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10.6: Remove passwords from edit-restricted PDFs
Authored by: kamath on Feb 25, '10 01:00:39AM
This trick works well, but I have issues with the original steps. Here's a slightly simpler set of steps:
  1. Pause Printer
  2. Print Document
  3. open terminal, and type the following:
    sudo -s
    (enter your password)
    cd /var/spool/cups
    (look for file that starts with 'd')
    cp file ~/Desktop/.pdf
    chown $SUDO_USER ~/Desktop/.pdf
    Replace file with the name of the file that starts with 'd'.
  4. delete print job from the printer list and resume the printer.
It is a stunningly bad idea to change the permissions on system directories, like /var/spool/cups. This avoids changing any permissions (save the file you're copying), and limits your exposure to doing anything as root (you must be root to look in /var/spool/cups, otherwise it would be reduced to a single sudo cp ...). I could avoid chowning the file, but it would be icky and everyone would just accuse me of being a unix greybeard.

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