What is Mail Merge and how do it in C# and VB .Net?

(Generate documents populated by data and based on a Word template)

Mail Merge is the feature which allows you to easily generate a bunch of documents based on a template.

Mail Merge is the feature which allows to easy generate a bunch of documents based on a template.

By way of example «what is Mail Merge»:

Let us say, we need to create an app which generates hundreds of identical medical certificates in PDF format.

Classical Way:

Create an each PDF document programmatically in a cycle and insert personal data (First Name, Las Name, SSN, Date of Birth ...) from DB or a collection.
Actually, it's not so easy programmatically create document with a nice desing. And with future design changes, you may feel the difficulties to maintain this application.

Way with Mail Merge:

  1. Create a well-designed Word-template (*.doct) in MS Word with fields: First Name, Las Name, SSN, Date of Birth.
  2. Set the data source (DB) and link the fields ("FirstName = firtsname", ...).
  3. Execute the MailMerge method and you will get the populated PDF document based on the Template.

To help you feel at home working with Mail Merge, we prepared several C# apps:

  1. Creating envelopes for Simpson's family based on a one Template.
  2. Car rental contract - Simple WinForms App.
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