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Last post Author Topic: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.  (Read 8792 times)

MerleOne

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Hi,

I am looking for a virtual printer software such as doPDF, cutePDf, etc. except that the result of the output from this virtual printer would be a pdf identical to one generated by a scanned copy of the original document (no text inside, just a picture per page).
Do you know any software that does it, in one pass only ?

Thanks.
.merle1.

mouser

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2012, 08:35:40 AM »
i'm not sure i understand what you are asking for.

MerleOne

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2012, 08:45:07 AM »
Let say I have a word document.  I want to create a PDF from this word document, that would look as a printout of the document, except I don't want it to be "structured", I want the pdf to be equivalent to the one created by a scanner (hardware + software) after I print the .doc to paper and scan the printed paper to a pdf.

In such cases, the pdf doesn't contain text but only images.
.merle1.

mouser

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2012, 08:51:36 AM »
Ok i understand now what you want.

Perhaps a simpler way to say it is:

"I want to be able to print from an application (MS Word for example) to PDF -- but with each page stored as an image, so that no text is stored or recoverable from the PDF file."

MerleOne

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2012, 09:12:34 AM »
Exactly, thanks !

I currently do the following : I use the Office Document Image Writer virtual printer to convert a .doc into a .tif, then irfanview to convert the .tif into a pdf, but there are 2 annoyances :

1/ 2 steps are required
2/ the output quality (tif to pdf) is quite poor (maybe a setting in an irfanview plugin ?)

Edited : the reason I want to use an image format rather than a text format is to avoid any possible error when converting the .doc file to the .pdf format, such as font missing and substituted by another one, etc. .  So far, all "regular" word to pdf software show a few errors here and there.  I really want a 100% perfect copy within the pdf, whatever font/text/image is used in the source document.
.merle1.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2012, 09:32:20 AM by MerleOne »

AndyM

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2012, 12:17:52 PM »
I googled "print to jpg" just out of curiousity, several things there.

If you could print directly to a jpg or tiff (with no loss of quality), may be you could write a script to send the graphic output to a pdf maker etc.

MerleOne

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2012, 04:35:07 PM »
I googled "print to jpg" just out of curiousity, several things there.

If you could print directly to a jpg or tiff (with no loss of quality), may be you could write a script to send the graphic output to a pdf maker etc.

Thanks, I'll look into it.
.merle1.

Curt

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2012, 05:31:53 PM »
2/ the output quality (tif to pdf) is quite poor (maybe a setting in an irfanview plugin ?)

yes, re-check your settings. The quality can be surprisingly good, if you set them to be.


Edited:

This first gif screenshot made the long way from docx printed to tiff, converted via  IrfanView to pdf:

2012-02-22_003352.gif

---------------------
Screenshot of the original docx:

2012-02-22_004343.jpg

« Last Edit: February 21, 2012, 05:48:11 PM by Curt »

Innuendo

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2012, 06:30:17 PM »
There are lots of programs (some pay & some free) that install a PDF printer driver. Just print from inside the app of your choice & the output goes to a PDF file rather than to a physical printer.

4wd

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #9 on: February 21, 2012, 07:36:07 PM »
There are lots of programs (some pay & some free) that install a PDF printer driver. Just print from inside the app of your choice & the output goes to a PDF file rather than to a physical printer.

But most of them output to PDF in the format they were given, ie. text document input->text PDF output, image input->image PDF output

I think what MerleOne wants is no matter what the input, the PDF will always contain just images - what PDF Image Printer, (not free and not cheap), does.


NigelH

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2012, 08:33:15 PM »
PriPrinter can do this (not free though)
The Standard version does - with full bitmap output support (including multiple pages per file if target file is tiff )
The Pro version adds PDF support, but I could not see if it supports complete bitmap formats inside the PDF file (i.e. no embedded fonts/images, only the bitmap equivalent)

MerleOne

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2012, 02:10:03 AM »
Thanks all, will look into it !
.merle1.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2012, 04:05:05 AM by MerleOne »

Curt

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2012, 02:46:39 AM »
I think what MerleOne wants is no matter what the input, the PDF will always contain just images - what PDF Image Printer, (not free and not cheap), does.

