Insurance_Document_Conversion

5 Problems an Insurance Company can Solve with the Right Document Conversion Tool

Insurance_Document_Conversion

Few industries rely more heavily on document conversion tools and digital documentation than the insurance field. Insurance companies around the world have a need to securely store vast amounts of insurers’ documentation, claims, records of correspondence, etc. While digital documentation has its obvious benefits, it also creates challenges, including the demand caused by a high volume of daily conversions and difficulties integrating with proprietary software. PEERNET offers both a desktop and automated batch conversion solution that will seamlessly integrate into your organization’s operations, so that you can solve your insurance company’s problems with the right document conversion tool for you.


1. Problem: Proprietary software which lacks the ability to convert to TIFF.

Details: It is common for insurance companies to use proprietary software with which insurance agents process claims and access insurers’ information. Owing to the age of the software used as well as changes in available technology and data storage techniques, it often lacks TIFF conversion. When upgrading proprietary software is not an option due to cost or a reliance on legacy programs that cannot be changed, many insurance companies will instead opt to use a product such as PEERNET’s TIFF Image Printer or Document Conversion Service. These programs serve as the bridge between their proprietary software and the specific TIFF file format required by their chosen electronic document filing system.

Possible solutions: TIFF Image Printer is a desktop solution that insurance agents, for example, would engage with directly. In this case, a user would “print” directly from their proprietary software to create the required TIFF page. The same step of printing directly to the TIFF Image Printer allows creation of TIFF images from other file types they work with everyday, such as PDF, JPEG, Word, Excel files and more. Customize the printer settings to save the images in a specific location without prompting, set up a naming convention for the created files, and implement a post-conversion action such as previewing the created image or automatically adding it to an archive system. This is an ideal solution for companies looking to streamline the creation of TIFF images directly from their proprietary software and other applications.

A less hands-on approach, Document Conversion Service also bridges the need for TIFF creation between proprietary software and electronic document filing systems by means of its included Watch Folder service. With this approach, the insurance agents would save all files they need converted to a specific, monitored location for automatic conversion. Like the TIFF Image Printer, the same customization options of file naming conventions and post-conversion processing can be set. Document Conversion Service, and its Watch Folder service, checks any number of watched folders at designated intervals and batch converts all documents it finds in parallel, making it ideal for companies needing high volume conversion. Most commonly an insurance agency would adopt this solution if their proprietary software was only able to produce PDF files and they wanted them all converted to TIFF without the direct engagement of staff.


2. Problem: Your company has a high volume of insurers’ documentation and claim paperwork to convert daily.

Details: An insurance company, depending on the size, can easily have upwards of thousands of files daily that require conversion to a file format, such as TIFF image, that is suitable for archiving purposes. These files can come from a variety of sources and include both documentation uploaded by insurers and internal claim documents created by insurance agents. Processing these documents and making them accessible on the company’s website within a reasonable amount of time requires a document conversion tool that can scale between the demands for conversion and the company resources available to perform the conversions.

Possible solutions: PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service offers high-throughput with true parallel conversion and the ability to scale up based on conversion demands. The conversion service runs 24/7 without input from a user. A recent addition to Document Conversion Service and its included Watch Folder service is clustering and failover support, which allows multiple servers to work in tandem on a shared collection of files while providing load balancing and failover support. This approach is ideal for large volume batch conversions and clients requiring 100% conversion stability, such as an insurance company.


3. Problem: Electronic filing systems require specific TIFF file formats for archiving purposes.

Details: The nature of the insurance industry with its myriad of client applications, claims, policies, endorsements and other documents creates a need to store vast amounts of documents in an easily accessible format. In the last decade, technical improvements have made it possible for all that paperwork to be stored in electronic filing or archiving systems that provide insurance agents and adjustors with real-time access to client documentation. Most commonly, these types of systems require input data to be in a specific TIFF file format.

Possible solutions: PEERNET conversion software, including TIFF Image Printer and Document Conversion Service, specializes in high-quality TIFF conversion, guaranteeing the fidelity of your converted documents. Our products have the added benefit of being able to produce the exact TIFF file format your organization requires for your chosen electronic filing systems. While some might consider TIFF to be a singular file format, there are in fact many variations. PEERNET has accounted for the fact that electronic filing or archiving systems are very particular about the TIFF file format used for the input data.


4. Problem: Conversion of the vast amounts of uploaded insurers’ information to an insurance company’s website in an accessible format to provide real-time access for agents.

