If you have a copy of Ghostscript, you may prefer to use this for converting PDF documents. You may obtain Ghostscript (free) from http://sourceforge.net/projects/ghostscript/. Using Ghostscript may give better results on some documents. Since the TIF file is produced directly, instead of via a print driver, some processing complexity is eliminated.

To use Ghostscript, add a $convert_options keyword of GSPDF to the user profile referenced from the FS file, or in the FS file itself. The option keywords GS300 or GS400 can be used instead of GSPDF to specify 300x300 or 400x400 resolution PDFs respectively.

Install a current release of Ghostscript using the provided installer (currently GS902W32.EXE). The 64-bit version of Ghostscript is not currently supported.  If you use the standard Ghostscript install, FFEXTERN will pick up the details from the registry and no further configuration is needed. Check the 'install fonts' box: if you need to use other than the standard Ghostscript fonts, you can configure these in Ghostscript as described in the documentation: Copia cannot provide you with support for this task.

The use of Ghostscript for converting PDF files currently has the following restrictions:

The TIF image height defaults to the height of the first page in the PDF, so all pages in the PDF are expected to be the same height. Ghostscript will usually automatically arrange for the rotation of landscape documents to fit fax format provided that the dimensions are compatible with the specified size.

It is strongly recommended that any non-standard fonts are embedded in the PDF. If you do not do this, they may be substituted with inappropriate Ghostscript fonts.

All conversion defaults to tiffg3 encoded faxable TIFF in fine resolution.

Color or gray-scale originals are not dithered.

Acrobat accepts some PDF files which do not conform to Adobe standards, whereas Ghostscript does not. Some Macintosh files fall into this category (more information in the Ghostscript user manual).

Files to be converted by Ghostscript must contain a valid PDF signature in the file header. To override this check to convert unusual file formats supported by Ghostscript, add a value "OverridePDFCheck=1" to the [FXCVRT] section in COPIFACTS.INI or add an FS variable CVT_NOSIGCHECK to the FS file controlling the conversion.  With this value specified, specifying as PDF a format unknown to Ghostscript can result in huge numbers of output pages - use at your own risk!  The internal converter does not use this check.

The default conversion uses five Ghostscript command parameters, other than the specifications of the output and input filenames.  You may override any of these five parameters for special purposes, and also add additional parameters if you wish. Control variables GSPDF1 through GSPDF6 define overrides for each of the default parameters, and GSPDF7 through GSPDF9 define additional parameters.  If you add parameters 7 through 9, you must use consecutive numbers.  Defining for example parameter 8 on its own, without 6 and 7, will cause the conversion to fail.  Each variable should contain only a single parameter definition.  Note that parameter values are case sensitive.

If you need more than three additional parameters, set one of the available parameters to "@pathname" and place the additional parameters in the specified file.

The default values of the first five parameters are as follows:

GSPDF3-g1728x2292 (example: actual values calculated from source document)
GSPDF4-r204x196 (example: different values apply for GS300 and GS400 convert options)
GSPDF6-dMaxStripSize=0 (this parameter added in CopiaFacts version 8, see notes below)

Among parameters you may wish to add are -dPDFFitPage and -dNORANGEPAGESIZE.  Together these will adjust the page scaling and select the page orientation to accommodate oversized originals.  When both these parameters are given, the page length will be set to approximately 11 inches and Ghostscript will adjust the scaling to fit this size. These two parameters must be set individually, not using the Ghostscript "@filename" syntax to specify parameters in a separate file.

For example if your fax boards can handle T.6 encoding directly, you can add a command in the CFG file, or USR/UJP or FS files for FFEXTERN-initiated conversions as follows:

$var_def  GSPDF5  "-sDEVICE=tiffg4"

To create low-resolution A4-size portrait-mode fax files directly use the following overrides:

$var_def GSPDF3 "-g1728x1146"

$var_def GSPDF4 "-r204x98"

Important: the 8.71 release of Ghostscript changed the defaults so that the output TIF file will contain multiple image strips.  This Ghostscript release sets a default maximum strip size of 8KB. Some fax boards cannot send these files, and some releases of CopiaFacts do not automatically convert them to faxable format.  To avoid these problems, we have added an additional Ghostscript parameter as GSPDF6. If you already used GSPDF6 to add custom parameters, you will need to increment your parameter numbers if you are using Ghostscript 8.71.  If you are using an earlier release of Ghostscript you can safely overwrite this parameter, however.  Ghostscript release 9.00 has fixed this problem by changing the default maximum strip size again, this time to 1MB, which is still insufficient to accommodate some half-tone images in a single strip.  However the GDPF6 parameter remains in place to accommodate users of the earlier release.

Consult the Ghostscript user documentation for more information on the Ghostscript command-line parameters. Ghostscript conversion errors detected by CVSINGLE are listed with other Document Conversion Errors.

Conversions done from CVSINGLE must define any required GSPDFx variables in the CopiaFacts configuration file.  Conversions done from FFEXTERN can use the configuration file, the FS file, or the USR/UJP file referenced from the FS file on its $fax_user command.

Ghostscript conversions can also be done using CVSINGLE by specifying the -G command-line option. If you wish to convert single documents with non-standard options, you can use the Ghostscript program (GSWIN32.EXE) directly. The following parameters are suggested (note that parameters are case-sensitive):





-g1728x2292 (for A4)

-g1728x2156 (for US letter)





If you have any problems converting particular PDF files, it is a good idea to try reading them with the Ghostscript program or with Ghostview (separately downloadable) and viewing any error messages that are displayed.  For more information on using Ghostscript, please refer to the extensive documentation which is installed with the program. You can also batch-convert Postscript files to TIFF/F with Ghostscript.

PDF Page Orientation with Ghostscript

Letter and A4 PDF documents to be displayed in landscape orientation may either have a width greater than their height, or they may have a normal portrait mode width and height with a 90 or 270 degree rotation specified.  Rotation affects not only the image but also the co-ordinate system, and this complicates the processing of such PDFs.  If when you view the document in a PDF viewer it appears in landscape orientation, you can specify the output parameters as landscape, for example:

$var_def GSPDF3 "-g2292x1728" ;for A4

$var_def GSPDF4 "-r196x204"

FFEXTERN will then rotate the output to portrait mode after conversion.  In addition, FFEXTERN will do automatic rotation of the document if the following conditions are satisfied:

You have used the standard portrait-mode dimensions and not overridden them for landscape as just described, and either

The dimensions of the first page are either 11 inches wide and 8.5 inches high (Letter) or 297mm wide and 210mm high (A4), without rotation, or

A rotated page is detected and the dimensions of the first page are either 11 inches high and 8.5 inches wide (letter) or 297mm high and 210mm wide (A4).

This allows landscape-format documents in these sizes to be converted without special handling (as already happens for Adobe conversions using the Copia Fax Converter print driver, and for the internal PDF converter).  This process only applies to these (approximate) document sizes.

Ghostscript does not handle correctly multi-page documents in which pages have different orientations.  The output dimensions apply to the whole document and pages whose orientation does not match the first page will be truncated.