Giving back to the community
Cognidox https://www.cognidox.com/ would not exist without the help of many open source projects. Perl, Apache and Solr are just a few of the excellent open source packages that help make CogniDox a leading document
management system. So, to show our appreciation, we've released a couple of open source projects such as OfficeToPDF to help others.
You can see all of our open source projects on
OfficeToPDF - what does it do?
OfficeToPDF is a command line utility that converts Microsoft Office 2003, 2007, 2010, 2013 and 2016 documents from their native format into PDF using Office's in-built PDF export features.
Most Office to PDF converter tools are intended as single-user desktop applications. OfficeToPDF is useful (and unique) if you want to automatically create PDF files on a server-wide basis and free individual users from an extra step of using the "Save
as..." command on their Office files. These PDF files can then be stored and managed on a separate server. This can be useful if, for example, a department has a policy of only distributing PDF versions of documents to people outside the department.
There are some technical requirements that must be met before you can use it:
- .NET Framework 4
- Office 2016, 2013, 2010 or Office 2007
If you are using Office 2007, you will also need:
- Visual Studio 2010 Tools for Office Runtime [Download]
- 2007 Microsoft Office Add-in: Microsoft Save as PDF or XPS [Download]
It is distributed under the
Apache 2.0 license.
Supported File Types
The following file types can be converted:
- Word (.doc, .dot, .docx, .dotx, .docm, .dotm, .rtf, .wpd)
- Excel (.xls, .xlsx, .xlsm, .xlsb, .xlt, .xltx, .xltm, .csv)
- Powerpoint (.ppt, .pptx, .pptm, .pps, .ppsx, .ppsm, .pot, .potx, .potm)
- Visio (.vsd, .vsdx, .vsdm, .svg) [Requires >= Visio 2013 for .svg, .vsdx and .vsdm support]
- Publisher (.pub)
- Outlook (.msg, .vcf, .ics)
- Project (.mpp) [Requires Project >= 2010 for .mpp support]
- OpenOffice (.odt, .odp, .ods)
Conversion of Visio, Publisher and Project files require that the Visio, Publisher and Project applications are installed. These are not included in the Office standard package.
More information about installation and usage can be found on the Cognidox project page:
In order to use the tool, download the officetopdf.exe file and, from the command line, run officetopdf.exe with two arguments - the source Office document and the destination PDF document. e.g.
Microsoft Windows [Version 6.1.7601]
Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
C:\Users\test> officetopdf.exe somefile.docx somefile.pdf
Command line switches
The following optional switches can be used:
||create bookmarks in the PDF when they are supported by the Office application
||attempts to open the source document in read-only mode
||create high-quality PDFs optimised for print
||attempts to minimise the Office application when converting
||use a .dot, .dotx or .dotm template when converting with Word
||show document markup when creating PDFs with Word
||produce ISO 19005-1 (PDF/A) compliant PDFs
||do not exit running Office applications
||do not include properties in generated PDF
||do not include tags in generated PDF
||provide a read password to open the file with
||provide a read/write password to open the file with
||when using a template, create a new file from the template and merge the text from the document to convert into the new file
||show formulas in Excel
||shows column and row headings
||allow a limit on the number of rows to convert
||only convert the currently active worksheet in a spreadsheet
||only convert worksheet <num> in the workbook. First sheet is 1
||run Auto_Open macros in Excel files before conversion
||do not update links when opening Excel files
||skip automatic re-calculation of formulas in the workbook
||the distance (in points) from the header to the top of the page
||the distance (in points) from the footer to the bottom of the page
||perform a fast update of fields in Word before conversion
||do not clear Word's recent files list
||do not attempt conversion of a Word document if it has more than this number of
||do not update fields when creating the PDF
||when fonts are not available, a reference to the font is used in the generated PDF rather than a bitmapped version. The default is for a bitmap of the text to be used
||allows for some meta-data to be removed from the generated PDF.
<type> can be:
- basic - removes author, keywords, creator and subject
- full - removes all that basic removes and also the title
||controls how the pages layout in Acrobat Reader.
<layout> can be one of the following values:
- onecol - show pages as a single scrolling column
- single - show pages one at a time
- twocolleft - show pages in two columns, with odd-numbered pages on the left
- twocolright - show pages in two columns, with odd-numbered pages on the right
- twopageleft - show pages two at a time, with odd-numbered pages on the left
- twopageright - show pages two at a time, with odd-numbered pages on the right
||controls how the PDF will open with Acrobat Reader.
<mode> can be one of the following values:
- full - the PDF will open in fullscreen mode
- bookmarks - the PDF will open with the bookmarks visible
- thumbs - the PDF will open with the thumbnail view visible
- none - the PDF will open without the navigation bar visible
||append the generated PDF to the end of the PDF destination
||prepend the generated PDF to the start of the PDF destination
||set the owner password on the PDF. Needed to make modifications to the PDF
||set the user password on the PDF. Needed to open the PDF
||Prevent all content extraction without the owner password
||prevent annotations on the PDF without the owner password
||prevent rotation, removal or insertion of pages without the owner password
||prevent content extraction without the owner password
||prevent form entry without the owner password
||prevent full quality printing without the owner password
||prevent modification without the owner password
||prevent printing without the owner password
||print out messages as it runs
||print out the version of OfficeToPDF and exit
The following error codes are returned by OfficeToPDF. Note that multiple errors are returned as a bitmask, so bitwise operations can test for multiple errors.
0 - Success
1 - Failure
2 - Unknown Error
4 - File protected by password
8 - Invalid arguments
16 - Unable to open the source file
32 - Unsupported file format
64 - Source file not found
128 - Output directory not found
256 - The requested worksheet was not found
512 - Unable to use an empty worksheet
1024 - Unable to modify or open a protected PDF
CogniDox is a web-based, document management software tool aimed primarily at supporting high-tech product development. It enables better product lifecycle management and knowledge transfer from developers to partners, clients and customers.
We provide highly-integrated support for system engineering workflows and the product lifecycle. Plug-ins are provided for CMS products, software SCM tools, EDA tools, CRM systems, CAD tools and Help Desk applications. Our "instant Extranet" solution
enables companies to add a secure self-service customer portal onto their public web sites.
Based in Cambridge, UK since its formation in 2008, CogniDox has an impressive portfolio of blue chip users – see examples at