Previous 1 2 Next 17 Replies Latest reply: Jul 30, 2012 3:48 AM by Jerrold Green1
PigeonCake Level 1 (0 points)

So I need to add comments to my pages document but the default font for anything added to a comments note is Lucida Grande 9.0 pt...


If I want to change that to something smaller and more space efficient then I have to change it in...every...single...note...


There is a post about how to change this directly in the XML file within the Pages package bundle itself, but I'm guessing this was for iWork 08 because I don't recognise anything once I'm in there...


Any clues...


Many thanks



  • Level 8 (41,790 points)

    The descriptor of comments isn't available in the delivered templates. I guess that it's built from resources embedded in one of the .nib files embedded in the application's package.

    At this time, I have no way to create a default setting.

    It seems that the app create a new standard descriptor from scratch if the already existing one isn't the standard one.

    Save your document with its standard comments.

    Open the index.xml file.

    Searching in it, you will get the descriptor of the style used by default for comments.

    it must be resembling to :



    It's easy to change the font name or the font size or both if you want.


    When it's done, save the edited index.xml. If there is an index.xml.gz file, rename it as backup_index.xml.gz

    Then, open the document to check that the changes really apply.

    If it's OK, save the document.

    the old backup_index.xml.gz file will be deleted.

    Same thing for the edited index.xml which will be replaced by its packed version index.xml.gz


    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) dimanche 1 mai 2011 14:14:26


    Please :

    Search for questions similar to your own before submitting them to the community


    To be the AW6 successor, iWork MUST integrate a TRUE DB, not a list organizer !

  • Scott Campbell5 Level 1 (60 points)

    Lucida Grande has no italics, which makes any reference to a book or italicized text impossible to site accurately. Yvan's suggestion is far too complex for what I want to do. I wonder if anyone else knows of a way to include italics in comments.

  • fruhulda Level 6 (15,120 points)

    Create a style for the comments using the font, font size etc.. you want. It isn't that difficult to go through the comments and apply the style.If you like the style and want to use it in other documents there is an import option in the Format menu.

  • Level 8 (41,790 points)

    I retrieved an old script which may help.


    It was designed to change the default font but it may be used to changee the one used in comments.

    Here is the script, I give some explanations just after the code.



    --[SCRIPT set_iWork_default_font]


    Si vous choisissez "Pages" vous verrez:


    /* ----- Font Names */

    "FONT_Helvetica" = "Helvetica";

    "FONT_Helvetica-Bold" = "Helvetica-Bold";

    "FONT_Helvetica-Oblique" = "Helvetica-Oblique";

    "FONT_LucidaGrande" = "LucidaGrande";


    La police utilisée par défaut dans les textes, les notes et les tables est celle dont le descripteur est "FONT_Helvetica"


    éditez la ligne correspondante comme suit:


    "FONT_Helvetica" = "_nomDeVotrePolice_";


    Par exemple, pour utiliser Palatino, remplacez _nomDeVotrePolice_ par "Palatino-Roman"

    Enregistrez le fichier ainsi modifié par (cmd + S)


    Si vous choisissez "Numbers" vous verrez:


    /* ----- Font Names */

    "FONT_Helvetica" = "Helvetica";

    "FONT_HelveticaNeue" = "HelveticaNeue";

    "FONT_HelveticaNeue-Bold" = "HelveticaNeue-Bold";

    "FONT_LucidaGrande" = "LucidaGrande";

    "FONT_MarkerFelt-Thin" = "MarkerFelt-Thin";


    La police utilisée par défaut dans les textes, les notes et les tables est celle dont le descripteur est "FONT_HelveticaNeue"


    éditez la ligne correspondante comme suit:


    "FONT_HelveticaNeue" = "_nomDeVotrePolice_";


    Si vous choisissez "Keynote" vous verrez:


    "STYLE_Series_2" = "Series_2";

    "STYLE_None" = "Aucun";

    "STYLE_Series_5" = "Series_5";

    "STYLE_Series_3" = "Series_3";

    "FONT_LucidaGrande" = "LucidaGrande";

    "FONT_Helvetica" = "Helvetica";

    "STYLE_Free Form" = "Format libre";

    "STYLE_Series_1" = "Series_1";

    "FONT_GillSans" = "GillSans";

    "STYLE_Normal" = "Normal";

    "STYLE_Series_0" = "Series_0";

    "FONT_MarkerFelt-Thin" = "MarkerFelt-Thin";

    "STYLE_Series_4" = "Series_4";


