How to Create & Use PDF Files

November 2002
by Karen Saunders

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More and more businesses are relying on PDF files to transfer company documents and to send camera-ready artwork to printers. Here’s what you need to know to open, create, and utilize PDF files in your business.


About Adobe Acrobat

Adobe Acrobat software converts just about any type of file into a PDF (portable document format) file. The PDF file format is the most reliable, efficient way to share documents across platforms–Windows, Macintosh, or UNIX. The layout, content, fonts, and graphics in your file are preserved and can be viewed and printed.

To view and print PDF files, you’ll need the free Adobe Acrobat “Reader” software, which you can download from

To create a PDF file of your document (e.g., the interior pages of your book) for offset printing, you’ll need to purchase the Adobe Acrobat software program that includes the “Distiller” module (cost: approximately $250).


Professional Page Layout Programs vs. Word-Processing Programs

Professional page layout programs such as Adobe PageMaker, In-Design, and Quark Xpress were made for creating documents for commercial printing. They can handle fonts, graphics, color separations, and other essential pre-press operations. By contrast, word-processing programs such as Microsoft Word are designed to perform in the office setting and fall short in providing t…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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