Excerpt: Classroom in a Book for Adobe Acrobat 5, Pt 1 of 4
Sample lesson on Creating Adobe PDF Files from Adobe Press/Peachpit Press
21 February 2002
LESSON 3: Creating Adobe PDF Files
Acrobat provides a variety of ways for you to create Adobe PDF files
quickly and easily from existing electronic files or documents. You
can use the Print command from within your authoring application, you
can open files using the Open as Adobe PDF command, and you can
convert scanned documents using Acrobat® Capture® or the Adobe Paper
Capture Online service.
In this lesson, you'll learn how to do the following:
- Use an authoring application's Print command to convert a file to Adobe PDF
- Open a text file in Acrobat, automatically converting it to Adobe PDF
- Create an Adobe PDF file by exporting a file from Adobe PageMaker
- Specify security settings for a file
- View security information for a document
- Correct PDF files created by converting paper documents to Adobe
PDF using a scanner and the Web-based Paper Capture Online service
This lesson will take about 50 minutes to complete.
Download all files associated with Lesson 3 [SIT: 1.95 MB] or as individual files where mentioned in the excerpt.
Note: Windows users need to unlock the lesson files before using
About PDF Documents
Adobe Acrobat is not a program that enables you to create content.
The content of any PDF document must be created in a program other
than Acrobat. You can use any wordprocessing, page-layout, graphic,
or business program to create content and then convert that content
to Adobe PDF at the time you would normally print to paper. You can
think of Adobe PDF files as the electronic equivalents of your
printed documents. You can also create PDF documents by "capturing"
scanned images of paper documents and converting Web pages.
About Acrobat Distiller
Acrobat mostly uses Acrobat Distiller to create Adobe PDF files. All
the necessary components are installed and configured automatically
when you perform a typical installation of Acrobat so that you're
ready to create Adobe PDF files right away. Adobe PDF files created
with Acrobat Distiller maintain all the formatting, graphics, and
photographic images of the original document. Although Distiller has
very powerful options that let you control many aspects of your Adobe
PDF file, including the amount of compression applied to images,
whether or not fonts are embedded, and how color is managed, most
users will probably use only the four sets of predefined Distiller
In this lesson, you'll use these predefined Distiller job options to
create Adobe PDF files. For information on customizing Distiller job
options, see "Setting job options" on page 45 in the Acrobat 5.0 online Help.
Using an Application's Print Command
When you install Acrobat on your system, you automatically install an
Acrobat Distiller "printer" (Windows) and a Create Adobe PDF
"printer" (Mac OS) that appear in the Print dialog box of many
authoring applications. These printers let you create an Adobe PDF
file directly from your authoring application.
In this part of the lesson, you'll create an Adobe PDF version of a
contract between Adeline and Associates, a fictitious company that
repairs and restores antique automobiles, and their agency.
- Start your word processor
- Choose File > Open. Select Contract.doc in the Lessons/Lesson03
folder, and click Open
Note: If your word processing program won't open the Contract.doc
file [DOC: 76kb], open the Contract.pdf file [PDF: 34kb] in the Lesson03/Supply folder and
skip to "Viewing the PDF contract."
Take a minute to look at the contract document. Notice that the
document contains a simple graphic logo at the top of the page. (On
some platforms and with some word processing programs, you may not
see the graphic. The graphic should still print when you create the
PDF file, however.) Creating the Adobe PDF file Creating an Adobe PDF
file is as easy as printing. However, because printing is different
on Windows and Mac OS, this section has been organized by platform.
Creating the Adobe PDF file
Follow the steps in the Windows or Mac OS section.
- From within your word processing program, choose File > Print.
- Choose Acrobat Distiller from the Name pop-up menu in the Printer
section of the Print dialog box. In some applications, you may need
to click Setup in the Print dialog box to access the Name menu.
In this lesson, you'll use the default Distiller parameters (eBook)
to create the Adobe PDF file. First though, take a minute to see how
you would change the Distiller parameters (job options), if you
needed to. (The options available in the Print dialog box may vary
depending on your word processing application.)
- Click the Properties button to open the Acrobat Distiller printer
properties dialog box.
- Click the Adobe PDF Settings tab. You can choose a predefined set
of job options from the Conversion Settings pop-up menu, or you can
click Edit Conversion Settings to customize the job options. (Any set
of job options that you have previously defined and saved in Acrobat
Distiller will appear in this pop-up menu.)
For information on Adobe PDF Settings, see "Setting job options" in
the Acrobat 5.0 online Help.
