Andromeda ForeEdge™ Help

The following original work is Copyright © 2013-2019 by Andromeda Software Inc., Thousand Oaks, California USA. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.



The information here assumes you have installed and activated Andromeda ForeEdge™ on your computer. Please restart Adobe InDesign CC 2019 and either open or create a document with at least 100 pages, while working with this documentation. Be sure the document has “Facing-Pages” checked (in InDesign’s “File” >> “Document Setup” dialog). Now using InDesign’s “Window” menu, locate “Andromeda” >> “ForeEdge” and click it. This will launch Andromeda ForeEdge™.


ForeEdge™ is able to dynamically adapt to InDesign’s current working units of measure.

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To start off, we’ll get to know the controls in the ForeEdge™ dialog box as shown below. As the controls all relate to one another, it is best to read this entire help page to gain an overall understanding of how the settings work together.

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The edge proxy can be seen with a horizontal layout for books with a page count of 500 pages or more as shown in the image above.

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For thinner books, the vertical layout can be selected from the settings menu to give a zoomed in version of the edge proxy as shown below.

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When ForeEdge™ starts, it queries InDesign to acquire the overall page size of your book in the current units of measure. The width and height used by ForeEdge™ is displayed here for informational purposes. If this is not the correct size of your overall InDesign document, quit Andromeda ForeEdge™ and use InDesign’s “File” >> “Document Setup…” function to adjust it. Keep in mind that the page size displayed here is not the “finished size” of your book. We will discuss trim margins and bleeds below and how they relate to the finished size of your book.



In order for ForeEdge™ to correctly calculate the amount of image to smear on the edge of each page, it needs to know the thickness of the paper you will be printing your book on. Click the the control to open the list of options. Use the scroll bar to find and then click on to select the paper thickness you will be printing your book on. If you don’t see your specific paper, choose the setting here that matches the thickness of your paper, as closely as possible.



This is where you tell ForeEdge™ which page to start on and which page to stop on. By default ForeEdge™ auto-selects the entire book, from the first page to the last page. Keep in mind that a 400 page book has 200 sheets of paper in it and each sheet of paper has a front and a back. In this example, we have a 400 page book and the edge effect will be placed on all the pages. If we wanted the ForeEdge™ effect to start on page 100 and end on page 300, we could make that adjustment here. Note that there are “Place On:” controls further down which relate to this control, so keep reading.



The Trim Margin controls tell ForeEdge™ where you will be trimming your book in the paper cutter after it has been printed. In the printing industry, when ink goes right up to the edge of the page, it is called a “bleed”. In order to produce a bleed, the effect must be printed on oversize paper and then trimmed off in a paper cutter. This prevents ink from building up on the rollers of the printer. The Trim Margin is the distance in points from the edge of the paper that is printed on to where the paper cutter will cut, producing your finished book. In the example above, the overall InDesign page size is 8 1/2 inches (612 points) by 11 inches (792 points) and after printing, we are going to trim 1 inch (72 points) from the Bottom, Outer, and Top edges of the book, resulting in a book that has a finished size of 7 1/2 inches (540 points) wide, by 9 inches tall (648 points) after trimming. The ForeEdge™ effect is positioned by the values set here.



The Bleed controls tell ForeEdge™ how much edge-smear-effect to produce inside and outside of the Trim Margin you set in the section above. In the example above, with 10 points Inside and 10 points Outside, the smear will be a total of 20 points wide on each page where the effect appears. After the book is trimmed, 10 points will theorietically remain on the edge of each page, depending on the accuracy of your process.

Here’s another example: If you want 4 points of edge-smear-effect to remain on the edge of each page after trimming, set the Inside Bleed to 4 points. If you want to have the bleed extend 12 points beyond the trim line, set the Outside Bleed to 12 points. In this example, the total amount of edge-smear-effect generated will be 16 points and 12 of it will be trimmed off.

Depending on the printing process you are using, and other factors such as signature folding and binding, there are certain tolerances your process can “hold” in the overall book production process. In tests we’ve run at a local print shop, we’ve found an inside bleed of 6 points and an outside bleed of 6 points worked well. We’ve tried smaller tests with “inside 3 points” and “outside 3 points” and found the printer’s ability to handle each sheet accurately “drifted” from sheet to sheet by as much as 3 points and that caused some of the effect to get trimmed off entirely. You may want to leave a wide band of smear on your finished pages for artistic effect, or you may want to make the effect as small as possible, but ultimately your ability to do that will depend on how accurate your entire process is. We suggest experimentation.



If you have a very wide image you wish to use, and have it wrap around all three edges of your book (Bottom, Outer, and Top), check this box. Once checked, you will see that the Edge Proxy portion of the ForeEdge™ dialog box will change and only show 1 Browse button instead of 3. In this case, once you have selected an image, you will see that the image preview in the proxy shows which part of the image appears on each part of the book. Keep reading to the next section for some visual examples.

