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PDF Output Customizations
PDF Output Customizations

PDF Output Customizations

Learn about methods to customize your PDF output.
The DITA Open Toolkit is an open source publishing tool that transforms DITA content into various output formats. Out of the box, the DITA-OT uses the PDF2 plugin to tranform DITA content to PDF. In easyDITA, the DITA-OT is integerated into our Publishing Interface, so you can easily publish and convert your DITA content to PDF.
The PDF2 plugin contains basic PDF output formatting. If your PDF output requires custom styling such as a company logo, a specific header and footer, or specific spacing, then you’ll need to explore PDF output customizations.
This tutorial outlines three methods of customizing your PDF output so you can evalute your PDF customization needs and determine the best method to use:

PDF Plugin Generator Customizations

You can use a customization plugin to extend the default PDF2 transformation. You’ll need to build the plugin and then upload it into easyDITA. To create a plugin, you can use the PDF Plugin Generator.
The PDF Plugin Generator is the easiest way to customize your PDF output. It’s a free tool that enables you to preview and select your customizations, and then it generates the required plugin files for you. We recommend using this method to customize your PDF output if your required customizations are simple and available in the generator.
Here’s an example of some styling customizations you can configure using the PDF Plugin Generator:

easyDITA PDF Customizations

You can build your own customization plugin to extend the PDF2 transformation. Our documentation shows you how to build a plugin with easyDITA PDF customizations. Building your own plugin with our PDF customizations requires an understanding of XSLT and CSS because you’ll need to add and modify code in the plugin files.
We recommend using this method only if the PDF customizations you require are simple, and only after using the PDF Plugin Generator first to generate the plugin skeleton with your customizations. Then, you’ll add easyDITA PDF customizations into the plugin. That way, you can get the customizations available in the PDF Plugin Generator and have the plugin files generated for you. So you’ll only need to add additional code to the plugin for our customizations (which are not available in the PDF Plugin Generator).
Here’s an example of our PDF output, which was created using a plugin built with our PDF customizations:

Professional Services

If your PDF output is highly stylized or you have localized content, we recommend that you use professional services to develop your PDF output customizations. Get in contact with us so we can place you with the right solution based on your content and PDF output requirements.