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Author image Phil M. Perry
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NAME

PDF::Builder - Facilitates the creation and modification of PDF files

SYNOPSIS

    use PDF::Builder;

    # Create a blank PDF file
    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();

    # Open an existing PDF file
    $pdf = PDF::Builder->open('some.pdf');

    # Add a blank page
    $page = $pdf->page();

    # Retrieve an existing page
    $page = $pdf->open_page($page_number);

    # Set the page size
    $page->size('Letter');  # or mediabox('Letter')

    # Add a built-in font to the PDF
    $font = $pdf->font('Helvetica-Bold'); # or corefont('Helvetica-Bold')

    # Add an external TrueType (TTF) font to the PDF
    $font = $pdf->font('/path/to/font.ttf');  # or ttfont() in this case

    # Add some text to the page
    $text = $page->text();
    $text->font($font, 20);
    $text->position(200, 700);  # or translate()
    $text->text('Hello World!');

    # Save the PDF
    $pdf->saveas('/path/to/new.pdf');

SOME SPECIAL NOTES

See the file README.md (in downloadable package and on CPAN) for a summary of prerequisites and tools needed to install PDF::Builder, both mandatory and optional.

SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT KIT

There are four levels of involvement with PDF::Builder. Depending on what you want to do, different kinds of installs are recommended. See "Software Development Kit" in PDF::Builder::Docs for suggestions.

OPTIONAL LIBRARIES

PDF::Builder can make use of some optional libraries, which are not required for a successful installation, but improve speed and capabilities. See "Optional Libraries" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information.

STRINGS (CHARACTER TEXT)

There are some things you should know about character encoding (for text), before you dive in to coding. Please go to "Strings (Character Text)" in PDF::Builder::Docs and have a read.

RENDERING ORDER

Invoking "text" and "graphics" methods can lead to unexpected results (a different ordering of output than intended). See "Rendering Order" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information.

PDF VERSIONS SUPPORTED

PDF::Builder is mostly PDF 1.4-compliant, but there are complications you should be aware of. Please read "PDF Versions Supported" in PDF::Builder::Docs for details.

SUPPORTED PERL VERSIONS (BACKWARDS COMPATIBILITY GOALS)

PDF::Builder intends to support all major Perl versions that were released in the past six years, plus one, in order to continue working for the life of most long-term-stable (LTS) server distributions. See the https://www.cpan.org/src/ table First release in each branch of Perl x.xxxx0 "Major" release dates.

For example, a version of PDF::Builder released on 2018-06-05 would support the last major version of Perl released on or after 2012-06-05 (5.18), and then one before that, which would be 5.16. Alternatively, the last major version of Perl released before 2012-06-05 is 5.16.

The intent is to avoid expending unnecessary effort in supporting very old (obsolete) versions of Perl.

Anticipated Support Cutoff Dates

  • 5.24 current minimum supported version, until next PDF::Builder release after 30 May, 2023

  • 5.26 future minimum supported version, until next PDF::Builder release after 23 June, 2024

  • 5.28 future minimum supported version, until next PDF::Builder release after 22 May, 2025

  • 5.30 future minimum supported version, until next PDF::Builder release after 20 June, 2026

  • 5.32 future minimum supported version, until next PDF::Builder release after 20 May, 2027

  • 5.34 future minimum supported version, until next PDF::Builder release after 28 May, 2028

If you need to use this module on a server with an extremely out-of-date version of Perl, consider using either plenv or Perlbrew to run a newer version of Perl without needing admin privileges.

On the other hand, any feature in PDF::Builder should continue to work unchanged for the life of most long-term-stable (LTS) server distributions. Their lifetime is usually about six (6) years. Note that this does not constitute a statement of warranty, but that we intend to try to keep any particular release of PDF::Builder working for a period of years. Of course, it helps if you periodically update your Perl installation to something released in the recent past.

KNOWN ISSUES

This module does not work with perl's -l command-line switch.

There is a file INFO/KNOWN_INCOMP which lists known incompatibilities with PDF::API2, in case you're thinking of porting over something from that world, or have experience there and want to try PDF::Builder. There is also a file INFO/DEPRECATED, which lists things which are planned to be removed at some point.

HISTORY

The history of PDF::Builder is a complex and exciting saga... OK, it may be mildly interesting. Have a look at "History" in PDF::Builder::Docs section.

AUTHOR

PDF::API2 was originally written by Alfred Reibenschuh. See the HISTORY section for more information.

It was maintained by Steve Simms, who is still contributing new code to it (which often ends up in PDF::Builder).

PDF::Builder is currently being maintained by Phil M. Perry.

SUPPORT

The full source is on https://github.com/PhilterPaper/Perl-PDF-Builder.

The release distribution is on CPAN: https://metacpan.org/pod/PDF::Builder.

Bug reports are on https://github.com/PhilterPaper/Perl-PDF-Builder/issues?q=is%3Aissue+sort%3Aupdated-desc (with "bug" label), feature requests have an "enhancement" label, and general discussions (architecture, roadmap, etc.) have a "general discussion" label.

Do not under any circumstances open a PR (Pull Request) to report a bug. It is a waste of both your and our time and effort. Open a regular ticket (issue), and attach a Perl (.pl) program illustrating the problem, if possible. If you believe that you have a program patch, and offer to share it as a PR, we may give the go-ahead. Unsolicited PRs may be closed without further action.

LICENSE

This software is Copyright (c) 2017-2022 by Phil M. Perry.