    La police utilisée par défaut dans les textes, les notes et les tables est celle dont le descripteur est "FONT_GillSans"


    éditez la ligne correspondante comme suit:


    "FONT_GillSans" = "_nomDeVotrePolice_";


    Une liste de 564 noms de polices est disponible sur mon iDisk:






    If you choose "Pages" you will see:


    /* ----- Font Names */

    "FONT_Helvetica" = "Helvetica";

    "FONT_Helvetica-Bold" = "Helvetica-Bold";

    "FONT_Helvetica-Oblique" = "Helvetica-Oblique";

    "FONT_LucidaGrande" = "LucidaGrande";


    The font used as default for tables is the one whose descriptor is "FONT_Helvetica"


    edit the line as:


    "FONT_Helvetica" = "_yourFontName_";


    For instance, to use Palatino, replace "_yourFontName_" by "Palatino-Roman"

    Save the file (cmd + S)


    If you choose "Numbers" you will see:


    /* ----- Font Names */

    "FONT_Helvetica" = "Helvetica";

    "FONT_HelveticaNeue" = "HelveticaNeue";

    "FONT_HelveticaNeue-Bold" = "HelveticaNeue-Bold";

    "FONT_LucidaGrande" = "LucidaGrande";

    "FONT_MarkerFelt-Thin" = "MarkerFelt-Thin";


    The font used as default for tables is the one whose descriptor is "FONT_HelveticaNeue"


    edit the line as:


    "FONT_HelveticaNeue" = "_yourFontName_";


    If you choose "Keynote" you will see:


    "STYLE_Series_2" = "Series_2";

    "STYLE_None" = "Aucun";

    "STYLE_Series_5" = "Series_5";

    "STYLE_Series_3" = "Series_3";

    "FONT_LucidaGrande" = "LucidaGrande";

    "FONT_Helvetica" = "Helvetica";

    "STYLE_Free Form" = "Format libre";

    "STYLE_Series_1" = "Series_1";

    "FONT_GillSans" = "GillSans";

    "STYLE_Normal" = "Normal";

    "STYLE_Series_0" = "Series_0";

    "FONT_MarkerFelt-Thin" = "MarkerFelt-Thin";

    "STYLE_Series_4" = "Series_4";


    The font used as default for tables is the one whose descriptor is "FONT_GillSans"


    edit the line as:


    "FONT_GillSans" = "_yourFontName_";


    A list of 564 names is available on my iDisk:




    Yvan KOENIG (Vallauris, FRANCE)

    5 mars 2009

    2009/08/31 added treatment of flatfiles.



    on run

      if my parleFrancais() then

      set prompt1 to "Choisir l'application"

      set prompt2 to "Choisir un modèle"

      set prompt3 to "Choisir une localisation"


      set prompt1 to "Choose the application"

      set prompt2 to "Choose a template"

      set prompt3 to "Choose a localization"

      end if


    choose the application *)

      set theApp to choose from list {"Pages", "Numbers", "Keynote"} with prompt prompt1

      if theApp is false then error -128

      set theApp to item 1 of theApp


    define some parameters *)

      if theApp is "Pages" then

      set permitted to {"", ""}

      set sub to "Templates"

      set theStrings to "Localizable.strings"

      else if theApp is "Numbers" then

      set permitted to {"", ""}

      set sub to "Templates"

      set theStrings to "Localizable.strings"

      else (* it is "Keynote" *)

      set permitted to {"", ""}

      set sub to "Themes"

      set theStrings to "fontsAndText.strings"

      end if


    choose the template *)

      set p2f to (path to applications folder as text) & "iWork '09:" & theApp & ".app:Contents:Resources:" & sub

      if 5 > (system attribute "sys2") then (*

    it's Mac OS X 10.4.11 *)

      set allowed to permitted

      else (*

    it's Mac OS X 10.5.6 with a bug with Choose File *)

      set allowed to {}

      end if

      set p2f to (choose file with prompt prompt2 default location (p2f as alias) of type allowed) as text

      if p2f does not end with ":" then set p2f to p2f & ":" (* ADDED *)


    choose the localization folder *)

      set p2f to p2f & "Contents:Resources"

      set p2f to (choose folder default location (p2f as alias) with prompt prompt3) as text


    open the localizable.strings file *)

      tell application "Finder"

      set nb to count of (files of folder p2f whose name starts with "localizable")

      if nb = 1 then duplicate file theStrings of folder p2f (* as there is no backup, duplicate "localizable.strings" for safe *)

      end tell -- Finder

      tell application "TextEdit"

      open file (p2f & theStrings)

      end tell


    end run




    on parleFrancais() (* Check if Pages is running in French *)

      local z


      tell application "Pages" to set z to localized string "Cancel"

      on error

      set z to "Cancel"

      end try

      return (z = "Annuler")

    end parleFrancais







    Run the script.