Details: In recent years many insurance companies have moved towards online submission of insurers’ documentation when they make a claim, rather than having to mail a paper copy. This can result in the upload of prescription, dental and health receipts in many different formats such as JPEG, PNG or PDF. This gives rise to the need to convert these uploaded files before saving them in a document retrieval system for easy access by insurance agent for review as well as for long-term storage of the files.

Possible solutions: Document Conversion Service is the ideal tool to handle this type of problem. A 24/7 automatic batch converter, Document Conversion Service is able to continuously convert uploaded files of a variety of formats to TIFF in the background as part of your organization’s website. As a full-fledged Windows® service, the conversion process runs without the need for an active signed-in user. Clustered conversion and conversion process monitoring methods ensure minimal downtime. Adaptable, files created by Document Conversion Service can incorporate existing naming sequences and file structures for seamless integration into new and legacy document retrieval systems.


5. Problem: Email claim submission requiring significant staff engagement in order to convert and save the insurers’ documentation appropriately.

Details: Some insurance agencies utilize an email system for submission of insurers’ documentation for claim processing. This can lead to significant loss of valuable time as staff then need to open every submission, convert to TIFF and save to a specific location. In addition, email correspondences with insurers often include information relevant to a claim and therefore needs to be saved in the insurers file.

Possible solutions: Document Conversion Service has the ability to extract and convert any documents attached to Outlook Message Archives (*.msg) as well as the email itself. Therefore, staff would no longer need to engage with the conversion or saving procedure of email attachments, thereby freeing up their valuable time for other tasks. Instead, staff could simply save all relevant Outlook emails to a folder monitored by the Watch Folder service. Document Conversion Service would then pick up these *.msg files, and batch convert the messages and attachments, saving the resultant files to a designated location. This Watch Folder feature includes the ability to focus on or exclude specific file formats as well.


Learn more about PEERNET Products that are ideal for the Insurance Industry.

TIFF Image Printer: Helps your company start converting documents to TIFF as quickly and easily as possible. This tool allows TIFF to show up as an option on the standard Windows print menu. For organizations that want to make the transition to paperless as painless as possible, this is a great option.

Document Conversion Service: The solution you need to automate your file conversion process, saving your organization incredible amounts of time and resources. The industry-leading automated, batch file conversion solution. Capable of converting documents in the background, 24/7. Used by trusted institutions and organizations around the world for their file conversion needs.

We’re always happy to lend a helping land. Just get in touch with us to let us know what problems your organization is having trouble with, and we’ll get back to you to let you know how our document conversion tools can help solve your needs.

Our Customers:

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National-Western-Life-Insurance-logo1
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HDFCLife-logo1
aia-insurance-logo1
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national-life-group-logo1
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Extracting and Converting Outlook Message Attachments


With the release of Document Conversion Service 3.0.009, the Watch Folder Service now includes the ability to extract and convert any supported file attachments in an Outlook Message (*.msg) file, as well as the email message itself.

The original email and all attached files and embedded images in the email and any signature are processed. If any of the attached files are Outlook Message files, they too are recursively processed and any attachments extracted and converted as well.

All of the converted message contents are stored in a folder of the same name as the original Outlook MSG file with an auto-numbered naming sequence in place to handle any file name collisions for embedded images and the attached files.

The sample message below, Test Email With Attachments.msg, contains a single attached PDF file, lorem.pdf, as well as 5 small images from the signature.

When the MSG is processed, the original message file and all attachments are processed and placed into a folder named Test Email With Attachments.msg. The attached PDF file will retain its name, and the inline images that are part of the signature named image001 through to image005.

Setting Up a Watch Folder for Message Extraction

Open the Watch Folder Service configuration file in Notepad by going to Start – All Programs – PEERNET Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Watch Folder – Configure Watch Folder Settings.

Watch Folder Service includes several sample watch folder configurations to get you started. You can modify any of them to suit your needs, or copy and paste a section to create a new one, or use an existing one you have already created. You can enable or disable message extraction in each watched folder individually in the Watch Folder Service.

Enabling Message Extraction

The PreprocessArchiveFormatsFilter setting in each folder will enable or disable message extraction for that folder. This setting determines which archive formats will have additional processing applied by listing them by file extension. Currently only the ‘*.msg’ extension is accepted. Set this as an empty string or comment out the line to disable processing.

Message Extraction Settings

A collection of settings is available to manage the email contents you want extracted.

Message attachments can be inline (pasted in the message body) or attached as separate files. Images in signatures are often inline attachments. You can disable the processing of inline attachments with the setting PreprocessArchive.MSG.IncludeInlineAttachments. We recommend leaving this set to true as inline attachments can also be documents and are not always embedded images. This setting is applied to the list of attachments before the include and exclude filters below.