This is free software, licensed under:

The GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) Version 2.1, February 1999

  (The master copy of this license lives on the GNU website.)
  (A copy is provided in the INFO/LICENSE file for your convenience.)

This section of Builder.pm is intended only as a very brief summary of the license; please consider INFO/LICENSE to be the controlling version, if there is any conflict or ambiguity between the two.

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU Lesser General Public License, as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 2.1 of the License, or (at your option) any later version of this license.

NOTE: there are several files in this distribution which were incorporated from outside sources and carry different licenses. If a file states that it is under a license different than LGPL 2.1, that license and its terms will apply to that file, and not LGPL 2.1.

This library is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU Lesser General Public License for more details.

GENERAL PURPOSE METHODS

$pdf = PDF::Builder->new(%opts)

Creates a new PDF object.

Options

file

If you will be saving it as a file and already know the filename, you can give the 'file' option to minimize possible memory requirements later on (the file is opened immediately for writing, rather than waiting until the save). The file may also be a filehandle.

compress

The 'compress' option can be given to specify stream compression: default is 'flate', 'none' (or 0) is no compression. No other compression methods are currently supported.

outver

The 'outver' option defaults to 1.4 as the output PDF version and the highest allowed feature version (attempts to use anything higher will give a warning). If an existing PDF with a higher version is read in, outver will be increased to that version, with a warning.

msgver

The 'msgver' option value of 1 (default) gives a warning message if the 'outver' PDF level has to be bumped up due to either a higher PDF level file being read in, or a higher level feature was requested. A value of 0 suppresses the warning message.

diaglevel

The 'diaglevel' option can be given to specify the level of diagnostics given by IntegrityCheck(). The default is level 2 (errors and warnings). See "IntegrityCheck" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information.

Example:

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    ...
    print $pdf->to_string();

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new(compress => 'none');
    # equivalent to $pdf->{'forcecompress'} = 'none'; (or older, 0)

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    ...
    $pdf->saveas('our/new.pdf');

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new(file => 'our/new.pdf');
    ...
    $pdf->save();
$pdf->default_page_size($size); # Set
@rectangle = $pdf->default_page_size() # Get

Set the default physical size for pages in the PDF. If called without arguments, return the coordinates of the rectangle describing the default physical page size.

This is essentially an alternate method of defining the mediabox() call, and added for compatibility with PDF::API2.

See "Page Sizes" in PDF::Builder::Page for possible values.

$pdf->default_page_boundaries(%boundaries); # Set
%boundaries = $pdf->default_page_boundaries(); # Get

Set default prepress page boundaries for pages in the PDF. If called without arguments, returns the coordinates of the rectangles describing each of the supported page boundaries.

See the equivalent page_boundaries method in PDF::Builder::Page for details.

INPUT/OUTPUT METHODS

$pdf = PDF::Builder->open($pdf_file, %opts)

Opens an existing PDF file. See new() for options.

Example:

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->open('our/old.pdf');
    ...
    $pdf->saveas('our/new.pdf');

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->open('our/to/be/updated.pdf');
    ...
    $pdf->update();
$pdf = PDF::Builder->from_string($pdf_string, %opts)

Opens a PDF contained in a string. See new() for other options.

diags => 1

Display warnings when non-conforming PDF structure is found, and fix up where possible. See PDF::Builder::Basic::PDF::File for more information.

Example:

    # Read a PDF into a string, for the purpose of demonstration
    open $fh, 'our/old.pdf' or die $@;
    undef $/;  # Read the whole file at once
    $pdf_string = <$fh>;

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->from_string($pdf_string);
    ...
    $pdf->saveas('our/new.pdf');

Alternate name: open_scalar

from_string was formerly known as open_scalar (and even before that, as openScalar), and this older name is still valid as an alternative to from_string. It is possible that open_scalar will be deprecated and then removed some time in the future, so it may be advisable to use from_string in new work.

$string = $pdf->to_string()

Return the document as a string and remove the object structure from memory.

Caution: Although the object $pdf will still exist, it is no longer usable for any purpose after invoking this method! You will receive error messages about "can't call method new_obj on an undefined value".

Example:

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    ...
    print $pdf->to_string();

Alternate name: stringify

to_string was formerly known as stringify, and this older name is still valid as an alternative to to_string. It is possible that stringify will be deprecated and then removed some time in the future, so it may be advisable to use to_string in new work.

$pdf->finishobjects(@objects)

Force objects to be written to file if possible.

Example:

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new(file => 'our/new.pdf');
    ...
    $pdf->finishobjects($page, $gfx, $txt);
    ...
    $pdf->save();

Note: this method is now considered obsolete, and may be deprecated. It allows for objects to be written to disk in advance of finally saving and closing the file. Otherwise, it's no different than just calling save() when all changes have been made. There's no memory advantage since ship_out doesn't remove objects from memory.

$pdf->update()

Saves a previously opened document.

Example:

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->open('our/to/be/updated.pdf');
    ...
    $pdf->update();

Note: it is considered better to simply save() the file, rather than calling update(). They end up doing the same thing, anyway. This method may be deprecated in the future.

$pdf->saveas($file)

Save the document to $file and remove the object structure from memory.

Caution: Although the object $pdf will still exist, it is no longer usable for any purpose after invoking this method! You will receive error messages about "can't call method new_obj on an undefined value".

Example:

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    ...
    $pdf->saveas('our/new.pdf');
$pdf->save()
$pdf->save(filename)

Save the document to an already-defined file (or filename) and remove the object structure from memory. Optionally, a new filename may be given.

