[scribus] Clickable URL links in PDF export

Repubo repubo at gmail.com
Mon Apr 26 08:47:38 CEST 2010


I was able to create clickable (and movable) external links in a PDF  
for both a website and email with Scribus. I’m using Scribus 1.3.6  
with Ghostscript 8.57 on an Intel Mac with OS 10.5.8. I tried opening  
the PDF’s Scribus made in both Adobe Reader 9.3.2 and Apple’s Preview  
4.2 and the links I created all worked as designed.

I don’t know exactly what type of document you’re creating, but the  
steps I used should be able to be applied to any type of document.  
Here’s what I did:

Open your document in Scribus. I’ll assume it’s complete except for  
the links you want to add. If you haven’t done so already, you’ll want  
to make all the link text blue, which of course is what most people  
expect a link to look like. Select a text box with a link then open  
Story Editor. Highlight the link text in Story Editor and click-on the  
double arrow to the right of the paint bucket icon in Story Editor  
(far right side - you may need to make the Story Editor screen wider  
to see it) and from the drop-down menu choose blue. Continue this  
through-out your document until all link text is blue.

 From the Windows drop-down menu make sure PDF Tools has a check-mark  
next to it; if it doesn’t, simply select it. With PDF Tools active in  
the main tool bar, you should have seven additional icons. The last  
one, on the far right, that looks like an outline of two shoe prints  
is the one to use to create a Link Annotation. Click-on the Link  
Annotation icon and your cursor will become a crosshair. Draw a box  
around your first link text with the crosshair. The box you just made  
will be outlined in red. While it’s still selected go to Item at the  
top of the Scribus screen and from the Item drop-down menu select PDF  
Options. A check-mark should be next to Is PDF Annotation. If it isn’t  
checked, select it. From Items/PDF Options select Annotation  
Properties. A dialog box will open. From the drop-down menu for Type  
select External Web-link. There will now be an empty box under  
Destination. In that box type the webpage address for the text link.  
Or you can open the link in a browser and copy the link from the  
browser and paste it into the Destination box. Continue creating link  
annotations for all text links on the page. If your text link is for  
an email address, in Destination type the standard mail-to text using  
the following format with-out any punctuation other than what’s below:

mailto:someone at somewhere.com?subject=Hello%20again

I’d suggest you test a PDF of one page before you do your entire  
document. I used this procedure on two separate documents saved as PDF  
1.5. Preflight Verifier claimed one had errors due to the Annotations  
but the other did not, yet the links for the link text on both PDF’s  

To keep the Link Annotations you’ve created over the link text when  
you move things around, simply select both the Link Annotations box  
for the link and the text box containing the link text and Group them  
in the X,Y,Z tab in the Properties dialog box from the Windows drop- 
down menu.


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