Edge Proxy


With the “Wrap 1 Image Around All 3 Edges” checkbox unchecked, you will see 3 Browse buttons as seen above. When in this mode you can pick 3 separate images, 1 for each edge of your book.


With the “Wrap 1 Image Around All 3 Edges” checkbox checked, you will see 1 Browse button as seen above. When in this mode you pick 1 image which will appear wrapped all the way around the entire book from Bottom, to Outer, to Top edge. More visual samples follow.

When you click a Browse button in either of the above two modes, you may then navigate your computer hard disk and select a .JPG (JPEG) or .PNG image file. Be sure to choose an image file of high resolution as you will be printing the results on paper and a resolution of at least 250 pixels per inch is suggested for good printed quality. In the image below, we have navigated on a Windows computer (the Macintosh file navigation dialog will look a little different but will perform the same function) and we are selecting a photo of the Golden Gate Bridge, as seen below.


Then we clicked the Open button. The results are seen below.


You can see that the image we selected is displayed in the area representing the Bottom edge of the book. There is a blue box showing the overall boundaries of the image selected, which has been automatically scaled down to fill the area available at the Bottom of the book, which is 540 points wide by 69 points tall, after trimming. Note that you can click-and-drag anywhere inside the blue box to move the picture around and bring other available content from the photo into view. This is how you can re-crop your image if you don’t like the default cropping, which centers your image in the available space. Note how in the image below we have dragged the image down and now the image contains the upper portion of the Golden Gate Bridge. The blue box also denotes we are now seeing the upper portion of the browsed JPEG image of the bridge.



In the view above, notice how below the Edge Proxy it shows “Position: (0,-43)”. This is the current X and Y position (in points) of the currently selected browsed JPEG image relative to the upper-left corner of the book section you are working on. This can be helpful when aligning multiple edge images precisely. The Width and Height display, shows (in points) the scaled size of the selected browsed JPEG. The PPI display shows the Pixels Per Inch resolution that the image will output and print at. Earlier when we suggested 250 pixels per inch as the minimum for good print quality, you can see here that with the image we’ve selected above, the resolution is a little lower (213 PPI) than what we’d suggested. You’ll get better quality output if you use higher resolution images.

At the bottom of the view above there is a slider for Image Scale. When you have a selected image, you can slide the little ball on the slider by dragging the mouse to make the image appear larger or smaller.


In the above view, see how we’ve slid the Image Scale ball to the right and enlarged the image. Note that the Position, Size and PPI have all updated, as well as the size and position of the blue box, showing what part of the original JPEG we are now using to decorate the Bottom of our book. WARNING: As you scale up, the PPI resolution (output quality) gets worse, so this is another reason to start off with higher resolution images.

Once you start playing with Image Scale and moving the images around, you may find it difficult to “get back to where you started”. If this is the case, click somewhere outside the blue box to deselect it, then click the Browse button again to re-select your image. This will return all image scale and position attributes to their defaults.

Note you can also move images precisely in one axis only, using the arrow keys on your keyboard. If you hold down the SHIFT key and then press an arrow key, the amount of movement will be bigger. If arrow keys are not working for you, try clicking on the ForeEdge™ dialog box to make sure it has keyboard input focus, then click on an image to select it again (the blue box indicates it is selected), then try the arrow keys again.

Note you can also scale images precisely, using the plus (+) and minus (-) keys on your keyboard. If you hold down the SHIFT key and then press a plus (+) or minus (-) key, the amount of scale will be bigger. If the plus (+) and minus (-) keys are not working for you, try clicking on the ForeEdge™ dialog box to make sure it has keyboard input focus, then click on an image to select it again (the blue box indicates it is selected), then try the plus (+) and minus (-) keys again.

Now we’ve gone on to select 3 different images, 1 for each edge of our book. See below.


You can click on each edge of the book and select the image placed there, to crop, scale, and move your image exactly as you wish it to appear on the edge of your finished book. Note that clicking anywhere inside the blue box takes precedence over clicking on a Browse button so if you want to re-Browse, click somewhere outside the blue box to deselect it, then click Browse.

When using Image Scale, it is perfectly fine to make your image smaller than the width of the book edge area you are working on. Untouched area will remain untouched during the output phase. This can be used to control the length of the effect generated along the edges of your book. This is similar to using the “Pages to Place on:” control to adjust the size of your effect from the front of your book to the back.


Note how in the Edge Proxy view above, the Outer edge of this sample book is 648 points wide by 69 points tall. Using Adobe Photoshop’s File >> New function (pictured below) you can create a new image to exactly the specifications you need:


You can then fill the new image with whatever you wish to appear on the edge of your book.


