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PrimoPDF - Awesome Freeware PDF Creator


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I thought I'd let you folks know about an awesome little freeware PDF creator program I found. It's an opensource program called PrimoPDF you can download it here. (I aplolgize if it's already been discussed here, I didn't check)

It works just like Acrobat Distiller, in that it creates a printer on your system. Then all you have to do is print from Word, Excel, IE, whatever to that printer and it will create a PDF file for you.

After extensive testing I found it to work very well. Best of all it can be used without fear in a corporate environment. Very nice. This little program will save my company tons of money liscensing the Adobe Acrobat program (around $300). It doesn't do everything Acrobat does - it just creates simple PDF files, it doesn't edit them. If anyone know of a freeware (corporate useable) direct PDF editor please let me know. Also, it doesn't create hyperlinks in the PDF files it creates, which is no big deal for me.

PrimoPDF uses the old InstallShield program for installation, so to install it you will have to create a setup.iss file. I've included my setup.iss file at the end of this post. Just cut and paste it onto notepad and save it as setup.iss in the same directory as the setup program. The command for a silent install is:

PrimoSetup.exe -s /f1".\setup.iss" /f2"c:\primopdf.log"

Note: there is no space character immediately after /f1 and /f2

Now there is another issue with the program. It creates temp files in its installation directory. This works fine for users with admin rights, but it errors if someone without admin rights tries to use it. To fix this I use SetAcl.exe to open the rights for the PrimoPDF installation directory. The command is:

setacl.exe" -on "C:\Program Files\ActivePDF\PrimoPDF" -ot file -actn ace -ace "n:S-1-1-0;p:full;s:y;i:so,sc;m:grant;w:dacl"

The above command is all one line. It opens up the rights to the PrimoPDF directory so "Everybody" has full control. Now PrimoPDF won't error when a non-administrative user tries to run it.

You can find a shockwave tutorial on how to use PrimoPDF here. You can access the PrimoPDF support forums here. Give it a try. The price is right :)


[InstallShield Silent]
File=Response File
[File Transfer]
szName=CAX Services
szCompany=Xerox  Corporation

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It's been 6 months I'm using PDFCreator in my unattend cd with no problems at all, no need to install GScript or whatsoever (required files are already included), and install file is 7.21 Mo.

installation parameters :

PDFCreator-0_8_0_GNUGhostscript.exe /verysilent /norestart

download location :


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  • 6 months later...

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