Caution: Although the object $pdf will still exist, it is no longer usable for any purpose after invoking this method! You will receive error messages about "can't call method new_obj on an undefined value".

Example:

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new(file => 'file_to_output');
    ...
    $pdf->save();

Note: now that save() can take a filename as an argument, it effectively is interchangeable with saveas(). This is strictly for compatibility with recent changes to PDF::API2. Unlike PDF::API2, we are not deprecating the saveas() method, because in user interfaces, "save" normally means that the current filename is known and is to be used, while "saveas" normally means that (whether or not there is a current filename) a new filename is to be used.

$pdf->close();

Close an open file (if relevant) and remove the object structure from memory.

PDF::API2 contains circular references, so this call is necessary in long-running processes to keep from running out of memory.

This will be called automatically when you save or stringify a PDF. You should only need to call it explicitly if you are reading PDF files and not writing them.

Alternate names: release and end

$pdf->end()

Remove the object structure from memory. PDF::Builder contains circular references, so this call is necessary in long-running processes to keep from running out of memory.

This will be called automatically when you save or to_string a PDF. You should only need to call it explicitly if you are reading PDF files and not writing them.

This (and release) are older and now deprecated names formerly used in PDF::API2 and PDF::Builder. You should try to avoid having to explicitly call them.

METADATA METHODS

$title = $pdf->title();
$pdf = $pdf->title($title);

Get/set/clear the document's title.

$author = $pdf->author();
$pdf = $pdf->author($author);

Get/set/clear the name of the person who created the document.

$subject = $pdf->subject();
$pdf = $pdf->subject($subject);

Get/set/clear the subject of the document.

$keywords = $pdf->keywords();
$pdf = $pdf->keywords($keywords);

Get/set/clear a space-separated string of keywords associated with the document.

$creator = $pdf->creator();
$pdf = $pdf->creator($creator);

Get/set/clear the name of the product that created the document prior to its conversion to PDF.

$producer = $pdf->producer();
$pdf = $pdf->producer($producer);

Get/set/clear the name of the product that converted the original document to PDF.

PDF::Builder fills in this field when creating a PDF.

$date = $pdf->created();
$pdf = $pdf->created($date);

Get/set/clear the document's creation date.

The date format is D:YYYYMMDDHHmmSSOHH'mm, where D: is a static prefix identifying the string as a PDF date. The date may be truncated at any point after the year. O is one of +, -, or Z, with the following HH'mm representing an offset from UTC.

When setting the date, D: will be prepended automatically if omitted.

$date = $pdf->modified();
$pdf = $pdf->modified($date);

Get/set/clear the document's modification date. The date format is as described in created above.

%info = $pdf->info_metadata(); # Get all keys and values
$value = $pdf->info_metadata($key); # Get the value of one key
$pdf = $pdf->info_metadata($key, $value); # Set the value of one key

Get/set/clear a key in the document's information dictionary. The standard keys (title, author, etc.) have their own accessors, so this is primarily intended for interacting with custom metadata.

Pass undef as the value in order to remove the key from the dictionary.

%infohash = $pdf->info()
%infohash = $pdf->info(%infohash)

Gets/sets the info structure of the document.

See "info Example" in PDF::Builder::Docs section for an example of the use of this method.

Note: this method is still available, for compatibility purposes. It is better to use individual accessors or info_metadata instead.

@metadata_attributes = $pdf->infoMetaAttributes()
@metadata_attributes = $pdf->infoMetaAttributes(@metadata_attributes)

Gets/sets the supported info-structure tags.

Example:

    @attributes = $pdf->infoMetaAttributes;
    print "Supported Attributes: @attr\n";

    @attributes = $pdf->infoMetaAttributes('CustomField1');
    print "Supported Attributes: @attributes\n";

Note: this method is still available for compatibility purposes, but the use of info_metadata instead is encouraged.

$xml = $pdf->xml_metadata();
$pdf = $pdf->xml_metadata($xml);

Gets/sets the document's XML metadata stream.

$xml = $pdf->xmpMetadata() # Get
$xml = $pdf->xmpMetadata($xml) # Set (also returns $xml value)

Gets/sets the XMP XML data stream.

See "XMP XML example" in PDF::Builder::Docs section for an example of the use of this method.

This method is considered obsolete. Use xml_metadata instead.

$val = $pdf->default($parameter)
$pdf->default($parameter, $value)

Gets/sets the default value for a behavior of PDF::Builder.

Supported Parameters:

nounrotate

prohibits Builder from rotating imported/opened page to re-create a default pdf-context.

pageencaps

enables Builder's adding save/restore commands upon importing/opening pages to preserve graphics-state for modification.

copyannots

enables importing of annotations (*EXPERIMENTAL*).

CAUTION: Perl::Critic (tools/1_pc.pl) has started flagging the name "default" as a reserved keyword in higher Perl versions. Use with caution, and be aware that this name may have to be changed in the future.

$version = $pdf->version() # Get
$version = $pdf->version($version) # Set (also returns newly set version)

Gets/sets the PDF version (e.g., 1.5). For compatibility with earlier releases, if no decimal point is given, assume "1." precedes the number given.

A warning message is given if you attempt to decrease the PDF version, as you might have already read in a higher level file, or used a higher level feature.

See PDF::Builder::Basic::PDF::File for additional information on the version method.

