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PDF File size grows each time form is saved (even with no data changes) when open in browser. Why?

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I have an SAP Adobe form (PDF) and we are seeing a difference in the Save behavior between when it is viewed in Adobe Reader vs. the adobe plug-in(?) for Internet Explorer.

When the form is viewed in Internet Explorer, every time the user saves the form the file size grows (even with no data changes in the form - i.e., open the form, hit save). This is not true if the form is opened in Adobe Reader.

The form in question has multiple pages but the only fields directly bound to the SAP source are a handful of identifiers (e.g., order number) and a dynamic table. It appears from our testing that the more entries in the table when the form is created, the greater the size increase each time the file is saved. The table length is not changed after the form is first generated.

Is there a known difference in the behavior of Adobe Reader vs. the browser plug-in which would account for this difference? Maybe in the compression logic? 

Our users have Adobe Reader X installed on their machines.

3 Replies

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We are using reader extensions on the form to allow file saves.

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We have done some further testing and discovered a couple of important things:

1) If we open a version of the form that has grown (even after several saves via the browser), but open it in Adobe Reader then save it, the form reverts to its original size.  So, whatever the plug-in is adding to file on a save is being removed again if Adobe Reader is used.

2) This is not just happening on the form mentioned above.  It appears to happen on any form in which we have embedded XML data.  We have another multi-page form which uses a pure XML interface (i.e., no bound fields from SAP), and it grows in the same fashion when saved via the browser.  The original form had the bound table, but within the table one field of each row contains a large XML string which is used to dynamically populate the form pages as the user navigates.

When we ran the test on simple SAP-bound form with no embedded XML, the form size does not change when it is saved via the browser.  This suggests that my mention of the dynamic table in the original form is of no consequence in the behavior (except perhaps that it happens to be where we store the embedded XML data).