Scope: Acrobat Professional 6.0 and greater
Skill Level: Intermediate
Batch Processing is a way for Acrobat to operate on large numbers of documents (for example, to split documents, add stamps, fill in document metadata, and so on). To do batch processing the user first builds a list of commands (or actions) called a Batch Sequence. Acrobat includes a built-in list of common commands from which to choose. Third party plug-ins can also add commands to this list. When the sequence is run, Acrobat applies the list of commands to each file it processes.
this.info.copyright = "Copyright \u00A9 " + this.modDate.getFullYear(); + " by " + identity.corporation; this.info.version = "1.34.06"; this.info.modifiedBy = identity.name; event.rc = (this.modDate > (new Date("3/2/2001")) );
Batch Processing and this script now make easy work of updating hundreds or thousands of documents. The script not only allows us to access document properties that aren’t available in the built-in Batch Sequence Commands, but it allows us to customize the operations performed on each document.
To edit or create a Batch Sequence:
1. Use the menu item:
Advanced>Batch Processing …
This menu item displays the Batch Processing Dialog (Figure 1).
2. Press the New Sequence button.
3. Enter a Name for the new Batch Sequence and press OK to display the Batch Sequence editing dialog.
4. Press the Select Commands… button to display the Sequence editing dialog.
1. Don’t use functions that display user interface items like menus, dialogs, or alert boxes. Using these items defeats the purpose of batch processing since the user will have to monitor the process and possibly have to click buttons and enter text for each file processed.
2. Don’t perform unreliable operations. There are functions in Acrobat that rely on not so reliable services like internet connections and external files. Since the batch process is operating automatically in its own world, any code that hangs will slow or stop the process without necessarily giving the user any indication there is a problem.
4. Don’t perform lengthy or inefficient operations. This is of particular importance when processing hundreds or thousands of documents. It is not unusual for batch processing to run for days, so the performance of each line of code is important.
6. In general, Batch Scripts should be able to be run unattended.
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