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On 11/04/2022 15:16, Philip Jackson wrote:
Hi Mike,

I'm using LO on UbuntuStudio 20.04 LTS and your --headless command line instruction works and produces a pdf file which passed the pdfinfo check with flying colours. I just rechecked to make sure.   So maybe your problem is distro related?

Thanks for your reply. Interesting to know it works for someone else.... I'll do a bit more checking on what's going on here.

But I don't use the --headless command very often because it breaks the links in my pdf output. So, I make use of the LO Writer gui to do file> export as>export as pdf  which gets me a workable pdf with working links (clickable table of contents etc). If I need to reassemble some pdf docs, I use pdftk utility because so many of the others break those links.

I can't use the gui at all. The target document odt is actually created by a perl web script that modifies a template odt file, then converted using LO to either doc or pdf for the end user all running in the cgi context.

IIRC simple pdf conversion loses brochure formatting when present in the document, hence use of --print-to-file.


On 11/04/2022 10:51, Mike Scott wrote:
I'm having a spot of bother trying to get a .ps or .pdf produced from a .odt using the command line.

I've revisited some code last used a few years ago, whose last step is just to use LO to do this conversion. It used to make a .ps file, but that now seems to have changed, and I get a .pdf instead - which is corrupt.

So I get for example

libreoffice --headless --print-to-file --outdir "./"  "./y.odt"
print /dhome/mike/homebrew software/service sheet production/web generator/y.odt -> /dhome/mike/homebrew software/service sheet production/web generator//y.pdf using <default_printer>

pdfinfo y.pdf
Syntax Warning: May not be a PDF file (continuing anyway)
Syntax Error (2432): Illegal character '{'
Syntax Error: Couldn't find trailer dictionary
Syntax Error: Couldn't find trailer dictionary
Syntax Error: Couldn't read xref table

The resulting pdf won't load into a browser and upsets several of the pdf tools, although gimp or xreader can read it. Fortunately, pdf2ps accepts the file, so as a workaround, I do the LO --print-to-file and then run the result through pdf2ps and then back through ps2pdf; the result of that contortion seems OK.

Looking at the GUI instead, under the tools|options|print page, if I try to set options for print to file, the tick box for pdf is set and disabled. Yet if I select print to file in the normal print dialogue, I get a valid .ps file not a pdf.

I need to run this as a print job, since '--convert-to pdf' doesn't honour the brochure setting in place in the document. Using the GUI and printing works fine, but isn't useful for automated processing.

If anyone has a way better of doing a command line conversion to a pdf while honouring in particular the 'brochure' setting, I'd be grateful.

(This is with LO under mint 20)

Mike Scott
Harlow, Essex, England

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