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PDFCreator for Windows

Posted by malcolmdavis on September 13, 2005 at 8:12 PM PDT

PDFCreator installs a virtual printer driver that allows applications to print to PDF files rather than a printer. I’ve found it useful for several tasks:

  • Bookmark alternative: Bookmarked pages have a tendency to disappear or move. The Google cache may or may not have the page. When I really want a page for reference later on, initially I did a browser ‘save as’ to remedy the disappearing page problem. However, using the print functionality is easier, and the text inside the PDF is selectable for copying.
  • Document distribution: Sometimes free viewers don’t exist for a particular file format. Yet, I can print and send a PDF file. PDFCreator is not as feature rich as the commercial Adobe product, but an inexpensive alternative to creating PDF documents for distribution.
  • Print testing: When adding printing to an application, I use the PDF printer to test formatting and print behavior.

PDFCreator is my default printer. To make it easier to use, I’ve configured PDFCreator to automatically print to a specific folder using a configurable naming convention. No need for the annoying popup asking for filename and location. PDFCreator can also be configured to write to other formats including JPEG, BMP, PCX, PNG, PS, TIFF, and EPS.

PDFCreator can be downloaded from

I use version 0.8 dated March 31, 2004. I've had multiple problems with PDFCreator 0.8.1 release candidates (RC). One version blew away a directory containing files. Even though I enjoy being on the bleeding edge, the RC was a little too much blood.