6 Different Ways to Create PDFs on MAC OS

Even an experienced MAC user may be unaware of the operating system’s strong focus on facilitating PDF creation. There are in fact six different ways to create PDF files on MAC, all of which you’ll find outlined below.

1. Creating a PDF from an Existing Document

The use of open source software such as OpenOffice or NeoOffice can allow MAC users to create PDFs from existing documents without losing any information. In the ‘General options‘ page, you can choose to export the whole document, part pages, or/as well as bookmarks. Settings can also be determined in regard to zoom ratio and page layout using the ‘Initial view‘ option page and in respect to security (password protection) in the ‘Security Option‘ page. So in addition to creating a simple PDF version, open source programs can allow more detailed customisation of said documents.

2. Using ‘Print’ to Create a PDF

A PDF file can be created simply by opening the file you wish to create a PDF of and then selecting ‘Print‘ or hitting ‘Command+P‘. This will open the print dialogue box where you will find a ‘PDF‘ drop-down selection (towards the bottom left) with the option ‘Save as PDF‘. Clicking this will allow you to save the file and determine file attributes such as title, as well as enforce password protection. The print dialogue box also offers easy compression, encryption and emailing (depending on the selection you choose).

3. Creating PDF files from Web Pages

Depending on your web browser, there are two ways to create PDFs from a web page. Using Sunrise is arguably the quickest, as this browser has the option to ‘Save Entire Page as PDF’. If selected, this will automatically save the entire page to the default download folder.

The other option is to use Firefox’s PDF Download extension, which enables PDF creation in-browser and/or emailing of said file to the specified output email.

4. PDF file from a picture

A picture(s) can easily be converted to a PDF format by ‘previewing‘ the picture(s) in finder and then using the print dialogue box to save (by selecting the save as PDF document option).

If you wish to generate a PDF of all images in a directory, simply drag the ‘directory icon‘ to the ‘Preview icon‘ and simultaneously hold down ‘Command + Option‘ keys. Next, highlight all of the pictures and choose ‘Print selected images‘ from the ‘File‘ menu. Finally, choose ‘Save as PDF‘.

5. Create a PDF from Helps

It is also easy to create PDF versions using MAC’s built-in online help system ‘man‘. One way is to view the instructions of for example, the download tool ‘curl‘ (using the ‘man curl command‘), and then use the ‘man-t curl | open -f -a Preview.app command‘ to convert those instructions into PDF. These PDFs can then be opened or read using the ‘Preview‘ program.

6. Your Network as a PDF Creator

If you use web-based word processors such as Zoho Writer or Google Docs, these will often have a built-in ‘Generate PDF’ option. Similarly, you can also use PDF creation services (through your network) to create PDF versions of existing documents. You will be required to upload this document and then be offered the option to save the PDF version. Examples of websites offering this service include: ExpressPDF, Zamzar, and PDF Online.

Otherwise if you need Mac support please contact core technical solutions.



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