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Thread: Full featured PDF editor?

  1. #1
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    Full featured PDF editor?

    Hey all. Been using Ubuntu for a little over a week now, and have to say, I love it, and am wanting very badly to finally ditch Windows....at home at least.

    My biggest issue though for completely moving away from Windows XP is as follows:

    I work as a paralegal in very document intensive litigation. I NEED a full featured PDF editor, nothing short of Adobe Acrobat or Nitro PDF's functionality. I use NitroPDF for work mainly.

    I have done a bit of searching, but it doesn't seem like a native Linux app will fill my requirements here. I also checked the compatibility list in Wine, Adobe Acrobat full seems to be problematic...and Nitro just flat out doesn't work at all in Wine.

    I tried running NitroPDF in a Windows XP Virtual Machine via VirtualBox. Editing PDFs in a XP VM is incredibly SLOW....but... I only have 512 system ram, and 198 of which dedicated to my XP VM. If I upgrade this box (Athlon XP2800+, 2.07ghz) to 2 gigs of DDR RAM and allocate 512 of that to my XP VM, think that will solve my problem?

    Or would I be best off finding a native Linux pdf editor...or...are neither of these a good solution, and I can expect my PDF editing to be excruciatingly slow regardless how much system ram I have, and regardless how much ram I allocate to my XP virtual machine?

    Kinda lost here and can really use some guidance to be completely Microsoft free!

    Thanks guys!

  2. #2
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    Give pdfedit a try (it's in the repos) it has some bugs but gets the job done for my needs.
    What makes a great open source contributor is not primarily the brilliance of their ideas or importance of their bug, but rather their willingness to see it through to success.

  3. #3
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    PDF is a horrifically misguided file format and has only recently become a partially "open" file format. If at all possible I'd suggest migrating to a current open file format like ODF that has better editor support and is intended for mainstream end users rather than manufacturers, product manuals, tax forms, 3D content, etc.

  4. #4
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    Scribus is the animal you are looking for.... It produces really descent quality pdf files... This page should explain it best...
    http://docs.scribus.net/index.php?la...age=pdfexport1
    It may or not be able to replace your existing software.
    Good luck

  5. #5
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    PDF is a horrifically misguided file format and has only recently become a partially "open" file format.
    I have a sneaking suspicion that the OP wants to get work done and collect a paycheck rather than engage his employers in a holy war about open formats. Just guessing.

    Scribus is the animal you are looking for
    Unlikely. Scribus and Acrobat do entirely different things.

    Give pdfedit a try
    Pdfedit can do some fairly sophisticated things, but it is extremely user-unfriendly. Also, its capabilities are technical-focused instead of workflow-focused, i.e., it doesn't mesh well with what I actually have to do for work.

    I NEED a full featured PDF editor, nothing short of Adobe Acrobat or Nitro PDF's functionality.
    You are out of luck. You need Acrobat, and for Acrobat you need Windows. There is no way around it.

    NitroPDF is the closest substitute in existence for Acrobat, and it's a relatively poor runner-up. There is nothing even remotely close to Acrobat that runs natively on Linux. (Pdfedit is probably the best there is, and it's...well, not even close.)
    I could not fail to disagree with you less.

  6. #6
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    Have a look at your system usage memory Check under windows in the VM... If you are paging then you definately will get a boost from more memory.

    Scribus does have excellent PDF output including, forms, slideshows and scripting. The major limitation being that it only exports PDF documents, it can not import them.

    Sorry I can't help more...

  7. #7
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    Can you clarify a little bit as to whether you need to simply create a pdf document or modify existing pdf documents?

    Lots of tools can do the former, only pdfedit (that I know of) can do the latter (on a linux system).
    What makes a great open source contributor is not primarily the brilliance of their ideas or importance of their bug, but rather their willingness to see it through to success.

  8. #8
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    Quote Originally Posted by wylfing View Post
    I have a sneaking suspicion that the OP wants to get work done and collect a paycheck rather than engage his employers in a holy war about open formats. Just guessing.
    I see that side of the story and completely understand the situation but there's also a matter of using the right tool for the job. Unless there's a specific reason for using PDF, as in the PDF provides functionality that other formats don't (embedded 3D content, "Connect" meetings, etc.) , then there's no reason to use PDF anymore.

    As other users have said there really isn't a good way to work with PDF files in Linux to the same extent as Acrobat offers. So if Linux is going to be used perhaps its a good idea to move away from PDF files (to ODF for example). If PDF files are a necessity then maybe Linux isn't the way to go right now. Cheers!

  9. #9
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    If any format switch was to be undertaken, I wouldn't suggest ODF, as from what I know, that's only readable by OpenOffice. I'd suggest using a postscript file ( .ps extension) as they're very comparable to pdf files.
    What makes a great open source contributor is not primarily the brilliance of their ideas or importance of their bug, but rather their willingness to see it through to success.

  10. #10
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    Re: Full featured PDF editor?

    If you know how to use latex, you can create PDF documents by compiling your tex source document, but it is a lot of work formatting to get it to exactly what you want it to be. But, if you want to work with other people's PDF documents, then this method won't work.

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