You can filter, based on file extension, which attachments to process and which to skip. To filter for specific file types, enter in the extensions for each type separated by the pipe (|) character. The include filter will be applied first, and then the exclude filter.

Most often only one of the include filter, PreprocessArchive.MSG.AttachmentsIncludeFilter , or the exclude filter, PreprocessArchive.MSG.AttachmentsExcludeFilter, will need to be set at any one time. This will depend on how you need to filter. It is easier to say exclude only “*.jpg” attachments, or include only “*.pdf” attachments than to write long, specific lists of all of the file types.

To include all attachments and exclude none, set both settings to an empty string.

As an example of filtering, if you only want any attached Word and PDF documents, and the original email message, you can set the include filter to “*.doc|*.docx|*.pdf” and leave the exclude filter as an empty string.

Controlling the Size of Images

Outlook messages often have signatures in them, and those signatures often have images such as company logos or social icons. These images are often quite small in size on disk originally but can explode in size when processed to the output type and resolution you have set for the watched folder.

If you are including the images in your message processing, the following settings can help you keep the file size of the processed images to a minimum.

The first setting, ConverterPlugIn.PNImageConverter.KeepSourceImageResolution, will force any images to maintain their original resolution when converted to the new format. This means that if the Watch Folder is set to create 300 dpi TIFF images and one if the email images is a 96dpi JPEG image, the resulting TIFF image will also be 96dpi, and not 300dpi. This results in a much smaller image.

The compression settings used for the output file format you are creating also affect the output file’s final size.

In this example, we are creating TIFF images and using the highest JPEG compression to get a lower file size. Keep in mind that this compression will apply to all files created, and will work better on highly colored images. JPEG compression on a text-based document such as the email message itself can cause slight blurring of text. There is no one size fits all setting that works for all document types; you may have to change the compression settings to work with your style of documents.

Getting Help and Other Features

Need some help getting started with message extraction? Looking for a feature that you don’t see here? Contact us and we’ll be glad to help.

Here are some other features of Watch Folder Service you might be interested in:

Setting Up High Performance Clustering and Failover


Starting with version 3.0.010, Document Conversion Service now supports clustering and fail over protection.

Clustering is a method of directing multiple computers running DCS at a single shared location of files to convert. The group of computers together is a cluster and each computer in the cluster is a node.

The computers, or nodes, work in tandem converting files from a single shared location to which they all have access. This location is often on a network share external to any of the computers in the cluster. It can contain an existing mass collection of files or be a drop location that periodically receives collections of files to be converted.

Each computer selects a pre-set, customizable, number of files from the shared location to convert, does the conversion and places the converted files into the designated shared output location. This spreads the work out across each computer, or node, in the cluster and allows for faster conversion, load balancing and failover protection.

This approach works well when you have a large existing collection of files to be converted, or a need to convert a significant number of files on a daily basis. If your conversion needs are smaller but 100% uptime on your conversion turnaround is required then a clustered solution is also a good choice.

Clustered Conversion with DCS

Document Conversion Service uses its included Watch Folder Service tool to implement clustered conversion. Each computer in the cluster will need a separate license of Document Conversion Service. You can use different levels of licensing on each computer depending on the processing power of each computer.

On each computer, the Watch Folder tool will monitor the shared collection of files for files to pick up and pass them to the Document Conversion Service running on that computer to be converted. The Watch Folder then copies the converted files back to the final location.

Setting Up the Shared Data Location

You will need a common network share location to store the files that you want to convert as well as the final converted files. This location needs to be accessible for all computers in the cluster. You will also need an administrative level account that has access to the network share location and that can be used to install Document Conversion Service on each computer in the cluster.

On the network share you will need to create folders for the following four locations used by the Watch Folder.

  • InputFolder – The folder to watch for incoming files to be converted. If desired, a flag can be set to search subfolder content as well as the root folder.
  • OutputFolder – The folder in which to store the converted files.
  • FailedFolder – This folder stores any file that failed to convert.
  • CompletedFolder – This folder is optional. When set to a folder it stores the original file after conversion is complete. When left blank it deletes the source files after conversion has completed successfully.

Setting up Each Computer in the Cluster

You will need to perform the following steps for each computer, or node, that you want in your cluster.  Before you begin make sure you have the following:

  • a Document Conversion service license for each computer in your cluster
  • access to an administrative level account that has full permissions to the network share location
  • the same administrative level account must be used when the Document Conversion Service prompts for a Logon Account as part of its install process

Step 1: Install Document Conversion Service

Install Document Conversion Service and when prompted for the Logon Account, use the administrative level account that has access to the shared network location. This is critical as both Document Conversion Service and the Watch Folder Service tool will run under this account and need to have full access to the network share to be able to read/write and lock the files as part of the clustered conversion.

