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pdf printout cuts off left side of document

Posted on 2008-06-24
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Last Modified: 2011-10-19
I have 500 emails with pdf attachments. I need to print the pdf attachment out from each email.  They are in Outlook 2003.  I tried just right clicking the attachment(pdf) and choosing print. It prints to the default printer.  The problem is that each pdf has text right up to the very left edge of the document so when it prints it is cutoff on the left side.  All the features int he print widow for shrinking to fit do assorted things to the results.  None of them are good.  All Page scaling options and auto rotate and center options cause undesireable results like making the document appear tiny in the center, etc.  None cause the document to move out from the left margin.

I have tried printing on a Brother 7820N and a Canon L75 with the same results. The computer is running XP Pro.

Any help correcting this is appreciated as well as suggestions for printing out these attachments in a batch method would be great!  Thanks!  500 points because I need a solution urgently....need top print out tonight.
Invoice---I-785.pdf
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Question by:wintensivetech
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Expert Comment

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
ID: 21873110
Can you export all attachments to a directory and then batch print from e.g. Acrobat?
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Author Comment

by:wintensivetech
ID: 21880478
I suppose I could export them one by one from outlook to afolder.  But then how do you print in one step.  or "batch" print.  Thanks.
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Expert Comment

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
ID: 21883835
Acrobat Professional has a batch sequence functionality that allows you to e.g. print all files in a directory (these instructions are for Acrobat 9 Pro/Pro Extended, you will find similar menu items in older version of Acrobat):

Select "Advanced>Document Processing>Batch Sequences" - this will bring up a dialog that lists all currently defined batch sequences. There should already be a "Print All" sequence in the list, so just select that and click on "Run Sequence". The sequence will then prompt you for which files to print, just browse to your directory and select all files.
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by:wintensivetech
ID: 21888494
Great idea for the batch printing. I have Acrobat 6.0

What about the fact that it prints out and cuts off the left side?
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Expert Comment

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
ID: 21890571
I assume that Outlook is responsible for that. Can you get an acceptable print when you print just the PDF file from Acrobat?
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Author Comment

by:wintensivetech
ID: 21902425
I saved the attachment as a pdf file and exited Outlook.  I opened the pdf in Acrobat Reader and printed.  Same result...left side cut off (about 4 or 5 character are cut off).  None of the page handling options cure the problem.  

These pdf files are copies of sales receipts created by a point of sale program and exported as pdf files.  When viewed in acrobat you can see that the image goes to the edge of the page.  Normally the page handling options allow for centering.  But when you try this with the files I'm dealing with you get strage results.  Just for fun try this to see some of the bizarre results you can get:  Download the attachment, click file, print.  In page handling, choose NONE for Page Scaling and check the box for Auto Rotate and center.  It shows the text of the file not even on the page??!!  (By the way, when you print this, you get a blank page.)

Thansk to everyone for their suggestions!!
Invoice---I-785.pdf
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LVL 44

Expert Comment

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
ID: 21903885
I see... The problem is that the page is almost 40" long, so when you select to center the page, it will only print the center of the page (which of course will be blank). You can see the results with a modified crop box (which means that you are changing the page size of the PDF page) by doing the following:

Open the document
Select "Document>Crop Pages"
In the "Margin Control" section set "Bottom" to 32", leave all other values at 0. (you could also try to select "Remove White Margins", which will also get rid of the white margin at the top)
Click on "Apply"

Now bring up the print dialog and select to center the page - you will see the changed behavior right there in the preview.

Now, this is probably not feasible to modify all documents manually. Unfortunately you cannot use the "remove white margins" option in a batch sequence, but you can manually specify the crop box settings in a batch sequence. Would it be possible to limit all documents to a height of e.g. 10" (this would give you 0.5" margin at the top and the bottom)? How would you print receipts that are longer than one letter sized page?
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Accepted Solution

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Karl Heinz Kremer earned 500 total points
ID: 21903906
I'll take that back: "Remove white margins" does actually work in a batch sequence - the problem is only that you cannot see the setting once you apply it.

So, would it be OK to remove the blank area around the page content? This way, you can print at least all pages with the "auro rotate/center" option that will fit on your target page size.
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Author Comment

by:wintensivetech
ID: 21929585
I'm going to try this and get back to you. Thanks so much for the input!!
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Expert Comment

by:kr0me
ID: 21935318
You also might want to have a chat with the sender of these pdf's - get them to adjust the way it is being saved/scanned (i.e. dimensions - I assume you're after A4/210mmx297mm) - this will prevent this from happening again otherwise you will have to do the above workflow for every receipt coming your way...

:)
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Author Comment

by:wintensivetech
ID: 21946519
kr0me:  I completely agree with you, however, these pdf files are the results of an export from a POS system at a store.  I suppose I could see if the export procedure has any controls that can manipulate the export format. So I have 2 things to try:

1) Save them all to a file and do the batch print method by khkremer (possible solution to the exact current problem)
2) see if I can control the export format better (possible future workaround to prevent this)

Thanks again for the input.  I'm going to try these and get back to everyone!
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Author Comment

by:wintensivetech
ID: 22033342
kr0me - we are going to talk to them about the export routine and see if there is  better way!

khkremer - EXCELLENT work!   The batch approach in Acrobat works.  

To sum up:  Since all the attachments are in Outlook, I couldn't find a way around the good ol fashioned righ-click ->SAVE as for each attachment.  This was fine because they were all named uniquely so I didn't also have to rename everything (though I will eventually have to find a batch attachment saver for outllok).  But once in a file all files could be batch printed using the batch processor in acrobat.  My version didn't have rotate and center, so what I did was used the batch command to crop the page (I used 34 to be sure it was down to one page, 32 caused my docs to be 2 pages) and set the print part of the batch to be interactive.  The result of the batch run is that it auto open and crops each file and prompts for the priont window. I check auto-rotate and center one time and click OK repeatedly for each one.  This is not as bad as it sounds compared to doing it all manually.  I just sit there for 5 minutes or so pressing ok at each prompt. I can even change printers halfway through to send some of the job to a different printer to cut the time in half.
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Author Closing Comment

by:wintensivetech
ID: 31470437
If we have to do this again I may look a bit closer at the exact batch commands available in my version vs. the new one.  Bu tthanks for all your help!!
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