Guidance needed to open PDF's in OpenOffice.org

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Guidance needed to open PDF's in OpenOffice.org

Postby LealandA » Sun Mar 30, 2008 7:39 am

Need a walkthrough to tell me how to make PDF's readable in Open Office. I don't need to be able to edit them, I need to be able to read them using only Open Office. Is this possible?

Title Edited. A descriptive title for posts helps others who are searching for solutions and increases the chances of a reply. 'Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office' sounded likr you were providing a guide. (TheGurkha, Moderator)
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Mar 30, 2008 8:02 am

No. It's not possible. I'm always surprised when people ask this, but it is not an unusual question. If you try a search for PDF you may find several thrreads.

Please read the Survival Guide to the Forum before posting.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby LealandA » Sun Mar 30, 2008 8:08 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:No. It's not possible. I'm always surprised when people ask this, but it is not an unusual question. If you try a search for PDF you may find several thrreads.

Please read the Survival Guide to the Forum before posting.


I did that, and after the confusion, I needed to ask the question up front in order to make sure. There isn't a third party extension or anything that anyone knows of?
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Mar 30, 2008 9:39 am

If you read this thread you will find a link to an extension that is being worked on, but the emphasis seems to be on importing drawings into Impress or Draw. If you want to read PDF files why not use a pdf reader?
As already mentioned in my comment regarding the initial blog entry, it won't be an option for us to import the PDF content into a Writer document containing floating text and as such a floating layout. So, we decided to write a filter that imports the PDF content as OOo Draw/Impress document.
With this solution, we'll have the full benefit of a page orientated, fixed layout. All graphical elements will be at fixed positions given in the PDF file and text portions will be combined as most as possible to be anchored in text shapes, ensuring that text portions preserve their exactly given position, but are still editable by the user.

The challenge with this solution is 'just' to find the most common bounding box for text portions that can be grouped together in one text shape. But this is nothing compared to the 'impossible' and life time task of reconstructing/guessing the whole layout of the original document the PDF document was created from. As you know, PDF files don't contain such structuring information in general, beside some tagged PDF files, on which we can't rely.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby TheGurkha » Sun Mar 30, 2008 9:48 pm

If you want to read PDF files but don't want to have the 'heavyweight' Adobe Acrobat as your viewer, you could try Sumatra PDF reader. it is small, fast and open-source, and isn't bogged down by bloat.

http://blog.kowalczyk.info/software/sumatrapdf/
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Hagar Delest » Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:07 pm

Foxit reader is also quite good (allow comments in a PDF): Foxit Reader. It even supports Linux now!
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby DDRdictions » Fri Apr 11, 2008 2:54 am

It is actually possible to both open and edit PDFs in Open Office. I have done this before using an add-on (a plugin, macro, or extension, I forget which it was) that I came across sometime last year. I wish I could remember the page it was on, as I had to reformat recently and neglected to backup that add-on. There were two versions: Windows and Linux. I remember that very well because I downloaded the Linux file and was unable to set it up, I have XP. I wish I could be of more help, but unfortunately I've had no luck finding that web page.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Dave » Fri Apr 11, 2008 4:34 am

Do please come back with the information when you find it. I've never heard of it, either as a reader or an editor.

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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby r4zoli » Fri Apr 11, 2008 9:08 am

PDF import in one time was a planned feature for OOo 3.0, and now if you see not in Feature Freeze list, but if you search on OOo wiki you find PDF import Extension, and PDF posts on Gullfoss.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Fri Apr 11, 2008 9:34 am

What a waste of human effort! Just use the original document that was used to create the PDF in the first place. It is like translating from one language to another, then back again. You can never be sure that the back translation will be 100% accurate. If you want to be sure, you need the original.

Here is the above paragraph translated to French, then back to English using Babel Fish:
What a wasting of human effort! Use right the original document which was employed to create the pdf initially. It is like translating from one language to another, then behind still. You can never be sure that the translation postpones will be 100% precis. If you want to be sure, you need the original.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Villeroy » Fri Apr 11, 2008 9:59 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:What a waste of human effort!

This is quite often the case when the developers try to follow what thousands of users cry out persistently.

