PDF Compression

Most hosting configurations will set a limit on the size of files which can be uploaded through a website function (e.g. WordPress media library, web form submissions, etc.) This is done to prevent timeouts and unnecessarily large files from consuming your disk space. Often these files are PDF files. Rather than increasing your upload limit, we recommend first trying to compress your files.

You have a few simple ways to compress a PDF file:

Quick Compression

In Adobe Acrobat, click “File” > “Save as Other > “Reduced File Size” and choose the level of compatibility (e.g. Retain Existing). Then click “OK”.

This will allow you to save your file as a smaller file. This works well when files are large due to images. 

Often, quick method doesn’t give you the results you need, however the next method will:

Compress with Distiller

This option requires Adobe Acrobat Distiller but you will see excellent compression results.

In Adobe Acrobat, click “File” > “Export To” > choose “PostScript” (.ps file) and save the file.

Navigate to where you saved your file and choose to open it with Acrobat Distiller. This will open Distiller. This will immediately begin re-saving your file as a smaller file. Make sure that “Smallest File Size” in the Default Settings at the top of the screen. If it isn’t, you may need to change that and open your .ps (PostScript) file in Distiller again.

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