Generate PDF/A Output

PDF/A is a variation of PDF file format designed for the long-term archiving of electronic documents. Some governments and standards organizations require PDF/A to ensure preservation of documents. A PDF/A file is a PDF file viewable by PDF viewers such as Adobe Reader, but the PDF/A file must follow additional requirements specified in the ISO standard. These requirements specify both required objects and features not supported for long-term archiving. You can generate the PDF/A-1A, PDF/A-1B, PDF/A-2A, or PDF/A-2B variation of the PDF/A standard.

Requirements and Limitations

PDF/A output has specified requirements and limitations.

Limitations and requirements for generating PDF/A output:

  • Supported template types: RTF, FO, XPT, and XSL.

  • Font requirements: By default, all fonts in the template are replaced with Albany fonts in the output. To use a different font in the output, specify the font mappings in the report configuration. If Albany fonts aren't available in the JVM font directory, and you haven't specified a font mapping, the output won't be a valid PDF/A file. In this case, Helvetica font is used.

  • PDF features not supported in PDF/A documents:

    • All audio and video content, including Flash embedding

    • Transparency (transparent colors render as opaque). Use PDF/A–2B to support transparency.

    • Encryption

  • Reprocessing by utilities isn't supported: Reprocessing PDF/A file using the PDFBookBinder, PDFDocMerger, or PDFSignature (digital signature) utitlities isn't supported. The reprocessed PDF file may lose conformance to the PDF/A standard.

  • Required report configuration properties: The report run-time properties must be set as shown in the following table.

    Property Required Setting


    Must be no higher than 1.4

    Enable PDF Security


    Must be set to false

    Encryption Level


    Must be set to 0


    Must be se to true

    Formatting properties specific to PDF/A output can be set in the Report Properties dialog. For more information, see PDF/A Output Properties.

Additional Resources

For more information about the PDF/A standard, refer to the Adobe website. Refer also to the website for articles 'Use of PDF 1.4 (PDF/A-1)' and 'Addendum Cor 1:2007'.