$bool = $pdf->is_encrypted()

Checks if the previously opened PDF is encrypted.

Alternate name: isEncrypted

This is the older name; it is kept for compatibility with PDF::API2.

INTERACTIVE FEATURE METHODS

$otls = $pdf->outline()

Creates (if needed) and returns the document's 'outline' tree, which is also known as its 'bookmarks' or the 'table of contents', depending on the PDF reader being used.

To examine or modify the outline tree, see PDF::Builder::Outlines.

Alternate name: outlines

This is the older name; it is kept for compatibility.

$pdf = $pdf->open_action($page, $location, @args);

Set the destination in the PDF that should be displayed when the document is opened.

$page may be either a page number or a page object. The other parameters are as described in PDF::Builder::NamedDestination.

This has been split out from preferences() for compatibility with PDF::API2. It also can both set (assign) and get (query) the settings used.

$layout = $pdf->page_layout();
$pdf = $pdf->page_layout($layout);

Gets/sets the page layout that should be used when the PDF is opened.

$layout is one of the following:

single_page (or undef)

Display one page at a time.

one_column

Display the pages in one column (a.k.a. continuous).

two_column_left

Display the pages in two columns, with odd-numbered pages on the left.

two_column_right

Display the pages in two columns, with odd-numbered pages on the right.

two_page_left

Display two pages at a time, with odd-numbered pages on the left.

two_page_right

Display two pages at a time, with odd-numbered pages on the right.

This has been split out from preferences() for compatibility with PDF::API2. It also can both set (assign) and get (query) the settings used.

$mode = $pdf->page_mode(); # Get
$pdf = $pdf->page_mode($mode); # Set

Gets/sets the page mode, which describes how the PDF should be displayed when opened.

$mode is one of the following:

none (or undef)

Neither outlines nor thumbnails should be displayed.

outlines

Show the document outline.

thumbnails

Show the page thumbnails.

full_screen

Open in full-screen mode, with no menu bar, window controls, or any other window visible.

optional_content

Show the optional content group panel.

attachments

Show the attachments panel.

This has been split out from preferences() for compatibility with PDF::API2. It also can both set (assign) and get (query) the settings used.

%preferences = $pdf->viewer_preferences(); # Get
$pdf = $pdf->viewer_preferences(%preferences); # Set

Gets/sets PDF viewer preferences, as described in PDF::Builder::ViewerPreferences.

This has been split out from preferences() for compatibility with PDF::API2. It also can both set (assign) and get (query) the settings used.

$pdf->preferences(%opts)

Controls viewing preferences for the PDF, including the Page Mode, Page Layout, Viewer, and Initial Page Options. See "Preferences - set user display preferences" in PDF::Builder::Docs for details on all these option groups, and "Page Fit Options" in PDF::Builder::Docs for page positioning.

Note: the various preferences have been split out into their own methods. It is preferred that you use these specific methods.

PAGE METHODS

$page = $pdf->page()
$page = $pdf->page($page_number)

Returns a new page object. By default, the page is added to the end of the document. If you give an existing page number, the new page will be inserted in that position, pushing existing pages back by 1 (e.g., page(5) would insert an empty page 5, with the old page 5 now page 6, etc.

If $page_number is -1, the new page is inserted as the second-to-last page; if $page_number is 0, the new page is inserted as the last page.

Example:

    $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();

    # Add a page.  This becomes page 1.
    $page = $pdf->page();

    # Add a new first page.  $page becomes page 2.
    $another_page = $pdf->page(1);
$page = $pdf->open_page($page_number)

Returns the PDF::Builder::Page object of page $page_number. This is similar to $page = $pdf->page(), except that $page is not a new, empty page; but contains the contents of that existing page.

If $page_number is 0 or -1, it will return the last page in the document.

Example:

    $pdf  = PDF::Builder->open('our/99page.pdf');
    $page = $pdf->open_page(1);   # returns the first page
    $page = $pdf->open_page(99);  # returns the last page
    $page = $pdf->open_page(-1);  # returns the last page
    $page = $pdf->open_page(999); # returns undef

Alternate name: openpage

This is the older name; it is kept for compatibility until after June 2023 (deprecated, as previously announced).

$page = $pdf->import_page($source_pdf)
$page = $pdf->import_page($source_pdf, $source_page_number)
$page = $pdf->import_page($source_pdf, $source_page_number, $target_page_number)
$page = $pdf->import_page($source_pdf, $source_page_number, $target_page_object)

Imports a page from $source_pdf and adds it to the specified position in $pdf.

If the $source_page_number is omitted, 0, or -1; the last page of the source is imported. If the $target_page_number is omitted, 0, or -1; the imported page will be placed as the new last page of the target ($pdf). Otherwise, as with the page() method, the page will be inserted before an existing page of that number.

Note: If you pass a page object instead of a page number for $target_page_number, the contents of the page will be merged into the existing page.

Example:

    my $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    my $source = PDF::Builder->open('source.pdf');

    # Add page 2 from the old PDF as page 1 of the new PDF
    my $page = $pdf->import_page($source, 2);

    $pdf->saveas('sample.pdf');

Note: You can only import a page from an existing PDF file.

$xoform = $pdf->embed_page($source_pdf, $source_page_number)

Returns a Form XObject created by extracting the specified page from $source_pdf.

This is useful if you want to transpose the imported page somewhat differently onto a page (e.g. two-up, four-up, etc.).

If $source_page_number is 0 or -1, it will return the last page in the document.

