We have a requirement where we need to convert fm files to pdf programatically. We have explored options of DZbatcher and others but wanted to know if there is any possibility to achieve that without any third party tools. Can we make a exe utilizing FDK or something similar. If yes, would like to know options on how to start with. Also, is it enough to have a single user license for the framemaker to achieve this. In our requirements, user would request for PDF using another system and so it will be always a single system who uses framemaker.
re: Also, is it enough to have a single user license for the framemaker to achieve this.
Doubtful. I strongly suspect you need Framemaker Publishing Server.
And it may provide tools to do exactly what you want.
I noticed a few years back that a PC brand I was checking appeared to be generating PDF product data sheets upon click, from a database of live product details. I suspect they were using FM Server.
Here's the Adobe product page. It (and FM, TCS) are virtually impossible to find on the Adobe site. You have to be persistent about drilling down through vague menus doing "show alls", and looking for tech comm breadcrumbs to follow. And when you get to that page, there's no data sheet and no obvious pricing. It's almost as if ADBE only wants to sell it to people who already know that it exists and that they want to buy it.
And to answer your first question, it is certainly possible to do what you want with the FDK. It fully supports programmatic PDF generation. If you needed to make adjustments to the PDF afterwards, that would be another story... I don't have any experience with that. I do believe that Bob is correct about the licensing aspect, but I don't think the server version would give you additional tools. It would just make it legal. You could build and test with your current version of FM on any computer.