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Old 02-21-2014, 01:35 PM   #1
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XMP Metadata in PDF ?

"What's new" for release 1.25 says this:

Quote:
calibre can now read and write XMP metadata from PDF files. This means that all metadata that you can create in calibre, including custom columns, can be stored in the PDF files. It is also useful when importing PDF files created by some academic publishers, that sometimes have good XMP metadata, such as DOI identifiers, tags and so on.
I didn't see any changes in Preferences for PDF input and output. Did I miss something?

If I wanted to put metadata in calibre into PDF files, exactly where and how would I do that?
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Old 02-21-2014, 02:29 PM   #2
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I assume like all metadata saving it will happen automatically?

The difference is, now PDF gets that to begin with.

Save to disk or convert it.
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Old 02-21-2014, 04:39 PM   #3
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Did a Save to disk - did not add the metadata

Did a PDF to PDF conversion and it did inject the metadata, and I can 'see' it in Acrobat, PDF XChange and Nitro, but they're limited in what they display.

Acrobat & XChange show Comments as un-rendered HTML in Subject, Nitro has nothing there. Subject is a single line of text usually used for something like 'Genre', so I'm not sure about having Comments there.

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Old 02-21-2014, 07:44 PM   #4
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I also tested PDF save to disk, which didn't add any extra metadata that I could find.

After PDF to PDF conversion, Adobe reader (on OS X) shows unrendered HTML from Comments in Subject, while Skim shows Subject as blank. Neither reader application showed metadata from custom columns. On the 2 PDFs I tested, anyway.

If all that metadata is being stored in the PDF, where is it stored and how does one access it from within the PDF reader, if not in "Properties" or "Get Info"? Or if it wasn't stored in those tested PDFs but could have been, with some arcane technique, what is the arcane technique?

ETA. And does it depend on various security settings of the PDF file?

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Old 02-21-2014, 08:48 PM   #5
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The vast majority of PDF readers dont support XMP metadata, which is why I never bothered adding support for it to calibre for such a long time. If you want to see the metadata, add the PDF file again to calibre.
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Old 02-21-2014, 09:23 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
The vast majority of PDF readers dont support XMP metadata, which is why I never bothered adding support for it to calibre for such a long time. If you want to see the metadata, add the PDF file again to calibre.
Oh, thanks. Yeah, I was just learning on Wikipedia what apps support XMP:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extensi...adata_Platform

Skim doesn't support XMP. According to Adobe, Adobe Reader does support it, but even so, I found no way to display XMP in Adobe Reader. I let ownership of Acrobat lapse a year or two ago (and won't buy it again just for this). Just installed ExifTool, but I'm not very good with command line applications.

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Old 02-21-2014, 09:28 PM   #7
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Indeed, the only reason XMP support was added at this time was that there is now at least one academic publisher (Elsevier) that does produce PDF files with good XMP metadata, thus it made sense to read XMP metadata. And if you read it, then you have to write it as well, otherwise you get bug reports like I changed the metadata but it doesn't show up in the PDF.
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
.... If you want to see the metadata, add the PDF file again to calibre.
Tried that with a couple saved out PDF to PDF converted PDFs. Still didn't see any extra metadata (like from custom columns) after adding them back into calibre. The only place in calibre I know of to look for embedded metadata is in Viewer, click the metadata icon, which showed PDF metadata as before the save-out and re-add. Unless I missed something obvious....

Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
Indeed, the only reason XMP support was added at this time was that there is now at least one academic publisher (Elsevier) that does produce PDF files with good XMP metadata, thus it made sense to read XMP metadata. And if you read it, then you have to write it as well, otherwise you get bug reports like I changed the metadata but it doesn't show up in the PDF.
Thanks for the explanations. I was just curious. I don't have many PDFs or use them much. But lots of other people do. So I anticipated there'd be questions.
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:14 PM   #9
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You sure you dont have the pdf metadata reader/writer plugins disabled? I just tried the following experiment:

1) Import a pdf into calibre
2) Edit the value of a custom
3) Save the pdf to disk
4) Import the saved pdf back into calibre (and allow adding of the duplicate)
5) the newly added duplicate has the edited value from step (2) in the custom column
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:50 PM   #10
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PDF metadata reader and writer plugins are not missing or disabled.

When I do those 5 steps, with "save metadata in OPF file" turned off, the newly added duplicate shows no values in the custom columns that were edited before the save to disk.

With "save metadata in OPF file" turned on, the custom columns of the saved-out re-add are populated correctly. But that's because of the OPF, not the XMP.

Are you saying the saved out PDF has those custom column values XMP embedded, and the new book record's custom columns should be filled automatically with those values during the Add Book creation of that new book record? If that's what's supposed to happen, it is not happening for me, when "save metadata in OPF file" is turned off during the save.

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Old 02-21-2014, 11:06 PM   #11
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Yes the custom columns are embedded in the PDF on save. They are read even if no OPF is present. You can look at their definitions by running

pdfinfo -meta file.pdf

(pdfinfo is in the calibre install directory)
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Old 02-21-2014, 11:45 PM   #12
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restructured

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Old 02-21-2014, 11:45 PM   #13
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Eureka. Hooah. Success. I had "read metadata from file contents" turned off for the Add. With it turned on, the custom column metadata embedded in the pdf populates the custom columns. (Without the OPF present during the Add). So that confusion is solved.

This has nothing to do with conversion, just metadata read and write at import or export. So that confusion is solved. (ETA: Though conversion also updates the metadata in the output format.)



But after installing command line tools with 1.25 on OS X:

MacCatlin:frameworks unbogg$ pdfinfo -meta /users/unbogg/books/raw/_working/bazaar.pdf
-bash: pdfinfo: command not found

Like I said, I'm not real good with command line.

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Old 02-21-2014, 11:49 PM   #14
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@unboggling: If you are on OS X pdfinfo will not be installed as a command line tool, you will need to find it inside the calibre application bundle.

@BR: covers are not inserted into PDF and all custom column metadata is inserted using a special namespace so it does not cause problems for any other application.
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Old 02-22-2014, 12:19 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
@unboggling: If you are on OS X pdfinfo will not be installed as a command line tool, you will need to find it inside the calibre application bundle.
Found it. I think on OS X I'd have to input the pdf file to pdfinfo in a script. But I have no burning need to take the time to do it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
@BR: covers are not inserted into PDF and all custom column metadata is inserted using a special namespace so it does not cause problems for any other application.
Some people may not want all their custom column metadata automatically saved willy-nilly into exported PDFs.

Though personally, I wish custom column metadata could be written into other formats besides PDF. Such as EPUB.
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