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From the author of Preflighting a File

Preflighting a File

Preflighting a PDF file is relatively straightforward; start with the file open in Acrobat and then do the following:

  1. Click on the Preflight button in the Print Production panel (Figure 2). Acrobat will display the Preflight window (Figure 3).
  2. Figure 3 The Preflight window presents you with a list of Preflight Profiles. Pick one and click the Analyze button.

  3. Select a preflight profile from the list. We’ll talk about preflight profiles in detail in a moment; when in doubt, select anything in the PDF Analysis category shown in Figure 3.
  4. Click the Analyze button in the bottom-right corner of the window. There’s also an Analyze and Fix button that’s used with Fixup profiles; we’ll come back to that, too.

Acrobat will think to itself for a while (maybe a long while, depending on the size of the PDF file) and then present you with its findings in the Preflight Results dialog box (Figure 4).

Figure 4 The Preflight results window lists the information the preflight extracted from your file.

This report consists of a series of lists—each initially closed—of information about the file. Two of these lists are available in every preflight report:

  • Overview presents all of the information collected by the preflight. This is where you can browse the complete contents of your file, seeing all the fonts, images, color spaces, and other characteristics of the document (Figure 5).
  • Figure 5 The Overview information lists all of the characteristics of your PDF file discovered by the preflight engine. This can be surprisingly fun to peruse in your idle moments.

  • Preflight Information lists information about the preflight session itself: the date and time, the version of Acrobat, etc. I’ve never had reason to refer to this, myself, but I can imagine it happening.

The other information listed in the preflight report is placed there as a result of the preflight profile you selected. Let’s talk about those profiles.

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