- Click Cancel or OK without changing any of the default settings
until you return to the Print dialog box.
- Click OK or Print.
- In the Save PDF File As dialog box, name the PDF document
Contract1.pdf and save it in your Lesson 3 folder.
- Exit your word processor.
For alternative ways of converting Microsoft Office application files
to Adobe PDF, see "Converting Microsoft Office application files
(Windows)" and "Converting Microsoft Office application
files (Windows)" in the Acrobat 5.0 online Help.
In Mac OS:
- From within your word processing program, choose File > Print.
After you install Acrobat, open the Chooser and select any
PostScript® printer. A Create Adobe PDF printer will be defined
automatically. In your word processing program, choose File > Page
Setup, and select Create Adobe PDF as the printer.
If you do not have a PostScript printer defined in the Chooser, visit
the Adobe Web site for instructions on installing and using the
AdobePS· printer driver.
- In the word processing program's Print dialog box, make sure that
Create Adobe PDF is selected as the printer, that File is selected
for Destination, and that PDF Settings is selected from the pop-up
menu. (The options available in the Print dialog box may vary
depending on your word processing application.) Now you'll choose the
Distiller job options to be used in creating the Adobe PDF file.
- Open the Job Options pop-up menu to view the job options available.
In addition to the standard job options (eBook, Screen, Print, and
Press), any set of job options that you have previously defined and
saved in Acrobat Distiller will appear in this pop-up menu. Select
eBook, the default Distiller job options. In Mac OS, you can
customize the Distiller job options settings only from Distiller, as
described in "Setting job options" in the Acrobat 5.0 online Help.
- For After PDF Creation, choose Launch Nothing. The Launch Adobe
Acrobat option automatically opens Acrobat and displays your newly
created PDF document.
- Click Save. Name the PDF document Contract1.pdf , and save it in
the Lesson03 folder.
- Exit or Quit your word processor. You don't need to save any changes.
Creating PostScript Files
Not all authoring applications offer a mechanism for creating Adobe
PDF files directly. In these cases, you must first create a
PostScript file and then convert this PostScript file to Adobe PDF.
Advanced users may also want to use this two-step method so they can
insert Distiller parameters into the PostScript file to more closely
control the creation of the PDF file. (See "Setting the Distiller
Advanced job options" in the Acrobat 5.0 online Help.) You may also
prefer to create PostScript files if you routinely convert multiple
PostScript files to Adobe PDF in a watched folder or need to combine
multiple PostScript files into a single Adobe PDF file. (See "Setting
up watched folders" and "Combining PostScript files" in the Acrobat
5.0 online Help.)
You create PostScript files using the AdobePS driver and an Acrobat
Distiller PPD with the source application. The AdobePS driver and an
Acrobat Distiller PPD are installed automatically in the default
Acrobat installation. (The PScript driver is installed on Windows
-- From the Acrobat 5.0 online Help.
Viewing the PDF Contract
- Start Acrobat
- Choose File > Open. Select in the Lesson03 folder,
and click Open.
Note: If you need to use the supplied PDF document, locate and open
the Supply folder inside the Lesson03 folder. Select Contract.pdf [PDF: 34kb]
from the list of files, and click Open. Choose File > Save As, name
the file Contract1.pdf and save it in the Lesson03 folder.
Take a moment to look at the document. Distiller has re-created the
original document, maintaining the format, fonts, and layout. Just as
easily as you would print a paper copy of your file, you have created
an Adobe PDF version of your file that you can share with users on
any platform, e-mail, or post on the Web.
Creating Adobe PDF from a Text File
With the "Open as Adobe PDF" command in Acrobat, you can convert a
variety of file formats-BMP, Compuserve GIF, HTML, JPEG, PCX, PICT
(Mac OS only), PNG, Text, or TIFF files-to Adobe PDF by simply
opening the files in Acrobat. Before the agency would sign the
contract with Adeline and Associates, they asked for a cancellation
clause to be added. Rather than redoing the contract, Adeline and
Associates prepared a simple text document containing a cancellation
clause. You'll convert this text document to Adobe PDF by opening it
in Acrobat using the Open as Adobe PDF command, and then you'll
append it to the Sales Agency Agreement document.
- With the Contract1.pdf file still open, choose File > Open as Adobe
PDF. For File of Type (Windows) or Show (Mac OS), select Text (*.txt,
*.text). Select Cancel.txt [TXT: 1kb] in the Lesson03 folder, and click Open.
