"Failed to Export PDF"

New Here ,
Jun 12, 2018 Jun 12, 2018

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Working on a file in InDesign (13.1) and when I try to print it fails, and when I try to export it as a pdf it says "Failed to Export to pdf" with no explanation. I tried turning off downsampling, but that didn't help. Even deleted all of the photos to test doing it that way, but still no luck.

It seems to be a problem with this particular file, not with memory, because when I tested the issue by opening a different, much larger and more complex file, it exported just fine.

Tried packaging it as well, and also got the failed to create pdf error, which seems to make it not package the file, either.

Appreciate any suggestions. Thanks.

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Import and export, Performance

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Adobe Community Professional , Jun 12, 2018 Jun 12, 2018
Try removing any document corruption by saving it as an IDML document, renaming it and reopening it and exporting as a PDF/X-4.

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New Here ,
Jun 12, 2018 Jun 12, 2018

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Update: I just went through the file and printed each page as a pdf, one by one. Every page worked just fine. So that's a work-around, but obviously not ideal. Perhaps this helps identify the problem, though?

Thanks.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 12, 2018 Jun 12, 2018

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Try removing any document corruption by saving it as an IDML document, renaming it and reopening it and exporting as a PDF/X-4.

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New Here ,
Aug 07, 2018 Aug 07, 2018

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I am having the same problem and tried this but still no luck. I can't package the file and cannot save it as a pdf. It will only save as an interactive pdf.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 07, 2018 Aug 07, 2018

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I'm on InDesign 12.1.0.56, and I recently had this problem with a fairly large book file. 

I was able to make it work only by shutting down my computer, opening only InDesign and Suitcase after restart, and doing nothing else but create the PDF.

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Adobe Employee ,
Aug 29, 2018 Aug 29, 2018

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Hi Megan/ Winton,

I would like to know if the steps suggested above worked for you, or the issue still persists.

Kindly update the discussion if you need further assistance with it.

Thanks,

Srishti

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Explorer ,
Feb 28, 2019 Feb 28, 2019

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Good morning, I just tried this. No luck

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 01, 2019 Mar 01, 2019

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What did you try? By no luck what do you mean?


You can always start a new thread in the forums and give as much information as possible.

Version of Indesign

Operating System (and computer specs)

PDF export options

What you have tried and what the results were.

Thanks - happy to help if I can.

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Community Beginner ,
May 05, 2019 May 05, 2019

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I tried exporting/saving as an IDML file, but InDesign won't open the IDML file. Waited for 63 minutes and gave up.

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Adobe Employee ,
May 07, 2019 May 07, 2019

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Hi Russel,

I understand how frustrating it could be. Looks like the file itself is damaged. If this is happening with this particular file, would you mind sharing the file with us? If not, please email your InDesign file to corrupt_indesign_docs@adobe.com and we will take a look at the document.

If the file is larger than 10 Mb, you can upload it to Creative Cloud and send us the download link.

I must also inform that file recovery can't be guaranteed with a 100% success. We'll try our best.

Regards,

Srishti

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New Here ,
Aug 06, 2021 Aug 06, 2021

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This solution doesn't work.

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New Here ,
Nov 14, 2021 Nov 14, 2021

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LATEST

Managed to save mine by renaming files names that are too long! I noticed there are file names in my links folder that are super long. renamed them and it worked!

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Guide ,
Aug 30, 2018 Aug 30, 2018

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  • Are you able to share the PDF Export settings you are using when you are seeing the hanging of InDesign?
  • Also have you tried resetting InDesign's preferences?

To be honest I've spend 10+hrs on a file that had a similar problem recently. IDML didn't fix the corruption in the file.However I did eventually discover the culprit in the document. One element had corrupted, but PDF creation only failed using one particular scenario. Once things started failing though Printing, Packaging nothing would work, and InDesign would go into a complete spin.

