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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs Apps
I'm not sure if this one's been spotted in the wild before, but I was running into some problems converting Word documents to PDF. Specifically, when users make the documents multi-section, and change the page layout between sections.

If you use the standard PDF button in the Print dialog box, it outputs multiple files, creating a new PDF document for each time the page layout changes. So if you go from portrait to landscape and back, you get three documents. I'd fiddled with various utilities to put them back together with mixed success, but found an even better one button solution...

Click on the Preview button instead of the PDF button. It will generate a single PDF file with the correct page layouts and open it with Preview. Then all you have to do is save the resulting PDF, and you're all set.
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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs | 12 comments | Create New Account
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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: frgough on Oct 12, '06 07:53:06AM

Sweet! This particular bug has been giving me grief for years.



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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: abadgersf on Oct 12, '06 08:13:19AM

Thank you, thank you, thank you! Why I never figured this out myself I'll never know. I've been using Acrobat Pro to piece all the sections back together.

---
iMac G5 / PowerBook G4 Ti



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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: chocky on Oct 12, '06 08:50:42AM

Hmmm. Doesn't work for me. In my limited testing I get three documents, one for each section in the Word document.



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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: wjshack on Oct 12, '06 10:18:11AM

Deosn't work for me either when I try it on a doc that switches from portrait to landscape. I suspect it may fix the problem where the multiple sections are due to slight corruption of the section break.



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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: erdrd on Oct 12, '06 10:25:48AM

I used to be plagued by this with Word 98 and Word v.X. I used Acrobat (not Reader) to put the individual sections together.

In Office 2004 this issue seems to have been resolved. I recently made a PDF via the Print Dialog from a multi-section Word document. It created a single PDF with all the sections in it. I did not have different paper sizes, however.

However, I did notice that when outputting a multiple-page label design (created via the Merge function) the first page seems to be handled as a separate document during printing, so presumably this would generate two PDFs (first page and rest of pages) if made into PDF via Print Dialog.

Needless to say the Section functinality in Word, while valuable is a checkered beast.



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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: Fillman on Oct 12, '06 04:25:07PM

I use Office 2004 and the Adobe PDF printer function from Acrobat 6.0.2 Pro on complex sectioned Word reports. It works every time. You can control file sizes for graphics by making sure the jpg compression is selected otherwise your pdf is often double the size of the already bloated Word doc.

That said, Excel fails every time in preview and Acrobat. I have not found any way to print a single file from multiple worksheets.



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A quick (and free) way to put them together
Authored by: linguini on Oct 12, '06 11:50:58AM
I just wanted to point out a very nice utility that I've been using in these cases: Combine PDFs is very simple and free, and also allows you to change the title & author of the PDF file:
[link:http://www.monkeybreadsoftware.de/Freeware/CombinePDFs.shtml]

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oops, I messed up the link
Authored by: linguini on Oct 12, '06 11:54:50AM
Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: swisswuff on Oct 12, '06 01:51:33PM

I can open my multi section multi layout Word document using Open Office.

That program exports PDFs that contain all pages correctly turned. Very sweet and quite painless.

Also, Open Office lets me control details of the PDF export, because obviously I want to keep the file size limited but pictures still discernible.



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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: T0b1 on Oct 14, '06 02:06:29AM
I' rather recommend PDFlab
http://www.iconus.ch/fabien/pdflab/ as it joined thousands of PDFs for me w/o any problems. Its was also recommended here at macoshints several times (use the search).

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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: liyanage on Oct 26, '06 08:46:01AM

Using the Preview button workaround didn't work in my case, so I used the nice PDF workflow feature and some AppleScript / Python to merge the PDFs automatically, it's a very convenient solution.

http://www.entropy.ch/blog/Mac+OS+X/2006/10/24/AppleScript-to-merge-MS-Word-Section-PDFs.html



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Convert complex Word documents to PDFs
Authored by: gillycreamy on Nov 14, '06 12:27:42PM
Firstly thanks to all who posted, this was giving me grief for hours.

Preview didn't work for me.

pdflab did not work for me either - it had problems with my document but to be fair it was pretty complex. combinepdfs on the other hand was just brilliantly simple - it took moments. The link again:

http://www.monkeybreadsoftware.de/Freeware/CombinePDFs.dmg

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