Using the Acrobat Distiller

The simplest way to create a compliant PDF/A-1b file is to use the Distiller that comes with Acrobat Pro. This method will work with either Mac or Windows OS, and it is independent of the word processor being used.  However, you must always make sure that the computer you use for the conversion also contains all of the fonts that were used during document creation, and that all of these fonts are embedded.

This works without any changes to the document.
  1. Just generate a PDF file from your Word or word processing document; at this stage, it does not have to be A-1b compliant.
  2. Open the PDF file in Acrobat Pro
  3. Click File --> Save as... and select Postscript (.ps)
  4. Open your Acrobat Distiller (note if you are in the Library or GEB computer lab and cannot locate the Distiller ask for assitance)
  5. At the top of the Distiller window, change the Default Setting to PDF/A-1b:2005(RGB)
  6. From the menu bar at the top of your screen select Settings... --> Edit Adobe PDF settings...
  7. In the Edit Adobe PDF settings window click on the Font tab at the top of this dialog window
  8. Make sure that Embed all fonts and Subset embedded fonts are checked and the latter set to 100%, and then click the OK button on this dialog window
  9. Drag and drop the Postscript (.ps) file generated in step 3 above into the middle section of your Distiller window, it will automatically generate a new PDF file which now should be PDF/A-1b compliant
To check the PDF/A-1b compliance
  1. Open this new PDF file in Acrobat Pro X
  2. Click View --> Print Production, and then select PreFlight
  3. Select the Verify compliance with PDF/A-1b, and then click the Analyze button - bottom right
  4. If you obtain the green check your document is compliant