To elaborate on what was happening in my case:

  • I needed to export the file as PDF (Interactive) with Tagged PDF option enabled (for accessibility purposes).
  • When the Tagged PDF option was enabled. the PDF creation would put InDesign into an endless loop. The application wouldn't crash... the progress bar would just hang. I even left it running over night.
  • When Tagged PDF option was disabled... the PDF created immediately.

I ended up reconstructing the file bit by bit to finally discover there was ONE grouped anchored object that had been marked up with Object Export Options that caused the issue.  Once I recreated that design element. All was OK.

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New Here ,
Aug 30, 2018 Aug 30, 2018

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I was able to get it to save as an Interactive PDF…just not a regular PDF.

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Adobe Employee ,
Aug 31, 2018 Aug 31, 2018

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Hi Megan,

Thanks for getting back to us. As per your query, you can not save the file by "Save" or "Save As" neither you can export it to "Print PDF". You can only Export it to "Interactive PDF". If yes, I would need a few more details to solve this query:

  • Is it happening with multiple files or one particular file?
  • Where the file files are saved and where you are trying to export(Local HDD/ External HDD/ Network Drive/ Google Drive/ Dropbox)?
  • Please try Exporting to IDML and check if that helps!

Regards,

Srishti

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 07, 2018 Sep 07, 2018

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I having the same problem - I can't export to PDF, it just fails every time. Appears to be just this document, and it was working a day or two ago. InDesign has been crashing a lot lately.

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Adobe Employee ,
Sep 10, 2018 Sep 10, 2018

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Hi Justin,

We are sorry to hear about this. I would request you to please try these steps and share results:

  • Export to IDML and save IDML file on Desktop.
  • Close the existing document and open IDML from Desktop.
  • Try Exporting to PDF and check what happens.

Looking forward to your response!

Regards,

Srishti

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New Here ,
Jun 24, 2021 Jun 24, 2021

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This work for me. ^^ Thanks Srishti. 

 

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New Here ,
Aug 06, 2021 Aug 06, 2021

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This solution does not work.

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 11, 2018 Sep 11, 2018

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Can somebody from ADOBE respond to this question? Do something! Fix your freaking app.

I am still having the same issues and still cant find the solution.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 11, 2018 Sep 11, 2018

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State your InDesign version and OS and what the issue is – we're not mind readers.

And don't be rude!

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 12, 2018 Sep 12, 2018

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Hi Derek,

I apologies. I am so frustrated. I've been dealing with this problem since last year when I first started this book project. I had to give the raw files to the printer last year because I couldn't make it work and don't have time to fix it myself, and now, the second book is almost done and this is now becoming an issue again. I tried everything I read from the google, watched youtube, it's working at first and then after another trial, it is failing again.

Hopefully, this will be fixed. Thanks!

Regards,

Love

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 12, 2018 Sep 12, 2018

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As mentioned, there can be a number of factors. Can you state your InDesign version number and OS.

In the meantime do a Save As and incrementally name your document, that will clear out the crud that builds up. You should do this on a regular basis (and keep a copy of the document externally in case of an issue with your computer).

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 11, 2018 Sep 11, 2018

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Shristi (message just above yours) IS Adobe Staff.

lovec54092160

Please tell us exactly what happened to you. Did you try the suggestions she made just above. What operating system? What InDesign verson? Exactly what happened?

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 12, 2018 Sep 12, 2018

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Hi Steve,

Please tell us exactly what happened to you. Did you try the suggestions she made just above.

What operating system? - MacOS Sierra - V10.12.6

What InDesign version? - Indesign CC Version 9

Exactly what happened? - Everytime I am trying to export as PDF (Print) - Press Quality, it is stopping at around 50 - 70% giving me Failed Notifications, I tried changing the PDF settings and also tried exporting PDF 4 - 7 or changing the compression to 300ppi... still now working.

I tried exporting as "Smalles File Size" and it worked yesterday. Before it wasnt...

So I am all confused and dont know what to do everytime.

Please let me know.

Regards,

Love Pascual

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