We need a decent database, but it must be a single-file format.
We need more sheets, rows and columns in Calc, but better performance.
We need future proof file formats including full support of anything Microsoft throws at us.
It must be free (of charge), including the most advanced linguistic tools.
It must be modular but fully integrated.
It has so much bloat I'm not interested in, but why not <...>?
... to be continued.
Each demand is contradictory in itself. I'm pretty shure that pdf-editing is quite a technical challenge, impossible to be ever good enough for those who "desperately need it".
Please, edit this topic's initial post and add "[Solved]" to the subject line if your problem has been solved.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby TheGurkha » Fri Apr 11, 2008 12:40 pm

DDRdictions wrote:It is actually possible to both open and edit PDFs in Open Office. I have done this before using an add-on (a plugin, macro, or extension, I forget which it was) that I came across sometime last year. I wish I could remember the page it was on, as I had to reformat recently and neglected to backup that add-on. There were two versions: Windows and Linux. I remember that very well because I downloaded the Linux file and was unable to set it up, I have XP. I wish I could be of more help, but unfortunately I've had no luck finding that web page.


I've Googled this to death and can't locate anything that even sounds close to this functionality. :roll:

I'm as preplexed as everyone else though, why edit a PDF? Edit the source doc and then create a new PDF.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Fri Apr 11, 2008 1:01 pm

Villeroy wrote:
Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:What a waste of human effort!

This is quite often the case when the developers try to follow what thousands of users cry out persistently.

So don't try to follow them all. A lot of the crying is due to ignorance. Listen by all means, but then take the right decisions to ensure that developers' time is used for the maximum benefit for 99% of users, not for the most vociferous 1%.

I have been involved with testing beta software for some years, and we hear all manner of ridiculous demands when all that users need to do is copy/paste the unsupported file type via the clipboard.

Importing PDF is error prone at best. The best way to import most PDF files is via the clipboard. Select all, copy, paste. Then reformat the document in the target program. Or take a screenshot and paste that in.

The benefits of slightly easier workflow don't justify the programming effort. Other specialised programs will always do a much better job. If users really need to edit PDF files they should buy Adobe Acrobat or another similar program.

Seeing where Oo 3.0 is going with multi-page spreads smart zoom controls and better notes, these things are more important to most users so that is where the effort should be targetted. Improve PDF output to support OpenType Postscript fonts and PDF/X-1a before even thinking about PDF import.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby foxcole » Fri Apr 11, 2008 10:25 pm

Hear, hear! Well put, Bhikkhu.
Cheers!
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby AndrewZ » Thu Jun 05, 2008 4:06 pm

LealandA, now there is an extension to import PDFs into Draw. In my tests, it reads fine, but it is slow.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby cajunlibra » Fri Jan 02, 2009 9:45 pm

Regarding not understanding why someone would want to edit a PDF, with recommendations to just obtain the original and edit that. Well, many organizations make forms available online as PDFs only. In order to fill out the form, one must print then handwrite information. It would be much neater and cleaner to be able to fill out the form digitally. This is why one may want to edit PDF files. Access to the original file is not an option in most cases. Retyping the form is also out of the question. Adobe Acrobat is expensive. I have found programs under linux that allow editing although it's a tedious task. Some pdf files made with Acrobat allow the user to edit the file's field but not save the file in that format.

I hope that my argument is justified as valid.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Hagar Delest » Fri Jan 02, 2009 10:20 pm

cajunlibra wrote:many organizations make forms available online as PDFs only. In order to fill out the form, one must print then handwrite information.

If the form is correctly made, you can fill in it digitally and then print it, saving it filled in is a different story. If you can't fill it in digitally, it might mean that the organization wants you to write it by hand.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby TheGurkha » Fri Jan 02, 2009 10:41 pm

cajunlibra wrote:Regarding not understanding why someone would want to edit a PDF, with recommendations to just obtain the original and edit that. Well, many organizations make forms available online as PDFs only. In order to fill out the form, one must print then handwrite information. It would be much neater and cleaner to be able to fill out the form digitally. This is why one may want to edit PDF files. Access to the original file is not an option in most cases. Retyping the form is also out of the question. Adobe Acrobat is expensive. I have found programs under linux that allow editing although it's a tedious task. Some pdf files made with Acrobat allow the user to edit the file's field but not save the file in that format.

I hope that my argument is justified as valid.


Use the free version of the PDF-Xchange PDF viewer. It allows you to type directly into the PDF and save a copy with a new name, using their 'typewriter' tool. But this is slightly different to what others mean by editing a PDF - they want to change the underlying content of the PDF as if they were editing it in a sort of DTP way, not just add some text over the top of it.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby OifHunter » Fri May 22, 2009 6:27 pm

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:What a waste of human effort! Just use the original document that was used to create the PDF in the first place. It is like translating from one language to another, then back again. You can never be sure that the back translation will be 100% accurate. If you want to be sure, you need the original.


