12 Replies Latest reply on Oct 29, 2013 6:38 AM by cecelia63

    PDF files into InDesign Not Working

    cecelia63

      Hi All, this is my first post on the Adobe Community.  I problem cropped up in the last week and i am going crazy.  Please help!!  I am running on  a MacBook Pro with OSX 10.7.5. 

       

      I have been using a workflow to create tables in InDesign for months with no issues:

       

      1.  Calculate a complex table in Excel

      2.  Paste the table into PowerPoint for formatting

      3.  Copy the table in PowerPoint, then paste it back as a pdf image

      4.  Option-click on the pdf image on the slide to save it as a pdf file

      5.  Go to a frame InDesign that already has a linked image, re-link to the new pdf file.

       

      This workflow has been very helpful because I have a lot of complex and carfully formatted tables I need to get into InDesign.  Now, since upgrading both my Microsoft Office 2011 and my Adobe CS6 SW it not working

       

      I can copy, paste-as-pdf, save the pdf file.   But when I try to link to it in InDesign it get the message "Failed to open the pdf file." 

       

      I can still link to older pdf files with no problem, and I can use this work flow on text-only pdf files from PowerPoint.  The pdf files that contain tables are not linking into InDesign.  I have tried to do the past-as-pdf into Microsoft Word and the behavior is the same. 

       

      All the pdf files look fine in Acrobat.

       

      Thank you very much for any assistance.

       

      -Cecelia

        • 1. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

          Show the import options when you place and make sure the crop option is set to something that actually exists in the PDF, Media, Art or Bounding Box would be likely choices.

          • 2. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
            cecelia63 Level 1

            Peter, thank you very much for replying.  I tried the import options with all three settings but none changed the "Failed to open the pdf file" message.  I am not sure how to know if the pdf has any of these.  I have tried creating the pdf through PowerPoint and Word with "Paste As" and also through Preview using the clipboard and all behave the same.  On the bright side, I have figured out how to use Preview to create a high quality jpeg that seems to be sufficient IQ (highest quality and 300 dpi).

             

            Thanks again, Cecelia

            • 3. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
              G.Hoffmann Level 3

              Cecelia,

               

              I'm just curious, why don't you place your Excel file in the InDesign document

              directly? There it can be edited (size of table cells, text, font...).

               

              I don't have Excel, Word and Powerpoint. If somebody sends me an (always

              unwanted) Excel file, then I can view it by InDesign. 

               

              For advanced editing, Illustrator might be recommended, but I didn't test it.

               

              Best regards --Gernot Hoffmann

              • 4. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                Willi Adelberger Most Valuable Participant

                No, formatting Excel files in Illustrator is not a good idea. But formatting it in InDesign would give better results than the way around PowerPoint, Preview and ultimately InDesign. None of those programs except InDesign has reliable PDF capabilites, so I would avoid them here.

                • 5. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                  G.Hoffmann Level 3

                  Willi,

                  I should have tested it, but I didn't...: Neither CS2 nor CS6 Illustrator can

                  open or place an actual *.XLS. Can this be confirmed generally?

                   

                  Best regards --Gernot Hoffmann

                  • 6. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                    Willi Adelberger Most Valuable Participant

                    The exchange from Excel to AI is very poor. A little bit can be done in the charts table, but Illustrator has no tool to support tables anyway.

                    • 7. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                      Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                      Cecelia,

                       

                      While I agree that there is probably not a reason for importing PDF over simply importing the Excel table in a general sense, I suspect there may be soemthing specific to lo lead you to your workflow, and I'd like to figure out why your PDF doesn't import. Would you be willing to send me one of them? I'll send you an upload link.

                      • 8. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                        cecelia63 Level 1

                        Peter,  Yes, I would love to send you a file that works from a few weeks back and one that does not.  Thank you!

                         

                        To the other responders, thanks for the ideas.  My project is a knitting book and there will be approximately 200 tables.  The Adobe table-formatting tools are not familiar to me, and the PowerPoint formatting tools are both familiar to me and pretty easy to use.  I have also had many problems over the years with embedded Excel files within Microsoft Office, and I would be concerned about the stability of the file. 

                         

                        The imported pdf files from PowerPoint or Word look great in InDesign. 

                         

                        Thanks again!

                         

                        Cecelia

                        • 9. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                          I sent the link yesterday. Check your email for a message from Adobe Forums telling you that you have a private message from me.

                          • 10. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                            Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                            I'm getting the same results here that you are getting, and I can't see any reason for it. I was able to open the PDF in Illustrator (Not something I recommend most of the time, but this file has no text) and resave without any edits, and it placed fine. I think it must be something that Mac Quartz is adding or leaving out, but I can't say what.

                             

                            These are really charts rather than what we normally think of as tables. Do you have Illustrator? It would be fairly easy to reproduce these in Illustrator directly (and not that difficult in ID using traditional tables with different fills in empty cells), but if you are comfrotable working in Excel it is commonly recommended that Excel charts be pasted into Illustrator and then saved as PDF there.

                            • 11. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                              cecelia63 Level 1

                              Peter,  thank you!  I am not crazy!

                               

                              I will try pasting the PowerPoint table into Illustrator.  I did try pasting it into InDesign but it was completely garbled.  I can also paste from Excel, but if I need to edit the table format in Illustrator i fear a the learning curve.

                               

                              I won't be able to try this today, but I will repoat as soon as i can.

                              • 12. Re: PDF files into InDesign Not Working
                                cecelia63 Level 1

                                Peter,  When you said that Mac Quartz might have been leaving something out, you gave me a clue that Apple was the problem.  I upgraded to Mavericks last night and my workflow is now working again!  Thank you so much for you help!

                                 

                                Best,

                                Cecelia