Create a new image as is described above and use the Photoshop text tool to add text with the exact message, font, point size, color, and any other characteristics you want. Save the image from Photoshop as a JPEG (or PNG with transparency) file , then go back to ForeEdge™ and Browse to select your new “text” image file to use it on the edge of your book. Here is an example:


Here’s that same “text” image file used with the “Wrap 1 Image Around All 3 Edges” feature turned on:


We’ve done a little up-scaling and re-cropping to make the text more readable, but you get the idea. AGAIN – Keep a careful eye on your output resolution because in the example above where we created a 300 PPI image for the Outer edge of our book and then decided to wrap it around all three edges, you can see that our current output PPI is now 100 which is much too low for good print quality. We’d need to create a new higher resolution version of this “text” image if we were really going to print this. You can also create your text in a PNG file with a transparent background, if desired.


FE-place on

The “Place On:” controls enable you to tell ForeEdge™ which pages to output the edge-smear-effect on. If you only want the effect to appear on right pages, click the “Right Pages Only” radio button. If you want the effect on both left and right pages, click the “Left and Right Pages” radio button.

Suppose you want to see one image when you fan the book one way and another image when you fan the book the other way. Another idea we have seen is to place different text messages, for example, “HELLO” when the book is fanned to the right, and “GOODBYE” when fanned to the left. What about black text on a white background when you fan the book one way and (the same message) white text on a black background when you fan it the other. There are countless other creative ideas. Placing multiple images simply requires you to run ForeEdge™ multiple times on the same document, but you need to run it the 1st time with “Right Pages Only” checked and then run it the 2nd time with a different image and “Left Pages Only” checked.


Once you have everything set up as desired, you are ready to click the GO button. Click GO and you will see:


which indicates ForeEdge™ is working hard to create the effect you want. During this process, ForeEdge™ creates image slivers for each page and smears and places them to the specifications requested. The image files created are saved into a folder located in the same folder where the current InDesign document is stored. The automatically created folder is named “ForeEdge_” plus the name of the document. For example, here on our Windows computer the currently opened InDesign document is:

C:\Users\plug_\Desktop\ForeEdge\400 Page Test\400 Page Test.indd

The images created by ForeEdge™ are automatically created and saved in a folder at:

C:\Users\plug_\Desktop\ForeEdge\400 Page Test\ForeEdge_400 Page Test

Inside that folder are additional folders containing image slivers for each type of effect you requested. These folders and images are automatically maintained by ForeEdge™ and you needn’t worry about the details other than to back up the modified and completed document, and all sub-folders with images, if you wish to.

If you have already clicked GO in the past for this document, ForeEdge™ detects that and asks you:


If you are simply re-running ForeEdge™ again to try different settings, click Yes to the above dialog and any prior effects will be deleted from your document. If you click NO images from prior runs will be replaced only if newly requested effects “step on” previously run effects.

As is good advice for any computer professional, please run ForeEdge™ only on a backup copy of your original InDesign document file so that just in case something unexpected happens during your run, you can throw the results away and get a new copy and not risk any damage or loss to your work in your original InDesign document file.


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When you click the Settings button, you get the dialog pictured above. The “Upscale to a minimum PPI of” checkbox turns on a feature where ForeEdge™ uses some internal logic to try to help improve the quality of the output images by artificially up-scaling the image resolution to the desired setting. If your output resolution is already above the set number, the feature will have no effect. Similarly, if your original images are too high in their resolution the “Downscale to a maximum PPI of” checkbox will reduce the unnecessary extra resolution of your images to the set number.

As you drag placed images around in the ForeEdge™ Edge Proxy area(s), they “snap” to top, left, right and bottom edges of the Edge Proxy area in which they were placed. This “snapping” behavior can be made stronger (High), which means the snap will grab from further away, or less strong (Low), which means you have to be closer for the snap to grab. You can also turn snap off by selecting “None”.

UNDO ForeEdge

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If you decide to change one or all of the images it’s best to replace the images than to delete them. Undo ForeEdge can take time and may hang up Indesign.


Clicking the Help button launches your web browser and brings you to this web page where additional details about Andromeda ForeEdge™ can be obtained. If you still have questions about the product, email us at


Clicking the About button displays the above. Note that the marketing web site has not been set up yet. At the bottom of the About box is the number of days remaining on your license for the product. If you have received a new Serial Key from Andromeda and you want to activate your product with the new key, click the blue “Update” link next to the Serial Key and you will see:


where you can paste in your new key and click OK.


We have known there is an issue when AfterEffects is installed. The solution is to temporarily
un-install AfterEffects while you are using ForeEdge. The problem is that Adobe forces .jsx and
.jsxbin files to be processed by AfterEffects (if it is installed, not ExtendScript Toolkit CC which
needs to be the case in order for ForeEdge to function correctly). We have tried many things but the
only thing that works is to uninstall AfterEffects while using ForeEdge.