- In the Open as Adobe PDF dialog box, select Create New Document.
Click OK. Your text file is automatically converted to an Adobe PDF
- Choose File > Save As. Name the file Cancel.pdf and save it in the
- Choose Window > Tile > Vertically to show the two documents,
Contract1.pdf and Cancel.pdf, side-by-side.
Now you'll add the converted file to end of the contract by dragging
its thumbnail into the navigation pane of the Contract1.pdf document.
- Click in one of the document panes to activate it, and then click
the Show/Hide Navigation Pane button to show the navigation pane.
Repeat this process for the second document pane.
- In each navigation pane in turn, click the Thumbnails tab to bring
the Thumbnails palette to the front.
- Select the Cancel.pdf thumbnail in the Thumbnails palette.
- Drag the selected thumbnail into the Thumbnails palette of
Contract1.pdf. When the insertion bar appears below (or to the right
of) the Contract1.pdf thumbnail, release the mouse button.
- Click in the Cancel.pdf document to activate it, and choose File >
Close to close the file.
- Resize the Contract.pdf window. Drag thumbnail between documents.
Page through the document to check that the page was inserted
- Choose File > Save to save your work.
Editing Text in a PDF File
In the previous section, you converted a simple text file to Adobe
PDF and inserted the converted page at the end of the contract file.
As you look at the inserted page, you see a header that is not
required. Also, the font used in the addendum is very different from
that used in the body of the contract. You can edit text in a PDF
file using the touchup text tool. However, you can edit only one line
at a time so you should do major editing in the authoring application
before you create the PDF version. In this file, you'll just remove
the unwanted header and format the first heading.
First, you'll check the font and font size used in the headings on
page 1 of the contract file so that you can use the same font and
font size on the page that you added.
- Go to page 1 of the contract. Select the touchup text tool and
click in the heading Sales Agency Agreement. A box appears around the
text. Drag to highlight the text within the box.
- Choose Tools > Touchup Text > Text Attributes. The Text Attributes
box displays the name of the font used and the font size. You'll use
this information to modify the headings on the addendum.
- Close the Text Attributes dialog box, and go to page 2 of the
contract. Now you'll delete the unwanted header.
- With the touchup text tool still selected, click in the unwanted
header. In the selection box, drag the cursor to select the entire
line of text. Press Delete. (If needed, click the Actual Size button
to show the document at 100%.) Text can be deleted and edited
only if the security settings of the PDF file are set to allow such
actions. This addendum was created with no security settings applied.
Now you'll change the font and font size of the heading on page 2.
- Click in the heading Addendum to Sales Agency Agreement, and drag
the cursor to select the line of text.
- Choose Tools > Touchup Text > Text Attributes.
- In the Text Attributes dialog box, choose the font and point size
you identified in Step 2. (If necessary, close any font alert boxes.)
- Close the Text Attributes dialog box, and click in a blank area of
the page to see the newly formatted text.
Select the text to be formatted. Define new formatting. Result
The heading text is now in the same font and type size as the
headings on page 1. Because the touchup text tool edits only one line
at a time, it is not useful for major editing tasks. However, it is a
very useful for making minor last-minute corrections such as changing
a font or adding color.
- Select the hand tool .
- Choose File > Close. Click Yes (Windows) or Save (Mac OS) to save
the file in the Lesson03 folder.
Changing the Distiller Job Options
At the beginning of this lesson, you created an Adobe PDF file
(Contact1.pdf) using Acrobat Distiller in Windows or Create Adobe PDF
in Mac OS. In both cases, Distiller used the default Distiller eBook
job options to create your Adobe PDF file. (The ebook job options
create a PDF file that provides the best balance between file size
and image quality for most uses.) In this section, you'll use the
Press job options, a predefined set of job options tailored for
high-quality printed output.
Distiller provides four job options settings that control the quality
of the resulting PDF document for different output needs:
- The eBook job options create Adobe PDF files appropriate for reading
primarily on screen-on desktop or laptop computers or devices for
reading eBooks, for example. This set of options balances file size
against image resolution to produce a relatively small selfcontained
- The Screen job options create Adobe PDF files appropriate for
display on the World Wide Web or an intranet, or for distribution
through an e-mail system. This option set produces the smallest PDF
file size. It also optimizes files for byte serving.
- The Print job options create Adobe PDF files that are intended for
printers, digital copiers, publishing on a CD-ROM, or distribution as
a publishing proof. This option set compresses the PDF file size
while striving to preserve the color, image quality, and font
attributes of the original document.