Example:

    my $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    my $source = PDF::Builder->open('source.pdf');
    my $page = $pdf->page();

    # Import Page 2 from the source PDF
    my $object = $pdf->embed_page($source, 2);

    # Add it to the new PDF's first page at 1/2 scale
    my ($x, $y) = (0, 0);
    $page->object($xo, $x, $y, 0.5);

    $pdf->save('sample.pdf');

Note: You can only import a page from an existing PDF file.

Alternate name: importPageIntoForm

This is the older name; it is kept for compatibility.

$count = $pdf->page_count()

Returns the number of pages in the document.

Alternate name: pages

This is the old name; it is kept for compatibility.

$pdf->page_labels($page_number, $opts)

Sets page label numbering format, for the Reader's page-selection slider thumb (not the outline/bookmarks). At this time, there is no method to automatically synchronize a page's label with the outline/bookmarks, or to somewhere on the printed page.

Note that many PDF Readers ignore these settings, and (at most) simply give you the physical page number 1, 2, 3,... instead of the page label specified here.

    # Generate a 30-page PDF
    my $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    $pdf->page() for 1..30;

    # Number pages i to v, 1 to 20, and A-1 to A-5, respectively
    $pdf->page_labels(1, 'style' => 'roman');
    $pdf->page_labels(6, 'style' => 'decimal');
    $pdf->page_labels(26, 'style' => 'decimal', 'prefix' => 'A-');

    $pdf->save('sample.pdf');

Supported Options:

style

Roman (I,II,III,...), roman (i,ii,iii,...), decimal (1,2,3,...), Alpha (A,B,C,...), alpha (a,b,c,...), or nocounter. This is the styling of the counter part of the label (unless nocounter, in which case there is no counter output).

start

(Re)start numbering the counter at given page number (this is a decimal integer, not the styled counter). By default it starts at 1, and resets to 1 at each call to page_labels()! You need to explicitly give start if you want to continue counting at the current page number when you call page_labels(), whether or not you are changing the format.

Also note that the counter starts at physical page 1, while the page $index number in the page_labels() call (as well as the PDF PageLabels dictionary) starts at logical page (index) 0.

prefix

Text prefix for numbering, such as an Appendix letter B-. If style is nocounter, just this text is used, otherwise a styled counter will be appended. If style is omitted, remember that it will default to a decimal number, which will be appended to the prefix.

According to the Adobe/ISO PDF specification, a prefix of 'Content' has a special meaning, in that any /S counter is ignored and only that text is used. However, this appears to be ignored (use a style of nocounter to suppress the counter).

Example:

    # Start with lowercase Roman Numerals at the 1st page, starting with i (1)
    $pdf->page_labels(0, 
        'style' => 'roman',
    );

    # Switch to Arabic (decimal) at the 5th page, starting with 1
    $pdf->page_labels(4, 
        'style' => 'decimal',
    );

    # invalid style at the 25th page, should just continue 
    # with decimal at the current counter
    $pdf->page_labels(24, 
        'style' => 'raman_noodles',  # fail over to decimal
           # note that PDF::API2 will see the 'r' and treat it as 'roman'
        'start' => 21,  # necessary, otherwise would restart at 1
    );

    # No page label at the 31st and 32nd pages. Note that this could be
    # confusing to the person viewing the PDF, but may be appropriate if
    # the page itself has no numbering.
    $pdf->page_labels(30, 
        'style' => 'nocounter',
    );

    # Numbering for Appendix A at the 33rd page, A-1, A-2,...
    $pdf->page_labels(32, 
        'start' => 1,  # unnecessary
        'prefix' => 'A-'
    );

    # Numbering for Appendix B at the 37th page, B-1, B-2,...
    $pdf->page_labels( 36, 
        'prefix' => 'B-'
    );

    # Numbering for the Index at the 41st page, Index I, Index II,...
    $pdf->page_labels(40, 
        'style' => 'Roman',
        'start' => 1,  # unnecessary
        'prefix' => 'Index '  # note trailing space
    );

    # Unnumbered 'Index' at the 45th page, Index, Index,...
    $pdf->page_labels(40, 
        'style' => 'nocounter',
        'prefix' => 'Index '
    );

Alternate name: pageLabel

This old method name is retained for compatibility with old user code. Note that with pageLabel, you need to make the "options" list an anonymous hash by placing { } around the entire list, even if it has only one item in it.

$pdf->userunit($value)

Sets the global UserUnit, defining the scale factor to multiply any size or coordinate by. For example, userunit(72) results in a User Unit of 72 points, or 1 inch.

See "User Units" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information.

$pdf->mediabox($name)
$pdf->mediabox($name, 'orient' => 'orientation')
$pdf->mediabox($w,$h)
$pdf->mediabox($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury)
($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury) = $pdf->mediabox()

Sets (or gets) the global MediaBox, defining the width and height (or by corner coordinates, or by standard name) of the output page itself, such as the physical paper size.

See "Media Box" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information. The method always returns the current bounds (after any set operation).

$pdf->cropbox($name)
$pdf->cropbox($name, 'orient' => 'orientation')
$pdf->cropbox($w,$h)
$pdf->cropbox($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury)
($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury) = $pdf->cropbox()

Sets (or gets) the global CropBox. This will define the media size to which the output will later be clipped.

See "Crop Box" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information. The method always returns the current bounds (after any set operation).