If ForeEdge still can’t communicate with InDesign, try launching Adobe ExtendScript Toolkit CC
(ESTK) and when it starts type:


Into the “Source1” main window area in the upper left of the ESTK window. Then click the green
“play” button (little green right arrow) and verify you get a little message box that says “Hello”
with an OK button. Dismiss the script by clicking OK. Now use the “File >> Save As” menu to save the
Source1 window as file “foo.jsx” to your Desktop. Quit ESTK and double-click on foo.jsx on your
desktop. If the ESTK doesn’t launch (and some other program does), this is the problem.

Quit the other program and right-click on “foo.jsx” on your desktop and select “Properties” (“Get
Info” on Mac) from the popup menu. Inside the “Properties” (“Get Info” on Mac) window, where it says
“Opens with:” make sure it says “ExtendScript Toolkit CC”. If it doesn’t, click the “Change” button,
then use the facilities there to locate Adobe ExtendScript Toolkit CC on your computer. It is
located here:

On Windows:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Adobe ExtendScript Toolkit CC\ ExtendScript Toolkit.exe

On Mac:
Macintosh HD:Applications:Adobe ExtendScript Toolkit CC:ExtendScript

On Windows You may have to click “More Apps” at the bottom if it is not in the list. You may have to
click “Look for another app on this PC” if it still doesn’t show up as a choice. Then navigate to
and select:

On Windows:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Adobe ExtendScript Toolkit CC\ ExtendScript Toolkit.exe

On Mac:
Macintosh HD:Applications:Adobe ExtendScript Toolkit CC:ExtendScript

If there is a checkbox that says “Always open files of type .jsx with this program” please check
that box and then click OK. Now try double-clicking foo.jsx on your desktop again to verify
ExtendScript Toolkit CC launches. Once this is working, ForeEdge will be able to communicate with
InDesign. Please try ForeEdge again and verify you see correct page sizes and the correct page
number range for your opened document file. This is proof ForeEdge is communicating with InDesign.
If you continue to have difficulties, please email us at and we will help you
as quickly as we can.


  • If using CMYK images, please convert to RGB JPG format before importing into ForeEdge™ as this will prevent any unexpected color-shift.
  • It is best to use high resolution (i,e,: 300 dpi) images as input to ForeEdge™ because this will produce data suitable for high-quality printing. You may notice after running ForeEdge™ that InDesign’s “Link Info” palette shows ForeEdge™ output images as “Actual PPI” of 72 dpi. This is untrue as the Actual PPI will be the same as the original dpi of the input image modified only by any scaling performed in ForeEdge™, which is usually minor.


Decorating and personalizing the edges of books is an art form almost as old as paper. Traditionally, books were clamped, holding the edge of the book slightly fanned, and in a position such that an artist could hand paint an image comfortably. With the advent of computers, digital cameras, Adobe InDesign, and Andromeda ForeEdge™, the average person can now create similar beautiful fore edge images on the edges of books.


Andromeda ForeEdge™ is designed to allow book publishers to decorate or personalize edges of books by smearing slivers of text or images on each page, giving the illusion the edges are painted or printed when the effect is actually generated automatically. The software enables the publisher to decide for themselves, all the desired parameters of the effect, such as which pages it is on, how wide the effect is, or where the effect is to be placed on each page. All three of the outer edges of a book may be optionally decorated. You can wrap a single large image around all three edges (the top “head” edge, the “fore” outer edge, and bottom “foot” edge), or use three separate images, one for each edge. You can create books where different images appear depending on which way you fan the pages. You can control the exact position of the image or text, as it will appear when the book is printed and viewed from each of the side(s).


Andromeda ForeEdge™ starts by evaluating your current opened InDesign CC 2019 document, when it is launched. ForeEdge™acquires the number of pages and the size of the pages. Your entire book needs to be in a single InDesign document file. If your book is short and has very few pages, the image you will see on the edge of your book can’t be very tall. Longer books with larger numbers of pages work better. Note that all the pages need to be the same size for the software to work properly. The images you select are slivered and smeared into new images that are then placed onto each page of your InDesign document.


Andromeda ForeEdge™ will be licensed for use for particular periods of time. Trial versions are available so if you are interested please inquire via the email below.


Andromeda ForeEdge™ is plug-in software for Adobe InDesign CC 2019. Andromeda ForeEdge™ is a trademark of Andromeda Software Inc. Adobe InDesign CC 2019 is a trademark of Adobe Systems Inc.


Software Engineering by: David Dobson
Concept, management, and documentation by: Steven D. Myers

The preceding original work is Copyright © 2013-2019 by Andromeda Software Inc., Thousand Oaks, California USA. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.

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