Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

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Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby melrose12112 on Fri May 16, 2014 10:41 am

This appears to be way more complicated than it should be, so I think I must be doing something wrong. I have several existing pdf files (syncd to SharePoint) I want to include in my PDF output. When I create the HTML5 TOC, I simply drag them over to the TOC and poof they work when I build.
I do the same thing for my Print TOC with a PDF Target, but it appears to just skip right over the pdf TOC entries. Anyone know what I'm doing wrong?
Thanks!!
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Re: Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby doc_guy on Sat May 17, 2014 3:13 pm

Hey melrose12112,

Welcome to the forums!

I've never tried this, but it doesn't surprise me to hear that it doesn't work. Flare generates PDF output based on topics in the Flare file system, using the page layouts that have been created. If you randomly inserted an existing PDF in the middle of your book, it would look strangely out of place. The page layout wouldn't match. The numbering would be off. The images would be rendered differently. The fonts wouldn't look the same.

In HTML5 output, you are linking to a PDF file that is independent of the HTML5 help system, so this isn't an issue. But I can see how it could cause problems in PDF output.

What I think you would do instead, is insert links to the external PDF files into the topics right before where the PDF files appear in the online output. Then you could conditionalize those links so they only show up in online outputs. So, in HTML5 output they would be embedded in to the help system with no reference to the links, but in the printed PDF file the external PDFs would be excluded, but there would be links to them inside the PDF that Flare CAN generate.

I hope that makes sense.
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Re: Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby melrose12112 on Mon May 19, 2014 2:01 pm

Great workaround. Thanks! That appears to work for generating the PDF, but now I have to click on the link to see the pdf. Is there a way I can have the links print out same way as a hover effect adds a footnote? I'm trying to include all of these extra pdfs as an appendix and then send my pdf to a printer to create a manual.
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Re: Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby TheGreatAndPowerfulOz on Fri Jul 31, 2015 6:53 am

melrose12112 wrote:I'm trying to include all of these extra pdfs as an appendix and then send my pdf to a printer to create a manual.

I would love to know if anyone can provide some instructions on how to do just what melrose12112 is trying to do.

I've also been asked to add an appendix to my Flare PDF output, which will be comprised of some externally-created PDF documents containing images of large charts/diagrams. I understand that they may not have the same page layout, etc., but that's alright; the appendix pages will need to be somewhat larger than our standard output page size of 8.5 x 11, so I want them to be "independent", anyway (i.e., not using the same page layout as the rest of the document).

One thought occurs to me, but I haven't tried it yet: Perhaps I could create a one-off page layout that would accommodate the large diagrams and include print TOC nodes using that layout for the various pages containing the diagram images. Has anybody done something like this before who could confirm that it will work? If so, could you also offer any important notes concerning potential pitfalls to avoid, etc.?

Thanks!
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Re: Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby Dave Lee on Fri Jul 31, 2015 7:37 am

TheGreatAndPowerfulOz wrote:I've also been asked to add an appendix to my Flare PDF output, which will be comprised of some externally-created PDF documents containing images of large charts/diagrams.


The original post was prior to v11, but there's a new "PDF stitching" feature in v11 which I think should do exactly what you want.
See: http://webhelp.madcapsoftware.com/flare ... g_PDFs.htm

Without v11, I think it's a case of either (a) inserting the pages into the PDF manually using Acrobat or a PDF editor, (b) extracting the information from the PDF to a format (like an image) that you can insert into a topic.
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Re: Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby TheGreatAndPowerfulOz on Fri Jul 31, 2015 8:22 am

Dave Lee wrote:there's a new "PDF stitching" feature in v11 which I think should do exactly what you want.
See: http://webhelp.madcapsoftware.com/flare ... g_PDFs.htm

Sweet! Thank you for the reply, Dave.

I recently updated to v11, but hadn't explored too much yet nor seen this feature. I'll check it out!
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Re: Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby ChoccieMuffin on Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:41 am

This is why I love these forums - just what I've needed to do and there's Dave again with the answer.

One small problem I have with this is that the PDF (which is just an output from a program so a text output) is mentioned in the TOC for my PDF output using H1 styling (I think). If anything I'd rather it wasn't included in the TOC at all, as I had previously done the "make an image of each page and add the image to a topic" thing so it didn't even have an entry in my TOC when done the old way.

Any suggestions how to make it disappear from my main TOC in my PDF?
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Re: Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby lcarver on Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:44 am

This thread is a few years old, but I'm having the same problem as ChoccieMuffin - I love that I can include my PDF cover page in the Flare TOC, but I don't want it to show up in my printed TOC. Since it doesn't have a heading or field that I can see where the mc-heading-level property is set, I'm not sure how to remove it from the printed TOC output. Anybody found a fix for this?
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Re: Display Existing PDF in a PDF Output??

Postby Dave Lee on Wed Mar 20, 2019 12:25 am

I'm not aware of any way to remove the TOC entry for a PDF that's been inserted/stitched in the TOC. It'll just use the label of the TOC entry itself.

Perhaps ask MadCap, or put in a feature request.
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