In the field of electronic documents, nowadays PDF may definitely be characterized as the file format that constitutes the most widespread standard for digitally based communication and teamwork. The importance of PDF has been underlined by the fact that in July 2008, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) published the approved ISO 32000-1 standard based upon PDF 1.7. PDF has become an official ISO standard.

Soft Xpansion allows for the high relevance of PDF. The company regularly publishes new versions of its PDF Software Development Kit (SDK). The SDK enables software developers to seamlessly implement the creation, editing and display of PDF files into their own 32- and 64-bit applications. The new version 7 now offers even more functionality and four additional sub-libraries.

The SDK may be used in Windows projects based upon different platforms.  Developers may use C++ (the language of the core of the SDK), .NET, C#, Delphi or languages that support the COM interface. It also includes ActiveX and .NET Controls and the possibility to implement viewing PDF documents into Internet Explorer and Firefox, as well as capabilities to fill PDF forms without installation of additional components.

With the SDK functionality implemented, end users do not need any extra programs to create, edit and view PDF files. The libraries are completely independent and do not require any specific system components or any additional software that is not already included in the operating system.

The SDK consists of separate sub-libraries, modules and extensions which may be bought and implemented separately. Thanks to this concept, soft Xpansion is able to offer a flexible pricing system. With this system, developers only pay for the components that are really needed. The PDF Xpansion SDK can be used on any modern 32-bit and 64-bit version of Windows: Windows 7, Vista, XP, Server 2003 and 2000.


The new sub-libraries, modules and improvements are as follows:

1. Four new sub-libraries, now nine in total
   * XFA Document Library (New)
   * Document Transformer Library (New)
   * Barcode Library (New)
   * Smart Card Crypto Library (New)
   * PDF Document Library
   * PDF Quick Viewer
   * PDF Rich Edit Library
   * PDF JavaScript Library
   * XPS Document Library

2. XFA Document Library (New)
This library enables users of PDF forms, that are users who create forms to collect data, to process and manipulate data in electronic forms in XFA format.

3. Document Transformer Library (New)
This library may be used to change the layout or design of existing electronic documents. The original file types may be PDF, RTF, text files, raster images (for example JPEG, TIFF, PNG) or electronic document in any format, including dynamic data. The resulting (transformed) document can be saved as PDF file, printed on a printer or saved as raster images.

4. Barcode Library (New)
The Barcode Library enables developers to generate either linear (1D) or matrix (2D) barcodes of the most common types. The library saves generated barcodes into raster files or integrates them into PDF files. The library has also a standard ActiveX interface, which makes it possible to place barcodes on pages of Microsoft Office documents (for example in Word or Excel) and to add barcodes to web pages (HTML files).

5. Smart Card Crypto Library (New)
Digital signatures in PDF documents are getting more and more popular. In combination with the Smart Card Crypto Library, the PDF Document Library (see below) allows signing of documents as well as signature verification by using smart cards. In this context, the PDF Document Library uses the standard cryptographic Windows subsystem “Crypto API” to perform the necessary cryptographic operations.

6. New Functionality in the PDF Document Library
The PDF Document Library is used to convert files into PDF, to create PDF forms and to display PDF files. The new features are:

   * Supports the Adobe® Supplement to the ISO 32000 standard, Extension Levels 3 and 5
   * Supports Extension identification
   * Supports data encryption using the AES 256 algorithm 
   * Supports a new password algorithm (use of Unicode-based passwords and password phrases)
   * Supports version 5 of the Standard Crypto Filter (ensures Acrobat 9 compatibility)
   * Barcode form fields
   * Rich media (video, audio and animation) and 3D projection annotations
   * Rich Text strings in annotations (formatted texts)
   * Comment relations (replies to comments, definition of status and checkboxes for comments)

7. New Functionality in PDF Quick Viewer
This library provides a standalone PDF viewer which is ready to be embedded into an existing application quickly. It is ready for implementation since it already includes predefined windows for the interaction with the end user and standard PDF viewer functionality. The new feature in this library is the ruler tool.

8. New Functionality in the PDF Rich Edit Library
The PDF Rich Edit Library is used to implement functionality to edit the page content of PDF documents. The new features are:

   * Improved display quality
   * Searching in text, as well as text selection and extraction of text strings and pictures are standard in the PDF viewer

9. New Functionality in the XPS Document Library
This library provides operations for XPS files in applications. The XPS format (developed by Microsoft) is an alternative to the PDF format. The new features are:

   * Improved conversion performance
   * Improved display quality
   * Searching in text, as well as text selection and extraction of text strings and pictures are standard in the XPS viewer

10.  PDF JavaScript Library (Adobe compatible object model)
The PDF Java Script Library makes it possible to implement Java Script actions into PDF files and to automate the procession of these files. The new features are:

   * Uses the Document Object Model
   * Global objects: “app”, “global”, “console”
   * Processing of Java Script actions in PDF Quick Viewer

The prices for the basic SDK component to create PDF files start at 950,- Euros. Various license types and component sets are available. The price list follows the idea to offer separable SDK components and modules. Therefore it allows a flexible adaptation to the actual clients` demands on the PDF solution.

Detailed information on the SDK is provided on the product page and in the PDF Xpansion SDK Guide. The Guide and a trial version are available for download on the product page as well.

The SDK is based upon the company´s PDF Xpansion technology, which is also used by several partners. Moreover, Soft Xpansion has implemented the technology into its own Perfect PDF 6  product family. The family members consist of retail desktop applications and freeware.