Its a good use of human effort to give users what they want. Instead of forcing upon them things they don't want. I want more of the people in the first group - hurrah for them.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Dave » Fri May 22, 2009 6:46 pm

OifHunter wrote:Its a good use of human effort to give users what they want. Instead of forcing upon them things they don't want. I want more of the people in the first group - hurrah for them.


If people can improve upon this free software, they should feel free to do so by taking sufficient number of courses and spending sufficient time. I want more people to stop saying, "I want."

This is a forum of people who are not programmer/developers, and so any such comments posted here are simply a waste of time and effort. There are two kinds of people here: Those who ask questions, and those who try to answer them to the best of their ability, based upon their years of experience, background and knowledge ...and they do that out of the goodness of their hearts. If something can be done to help, it will. If not, then you should simply accept that, and complain to the developers ...who might listen to suggestions. I repeat: There are no developers here, just plain folk like you and me.

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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby TheGurkha » Fri May 22, 2009 10:12 pm

OifHunter wrote:Its a good use of human effort to give users what they want.


I take your point, but then again, sometimes it's not the best thing to do. If there are better ways that the user doesn't know about it is better to educate the user, or if there are flaws in what they are asking for it wouldn't be a good idea to build flawed software just because that's what they think they want.
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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby Dave » Sun May 24, 2009 2:51 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Improve PDF output to support OpenType Postscript fonts and PDF/X-1a before even thinking about PDF import.


+1. However, I'd add NEVER think about PDF import. Why bother reinventing the wheel? With today's improved hardware/software, cheaper prices, multitasking is a breeze. A good workman has a toolbox full of tools, not just one Swiss army knife. There is, particularly, some absolutely excellent free PDF reader software other than Adobe, and some quite reasonably priced shareware for editing. "I cried because I had no shoes..."

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Re: Guide to opening PDF's in Open Office

Postby TheGurkha » Sun May 24, 2009 3:45 pm

Dave wrote:
Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Improve PDF output to support OpenType Postscript fonts and PDF/X-1a before even thinking about PDF import.


+1. However, I'd add NEVER think about PDF import. Why bother reinventing the wheel? With today's improved hardware/software, cheaper prices, multitasking is a breeze. A good workman has a toolbox full of tools, not just one Swiss army knife. There is, particularly, some absolutely excellent free PDF reader software other than Adobe, and some quite reasonably priced shareware for editing. "I cried because I had no shoes..."

David.


+2. IMHO the PDF editing extension was misjudged.
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Guidance needed to open PDF's in OpenOffice

Postby pguild » Wed Jul 15, 2009 11:13 pm

You can open and edit PDF's in OpenOffice.

Just be sure you have the latest version of OpenOffice. Then install the extension that lets you open .pdf files. See: PDF Import Extension.

You can open the .pdf file directly using the file/open -- just specify that you want to see all files.

I'm always getting these documents from various companies in .PDF format and it is great to be able to edit them. I don't have access to the source documents. I tried the extension recently and it worked great! :D

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Re: Guidance needed to open PDF's in OpenOffice

Postby StMark » Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:37 am

"...

All this is expected to change with Sun OpenOffice 3 which includes native PDF import and export features.

You will be able import PDF files into Draw (PowerPoint), perform the edits and then export them as hybrid PDFs meaning you can edit the PDF files back again in OpenOffice."

found at http://www.labnol.org/software/download ... obat/2187/ .

Lies then?
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Re: Guidance needed to open PDF's in OpenOffice

Postby RoryOF » Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:41 am

Download OOo 3.3 RC7 and try for yourself.
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Re: Guidance needed to open PDF's in OpenOffice

Postby topinforma » Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:42 am

I just downloaded this one oracle-pdfimport and i just tested and i just found out that works GRRRRRREEEAAAAAAATTTTTTTT!!!!!Awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Re: Guidance needed to open PDF's in OpenOffice

Postby RoryOF » Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:24 am

You will find that there are distinct limits to the alterations you can make using this extension.
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Re: Guidance needed to open PDF's in OpenOffice.org

Postby topinforma » Tue Apr 05, 2011 5:55 am

Well, you might be right but i just needed to open and edit a few un editable pdf's i found online and it's working fine by now
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