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Old 04-17-2012, 10:08 PM   #1
acme
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weblinks in PDF don't work in Lion Preview

I created a PDF in CS4 in Snow Leopard. This PDF has 2 links per page; one is a URL to a website. the other is a mailto: email link.

The links work fine in Snow Leopard Preview, but in Lion Preview, they appear not to be there, judging by when you place a cursor over them.

Anybody know a reason why this could be?

I don't know if it's an adobe problem, a PDF-ing problem or a Lion problem.

Thanks for any clues about this weird problem!

a
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Old 04-17-2012, 10:30 PM   #2
NaOH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acme
I created a PDF in CS4 in Snow Leopard.

Which Creative Suite application was used to make the PDF? Can you create another PDF that demonstrates this issue under 10.7 that you could post here?
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Old 04-17-2012, 11:09 PM   #3
acme
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InDesign where I made the document destined for PDF-hood.

exported as PDF

Opened in Acrobat, exported as .ps

Opened that in Distiller, which produced PDF in which the links work in Snow, not in lion.



You say, you want me to produce another file...just any old file with some links to see if I can duplicate this?

thanks,

a
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Old 04-17-2012, 11:12 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acme
InDesign where I made the document destined for PDF-hood.

exported as PDF

Opened in Acrobat, exported as .ps

Opened that in Distiller, which produced PDF (which can have clickable links if that option is enabled in InDesign) in which the links work in Snow, not in lion.

Not sure why you're jumping through all those hoops. I mean you create a PDF, then you turn it into a PostScript file to create a PDF.

Quote:
Originally Posted by acme
You say, you want me to produce another file...just any old file with some links to see if I can duplicate this?

Yep, just so anyone here can test a file with this issue. I figure it's a simple way to confirm whether or not the Lion issue is somehow connected to your setup.
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Old 04-17-2012, 11:15 PM   #5
acme
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NaOH
Not sure why you're jumping through all those hoops. I mean you create a PDF, then you turn it into a PostScript file to create a PDF.


Yep, just so anyone here can test a file with this issue. I figure it's a simple way to confirm whether or not the Lion issue is somehow connected to your setup.

the reason I jump through those hoops is at the suggestion of a friend. InDesign can make a PDF only so small; for whatever reason, converting to a PS file and distilling that makes the result even smaller, while keeping the visual quality high.

Else, I'd be *more* than happy to hit Cmd-E from Indesign and be done with it.

I'll whip up another file, same way, and post soon

thank you
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Old 04-17-2012, 11:18 PM   #6
NaOH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acme
the reason I jump through those hoops is at the suggestion of a friend. InDesign can make a PDF only so small; for whatever reason, converting to a PS file and distilling that makes the result even smaller, while keeping the visual quality high.

When I want to get an InDesign-created PDF as small as possible, I create the PDF then run it through the free ShrinkIt. I don't promise it will yield better results than what you're now getting, but you may want to test it versus your current approach.
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Old 04-17-2012, 11:47 PM   #7
acme
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I'll give shrinkit a try..thank you..

here's a link to my test file created, same workflow as the problem PDF:

http://coffeeonmars.com/testing/testLinks_2.pdf
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Old 04-17-2012, 11:54 PM   #8
NaOH
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Okay, the links don't work for me under Lion, either in Preview or Acrobat Pro (CS 5.5). Perhaps it's a clue (to what I can't say), but copying and pasting either line from that file does not yield the displayed characters when I paste the text elsewhere. Instead, I get

􀁍􀁒􀁋􀁑􀀣􀁆􀁒􀁉􀁉􀁈􀁈􀁒􀁑􀁄􀁕􀁖􀀑􀁆􀁒􀁐

Just to test, I'm going to create a PDF in InDesign then replicate your workflow to see what it yields. Yes, I'm doing all this within Lion under a different version of CS, but I figure it's worth the test. Back in a moment.
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Old 04-18-2012, 12:13 AM   #9
NaOH
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Same results here in my testing except when I copy/paste the text I get the actual text instead of symbols. I did try it two ways, going PDF > PS > PDF and also going PDF > EPS > PDF. No difference whether I open the files with Preview or Acrobat Pro.

