When the Fit Margins option is selected, the task Add SmartMarks does not take into consideration the size of SmartMarks added to a normalized PDF .
When the size of the SmartMark set that is added to the Normalized PDF is bigger than Media Box height and width, the resulting PDF is same size as the input PDF.
Is this a bug or expected behaviour in Automation Engine 18.1.1?
This is the intended behavior change in PackEdge 18.1 and Automation Engine 18.1.1 regarding SmartMarks indirectly attached to Media Box (or Plate size). It should not extend the plate/margin.
In older versions, when marks are directly or indirectly attached to a Media Box (or Plate size), the customer increased the height/width bigger than the Media Box. Hence the Media Box size increased if "Fit Margin" (or 'PlateFit' in Plato) option was used. When the Media Box is increasing, Fit Margin will fit again to the new increased Media Box. This causes an ever-growing Media Box.
To avoid this problem, R&D has changed the behavior that marks indirectly attached to plate/margin will not extend the plate/margin, by adding a clip path on the Media Box. This can indeed give unexpected results (e.g.: objects outside the clip path is not shown). When customer has such a situation, we suggest they adapt the SmartMarks structure:
To avoid attaching marks to Media Box if they would use Fit Margin option, instead attach the marks to Trim Box (or a named object) and apply the change again to see the update in PackEdge or Plato.
Re-save the SmartMark set and run the Add SmartMark task again in Automation Engine.