Problems with printed Invoice format

R. Victor Klassen rvklassen at
Thu Oct 27 07:27:37 EDT 2016

I looked into invoice pagination a few years ago.   It turns out it does half a job if you save the invoice as HTML and then bring it up in the right browser to print.
To do a full job would mean things like getting (page 1 of n) on the first page, and putting at least some headers at the top of pages 2 through n - optionally letterhead.   But at least rows aren’t broken in the middle.

What this is about is a directive - either HTML or CSS (been too long, I forget which) that tells the browser to keep everything in a cell of a table together when printing.  Turns out that directive, while standardized, is optional, and it is not implemented in the HTML reader/display system used by GNUCash, or (if I recall correctly - and it may have changed) by Safari. The directive is being emitted, it is just being ignored, as permitted by the standard.

I haven’t had a customer for which I have long invoices in several years, so this is all from memory, but we used to have one quite regularly, and my work process was to save as HTML, edit out of the HTML the lines I didn’t need (total tax on a completely non-taxable invoice; subtotal before tax) and then print from a browser that broke the table between cells - at the time it was Firefox.  

I don’t know which browsers currently implement that directive, as I haven’t had the issue since we dropped that customer.

To really do it right would likely require a total re-write of the report generation to generate PDF or the like (something that really understands pages) - without passing through HTML  But integrating a PDF viewer across all platforms is not as easy as integrating an HTML viewer across all platforms.

> On Oct 26, 2016, at 2:41 PM, John Whitmore <arigead at> wrote:
> Cross posted there. Thanks for the advice. Even though you're not really
> helping here ;-) So pagination needs to be implemented. Hmmm.. must look and
> see what the mechanism is, library and language used etc.
> On Wed, Oct 26, 2016 at 01:14:35PM -0500, John Mitchell wrote:
>> I have found some of the same issues with invoices as John. They do not paginate and although I have successfully created a custom invoice, I have to change to it using the options button before printing each time. The default invoice is not customizable enough to suit my purposes. I'd like to be able to select my custom invoice as the default.
>> John W. Mitchell
>> Lillian Services LLC
>> (251) 597-9257
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: gnucash-user [ at] On Behalf Of David T. via gnucash-user
>> Sent: Wednesday, October 26, 2016 12:00 PM
>> To: John Whitmore <arigead at>
>> Cc: gnucash-user at
>> Subject: Re: Problems with printed Invoice format
>> John,
>> It sounds like the documentation is a little misleading. Try looking at the report options before choosing print. At least, that’s where I see the style sheet selector. Once you’ve selected the style sheet, you should see the changes.
>> HTH,
>> David
>> BTW, what section of the documentation were you citing?
>>> On Oct 26, 2016, at 8:57 PM, John Whitmore <arigead at> wrote:
>>> Been using GnuCash for a while and I guess this is the first time I've 
>>> hit problems with my invoices. I've created an invoice with a lot of 
>>> entries, which have unfortunately stretched over more then one page. 
>>> The printed invoice is not being paginated at all.
>>> On top of that one the customer is complaining that the Invoice 
>>> contains the term "Tax" where as it should be "VAT" of "Value Added Tax".
>>> I took these problems as the motivation to actually customise my 
>>> Invoice by following the documentation to create a new style sheet 
>>> with my Logo and stuff. That's given me another problem as the 
>>> documentation states that: "With the style sheet configured, when you 
>>> print the invoice, you select the style sheet to use from the Options 
>>> menu." There is no "Options" Menu? When I select print if goes 
>>> straight to an un-paginated basic invoice. No option to change that. :-( I know it's in here somewhere.
>>> I'm running version 2.6.12 on OpenSUSE Tumbleweed, I probably 
>>> installed straight from the package manager for convenience, so I must 
>>> go look at latest, and installing from source, but I don't imagine that's my problem.
>>> Cheers for any thoughts. I know I'm simply missing something obvious 
>>> in all three cases, but Internet ain't helping.
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