Try this, although I don't know if it'll work since I don't use Vista.
Instead of exporting to PDF, try printing to file. That will create a prn file.
Open the FileName.prn file in Adobe Distiller 4 or 5 (should be on your original PM disks) and then specify the new name for your PDF output. Perhaps it'll work.
I'm with you on a preferance for PageMaker. It's been a mainstay for me for years and years.
Clicking on the InDesign link provided in this page
takes me to a page with links for upgrading to InDesign CS5 and for downloading a trial version.
If I were you, I would take advantage of the large discount for upgrading from PageMaker while the offer lasts. Of course InDesign will have a lot of features you won't use -at least for the time being. Same as Word, that has thousands of more features than most users will ever need. But InDesign is not a dead product as PageMaker has been for many years, and it will run in any of the newest operating systems, which PageMaker simply cannot possibly do. Also, many things you could do in PageMaker are done much more easily in InDesign. So, give it a try; it's free.
I have already been to the web site and the trial link just goes to an
InDesign notification page. There doesn't seem to be a download page
associated with it.
On further research it appears that the InDesign program won't run on my
computer any way. The system requirements are for an AMD Athlon 64 and mine
is a Sempron 32. It'll run on my laptop, but apparently not my desktop. The
more I look into it the more questions I have.
I tried your suggestion, but that didn't work either. Thank you for the
suggestion though it was a good thought.
I must confess that I found those links but didn't try them. Maybe CS5 isn't still available for buying, which would explain why there isn't a free trial.
If you are using an old and not very powerful machine, running on an old operating system, you should have no problem in continuing using PageMaker in that machine for as long as you keep it or it lives. Your problems will start when you are forced to start using any of the latest OSs, in which PageMaker will simply not run properly, if at all. If your laptop meets the minimum standards to run InDesign, my advise would be to upgrade to InDesign while the rebate lasts. When the time comes to replace your desktop by a new one, you will then be able to install InDesign there as well (two machines allowed if not open in both at the same time). Or unisntall it from your laptop and install in your new machine, as you prefer.
It would be a pity to have to pay the full price for InDesign in a couple of years. Or to move on to a cheaper but very different program.
I love PageMaker, and for what I do, it runs on either XP or Vista. Having a
computer geek in the house to install and tweak software to it's maximum
capability certainly helps The only issue I have is creating the PDFs. I
can either use alternate software to create the PDFs, go to a different
desktop publishing program, erase Vista and go back to XP, or upgrade both
my system and my publishing software to InDesign. Both my desktop and my
laptop are AMD. The desktop is a Sempron and the laptop is an Athlon both
with only 1Gb of Ram. Some of the forum discussions seem to be pointing at
CS4/CS5 having some issues with AMD systems.
Vista isn't doing anything more for me than XP so just erasing it and going
back to XP may be a better choice. InDesign seems to have a lot of fluff I
don't need and won't use, although it looks like it may have some components
of Adobe Illustrator which might let me do my lace drawings in the same
software that I use for publishing, which would resolve some minor issues
with my drawings not displaying correctly in PageMaker. $200 isn't a lot,
but it is if it's money down the drain. There are so many questions that
would be much more easily answered if there was a trial version.
CS5 is not yet shipping. Once it is, a free trial should be available rather quickly.