[OS X TeX] off topic, breaking up pdf files.

Ross Moore ross at ics.mq.edu.au
Sun Oct 27 01:02:02 EDT 2002

> greetings all,
> this isn't exactly a tex question, but this list has so many clever 
> people on it that it is tempting to ask here!
> i have a tex-generated .pdf file that is hundreds of pages and 
> therefore rather large. i have to share this file with a group of 
> people, even as i update it frequently. since all the updates only 
> append pages on.  since uploads/downloads through a modem (primitive, i 
> know) are rather slow i got the brilliant idea i'd save a lot of time 
> by splitting the file into a few chunks so my collaborators could 
> simply download the latest chunk instead of the whole file.
> to retain formula/heading numberings, i tried to do this in acrobat 
> simply by opening the .pdf file, select "print", select a page range 
> and specify a file instead of a printer.
> to my surprise (i don't know much about fonts) the resulting file 
> (containing only a fifth of the entire document) was substantially 
> larger than the original! there are no graphics involved, but the 
> original file is in landscape and the output is in portrait layout.

I'd guess that Acrobat is subsetting the fonts so that each page
can become self-contained; whereas pdfTeX loads a font once
and uses it on all pages.

Most of the size of a PDF document resides in the images
and the resources (such as fonts), rather than in the text itself.
Since pdfTeX makes very efficient PDF, at least with respect to font usage,
then I think your idea of splitting the file for user convenience
is actually misguided.
You would be better-off making separate TeX jobs for the different
chapters --- is it a proceedings ? --- or just letting each author
see the whole lot.

I've done two proceedings volumes -- one of ~600 pages, the other ~480 pages
 --- where to get author corrections we have separate jobs.
Using some specially written package files, and LaTeX's \includeonly
mechanism, as well as things like the  minitoc  package,
we make <author>-only.pdf  files that include the front-matter (incl.
Preface and Table-of-Contents) and have the exact same page-numbering 
for the author's chapter as is used in the full book.  

With the help of a Unix Makefile, updating all the files at the same time
is as easy as updating just the book --- and doesn't take that much longer.

> not surprisingly, the exact same thing happened if i repeated the steps 
> in preview.
> is this because the printer driver embeds the fonts in the output file 
> for th printer to use, whereas latex simply assumes acrobat/preview 
> knows where to find everything it needs?
> is there a better way to split large pdf-files to make them more 
> portable? (without messing with the tex-code?)

In practice you may not gain too much, since the same fonts probably
need to be included.

> any help appreciated, thanks in advance.

Hope this helps,

	Ross Moore

> --
> oskar holm
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