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Using release InDesign with DEBUG version of my PLN

Contributor ,
Nov 12, 2021 Nov 12, 2021

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Hello,

For almost 2 years, we have been testing and debugging our PLNs in their release versions, as we could not get the debug versions to build/link, and it was still possible to run in the VS2019 debugger with breakpoints etc...

Now, we have some quiet time, and I deceided to try to get the debug version of the PLN to build and finally managed to et the debug version of my PLN to build and link.

But, when I try to use the "normal" version of InDesign to load my debug PLN, nothing happens.

Do I need to also install the DEBUG version of InDesign (yuk!) ?

Very best regards,

Olivier

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Contributor , Nov 13, 2021 Nov 13, 2021

Yes, it seems that only the debug version of inDesign can be used with a plugin compiled in DEBUG mode 😞

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Contributor ,
Nov 13, 2021 Nov 13, 2021

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Yes, it seems that only the debug version of inDesign can be used with a plugin compiled in DEBUG mode 😞

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Adobe Employee ,
Nov 15, 2021 Nov 15, 2021

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I don't know what a PLN is in this context...

 

If you set the debug flag on the production version, does that help? You may also want to reach out to wwds@adobe.com with this question.

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Contributor ,
Nov 15, 2021 Nov 15, 2021

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Sorry, too much jargon.

PLN is the Windows file extension for InDesign plugins.

I have bitten the bullet and installed the debug version of InDesign.

Thank you for your assistance.

Very best regards,

Olivier

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Guide ,
Nov 16, 2021 Nov 16, 2021

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Olivier, please mind the subtle differences.

 

Since several decades a plug-in is a binary executable library (Windows: dll, OSX: framework) produced from C++ sources.

 

The term plugin is an unfortunate marketing choice for something formerly known as extension, implemented in a high level scripting language such as Flex/ActionScript, CEP / Javascript or the forthcoming UXP.

 

Setting a debug flag is a concept of the latter - it disables security checks for the convenience of the developer.

 

Debug builds of plug-ins have different binary code matching differences in the debug build of the application. As you found, they are incompatible with the release build and fortunately the application checks for that.

 

The differences would be larger object sizes to support extended (slow) runtime checks, additional object methods, entire interface omitted or unfunctional in the release builds - for example services to turn numeric IDs into readable strings, or support various debug output sinks. The plug-ins also should contain extra code in macros that are optimized away by the compiler for the release build. Therefor these debug plug-ins can't run with a release build.

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Adobe Employee ,
Nov 16, 2021 Nov 16, 2021

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Thanks, Dirk!

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New Here ,
May 25, 2023 May 25, 2023

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It may seem incredible and strange, but i can debug the Plug-In produced with xcode for the release verison of indesign.
I attached xcode to InDesign 2019, I activated the Debug executable checkbox, and strangely I can debug my Plug-In using a version release of InDesign, how is this possible?
What's even weirder is that I wanted to do the exact same thing with later versions of InDesign like 2020,2021 and so on, but with none of these I was able to debug the release version of InDesign.
The reason i keep wanting to debug the release version of InDesign is for the simple reason that it is much faster, the debug version of indesign is infinitely slower.
I apologize in advance if I have confused some terminology.

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Community Expert ,
May 25, 2023 May 25, 2023

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Hi @Stefano5C37,

You can debug your plugin with release version of InDesign as well that is not strange. You just need to generate the debug symbols while compiling the release build of your plugin and you should be able to debug it. The reason we use debug version of InDesign is that it comes with additional support for debugging, like enhanced run time checks, asserts for possible issues in your code etc. So the price you pay in terms of slowness of debug build is compensated with these additional support.

-Manan

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