Three Ways to Reduce PDF File Size

on Thursday, May 9, 2013

Most of you who have access to your county's Extension website frequently post Adobe PDFs on the site, as it is seen as a universal format, since it does not requite the end-user to buy anything, but merely download the Adobe Reader.

Just like images, it is a good idea to compress the size of your PDF document as much as possible, to save valuable file space on the web server.  Here are three ways to do so.

Save as a Reduced Size PDF. In Adobe Acrobat, choose File, then Save As, then Reduced Size PDF.  A screenshot is below, taken from Adobe Acrobat Pro X.  You'll then get a dialogue box asking for Acrobat version compatibility.  As it states in the dialogue box, the later version of Acrobat you choose, the lower the file size.

 Optimize the document.  In Adobe Acrobat, choose File, then Save As, then Optimized PDF.  Set Compression quality to Low (see screenshot below) for both Color and Grayscale Images.  For more control, you have a panel on the left to control which objects to compress (Images, Fonts, etc.).

Housecleaning.  Realize that when you delete a PDF file (or any other file) in your local copy of your website, that file is NOT deleted on the website itself.  So, perhaps twice a year, go into the site (in Dreamweaver's FTP use the Remote Panel, typically on the left) and delete any old PDFs (and any other files) that you no longer link to or use.  You will be surprised at the unused documents that can accumulate over the months.


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