    It will ask you to select the app

    the template

    the localized version


    Then it open the relevant resource in TextEdit.


    You will see  the line :

    "FONT_LucidaGrande" = "LucidaGrande";

    Edit it as :

    "FONT_LucidaGrande" = "here_put_the_name_of_a_font_which_may_be_used_in_italic";


    Save the file

    That's all folks.


    Here is a list of such fonts. Some are delivered with the operating system, some are installed with iWork, some are borrowed from trial versions of Adobe inDesign or Mer…Soft Office.


























































    After that, when you will create a document from the edited template, comments will be crated with the new font so, you will be able to apply italic to all or part of the comment.


    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) 8 mai 2011 12:01:29

  • michaelfromrochester Level 1 (80 points)

    You really don't need to become a scripting guru if you don't want to.


    Simply use the Paragraph Styles that are there and modify what you don't like.

    Screen shot 2011-05-08 at 6.52.50 AM.png


    Select your comments and change font, style, color, weight, size, etc whatever, and highlight that. See what style Pages is using (it will be highlighted in the Drawer) and click on the little red triangle to the right of it and choose your option to redefine, create new or whatever. If you use this document template frequently, simply do a Save as Template from the File Menu and voila there you have it.

    Screen shot 2011-05-08 at 7.00.15 AM.png


    It really is a simple process.

  • Level 8 (41,790 points)

    Ther is no need to be an AppleScript guru to use a script.

    I'm quite sure that you aren't an Objective-C guru but you are running pieces of code written with it for everything which you do with your macintosh.


    What's interesting with my scheme is that you edit the template only once.

    Then, every document created from this one will use the new font in comments.

    It's exactly what the OP asked for.

    With your scheme, he will get comments using Lucida Grande and will must apply a style to every new comment.


    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) 8 mai 2011 17:27:05

  • Level 8 (41,790 points)

    Are you sure that the style applied to one comment will be used for other ones ?


    It's not the way Pages behave on my French system.


    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) 8 mai 2011 17:30:12

  • fruhulda Level 6 (15,120 points)

    Of course not. He has to apply the style to every comment he makes in the document.

  • PigeonCake Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm trying to change the default font, I can already change the font on notes individually, but I want to put them in Helbetica Neue Light 7 point. I have a lot of notes.


    KOENIG Yvan

    VALLAURIS (France)

    I'll have to have a look at the code above when I'm on my Mac but I have a feeling I'm not going to be able to keep up with that. However I'll message you if I run into a hurdle because Lucida Grande is driving me nuts.


    Many, many thanks for the hard work on this reply.


    What a shame setting up a new template doesn't change the default comments font.

  • Level 8 (41,790 points)

    You don't have to change the script contents, just run it.


    It will ask you which app must be treated : Pages

    It will ask you which in_the_box template must be edited : Blank.template (it's my default one)

    It will ask you which localized version must be edited. I select fr.lproj (for French) for English it's en.lproj


    For Blank.template in English, you will get :


    Replace the highlighted LucidaGrande by HelveticaNeue

    Then press cmd + S

    The next document created with this template will use HelveticaNeue in Comments.

    I apologize but I found no way to define the default font size.


    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) 8 mai 2011 19:00:36

  • PigeonCake Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks KOENIG Yvan.

    I reading all this on an iPhone so can't really on it now.

    Will message you when I get back to my mac

  • michaelfromrochester Level 1 (80 points)

    I'm not sure that the level of complexity  involved in clicking on the Paragraph Style created for Comment to change the comment is overwhelming, but I find it a lot simpler than making my brain bleed writing scripts to do what a simple click will do.

  • Level 8 (41,790 points)

    I repeat that after running the script once, every comment created from the edited template will use the newly defined font which is what the OP asked and what your tip is unable to do.


    I repeat also that there is no need to write a script as I posted here the needed one.


    Yvan KOENIG (VALLAURIS, France) 9 mai 2011 11:11:02

  • drakefromca Level 1 (0 points)

    Koenig Yvan,


    Hello, I know this is an old post, but I too am trying to change the default settings for the comment section in pages.


    I see your script you have posted, but I do not know the steps to run that. I am no computer wiz. Can you tell me step by step how to run that?


    And if I do run it, which font will end up being my default?

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