$pdf->bleedbox($name)
$pdf->bleedbox($name, 'orient' => 'orientation')
$pdf->bleedbox($w,$h)
$pdf->bleedbox($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury)
($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury) = $pdf->bleedbox()

Sets (or gets) the global BleedBox. This is typically used for hard copy printing where you want ink to go to the edge of the cut paper.

See "Bleed Box" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information. The method always returns the current bounds (after any set operation).

$pdf->trimbox($name)
$pdf->trimbox($name, 'orient' => 'orientation')
$pdf->trimbox($w,$h)
$pdf->trimbox($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury)
($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury) = $pdf->trimbox()

Sets (or gets) the global TrimBox. This is supposed to be the actual dimensions of the finished page (after trimming of the paper).

See "Trim Box" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information. The method always returns the current bounds (after any set operation).

$pdf->artbox($name)
$pdf->artbox($name, 'orient' => 'orientation')
$pdf->artbox($w,$h)
$pdf->artbox($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury)
($llx,$lly, $urx,$ury) = $pdf->artbox()

Sets (or gets) the global ArtBox. This is supposed to define "the extent of the page's meaningful content".

See "Art Box" in PDF::Builder::Docs for more information. The method always returns the current bounds (after any set operation).

FONT METHODS

$font = $pdf->corefont($fontname, %opts)

Returns a new Adobe core font object. For details, see "Core Fonts" in PDF::Builder::Docs. Note that this is an Adobe-standard corefont name, and not a file name.

See also PDF::Builder::Resource::Font::CoreFont.

$font = $pdf->psfont($ps_file, %opts)

Returns a new Adobe Type1 ("PostScript") font object. For details, see "PS Fonts" in PDF::Builder::Docs.

See also PDF::Builder::Resource::Font::Postscript.

$font = $pdf->ttfont($ttf_file, %opts)

Returns a new TrueType (or OpenType) font object. For details, see "TrueType Fonts" in PDF::Builder::Docs.

$font = $pdf->bdfont($bdf_file, @opts)

Returns a new BDF (bitmapped distribution format) font object, based on the specified Adobe BDF file.

See also PDF::Builder::Resource::Font::BdFont

$font = $pdf->cjkfont($cjkname, %opts)

Returns a new CJK font object. These are TrueType-like fonts for East Asian languages (Chinese, Japanese, Korean). For details, see "CJK Fonts" in PDF::Builder::Docs.

NOTE: cjkfont is quite old and is not well supported. We recommend that you try using ttfont (or another font routine, if not TTF/OTF) with the appropriate CJK font file. Most appear to be .ttf or .otf format. PDFs created using cjkfont may not be fully portable, and support for cjkfont may be dropped in a future release. We would appreciate hearing from you if you are successfully using cjkfont, and are unable to use ttfont instead.

Among other things, cjkfont selections are limited, as they require CMAP files; they may or may not subset correctly; and they can not be used as the base for synthetic fonts.

See also PDF::Builder::Resource::CIDFont::CJKFont

$font = $pdf->font($name, %opts)

A convenience function to add a font to the PDF without having to specify the format. Returns the font object, to be used by PDF::Builder::Content.

The font $name is either the name of one of the standard 14 fonts ("STANDARD FONTS" in PDF::Builder::Resource::Font::CoreFont), such as Helvetica or the path to a font file. There are 15 additional core fonts on a Windows system. Note that the exact name of a core font needs to be given. The file extension (if path given) determines what type of font file it is.

    my $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    my $font1 = $pdf->font('Helvetica-Bold');
    my $font2 = $pdf->font('/path/to/ComicSans.ttf');
    my $page = $pdf->page();
    my $content = $page->text();

    $content->position(1 * 72, 9 * 72);
    $content->font($font1, 24);
    $content->text('Hello, World!');

    $content->position(0, -36);
    $content->font($font2, 12);
    $content->text('This is some sample text.');

    $pdf->saveas('sample.pdf');

The path can be omitted if the font file is in the current directory or one of the directories returned by font_path.

TrueType (ttf/otf), Adobe PostScript Type 1 (pfa/pfb), and Adobe Glyph Bitmap Distribution Format (bdf) fonts are supported.

The following options (%opts) are available:

format

The font format is normally detected automatically based on the file's extension. If you're using a font with an atypical extension, you can set format to one of truetype (TrueType or OpenType), type1 (PostScript Type 1), or bitmap (Adobe Bitmap).

dokern

Kerning (automatic adjustment of space between pairs of characters) is enabled by default if the font includes this information. Set this option to false to disable.

afm_file (PostScript Type 1 fonts only)

Specifies the location of the font metrics file.

pfm_file (PostScript Type 1 fonts only)

Specifies the location of the printer font metrics file. This option overrides the encode option.

embed (TrueType fonts only)

Fonts are embedded in the PDF by default, which is required to ensure that they can be viewed properly on a device that doesn't have the font installed. Set this option to false to prevent the font from being embedded.

@directories = PDF::Builder->font_path()

Return the list of directories that will be searched (in order) in addition to the current directory when you add a font to a PDF without including the full path to the font file.

@directories = PDF::Builder::add_to_font_path('/my/fonts', '/path/to/fonts', ...)

Adds one or more directories to the list of paths to be searched for font files.

Returns the font search path.

Alternate name: addFontDirs

Prior to recent changes to PDF::API2, this method was addFontDirs(). This method is still available, but may be deprecated some time in the future.

