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Printing to PDF from FM 12.04

New Here ,
Apr 01, 2016

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My team has been using FrameMaker for several years for training materials. Win7.
Our standard print process was always to save to PS file then distill.

However some time ago we discovered that live hyperlinking (either within the document or to internet) would not work from PDF when using this print process. Not sure why, was never able to solve that. (Yes, we had bookmarks enabled.)

So we tried other methods and started using save-as PDF instead with the same overall settings. This solved the link issue, but somewhat randomly we have another problem:

If all of the documents in the book are not OPEN explicitly before saving the book as PDF, There may be a (seemingly) RANDOM repagination of one or more documents (chapters) within the book. So the book PDF output will have duplicate page numbers, i.e. 74, 75, 76, 75, 76, 77, etc.
Obviously no good.

Framemaker's random failures under different processes is extremely frustrating. I'm always holding my breath hoping I don't miss some NEW failure that I didn't know to look for.

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Printing to PDF from FM 12.04

New Here ,
Apr 01, 2016

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My team has been using FrameMaker for several years for training materials. Win7.
Our standard print process was always to save to PS file then distill.

However some time ago we discovered that live hyperlinking (either within the document or to internet) would not work from PDF when using this print process. Not sure why, was never able to solve that. (Yes, we had bookmarks enabled.)

So we tried other methods and started using save-as PDF instead with the same overall settings. This solved the link issue, but somewhat randomly we have another problem:

If all of the documents in the book are not OPEN explicitly before saving the book as PDF, There may be a (seemingly) RANDOM repagination of one or more documents (chapters) within the book. So the book PDF output will have duplicate page numbers, i.e. 74, 75, 76, 75, 76, 77, etc.
Obviously no good.

Framemaker's random failures under different processes is extremely frustrating. I'm always holding my breath hoping I don't miss some NEW failure that I didn't know to look for.

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Apr 01, 2016 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
Apr 01, 2016

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If you want to print to postscript, you must enable the "Generate Acrobat data" option in the print dialogue. This adds the required pdfmarks for enabling all of the interactive features. However, this route is no longer recommended. Just use the SaveAsPDF route and select the appropriate joboptions file for the desired output (PDF) usage. Also, use the RGB option, unless you are trying to create press-ready PDFs.

It is also recommeded to always open all files when updating a book. The settings in the book file determine the pagination that the individual files use and will override any settings in the individual files. Ensure that the book updates properly and that the pagination is correct at that point (check the page numbers in the Book file status bar when you click on the individual files in the book). Then you should be able to create the PDF with the correct pagination.

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Apr 01, 2016 1
New Here ,
Apr 06, 2016

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Thanks this is helpful!

Our PDFs are used both for PRESS and for ebook. We've gone out of our way to try to use a single PDF file for this.

Appears that printing to PS continues to give a better, more consistent, reliable result.

Would you agree with this? Still recommended to open all documents while updating book and saving out the PS?

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Apr 06, 2016 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
Apr 06, 2016

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It's really not recommended to try to use the same file for both on-line viewing and press work as they have completely different requirements. You shouldn't have any interactivity, bookmarks, javascript, etc. in the press PDF file as many a preflight workflow at a press house will flag/reject such PDFs and it unnecessarily bloats the file. Further, for graphics rich documents, you may want much higher resolution graphics in the print version vs the online version [user expectation - a complex vector diagram could take quite a while to render, whereas an image of the same would display quite quickly].

For press work, printing to postscript with the AdobePDF as the target printer instance and using the appropriate joboptions should give you good results. If you need fine control over colours, then be aware that this is a RGB route (due to the Windows GDI involved in the postscript generation). To finely control output to CYMK and SPOT colours, you can use the public domain PubliPDF  utility from GrafikHuset [see:  Grafikhuset Publi PDF  - more usage details can be found on his old commercial site: Welcome to Grafikhuset Publi PDF  ] This utility intercepts the RGB postscript prior to Distilling and and allows you to apply specific CMYK or SPOT colour mappings from pre-defined look-ups (or automatically) to get the exact colours required. The alternative is to use the CMYK route via SaveAsPDF, but it is not quite perfect. However, it may suffice for your purposes.

The SaveAsPDF route using the RGB option is actually the same as printing to postscript [with the Generate Acrobat Data option enabled] and then running Distiller. FM sort of automates this and does the process in the background, i.e. it creates a .tps (temporary postscript) file by printing to the AdobePDF, runs Distiller with the specified joboptions, then removes the .tps file and opens (if specified) the finished PDF. This route also has a few minor gremlins, such as not properly working with oversized sheets.

Opening all files in a book prior to updating or printing is highly recommend (I'd actually say mandatory) for a couple of reasons. If the files have to be opened and there are any issues with a particular file (i.e. missing fonts, broken cross-refs, etc.) then the print job will fail (as the files are being opened silently to accomplish this) and you may not get any messages as to why. Opening the files first allows you to deal with any of these issues so FM can proceed unhindered. Further, if all files are opened in advance, you have the option of not saving them when closing. When they are opened silently, any updates, automatic font substitutions, etc. are automatically saved when the file is closed again [all in the background so you don't see it happening]. In some work flows, this could be an issue, especially if there is a shared file between publications. If you like tomaintain control and have final say as to FM does, open the files first. If it really doesn't matter to you, then you could just use the book file.

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Apr 06, 2016 0
New Here ,
Apr 06, 2016

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I appreciate your concern in using the same file for both, and we didn't like it either at first, but we generate a large number of books (~100) and pages (~30,000) every year, we don't want to double it. We target the press version and let the ebook version fall where it will. As we understand, our ebook deliverer is able to compress to save resources and improve performance.

I'll need to take a little time to review and absorb the rest of your reply.

Thanks again very much for your attention to this.

Steve

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