6 Replies Latest reply on Aug 3, 2011 10:41 AM by CynthiaBartz

    "Failed to Export PDF"


      Dear Friends,


      when trying to export a document in Indesign CS4 as PDF-file, I get an error message:

      Adobe InDesign
      Failed to Export PDF.

      After dismissing this dialog, the export-process quits and no PDF-file is created.

      There aren't any further notice-, warning- or error messages.


      The document itself should be valid, no links are missing or update-needing and all in used fonts are available on the system Indesign is running.


      I had already searched for a solution, or at least a reason for this error message, and found the following pages, dealing with that error message:


      • InDesign error "failed to export the pdf file"
        I ungrouped everything by selecting all objects on each of these two pages and ungrouping as many times as the option was available as it is described on the page, but the error still stays.


      Interestingly, removing the second sheet (=page) of this originally two sheet consisting Indesign document leads to a successful PDF-document export.

      But I want to export both sheets, not only the first one, into one single PDF-document.

      So there must be probably something on sheet number two which prevents a successful PDF-document export resulting in the error message mentioned above.


      Because there are no further informations provided except that the export failed, it is not very easy to track down the reason for this problem.

      Is there a log file for export or general application issues?

      Maybe you have also experienced this error during the past and maybe even know some walkaround or hint which could lead to the reason?

      Thank you for your answers in advance!

      With best regards


        • 1. Re: "Failed to Export PDF"
          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

          Divide and conquer.


          First, does the second page export on its own?


          If you remove half the objects from the page, does it export? How about if you put those back and remove the other half? If you are able to identify a group of objects that is causing the problem, you can continue to divide that group in half until you isolate the culprit. First suspects, by the way, are usually placed .eps files.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: "Failed to Export PDF"
            John Hawkinson Level 5

            Also, the easiest way to remove the objects is to place them on their own layer and then hide the layer...

            1 person found this helpful
            • 3. Re: "Failed to Export PDF"
              InnoRex Level 1

              Thank you for your answers!


              Exporting page 2 alone leads to an PDF-export-error.

              The error happens when PDF-file finalization is in progress.


              I found out that embedded PSD-files caused the problem.

              After un-embedding them, the PDF-export worked well, also for both pages.


              Now however, there are still some questions open:

              Why do embedded PSD-files cause an export-failure during PDF-export?

              Why aren't any information given to user about this failure?


              With best regards


              • 4. Re: "Failed to Export PDF"
                Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                Try resaving the .psds in Photoshop and place them again. Why are they embedded?

                • 5. Re: "Failed to Export PDF"



                  I had a similiar problem that stumped me for some hours today. Something in one of the responses you received sparked a thought - I was downsampling at a custom rate for color  images (200 instead of 100 dpi). When I went back to my "export to PDF" settings and unchecked the "Optimize for Web Viewing" I could export with no problems.


                  Not sure if your problem is solved by now, but this solved my very similar problem with exporting.





                  • 6. Re: "Failed to Export PDF"

                    The reason that I had this error message was that I had encrypted files and the computer that I was working on didn't have permissions. Hope this helps someone.