Mass PDF Creator

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by callmemike20, Feb 8, 2010.

  1. callmemike20 macrumors 6502a

    callmemike20

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #1
    Does anyone know of a program (free) that will allow me to turn all of my pages documents, word documents, powerpoints, etc. into PDFs without having to go through and do it to each individual file?

    I have a couple hundred things to convert from last semester (notes, presentations, etc). I like to convert them after each semester so I can easily access them later on.

    Thanks.
     
  2. pit29 macrumors 6502a

    pit29

    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Location:
    The Golden State
    #2
    Can't you do that with Automator? It's pretty easy, just open it and see what it can do...
     
  3. dyn macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2009
    Location:
    .nl
    #3
    You can achieve this by using cups-pdf and Automator. Install cups-pdf via Macports, Fink or download it from the website. After you've added the cups-pdf printer you need to open Automator and create a new Service. The first thing the Service needs to do is "Get Selected Finder Items" (locate it and drag it to the right). Next it has to print the selected items to the cups-pdf printer you've added: locate and drag the "Print Finder Items" to the right below "Get Selected Finder Items". Select the cups-pdf printer from the list. Just for safety make sure it reads "Service receives selected files or folders in Finder" near the top of the Automator window. If you save the service you can now use it in Finder to create pdf's from the selected documents.
     
  4. extralarge macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2008
    #4
    Why converter?

    Instead of convert, why don't you try to use the manage app to manage all your documents. After all, PDF is not convenient for you to share the PPT, keynotes etc. Try iDocument, it allows easy access to any kind of formats, and I remember it supplies academic cheap offers.
     
  5. callmemike20 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    callmemike20

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #5
    I actually tried this before you mentioned it. I have no idea what to do. Can you give me a step by stem direction please?

    Thanks for the suggestion; that looks like a cool app. However, it does not meet my needs. I am not looking for a document manager, rather I am simply looking to convert my files into a format that any computer can read. I will no longer need to edit the documents or present the powerpoints. It is basically a file of all my class notes and presentations from last semester. I like to keep all my notes on my computer in case I need to reference them in the future. I will most likely never open the files again. But, if I did, I want them all in the same format.
     
  6. callmemike20 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    callmemike20

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #6
    I just tried messing around with this. Is the automator supposed to disappear when I hit record?
     
  7. dyn macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2009
    Location:
    .nl
    #7
    I don't know, I haven't tried the record function yet. The record function allows you to record your own Automator action. In that regard the disappearing of Automator seems to be expected behaviour. If you want to use whatever Automator action you've defined you need to use the run button.

    Edit: I've documented the creation of the print to pdf service step by step, just follow the steps:
    1. Go to the following website, download the file and follow the instructions on the site: http://www.codepoetry.net/projects/cups-pdf-for-mosx
    2. Open Automator and choose to create a "Service".
    3. At the top right side of the Automator window you'll see "Service receives selected" following a pull down menu. In that menu you have to select "Files or folders".
    4. Behind that pulldown menu is the word "in" and another pull down menu which you need to change. The default is "any application" which needs to be changed to "Finder".
    5. On the left side click the "Utilities" folder.
    6. Locate "Print finder items" and drag it to the right.
    7. The "Print finder items" box currently has "Default printer" selected which needs to be changed to cups-pdf (or whatever the pdf printer is called).
    8. Now save the service and give it a proper name (Print all to pdf or something like that).
    9. In the Finder select the files you want to print to pdf, rightclick them and choose "Print all to pdf" from the service menu.

    Edit: I editted the above steps because it had some rather silly and unnecessary steps in them. When doing steps 3 & 4 there is no need to add the "Get selected Finder items" because that's what the settings in steps 3 & 4 are for. Silly me :eek:
     
  8. callmemike20 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    callmemike20

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #8
    All of the directions you gave are excellent. However, the directions to install CUPS are unreadable. I have no idea where to begin. They just make no sense to me. Please help!
     
  9. dyn macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2009
    Location:
    .nl
    #9
    I'll try to explain what I did to install the cups-pdf. I installed it by using macports but you can use the download from the link I gave earlier (macports seems to have a more up to date version and I'm already using it for other ports so this was easier for me). Just download it and install the .pkg file as you'd do with any other .pkg file.

    Ok, now we're getting to the interesting bit..adding the cups-pdf printer to our list of printers :) The link I gave has a detailed list of steps for adding the printer but it is a bit outdated. Below is the modified version that works for Snow Leopard (it's what I did to get it to work although I modified it a bit so it'll work with the .pkg version because the file locations are different). First we need to configure some stuff to get things to work properly before even adding the printer to the list. You need to fire up Terminal because most of the following steps will require it.

    1. Some symlinks in /usr are needed for CUPS to see cups-pdf, so run (it will run sudo so may ask for your password): "/etc/libexec/cups-pdf_links.sh" (w/o quotes). This file will automatically create the necessary symlinks so this is the only thing you need to run.
    2. If you know what you're doing you may edit /etc/cups/cups-pdf.conf if you want to change some cups-pdf settings to your liking. If you don't know what you're doing...DON'T TOUCH IT :)
    3. Tell cupsd to update (it may not be running on 10.5): "sudo killall -1 cupsd" (w/o quotes; this is a vital step so don't skip it!).
    4. Go to Print & Fax in system preferences.
    5. Hit the + button.
    6. Click on "default" (if it's not opened already).
    7. Wait.
    8. If you've installed cups-pdf correctly it will show up in the list. If it does, simply select it and hit the "add" button (you may rename it if you want a fancier name than cups-pdf ;)). You might need to reboot or repeat step 3 if it doesn't show up in the list and try this step again.
    9. Installation of cups-pdf is done, now proceed to my previous post for creating the service and you're all set!
     

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