[scribus] Problem with large exported PDF files

Bill Wheaton gisgeek at nc.rr.com
Fri Aug 20 02:49:40 CEST 2010

Hello Christoph--

I did not know about pdftk.  Based on your suggestion, I downloaded it and tried merging two smaller pdf pieces and it worked very well.  Many thanks for the workaround!


On Aug 19, 2010, at 7:24 PM, Christoph Schäfer wrote:

> Am Freitag, 20. August 2010, 00:42:17 schrieb Bill Wheaton:
>> Hi Christoph--  Thanks for the reply.
>> The original input files are, in total, about 500MB.  They are jpegs. There
>> are about 150 of them.  One per page.  There's no text, just 1 photo per
>> page.  In scribus, I set the the resolution of every photo to about
>> 300dpi.   Scribus properties for each image shows Actual X-DPI and Actual
>> Y-DPI of 300 to 330 depending on the photo.
>> I figure gs will resample down to 300, so I wasn't too worried about the
>> 330dpi.  I do not know why Scribus makes a 2GB PDF file.
>> If there is another way that I should be specifying 300dpi for each image
>> in Scribus, please let me know.
>> I'm exporting to PDF 1.5 (Acrobat 6).  I've tried setting colors for
>> Screen/Web and Printer.  The Printer option makes even larger PDF files
>> (about 2.5GB as compared to 2GB for screen/web).
>> Bill
>> On Aug 19, 2010, at 4:50 PM, Christoph Schäfer wrote:
>>> Am Donnerstag, 19. August 2010, 13:54:30 schrieb Bill Wheaton:
>>>> Hello List: I'm a new user to Scribus.  Have been using it to lay out a
>>>> photo book and I have some file size issues.
>>>> I need to output the book to pdf to upload to the printing service. 
>>>> Since the pdf is so huge, there's a tip on the printer's (viovio.com)
>>>> website suggesting that ghostscript be used to knock down the file size
>>>> to make it more manageable.  This all works fine until the size of the
>>>> scribus-generated PDF file gets larger than 2GB.  At that point the
>>>> ghostscript pass-through fails.  It happens consistently when the PDF is
>>>> bigger than 2GB and never happens if the PDF is less than 2GB.
>>>> I'm not sure whether the problem is with the PDF or with ghostscript, so
>>>> I'm looking for help/troubleshooting advice.  If no one can identify a
>>>> problem on the Scribus end, then I'll send inquiries to the ghostscript
>>>> crowd next.
>>>> The ghostscript command will knock a 1.9GB PDF file generated by Scribus
>>>> down to less than 300MB which is very helpful.  But any PDF bigger than
>>>> 2GB fails when passed through ghostscript
>>>> Here's the setup:
>>>> Mac OS 10.6.2
>>>> Scribus 1.3.6
>>>> Ghostscript 8.71
>>>> Here's the ghostscript command:
>>>> gs-8.71-macosx -dPDFSETTINGS=/prepress -dSAFER -dCompatibilityLevel=1.5
>>>> -dNOPAUSE -dBATCH -sDEVICE=pdfwrite -sstdout=%stderr
>>>> -dGrayImageResolution=600 -dMonoImageResolution=1200
>>>> -dColorImageResolution=300 -sOutputFile=vol_iv_gs.pdf -c .setpdfwrite -f
>>>> vol_iv.pdf
>>>> Here's the error:
>>>> PL Ghostscript 8.71 (2010-02-10)
>>>> Copyright (C) 2010 Artifex Software, Inc.  All rights reserved.
>>>> This software comes with NO WARRANTY: see the file PUBLIC for details.
>>>>  **** Warning:  An error occurred while reading an XREF table.
>>>>  **** The file has been damaged.  This may have been caused
>>>>  **** by a problem while converting or transfering the file.
>>>>  **** Ghostscript will attempt to recover the data.
>>> Hi Bill,
>>> I'm not sure about the gs side of things, but how on earth did you manage
>>> to create a PDF of that size? I assume you used a lot of high-resultion
>>> images, which is probably unnecessary, especially since you mentioned a
>>> book. Try to scale down the images to 300 dpi.
>>> HTH
>>> Christoph
> Hi Bill,
> Please try the following: Export from your source file to several smaller PDF 
> files (e.g., 1--30, 31--60 etc.). Then shrink each file with gs and join the 
> resulting files with pdftk.
> Christoph

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