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pdf2fax.8c - Man Page

image Portable Document Format file for facsimile transmission by HylaFAX


/var/spool/hylafax/bin/pdf2fax [ options ] [ files... ]


pdf2fax takes Portable Document Format (PDF) input and generates a TIFF Class F image file suitable for facsimile transmission. It is usually invoked by the HylaFAX scheduler process, faxq(8C). PDF imaging is typically done using the freely available Ghostscript software.

pdf2fax is actually a link (symbolic or otherwise) to the script appropriate for the PDF imaging tool. The link is setup when the faxsetup(8C) script is run to configure a HylaFAX server machine for use.

Input files containing PDF may be specified on the command line. If none are given, then pdf2fax will read from standard input.

By default, pdf2fax will generate a 98 line/inch output document whose page width is 1728 pixels and page length is 297 mm (a standard A4 page at low resolution). Horizontal resolution is always 204 dpi. Command line options may be used to select alternate vertical resolution and page dimensions.

If no filename is given, pdf2fax writes its output to a file named pdf.fax; the -o option can be used to specify an alternate filename.

By default, output is compressed using the standard Group 3 1D-encoding scheme, with EOL codes padded to byte boundaries. If the -2 option is specified, output is encoded with the optional Group 3 2D-encoding scheme (EOL codes are still padded to byte boundaries).

This script can modify outgoing facsimile, such as watermarking, To do this create a shell script etc/FaxModify in the spooling area that alters the document.

Note that bin/pdf2fax is usually just a link to a shell script that invokes the appropriate PDF RIP to do the work.


The following operations are recognized:


Write Group 3 1D-encoded data to the output file.


Write Group 3 2D-encoded data to the output file.


Write Group 4 MMR-encoded data to the output file.


Write color data to an output file (possibly a separate file if Group 3 or Group 4 data is also being output).

-i jobid

How the server references the associated Job ID number

-m pages

Set the maximum number of pages that are permitted in the output file. If more pages are present in the input document then abort processing.

-o file

Write output to the specified file instead of the default pdf.fax filename.

-w width

Set the output page width, in pixels. By default, pages are 1728 pixels wide.

-l length

Set the output page length in millimeters. By default, pages are 297 millimeters long.

-r vres

Set the vertical resolution, in lines/inch, at which to image the PDF.

Runtime Environment

Before user-supplied PDF is passed to the PDF interpreter, a limited number of operators are defined. These operators are operators commonly found in a LaserWriter printer and (sometimes) generated by Macintosh-based applications.

The default Display PDF-based execution environment includes support for the following fonts:


Note that this is the same set of fonts supported by the DPS extension to the X server.

The default Ghostscript-based environment is more uncertain; consult the Ghostscript documentation for information on what fonts are available.


Output from the Display PDF version of this command is encoded according to the Display PDF binary encoding protocol.

Ghostscript-based versions of this program fail to exit with non-zero status when an invalid PDF document is processed; this makes it problematic for the HylaFAX queue manager to determine when a problem arises when preparing a job for transmission.

See Also

sendfax(1), faxq(8C), hylafax-server(5F)


March 08, 2001