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Can I make a template to create 1200 forms

Jan 31, 2013 3:38 PM

I would like to have 1200 single page forms in pdf format, that each have a unique identifier (their address and business name).  I currently have 1200 single page merged word docs and want to tuen each of them into a stand alone fillable form.  Essentially I need to make a template that I can use 1200 times and would like to use a batch function to save some time.

Any help would be appreciated as this is new to me.

Scottydriver

 
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  • George Johnson
    11,651 posts
    Aug 11, 2002
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    Jan 31, 2013 3:59 PM   in reply to scottydriver

    It's possible. Would the fields you want to add be in the exact same location on the page for each?

     
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    Feb 1, 2013 1:07 AM   in reply to scottydriver

    If you have the data in a spreadsheet or even a Word document, you can use the Mail Merge function of the PDF Maker plugin for Office to generate multiple copies of the same PDF.

     
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    Feb 1, 2013 3:45 AM   in reply to George Johnson

    While you could automate the creation of the PDF files in Acrobat Pro, you cannot automate the Reader-Extension process to allow users of Reader X and earlier to save the filled-in form.

     

    You would also be bound by the Acrobat EULA in terms of the number of returned copies of any such extended form. I couldn't guarantee that adding a couple of extra fields to a template would make each one "unique" as defined by the EULA, and so you could be limited to a total of 500 returned forms from the entire set of 1200.

     
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    Feb 1, 2013 6:40 AM   in reply to Dave Merchant

    Or, be sure that the folks use either Acrobat or Reader XI that can save the forms. If the form data is to be submitted, that would be necesssary OR you can set the data to be submitted as form data, the preferred way anyway.

     
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    Feb 1, 2013 10:47 AM   in reply to scottydriver

    I'm helping Scott with this project and in answer to 1. George Johnson, yes the fields will be in the exact location and consist of about 30-40 fields. In answer to 2.try67 we have used the mail merge function to create the 1200 word forms but require them to be fillable. Im under the understanding that I would have to create a fillable form for each of the 1200 forms in Adobe and would appreciate any information on the automation process. I am using Version 9.5 Acrobat Pro.  At this point we are not too concerned with compiling the data electronically, but would like to save each form individually after it has been filled in. Thanks

     
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  • George Johnson
    11,651 posts
    Aug 11, 2002
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    Feb 1, 2013 10:58 AM   in reply to CBKWendy

    What do you have now, a single PDF with 1200 pages or 1200 individual PDFs?

     
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    Feb 1, 2013 11:03 AM   in reply to scottydriver

    A single pdf with 1200 pages - different name and address on each form - but the checklist will be the same. I'm familiar with the Extraction process so can easily create 1200 separate forms if necessary.

     
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  • George Johnson
    11,651 posts
    Aug 11, 2002
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    Feb 1, 2013 11:22 AM   in reply to CBKWendy

    It's easier if you don't. You can do what you want using a template, but it will require some scripting. It's also easier to do than describe, but I'll try. Begin by creating the fields on a page in the locations you want, insert this page to the document, as the first page for example. You can then replace it with a blank page, which will leave the form fields behind. Then make this page a template and hide it. You can then run a script from the interactive JavaScript console that spawns the hidden template on the first page as an overlay, extracts the page that now has fields as a new document, and repeat for the rest of the pages. Here are links to documentation of some of the scripting that will be involved:

     

    template.spawn: http://livedocs.adobe.com/acrobat_sdk/9.1/Acrobat9_1_HTMLHelp/JS_API_A croJS.88.1216.html

     

    doc.extractPages: http://livedocs.adobe.com/acrobat_sdk/9.1/Acrobat9_1_HTMLHelp/JS_API_A croJS.88.465.html

     

    The process for making a page a template through Acrobat's UI depends on what version you're using, but it can be doen programmatically too: http://livedocs.adobe.com/acrobat_sdk/9.1/Acrobat9_1_HTMLHelp/JS_API_A croJS.88.451.html

     
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    Feb 1, 2013 12:20 PM   in reply to scottydriver

    Well, I made it as far as running the script and must say this is a little out of my league.  Thank you for the links, but unfortunately they didn't make alot of sense. Is this the only way it can be done?

     
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  • George Johnson
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    Aug 11, 2002
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    Feb 1, 2013 12:32 PM   in reply to CBKWendy

    You can also try this. Create the fields that you want on the first page, select them all, and duplicate them to the other pages (Ctrl+A > right-click a selected field > Duplicate). This will allow you to copy the fields to all of the other pages, but with 1200 pages and 40 or so fields per page, this might be iffy (crash) and is why I didn't suggest it before. You can then extract the individual pages as separate documents as you know how to do. If it doesn't work, you can try duplicating fields to and extracting 100 or so pages at a time.

     
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    Feb 1, 2013 12:51 PM   in reply to George Johnson

    Yes, this is what I was thinking I might have to do. Thanks for your help.

     
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