Skip navigation
Currently Being Moderated

Disable printing when exporting to PDF from Indesign

Jun 14, 2013 3:04 AM

Tags: #pdf #print #environmental #disable_print #non-print #create_read-only_pdf #paper_waste

Hi  I need to create a T&C form which will be emailed out to clients, the sales team have requested that this should be readable but not printable as a PDF in a small step in saving the environment. I actually achieved this last week and now for the life of me cannot work out how to do it again. Would anyone be able to help?  Many thanks, Claire

 

NB: unchecking the 'Print Layer' in the Layer Options box does not work, sadly neither does ticking the 'Nonprinting' option in the Attributes window. I have a feeling it was something in the export dialog box but definitely not a security ermissions option as the PDF I created last week doesn't require a password and yet won't print.

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2013 3:06 AM   in reply to clairecessford

    In the Export Adobe PDF window, click down to the Security tab. Down in the Permissions section, change Printing Allowed: to None.

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2013 5:43 AM   in reply to clairecessford

    I would create your security in Acrobat Pro.

     

    Open the PDF and choose File > Properties > Security.

     

    Set a Permissions password. Set the document to not allow printing. This won't require a password to open the document, but would only require a password if you wanted to change the settings.

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2013 6:14 AM   in reply to clairecessford

    Sadly security in the PDFs is like a wet paper towel - very easy to break.

     

    It's nice to save the environment and all that - but perhaps a polite reminder in the header of the t&c would be better.

     

    At the end of the day if someone wants to print the document there's little you can do - people will find a way around it.

     

    http://cl.jroo.me/z3/l/D/K/d/a.aaa-Scanning-a-monitor.jpg

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2013 6:17 AM   in reply to Eugene Tyson

    I was just talking about this in an Acrobat class I was teaching yesterday. Eugene is quite correct. Security created in Acrobat/InDesign is like placing a lock on your front door: It deters casual theft, but if someone is determined to get in, they can probably find a way.

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2013 6:33 AM   in reply to Steve Werner

    It's more like leaving the door closed, not locked.

     

    Bob

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2013 7:12 AM   in reply to clairecessford

    Well, let's hope that those that do find a way to print it go on to recycle the paper.

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2013 7:54 AM   in reply to clairecessford

    If you're hoping to prevent a PDF document from printing with sneak-around backdoors, you'll be disappointed.

     

    Anyone who breaks an expensive scanner platen glass by placing or dropping a CRT monitor on it, when following Eugene's illustrated example, might be permanently dissuaded. Making a screen shot with the computer's own tools, or a camera's phone is easier and safer.

     

    If your hope is simply to always prompt the user to reconsider killing trees needlessly, it may be possible to intercept a print request made from the Acrobat display software in use at the time (Acrobat, Reader, Web browser window, Mac Preview, etc.) and display an alert to think about printing before proceeding. If this kind of print request can't be intercepted, you could consider creating a button in the document labeled "Print," but which displays an alert and gives the option to proceed or cancel. Perhaps there a script solution for what you need.

     

    If your hope is to make it as difficult as possible for someone to print a PDF, consider converting text to outlines and/or incorporating a patterned background behind text, to disable easy Optical Character Recognition, and to "contaminate" graphics. However, a clever Photoshop user might be able to minimize the graphic pattern.

     

    NOTE: Enabling Acrobat's security to disable screen readers does not disable the ability to select and highlight on-screen text, but it does prevent copying the text to the clipboard.

     

     

    HTH

     

     

    Regards,

     

     

    Peter

    _______________________

    Peter Gold

    KnowHow ProServices

     

     

     

    clairecessford wrote:

     

    Hi  I need to create a T&C form which will be emailed out to clients, the sales team have requested that this should be readable but not printable as a PDF in a small step in saving the environment. I actually achieved this last week and now for the life of me cannot work out how to do it again. Would anyone be able to help?  Many thanks, Claire

     

    NB: unchecking the 'Print Layer' in the Layer Options box does not work, sadly neither does ticking the 'Nonprinting' option in the Attributes window. I have a feeling it was something in the export dialog box but definitely not a security ermissions option as the PDF I created last week doesn't require a password and yet won't print.

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2013 7:11 PM   in reply to clairecessford

    Maybe I did it wrong, but I was able to open the PDF without entering a password, and the Print option was unavailable.

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 17, 2013 3:04 AM   in reply to clairecessford

    Obviously the monitor on a scanner was lighthearted humour and the Chutzpah way of getting this done.

     

    There are numerous ways to print a pdf from a pdf with the security.

     

    As I said earlier - a polite message in the header of the document might be more of a deterrent - as if someone wanted to print it they would be determined and when they found a way they would.

     

    I'd be far less inclined to print a document if it had in the header

     

    "this is an electronic file format, please consider the environment and refrain from printing this document".

     

    Anyone opening the PDF in the a 3rd party reader, like mac preview, or any number of 3rd party PDF readers would be able to resave it and print it with no warnings at all.

     

    That is - they wouldn't be prompted by Security field at all.

     
    |
    Mark as:
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 17, 2013 3:25 AM   in reply to clairecessford

    As I said, some people wont' even get the warning if they have a 3rd Party Reader.

     

    So a polite message would be seen by everyone and leave the choice up to them too.

     
    |
    Mark as:

More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)

Answers + Points = Status

  • 10 points awarded for Correct Answers
  • 5 points awarded for Helpful Answers
  • 10,000+ points
  • 1,001-10,000 points
  • 501-1,000 points
  • 5-500 points