-perfect for the job MerleOne described, but as you said, certainly "not free".
I am almost in a coma: $130 without support ($175 with support) ? !!!!
 :o



MerleOne

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2012, 03:56:12 AM »
Regarding PDF Image Printer, I am trying to install it within sandboxie, but it fails so far.  I have to find another test machine...  Will Try PriPrinter too...
.merle1.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2012, 04:22:39 AM by MerleOne »

MerleOne

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2012, 03:59:15 AM »
2/ the output quality (tif to pdf) is quite poor (maybe a setting in an irfanview plugin ?)
...
yes, re-check your settings. The quality can be surprisingly good, if you set them to be.
...
Thanks.  You are referring to irfanview plugin settings ?
.merle1.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2012, 06:22:49 AM by MerleOne »

Curt

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #15 on: February 22, 2012, 08:49:58 AM »
-yes. The first image in my first post was made exactly how you said:


I currently do the following : I use the Office Document Image Writer virtual printer to convert a .doc into a .tif, then irfanview to convert the .tif into a pdf,


4wd

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #16 on: February 22, 2012, 06:15:51 PM »
Here's a little single purpose program in AutoIt that will:
a) monitor a directory for .TIF or .TIFF files
b) call nconvert to output a PDF when it sees one

eg. test.tif -> test.pdf

Put it in a directory along with nconvert.exe, (available from here).

Call it from the CLI, (you can close the CLI afterwards), like so: ncfet2p <dir>

The archive contains the executable, source, UDF and example.

Basically just a butchered version of the example script in the archive.

You can exit it using the context menu on the tray icon, (standard AutoIt icon).

NOTE: I tested it on XP using the x86 version of nconvert.exe but I don't see a reason why it shouldn't work on Vista/7 x86/x64.

Feel free to do what you like with it, change it to use IrfanView, (which I don't use), or something else but remember: If it formats your drive, I wasn't anywhere near it :)

Should mention, it will overwrite any existing PDF of the same name and it doesn't delete the original TIF.

UPDATE: Pops up a ToolTip for a few seconds when it start a conversion, (just to let you know it actually recognised a file).
« Last Edit: February 22, 2012, 11:21:46 PM by 4wd »

Carol Haynes

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #17 on: February 22, 2012, 06:37:04 PM »
PriPrinter can do this (not free though)
The Standard version does - with full bitmap output support (including multiple pages per file if target file is tiff )
The Pro version adds PDF support, but I could not see if it supports complete bitmap formats inside the PDF file (i.e. no embedded fonts/images, only the bitmap equivalent)

I use priPrinter Pro and the PDF is structured - not a bitmap.

The only options I can see are:

23-02-2012 00-33-30.png

So you can't change the format of the output in the PDF (also checked the application options - no PDF options at all in there)

NigelH

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #18 on: February 22, 2012, 08:21:16 PM »
Thanks for the info Carol.
I wonder if Pelikan Software considered this might be a useful feature for PriPrinter

MerleOne

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #19 on: February 23, 2012, 01:44:34 AM »
-yes. The first image in my first post was made exactly how you said:

Ok, thanks.  My question was also : where do you change the settings ?
.merle1.

MerleOne

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #20 on: February 23, 2012, 02:00:01 AM »

I use priPrinter Pro and the PDF is structured - not a bitmap.


Thanks for the info and for the link !
.merle1.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #21 on: February 23, 2012, 03:26:07 AM »
Can I ask why you want to do this? I find the structured nature of PDFs very useful and single image files a bit of a PITA. IS there a reason why the bitmap approach would be widely needed?

Ath

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #22 on: February 23, 2012, 03:46:34 AM »
IS there a reason why the bitmap approach would be widely needed?
Copy protection?, but I'm also quite curious about the OP's answer ;)

tomos

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #23 on: February 23, 2012, 03:48:50 AM »
Can I ask why you want to do this? I find the structured nature of PDFs very useful and single image files a bit of a PITA. IS there a reason why the bitmap approach would be widely needed?

Edited : the reason I want to use an image format rather than a text format is to avoid any possible error when converting the .doc file to the .pdf format, such as font missing and substituted by another one, etc. .  So far, all "regular" word to pdf software show a few errors here and there.  I really want a 100% perfect copy within the pdf, whatever font/text/image is used in the source document.
Tom

Carol Haynes

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Re: Looking for a "virtual scanner' software in one pass, outputting in PDF.
« Reply #24 on: February 23, 2012, 03:59:58 AM »
Fair enough - but in some editors (acrobat?) you can embed the fonts you need to avoid this problem.

The problem with bitmap versions is if you want good quality printable versions of multipage documents they will get very large.