@directories = PDF::Builder->set_font_path('/my/fonts', '/path/to/fonts');

Replace the existing font search path. This should only be necessary if you need to remove a directory from the path for some reason, or if you need to reorder the list.

Returns the font search path.

$font = $pdf->synfont($basefont, %opts)

Returns a new synthetic font object. These are modifications to a core (or PS/T1 or TTF/OTF) font, where the font may be replaced by a Type1 or Type3 PostScript font. This does not appear to work with CJK fonts (created with cjkfont method). For details, see "Synthetic Fonts" in PDF::Builder::Docs.

See also PDF::Builder::Resource::Font::SynFont

Alternate name: synthetic_font

Prior to recent PDF::API2 changes, the routine to create modified fonts was "synfont". PDF::API2 has renamed it to "synthetic_font", which I don't like, but to maintain compatibility, "synthetic_font" is available as an alias.

There are also some minor option differences (incompatibilities) discussed in SynFont, including the value of 'bold' between the two entry points.

$font = $pdf->unifont(@fontspecs, %opts)

Returns a new uni-font object, based on the specified fonts and options.

BEWARE: This is not a true PDF-object, but a virtual/abstract font definition!

See also PDF::Builder::Resource::UniFont.

Valid options (%opts) are:

encode

Changes the encoding of the font from its default.

IMAGE METHODS

$object = $pdf->image($file, %opts);

A convenience function to attempt to determine the image type, and import a file of that type and return an object that can be placed as part of a page's content:

    my $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    my $page = $pdf->page();

    my $image = $pdf->image('/path/to/image.jpg');
    $page->object($image, 100, 100);

    $pdf->save('sample.pdf');

$file may be either a file name, a filehandle, or a PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::GD object.

Caution: Do not confuse this image ($pdf->) with the image method found in the graphics (gfx) class ($gfx->), used to actually place a read-in or decoded image on the page!

See "image" in PDF::Builder::Content for details about placing images on a page once they're imported.

The image format is normally detected automatically based on the file's extension (.gif, .png, .tif/.tiff, .jpg/.jpeg, .pnm/.pbm/.pgm/.ppm). If passed a filehandle, image formats GIF, JPEG, PNM, and PNG will be detected based on the file's header. Unfortunately, at this time, other image formats (TIFF and GD) cannot be automatically detected. (TIFF could be, except that image_tiff() cannot use a filehandle anyway as input when using the libtiff library, which is highly recommended.)

If the file has an atypical extension or the filehandle is for a different kind of image, you can set the format option to one of the supported types: gif, jpeg, png, pnm, or tiff.

Note: PNG images that include an alpha (transparency) channel go through a relatively slow process of splitting the image into separate RGB and alpha components as is required by images in PDFs. If you're having performance issues, install Image::PNG::Libpng to speed this process up by an order of magnitude; either module will be used automatically if available. See the image_png method for details.

Note: TIFF image processing is very slow if using the pure Perl decoder. We highly recommend using the Graphics::TIFF library to improve performance. See the image_tiff method for details.

$jpeg = $pdf->image_jpeg($file, %opts)

Imports and returns a new JPEG image object. $file may be either a filename or a filehandle.

See PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::JPEG for additional information and examples/Content.pl for some examples of placing an image on a page.

$tiff = $pdf->image_tiff($file, %opts)

Imports and returns a new TIFF image object. $file may be either a filename or a filehandle. For details, see "TIFF Images" in PDF::Builder::Docs.

See PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::TIFF and PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::TIFF_GT for additional information and examples/Content.pl for some examples of placing an image on a page (JPEG, but the principle is the same). There is an optional TIFF library (TIFF_GT) described, that gives more capability than the default one. However, note that $file can only be a filename when using this library.

$rc = $pdf->LA_GT()

Returns 1 if the library name (package) Graphics::TIFF is installed, and 0 otherwise. For this optional library, this call can be used to know if it is safe to use certain functions. For example:

    if ($pdf->LA_GT() {
        # is installed and usable
    } else {
        # not available. you will be running the old, pure PERL code
    }
$pnm = $pdf->image_pnm($file, %opts)

Imports and returns a new PNM image object. $file may be either a filename or a filehandle.

See PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::PNM for additional information and examples/Content.pl for some examples of placing an image on a page (JPEG, but the principle is the same).

$png = $pdf->image_png($file, %opts)

Imports and returns a new PNG image object. $file may be either a filename or a filehandle. For details, see "PNG Images" in PDF::Builder::Docs.

See PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::PNG and PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::PNG_IPL for additional information and examples/Content.pl for some examples of placing an image on a page (JPEG, but the principle is the same).

There is an optional PNG library (PNG_IPL) described, that gives more capability than the default one. However, note that $file can only be a filename when using this library.

$rc = $pdf->LA_IPL()

Returns 1 if the library name (package) Image::PNG::Libpng is installed, and 0 otherwise. For this optional library, this call can be used to know if it is safe to use certain functions. For example:

    if ($pdf->LA_IPL() {
        # is installed and usable
    } else {
        # not available. don't use 16bps or interlaced PNG image files
    }
$gif = $pdf->image_gif($file, %opts)

Imports and returns a new GIF image object. $file may be either a filename or a filehandle.

See PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::GIF for additional information and examples/Content.pl for some examples of placing an image on a page (JPEG, but the principle is the same).

$gdf = $pdf->image_gd($gd_object, %opts)

Imports and returns a new image object from Image::GD.

See PDF::Builder::Resource::XObject::Image::GD for additional information and examples/Content.pl for some examples of placing an image on a page (JPEG, but the principle is the same).