Admittedly, I don't know exactly what settings you used at the various points where you can make any choices, but it looks like there's something with the Lion PDF engine. If you want to detail your settings and have me re-try, just give me that information.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf NaOH-Test-Links.pdf (4.0 KB, 49 views)
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Old 04-18-2012, 02:28 AM   #10
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First of all, you should be able to create a PDF of exactly the same compression in InDesign as in Acrobat. In fact, there are more PDF options in ID than Distiller.
Exporting directly from ID as a PDF is the preferred method, and Adobe deprecates saving as PostScript and then Distilling from Adobe applications that can handle PDF export.

Secondly, I can make a document in InDesign CS4 that contains a hyperlink, export a PDF, and it works fine in Preview. Select some text, go to Type > Hyperlink & Cross-References > New Hyperlink, and add the URL. Then export as PDF, ticking the box for Hyperlinks in PDF options.

I suspect that converting to PS loses the hyperlink info, and that perhaps Snow Leopard's Preview is using Apple Data Detectors to construct the link whereas Lion's is not, instead relying on explicit link data.
I would expect Acrobat to behave the same way regardless of the OS version, so the fact that Acrobat doesn't display the links means that they aren't there. Have you tried Acrobat under Snow Leopard? If the links worked there, then that would suggest something very odd indeed.

Last edited by benwiggy; 04-18-2012 at 02:32 AM.
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Old 04-18-2012, 02:37 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benwiggy
Secondly, I can make a document in InDesign CS4 that contains a hyperlink, export a PDF, and it works fine in Preview. Select some text, go to Type > Hyperlink & Cross-References > New Hyperlink, and add the URL. Then export as PDF, ticking the box for Hyperlinks in PDF options.

I was assuming this was the procedure being used. acme, please confirm this and/or explain how you were creating links in InDesign.
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Old 04-18-2012, 11:21 AM   #12
acme
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OK..I just can not get the problem to happen with a new file, which tells me...not sure what. Something weird about my working file such that links DO work in Snow after following the below?

So, I guess going from Indesign to PDF with "Hyperlinks" selected gives a PDF with functioning links, but doing the Acrobat to .ps to Distiller to PDF part strips that out.

No clue why the links previously worked in Snow only... Sorry to waste you guys's time, but I know this happened to me; I kept trying to make it work. Must have done this procedure 20 times or more.


Here are the steps I used, below.
a


steps I took, CS4
  1. new document in ID: letter, landscape.
  2. on master page new layer. Make box the size of the page filled with black. Content "Unassigned."
  3. New layer, above first layer: text box. Type color= white
  4. in box, type: john@CoffeeOnMars.com and www.CoffeeOnMars.com
  5. highlight the email address, Select: Window Menu>Interactive>Hyperlinks
  6. type or paste the email into the URL field, replacing the http:// hit Return
  7. repeat 5 and 6 with the URL, only this time don't replace the http://
  8. Save, Export as PDF, Smallest setting, make sure to check Include Hyperlinks, near bottom, Export PDF General settings.
  9. double click email and in Link to: options select Mail; same for URL selecting URL
  10. Open in Acrobat. See that the hyperlinks really are hyperlinks; yellow messages will pop up if you leave cursor over each confirming what the link or mailto: is
  11. Export as .ps file from acrobat
  12. distill, then test resulting PDF in Snow Leopard. Links should work in Snow Leopard Preview app, and should NOT work in Lion Preview app.
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Old 04-18-2012, 11:46 AM   #13
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PostScript can't handle URLs. However, level 3 includes an operator called pdfmark, by which you can pass all sorts of Pdf stuff through ps, which Distiller picks up on the other side.

If the settings for exporting the ps did not allow for pdfmark, then the url wouldn't get through as a link. If you change your PS export settings, it might allow for pdfmark.

As I said earlier, I suspect that Snow Leopard's Preview must have recognised the urls using Apple's Data Detectors, rather than anything in the pdf itself.
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Old 04-18-2012, 01:37 PM   #14
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A change in WebKit makes sense, as the cause of the problem. But whatever the technicalities, the loss of clickable embedded links is a significant loss of functionality in the operating system. PDF generation and rendering has always been a major strength of OS X, and the ability to archive hypertext documents in PDF format is one of those things that has Microsoft Windows users in the business world jealous of Mac users.
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Old 04-18-2012, 01:50 PM   #15
acme
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Ben;

I adjusted the settings in Acrobat to put out level 3 PS but this made no difference when reading the resulting PDF in Lion: what is supposed to be links do not behave as links.

curious.

thank you for the information about level 3 and pdfmark


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