dependency distance between the currently selected DITA item and the respective DITA map entry.


    If a check mark displays, then the respective DITA map has an existing, up-to-date preview cache. This indicates that the system will load the cached preview rather than running a new DITA-OT transformation.

    See Clearing DITA Preview Cache for details to clear the cache.

  5. Optional: Select a DITAVAL to include in the DITA-OT preview transformation via the Select DITAVAL drop-down list.
    Select the No DITAVAL option to exclude DITAVALs from the DITA-OT preview transformation.

    See DITAVAL Management for details about DITAVALs.

  6. Select Preview in the dialog.

    Keep the following in mind:

    • The DITA-OT transformation process takes time to generate the DITA preview.

    • You can select Cancel Preview to cancel the DITA-OT transformation process at any time in the Generating DITA Preview... pop-up message that displays.

    If the map scope does not have an available up-to-date preview cache, then the DITA-OT transformation process executes, and the real-time DITA-OT process details display in the Log screen.

    DITA Preview > Log Screen

  7. Keep the DITA Preview tab open, and wait for the preview to generate.

    When the process completes, the system displays the Preview generated message along with the total build time for the DITA-OT transformation. Also, the DITA Preview tab switches to the Content screen, where the completed DITA content preview displays.

    DITA Preview > Content Screen


    If the DITA-OT transformation starts but the process does not successfully complete, then the DITA Preview tab remains in the Log screen view, and the Errors navigation tool displays in the DITA Preview tab toolbar.

    Use the toolbar Error arrows to navigate errors within the log. Select the left arrow to navigate to the previous error, and select the right arrow to navigate to the next error. To download the log, follow the step directly below.

    DITA-OT Log Errors

  8. Optional: If the system ran the DITA-OT transformation process instead of using an existing cache for preview generation, you can download the transformation log details by completing the following steps.
    1. Select the Log option in the DITA Preview tab toolbar.

      The Log screen displays.

    2. Select Download Log in the DITA Preview tab toolbar.

Next Steps (optional):

  • You can adjust the DITA map scope settings and regenerate the DITA preview as needed. Select the Preview button in the DITA Preview tab toolbar, and follow the steps above to repeat the preview process.

  • You can use the DITA Preview tab toolbar to emulate previews for individual hardware devices, set advanced preview settings, and perform other actions. See DITA Preview and XML Toolbar for details.

  • You can view details about previous DITA-OT transformation processes in the DITA logs. See Publishing Monitor for details.