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How to reduce/compress PDF file size?

Nov 8, 2009 6:58 PM

I am trying to PDF a very large excel document (multiple sheets) with graphs etc.


When i PDF the document and merge the sheets into one file, the file size is 8MB, however when my colleague who is also using the same program (Adobe Acrobat) PDF's the document it is only 234KB. I have changed all my Adobe Acrobat settings to match my colleague's however when i PDF the same file the size is still 8MB.


Any guidance on settings etc. would be much appreciated.

  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 10, 2009 9:06 AM   in reply to Kristine_Lee2

    Which Acrobat version you are using?

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    Nov 12, 2009 9:39 PM   in reply to Gola Raj

    Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro Extended, however my colleague who is able to PDF the documents into the smaller size is using Adobe Acrobat Professional version 7.1.0.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 12, 2009 11:32 PM   in reply to Kristine_Lee22

    What steps are you using to create the PDF versus your colleague (print or create PDF)? What job settings have you selected? Are the fonts embedded (they should be in most cases)? Are the files and the graphics identical that you are starting with? Are you using the same versions of OFFICE?


    As you can see there are many questions that are not answered and it is very difficult to answer you without more detail. Posting an example is also good. You might only post a portion of the PDF if that is available.

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    Nov 15, 2009 2:09 PM   in reply to Bill@VT

    Q. What steps am i using to create the PDF versus my colleaugue

    A. Both of us are using Print, how do you use "create PDF" when PDF'ing an excel file?


    Q. What jobs settings have I selected?

    A.  - Default Settings - Standard

        - Adobe PDF Security - None

        - Adobe PDF Outlook Folder - Prompt for Adobe PDF filename

        - Adobe PDF Page Size - A4

        - Boxes are ticked for; 1) View Adobe PDF results, 2) Add Document Information, 3) Do not send fonts to "Adobe PDF", 4) Delete log files for successful jobs

    • Under Standard settings:

         - Compatibility - Acrobat 6.0 (PDF 1.5)

         - Object Level Compression - Tags only

         - Auto-Rotate Pages - Collectively by File

         - Binding - Left    

         - Resolution - 600 dots per inch

         - Box ticked for Optimize for fast web view

         - Default page size - Width: 612, Height: 792, Units: Points


    Q. Are the fonts Embedded?

    A. I'm not quite sure what embedded fonts means? How do i figure out whether the fonts are embedded?


    Q. Are the files and the graphics identical that you are starting with?

    A. Yes we are both starting with the exact same files


    Q. Are you using the same versions of OFFICE?

    A. I am using Office 2007, and my colleague is using Office 2003



    Unfortunatly I cannot post a portion of the PDF as it is a confidential accounts file.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 15, 2009 2:41 PM   in reply to Kristine_Lee22

    You sure did what was asked. Thanks. Let me see if I can address some of the issues.


    a. If the create PDF (or PDF Maker) is available it will show up on the menu bar. For the purposes you asked, it is best to just do the print. PDF Maker adds links and often bloats the file if you are not careful.


    b. The Standard settings file will not embed all fonts, but if you are both using the same settings then that should not be the difference.


    c. The "do not send fonts" just means that they are not embedded in the PS file that the Adobe PDF printer makes before going to Distiller (you see none of this) and grabs the fonts from the system when making the PDF from the PS file.


    d. You have the same resolution and compatibility, which is good for the check.


    e. You can check font embedding from Acrobat using ctrl-D and selecting the font tab. If the fonts are embedded, it will say so for each font that is embedded. If they are also subset it will say that. Embedded subset is preferred for size except in a few cases where files will be combined and such.


    f. If need be, you could create a sample file for us to look at. It may not be needed, but it might be what is needed down the road.


    g. Your last comment is likely the problem. I might ask if you are both working with XLS or XLSX files? I have gotten different results from these two file types. OFFICE 2007 (at least in WORD) does some strange things to graphics in DOCX files. When I create a PDF, the graphic fonts are sometimes changed to bitmaps and a pretty graphic has been split into strips and pasted together poorly. I suspect MS to have put hooks in OFFICE 2007 to cause problems. In both cases of OFFICE and Acrobat, be sure you have updated them.


    I suggest you try different combinations of XLS and XLSX, or DOC and DOCX, to see how the results come out. I suspect that you may be looking at a MS OFFICE issue, particularly since you both apparently have the same version of Acrobat -- I think I remember that -- and basically the same settings. When I was playing around with WORD 2007 and conversion to PDF, I found some strange results that I could not replicate with OFFICE 2003. I was using AA8 and AA7 respectively, but one of my students also tried AA7 with WORD 2007.


    My guess is you may have to provide a sample XLS file and the various results of PDFs for us to go much further -- that is if my comments above do not help. Bill

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 30, 2009 4:00 PM   in reply to Bill@VT

    I've tried using different combinations of xls and xlsx files however still have the same problem.


    e.g. both computers i'm trying are Office 2007, i'm using the exact same excel file (4.97MB - macro enabled workbook) to begin with and using the same PDF settings, however one PDF's to 3MB and the other one PDF's to 8MB. Does that mean it has to do with different setup computer settings?

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 30, 2009 8:24 PM   in reply to Kristine_Lee22

    Not sure. I suspect that OFFICE 2007 is part of the problem. You might check to see if the same update level of OFFICE 2007 is being used. You may need to update one machine. I am assuming that all of the job settings are identical for both machines and have not been changed in the meantime. Originally you indicated one machine was using OFFICE 2003 and that set me to the discussion of the OFFICE 2007 issues.


    If you can create a file that can be posted and demonstrates the issue, it would be helpful. Other than testing yourself, it may be the quickest way to get useful feedback. A sample may also get others to join the discussion and contribute possibly the key solution.

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    Dec 13, 2009 10:54 PM   in reply to Bill@VT

    I have created a template however the total file size is over 14MB, which the forum won't let me upload.


    I deleted 2/3 of the document, and have attached it.


    Hopefully this can help figure out why.



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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 13, 2009 10:56 PM   in reply to Bill@VT

    I created a template document, however the total filze size was over 14MB.


    I deleted two thirds of the document and have attached it.

    Hopefully this can help figure out why.



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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 1, 2010 8:20 AM   in reply to Kristine_Lee22

    Did you ever make any progress reducing the size of the PDF reports.

    I am being forced to make the changeover from office 2003 to 2007 and experiencing the same issue.

    I PDF charts and from 2003 to 2007 have experienced 800% increase in File size, which is unaccecptable.


    I continue to look for ways to get a smaller PDF files from office 2007

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 1, 2010 12:32 PM   in reply to Pattcap

    Solution Found.


    If you "Save As"  PDF or XPS (selecting PDF of course)

    you ...well, I get a PDF File that is about the same size as that from Office 03.


    In VBA Code.

    With ActiveSheet
        .ExportAsFixedFormat Type:=xlTypePDF, _
                                Filename:=PDF_File_Name, _
                                Quality:=xlQualityStandard, _
                                IncludeDocProperties:=True, _
                                IgnorePrintAreas:=False, _
    End With


    Hope this helps folks.

    Also note that in code it bypasses Acrobat, you don't need a Reference to the Acrodist library file.



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