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Acrobat X Essential Training

Using the built-in Actions for automation


From:

Acrobat X Essential Training

with Anne-Marie Concepción

Video: Using the built-in Actions for automation

There is a great feature in Adobe Acrobat X that lets you to string together various commands from menus and panels, letting you automate and standardize really tedious kinds of things that you do every day. You'll find those Actions in the Tools panel. Look for Action Wizard. You'll see that there are seven default Actions, but you can create your own Actions, and you can save those Actions and share them with others in your workgroup. You could sell them on eBay or Craigslist-- all sorts of fun stuff. Now, before we get into this any further, I want to make sure that you understand this has nothing really to do with the other kind of actions that I talked about in various videos which add interactivity to content on the page.
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  1. 1m 53s
    1. Welcome
      1m 33s
    2. Using the exercise files
      20s
  2. 55m 0s
    1. Opening documents and moving them around
      6m 3s
    2. Working with the toolbars
      5m 59s
    3. Working with the panels
      3m 43s
    4. Customizing the toolbar with Quick Tools
      4m 40s
    5. Using the Pages panel to navigate
      3m 57s
    6. Selecting and copying text and graphics
      3m 24s
    7. Rotating pages
      4m 49s
    8. Changing the viewing options
      6m 12s
    9. Reviewing preferences
      7m 6s
    10. Finding words and phrases
      2m 35s
    11. Searching a PDF and working with the Search panel
      4m 21s
    12. Sharing PDFs by email and with Adobe SendNow
      2m 11s
  3. 33m 18s
    1. Creating PDFs from Microsoft Office applications
      9m 46s
    2. Creating PDFs from Creative Suite applications
      8m 57s
    3. Creating PDFs from within Acrobat Pro
      4m 27s
    4. Creating PDFs from a web site
      8m 22s
    5. Creating PDFs from the clipboard
      1m 46s
  4. 30m 58s
    1. Editing text
      8m 51s
    2. Adding text
      4m 40s
    3. Editing images and graphics
      3m 39s
    4. Changing the page number display
      3m 48s
    5. Digitally signing PDFs
      6m 26s
    6. Cropping pages and documents
      3m 34s
  5. 1h 6m
    1. Adding watermarks
      6m 17s
    2. Adding page backgrounds
      5m 41s
    3. Adding page numbers
      5m 56s
    4. Adding headers and footers
      9m 7s
    5. Adding bookmarks
      11m 30s
    6. Attaching files to a PDF
      7m 11s
    7. Adding metadata
      3m 45s
    8. Optimizing a PDF for file size and compatibility
      10m 12s
    9. Creating initial view settings
      7m 16s
  6. 37m 59s
    1. Adding hyperlinks to URLs
      7m 33s
    2. Creating links with the Link tool
      6m 9s
    3. Working with interactive actions
      6m 56s
    4. Creating and adding buttons
      6m 28s
    5. Adding video, sound, and SWF files
      7m 29s
    6. Adding page transitions
      3m 24s
  7. 27m 12s
    1. Extracting pages
      3m 53s
    2. Splitting a PDF into multiple files
      4m 13s
    3. Inserting pages from files and other sources
      5m 42s
    4. Moving, copying, and replacing pages
      8m 17s
    5. Combining PDFs
      5m 7s
  8. 27m 9s
    1. Exporting text
      8m 33s
    2. Exporting images
      6m 33s
    3. Exporting PDFs to Microsoft Word
      7m 21s
    4. Exporting PDFs to Microsoft Excel
      4m 42s
  9. 26m 27s
    1. Working with portfolios
      6m 57s
    2. Creating portfolios
      6m 26s
    3. Customizing portfolios
      7m 23s
    4. Optimizing backward compatibility
      5m 41s
  10. 32m 9s
    1. Creating an interactive form
      6m 42s
    2. Working with form fields
      6m 41s
    3. Editing field properties
      5m 34s
    4. Distributing and collecting forms
      9m 43s
    5. Enabling Reader to save form data
      3m 29s
  11. 34m 26s
    1. Adding sticky notes and other annotations
      9m 2s
    2. Using the drawing markup tools
      6m 10s
    3. Viewing, filtering, and replying to comments
      5m 24s
    4. Printing, summarizing, and exporting comments
      6m 35s
    5. Exporting comments to Word for Windows
      3m 28s
    6. Enabling extended commenting in Acrobat Reader
      3m 47s
  12. 25m 29s
    1. Understanding the different review processes
      2m 7s
    2. Using the email review process
      4m 33s
    3. Conducting a shared review with Acrobat.com
      6m 54s
    4. Using the Review Tracker
      4m 32s
    5. Using the Collaborate Live review process
      7m 23s
  13. 31m 2s
    1. Reviewing the print production tools
      5m 18s
    2. Previewing color separations
      3m 51s
    3. Using the Object Inspector to learn details
      3m 13s
    4. Working with the Preflight dialog box
      5m 34s
    5. Fixing hairlines
      3m 57s
    6. Converting colors
      2m 27s
    7. Saving as a standards-compliant PDF
      6m 42s
  14. 19m 16s
    1. Scanning a paper document to PDF
      4m 44s
    2. Setting up optimization options
      6m 48s
    3. Recognizing text in a scanned PDF
      4m 43s
    4. Reviewing and correcting OCR suspects
      3m 1s
  15. 17m 18s
    1. Using the built-in Actions for automation
      5m 32s
    2. Editing Actions
      4m 7s
    3. Creating new Actions
      4m 51s
    4. Sharing Actions with others
      2m 48s
  16. 35m 27s
    1. Choosing a security method
      5m 27s
    2. Password-protecting a PDF
      7m 28s
    3. Securing a PDF with a certificate
      5m 6s
    4. Creating a digital id
      5m 43s
    5. Removing sensitive content with the Redaction feature
      6m 52s
    6. Revealing and clearing hidden information
      4m 51s
  17. 33m 45s
    1. Opening and navigating PDFs in Reader
      7m 30s
    2. Adding comments
      3m 14s
    3. Viewing extended features
      6m 53s
    4. Digitally signing a PDF
      6m 15s
    5. Sharing PDFs
      2m 29s
    6. Using Acrobat.com
      7m 24s
  18. 3m 54s
    1. Final thoughts
      3m 54s