- The Press job options create Adobe PDF files that are intended for
high-quality printed output. This option set produces the largest
file size, but preserves the maximum amount of information about the
In this part of the lesson, you'll convert an Adeline and Associates
flyer document to Adobe PDF using the Press Distiller job options.
About Fast Web View
The Distiller 5.0 job options automatically create Adobe PDF files
that are optimized for Fast Web View. However, if you are working
with older files or with files that were not created using Acrobat
5.0, you should check whether the files have been optimized for Fast
Optimizing or Creating Fast Web View Files
You should convert your PDF files to Fast Web View PDF files-that is,
optimize them-before distributing them. This minimizes file size and
facilitates page-at-a-time downloading. In most cases, converting
your PDF files to Fast Web View PDF files by optimizing them reduces
their file size significantly.
Fast Web View also restructures a PDF document to prepare for
page-at-a-time downloading (byte-serving) from Web servers. With
page-at-a-time downloading, the Web server sends only the requested
page of information to the user, rather than the entire PDF document.
This is especially important with large documents, which can take a
long time to download from a server.
To find out if a PDF document has been converted to Fast Web View:
Choose File > Document Properties > Summary, and look at the Fast Web
To create a Fast Web View document:
- Choose Edit > Preferences > General. Select Options in the left
panel of the General Preferences dialog box. Select Save As Optimizes
for Fast Web View (This option is set by default.) Click OK.
- Use the File > Save As command to save your file.
-- From the Acrobat 5.0 online Help.
Opening the Flyer Document
Saved in Adobe PageMaker format, the flyer document contains general
information about Adeline and Associates and their repair and
restoration of antique automobiles.
Note: If you do not have Adobe PageMaker, proceed to "Adding security
to PDF files" and open the Flyer.pdf file [PDF: 181kb] that has been
supplied in the Lesson03/Supply folder.
- Start PageMaker.
- Choose File > Open. Select Flyerpc.p65 [P65: 1 MB] (Windows) or Flyermc.p65 [P65: 1 MB]
(Mac OS) in the Lesson03 folder, and click Open (Windows) or OK (Mac
OS). (Clear any alerts regarding missing printers. They are not
important in this lesson.)
- Choose File > Save As, rename the file Flyer1.p65 and save it in
the Lesson03 folder.
Take a minute to look at the flyer document. Notice that the flyer
contains a number of photographic and graphic elements.
If you get an alert indicating that fonts are missing, see "Getting
Started" at the beginning of this book, and install the fonts from
the Classroom in a Book CD. If you don't want to install the fonts,
you can accept substitute fonts, but the appearance of the document
may not be true to the original.
Choosing a Distiller Job Options Setting
The informational flyer is going to be printed by a commercial
printer so it can be handed out at automotive shows. For this reason,
the source file for the commercial printer needs to contain text
graphics of the highest quality-file size is not a problem. To create
this Adobe PDF file, you'll use the Distiller Press job options.
- In Acrobat, choose Tools > Distiller to start Acrobat Distiller.
- In the Acrobat Distiller dialog box, for Job Options, choose Press.
- Exit or quit Distiller.
In general, the predefined Distiller job options produce good
results. However, you may want to set custom options to control the
appearance of converted pages and to fine-tune the quality and
compression of images. For even more control over the PDF creation process, you
may want to convert your document first to a PostScript language
file, and then convert the PostScript file to Adobe PDF using
For information on creating PostScript files, see "Creating
PostScript files" in the Acrobat 5.0 online Help.
Creating the Adobe PDF File
Now that you've specified a Distiller job options setting, you can
convert the flyer directly to Adobe PDF from PageMaker. You'll use a
special PageMaker feature that exports an Adobe PDF file using
- Return to the PageMaker flyer document in PageMaker.
- Choose File > Export > Adobe PDF.
- Deselect Override Distiller's Options. Accept the remaining
settings, and click Export.
- Save the PDF file as Flyer1.pdf in the Lesson03 folder. Distiller
will open, and you can see the progress of the conversion.
- Exit or quit Distiller when the conversion is finished.
- Exit or quit PageMaker. You don't need to save any changes to the
PageMaker flyer document.
- If necessary, choose File > Open and open Flyer1.pdf in the
Lesson03 folder. Your PageMaker document has been converted to Adobe
PDF-fonts, text and graphics look just as they did in the original
PageMaker document (unless you allowed font substitution).