Who Am I?

I am a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist, an MCP, an MCSA and a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE). I am also A+ and Network+ certified. I have been working in "IT" for about 15 years now. There is never a dull moment and there is always more to learn.

Web Site: http://www.riguy.com [points to new Azure-based site]

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December 11, 2012

Print to PDF without Adobe

I am so tired of all Adobe software! Argggg.
It is bloated software and constantly has ongoing updates. It is not even an operating system and I am pretty sure it has more security and patch or enhancement updates than even Microsoft or Linux systems! Anyway, I was in need of some printing to PDF.

What is "printing to PDF"? For those who do not know: certain PDF related software is used to literally add a printer icon to your workstation. This software is installed and an icon is set up in your Printers folder so that you can "print" to it. Except it has nothing to do with printing. It just outputs the file to a .PDF. You pick where to save it. Pretty cool.

I recently ran into a situation where I needed to print to PDF. The catch? The need was on a server. I did not realize that you cannot use Acrobat Reader in order to print to PDF on a Windows Server 2008 (R2) system. Adobe Forum elders make it clear this has something to do with Licensing terms. As this was a test database server, I was not going to put a full licensed version of Adobe on this server. Only absolutely required software should go on a server, even a test one. After all, servers are not toys. So, I had to go somewhere else, away from the Adobe machine.

I remembered from several years ago that I used a very useful freeware piece called BullZip software for this very task, albeit on a standard PC. So I typed in bullzip.com to research and sure enough, it is still there. There is other software offered as well. I cannot vouch for the other programs, but BullZip PDF Printer is top notch. Not only is it still there, but I installed it on the server, tested it, and it works great. The download site let me know this freeware also works on Windows 8 and Server 2012. It appears they are forward thinking. This tells me they will be around for a long time!

Use and Support BullZip!

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