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Acrobat X Essential Training
8h 59m Beginner Nov 19, 2010

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In Acrobat X Essential Training, author Anne-Marie Concepción demonstrates how to create, modify, review, and share PDFs in Adobe Acrobat X Standard or Pro. Starting with a tour of the new panels-based interface, the course covers the basics of the software, such as creating and customizing PDFs, searching, editing text and graphics, and extracting PDF content to use in other programs. Also included are tutorials on creating forms, inserting interactivity and rich media, using the prepress tools, combining PDFs with other types of files to create customized portfolios, and ensuring document security. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Creating PDFs from web pages, Office files, and Creative Suite files
  • Signing PDFs with a digital signature
  • Creating interactive forms
  • Annotating PDFs with comments
  • Collaborating with others using PDF reviews
  • Making scanned documents searchable with OCR
  • Preparing documents for print with print production tools
  • Automating routine tasks with Actions
  • Securing PDFs with encryption and password-protection
  • Removing sensitive content with the Redaction feature
  • Sharing PDFs
  • Using the new features in Reader X and Acrobat.com
Subjects:
Business PDF
Software:
Acrobat
Author:
Anne-Marie Concepción

Using the built-in Actions for automation

There is a great feature in Adobe Acrobat X that lets you to string together various commands from menus and panels, letting you automate and standardize really tedious kinds of things that you do every day. You'll find those Actions in the Tools panel. Look for Action Wizard. You'll see that there are seven default Actions, but you can create your own Actions, and you can save those Actions and share them with others in your workgroup. You could sell them on eBay or Craigslist-- all sorts of fun stuff. Now, before we get into this any further, I want to make sure that you understand this has nothing really to do with the other kind of actions that I talked about in various videos which add interactivity to content on the page.

For example, if I open up the Page Thumbnail panel and right-click and choose Page Properties, we've talked about these kind of actions for buttons and for bookmarks and things like that. This adds interactivity to content on the actual page in the PDF. These Actions are actually for you to do production work. So that doesn't add anything to the content. I don't know why Adobe decided to call these Actions as well. C'est la vie. Let's take a look at each of these Actions, and see what it is they do.

So you just need to click them once. I am going to click this one, and you'll always get this little descriptive dialog box. If you get tired of looking at it, you can turn on Don't show again for this Action. An Action always includes a description, written by whoever created the Action, and three sections: One is what kind of file do you start with? The second one is what are the things that it's going to do to that file or files? And third, what should it do when it's done? Should it save the file? Should it save it with a new name? Should it prompt you for a save location? So these three things are part of every Action.

Let's look at Archive Paper Documents. The description tells us that it lets us automate taking paper documents, converting them to digital format, and then saving them in an Archive PDF format so that they can't be changed, which is a wonderful process, but could be a very tedious process if you are trying to convert all your paper stuff to digital PDFs. That's why the Action is so useful. Prepare for Distribution is something that some people do quite a bit in Adobe Acrobat. They take a document and they need to distribute it to a bunch of different people, and here are series of Actions that they may need to take to every single document before they distribute it.

They want to add a header and footer. They want to add a watermark. They want to add bookmarks. They want to remove hidden information like JavaScripts and buttons before it gets distributed publicly. This will help anybody in the office go through these steps exactly every time before a PDF gets distributed. Get a Scan Doc from an MFP, which I believe is a Multi Function Printer. This basically helps you automate doing OCR and adding descriptions and tags to documents as you scan them in.

Create Accessible PDFs, if part of your job is making sure that your PDF documents are accessible to people with visual disabilities, this Action is just for you. It goes through all of the many steps that are required to make a PDF accessible. Prepare for Review, if you're about to send your PDF out to a client or a group of people for their comments, this helps prepare a PDF for review. And Publish Sensitive Documents such as documents that contain confidential information, you need to go through and redact them and remove hidden information.

This steps you through all the different things that you need to do to strip a document of that sensitive information before you distribute it. So let's actually run one of these Actions. Like let's run the Prepare for Web Publishing on our current catalog page here. So we'll just say, Next, and first it's going to remove hidden information. You'll see a little Progress bar down here that tells you which step of the tasks it's on. So right now, we're on Remove Hidden Information.

In the case of this step, we have a dialog box where we can customize exactly which hidden information is deleted. So not every step gives you a dialog box, but this one does. So if I wanted to, I could say, I don't want you to remove the file attachments. If there's any file attachments here, leave them. And I'll click OK. Then the next one is Reduce File Size. Again, I am given the option to choose a compatibility. I'll just retain existing. Then it goes through Preflight, but notice it didn't give me the Preflight dialog box.

So the type of preflight that it went through was already part of the Action. Now, it's asking me where to save the document. I'll say, let's just save it in the same folder. I'll call it "forweb," and click Save, and it's done. Here is the document right here. It's ready for web publishing. So these default Actions, they are really useful. You may want to edit them to make them fit your particular workflow, or you may want to create your own because you have other things that you do all the time that aren't covered by these Actions.

In any of those cases--using the existing ones, editing the existing ones, or creating new ones--Acrobat can take care of you. So I think you can see that having some default Actions and also the ability to create your own Actions can save you a ton of time when you are working with Adobe Acrobat.

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