COLORSPACE METHODS

$colorspace = $pdf->colorspace($type, @arguments)

Colorspaces can be added to a PDF to either specifically control the output color on a particular device (spot colors, device colors) or to save space by limiting the available colors to a defined color palette (web-safe palette, ACT file).

Once added to the PDF, they can be used in place of regular hex codes or named colors:

    my $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    my $page = $pdf->page();
    my $content = $page->graphics();

    # Add colorspaces for a spot color and the web-safe color palette
    my $spot = $pdf->colorspace('spot', 'PANTONE Red 032 C', '#EF3340');
    my $web = $pdf->colorspace('web');

    # Fill using the spot color with 100% coverage
    $content->fill_color($spot, 1.0);

    # Stroke using the first color of the web-safe palette
    $content->stroke_color($web, 0);

    # Add a rectangle to the page
    $content->rectangle(100, 100, 200, 200);
    $content->paint();

    $pdf->save('sample.pdf');

The following types of colorspaces are supported

spot
    my $spot = $pdf->colorspace('spot', $tint, $alt_color);

Spot colors are used to instruct a device (usually a printer) to use or emulate a particular ink color ($tint) for parts of the document. An $alt_color is provided for devices (e.g. PDF viewers) that don't know how to produce the named color. It can either be an approximation of the color in RGB, CMYK, or HSV formats, or a wildly different color (e.g. 100% magenta, %0F00) to make it clear if the spot color isn't being used as expected.

web
    my $web = $pdf->colorspace('web');

The web-safe color palette is a historical collection of colors that was used when many display devices only supported 256 colors.

act
    my $act = $pdf->colorspace('act', $filename);

An Adobe Color Table (ACT) file provides a custom palette of colors that can be referenced by PDF graphics and text drawing commands.

device
    my $devicen = $pdf->colorspace('device', @colorspaces);

A device-specific colorspace allows for precise color output on a given device (typically a printing press), bypassing the normal color interpretation performed by raster image processors (RIPs).

Device colorspaces are also needed if you want to blend spot colors:

    my $pdf = PDF::Builder->new();
    my $page = $pdf->page();
    my $content = $page->graphics();

    # Create a two-color device colorspace
    my $yellow = $pdf->colorspace('spot', 'Yellow', '%00F0');
    my $spot = $pdf->colorspace('spot', 'PANTONE Red 032 C', '#EF3340');
    my $device = $pdf->colorspace('device', $yellow, $spot);

    # Fill using a blend of 25% yellow and 75% spot color
    $content->fill_color($device, 0.25, 0.75);

    # Stroke using 100% spot color
    $content->stroke_color($device, 0, 1);

    # Add a rectangle to the page
    $content->rectangle(100, 100, 200, 200);
    $content->paint();

    $pdf->save('sample.pdf');
$cs = $pdf->colorspace_act($file)

Returns a new colorspace object based on an Adobe Color Table file.

See PDF::Builder::Resource::ColorSpace::Indexed::ACTFile for a reference to the file format's specification.

$cs = $pdf->colorspace_web()

Returns a new colorspace-object based on the "web-safe" color palette.

$cs = $pdf->colorspace_hue()

Returns a new colorspace-object based on the hue color palette.

See PDF::Builder::Resource::ColorSpace::Indexed::Hue for an explanation.

$cs = $pdf->colorspace_separation($tint, $color)

Returns a new separation colorspace object based on the parameters.

$tint can be any valid ink identifier, including but not limited to: 'Cyan', 'Magenta', 'Yellow', 'Black', 'Red', 'Green', 'Blue' or 'Orange'.

$color must be a valid color specification limited to: '#rrggbb', '!hhssvv', '%ccmmyykk' or a "named color" (rgb).

The colorspace model will automatically be chosen based on the specified color.

$cs = $pdf->colorspace_devicen(\@tintCSx, $samples)
$cs = $pdf->colorspace_devicen(\@tintCSx)

Returns a new DeviceN colorspace object based on the parameters.

Example:

    $cy = $pdf->colorspace_separation('Cyan',    '%f000');
    $ma = $pdf->colorspace_separation('Magenta', '%0f00');
    $ye = $pdf->colorspace_separation('Yellow',  '%00f0');
    $bk = $pdf->colorspace_separation('Black',   '%000f');

    $pms023 = $pdf->colorspace_separation('PANTONE 032CV', '%0ff0');

    $dncs = $pdf->colorspace_devicen( [ $cy,$ma,$ye,$bk, $pms023 ] );

The colorspace model will automatically be chosen based on the first colorspace specified.

BARCODE METHODS

    These are glue routines to the actual barcode rendering routines found elsewhere.

    $bc = $pdf->xo_codabar(%opts)
    $bc = $pdf->xo_code128(%opts)
    $bc = $pdf->xo_2of5int(%opts)
    $bc = $pdf->xo_3of9(%opts)
    $bc = $pdf->xo_ean13(%opts)

    Creates the specified barcode object as a form XObject.

OTHER METHODS

$xo = $pdf->xo_form()

Returns a new form XObject.

$egs = $pdf->egstate()

Returns a new extended graphics state object, as described in PDF::Builder::Resource::ExtGState.

$obj = $pdf->pattern(%opts)

Returns a new pattern object.

$obj = $pdf->shading(%opts)

Returns a new shading object.

$ndest = $pdf->named_destination()

Returns a new or existing named destination object.