Step 2: Edit the Watch Folder Service Settings

The next step is to edit the Watch Folder Service settings to enable clustering and set the network share paths for the InputFolder, OutputFolder, FailedFolder and, if using, the CompletedFolder to the network paths created above.

The other two folders used by Watch Folder Service, the StagingFolder and WorkingFolder must be kept unique to each computer in the cluster. If you set these folders to the same location then your conversion will fail; do not do it!

Watch Folder uses these folders as a temporary holding location as it processes files. We highly recommend that these folders be set to a location on the local drive of the computer to reduce network traffic and improve performance.

Open the Watch Folder Service configuration file in Notepad by going to Start – All Programs – PEERNET Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Watch Folder – Configure Watch Folder Settings.

Watch Folder Service includes several sample watch folder configurations to get you started. You can modify any of them to suit your needs, or copy and paste a section to create a new one.

Edit the desired watch folder section to use the network share, replacing the paths shown below with your network share path. You will need to update the InputFolder, OutputFolder and FailedFolder locations. If you are using the CompletedFolder, set the path for that as well.  Keep the StagingFolder and WorkingFolder local to each computer in the cluster.

The last step is to enable clustered processing for this watch folder section by setting ClusteredProcessing.Enabled to true.

Step 3: Start Document Conversion Service

From the Document Conversion Service system tray icon, select Run Conversion Service to start the service.

You can monitor Document Conversion Service as it starts up by opening the logging console from the system tray menu.

The logging console will display status messages as the service starts. Do not leave this tool open and running 24/7. Use it to monitor service start up and as troubleshooting tool only. Leaving it running long term will cause issues with the conversion service.

Step 4: Start Watch Folder Service

Start the Watch Folder by going to Start – All Programs – PEERNET Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Watch Folder – Start Watch Folder Service. You can also start and stop the Watch folder service by selecting the service named PEERNET Watch Folder Service in the Services Control panel.

Start the logging console for the Watch Folder service by going to Start – All Programs – PEERNET Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Watch Folder – Open Watch Folder Log Viewer.

Like Document Conversion Service, the Watch Folder Service tool uses the same logging console to view its log files. Again, only use this logging console to monitor start up and to troubleshoot any conversion issues. Do not leave it running long term.

Step 5: Repeat for Each Computer

Repeat the above steps 1-4 for each computer in your cluster.

Tips to Increase Conversion Speed

Adjust the Conversion Throughput for Each Node

Depending on the capabilities of each computer and the license level of DCS you have installed, you can individually configure each computer in your cluster to maximize your document conversion throughput. See the how-to article Configure DCS and Watch Folder for Optimal Performance for complete details on determining your maximum throughput and applying the settings to both DCS and Watch Folder Service.

Faster PDF Conversion

This tip only applies when you have Adobe Reader (or Adobe Acrobat) installed on the computer. The default behaviour for Document Conversion Service when converting PDF files is to use Adobe to print them internally.

You can configure Document Conversion Service to use GhostScript to convert PDF files instead of Adobe. This approach is generally faster but take care to ensure that GhostScript can render your anticipated type of PDF documents correctly. You will need to run a sample set of PDF files using this approach to determine if using GhostScript instead of Adobe is an acceptable alternative.

How do I Setup DCS to Use GhostScript?

  1. Download and install the latest 32-bit version of GhostScript. Do not download the 64-bit version even for a 64-bit machine. DCS only works with the 32-bit version. If you have an internal version vetted by your IT department, you can use that provided it is 32-bit and version 9.05 or higher.
  2. Open the DCS configuration file by going to Start – All Programs – PEERNET Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Edit DCS Configuration File.
  3. Search the configuration file for the Adobe Acrobat Reader AppFactory section and set the Enabled setting to False to turn off Adobe Reader processing for PDF files. DCS automatically uses GhostScript to convert PDF files when Adobe Reader is missing or disabled.
  4. Next, search for the Ghostscript AppFactory setting. This section includes two additional settings, GS_DLL and GS_LIB, which DCS uses to set the version and location of GhostScript. Remove the comment markers and modify the paths for your version of GhostScript.
  5. Once modified, save your changes and restart DCS to pick up your modifications.

Running Post-Process Commands with Watch Folder Service


Introduced in Document Conversion Service 3.0.010, the Watch Folder Service can now run post-process commands for each file it finds to convert. These commands can be batch files or other executables.

You can specify separate commands to run  when the conversion succeeds and when it fails.

When the conversion is successful, we run the command against each file created by the conversion. If the conversion fails, then we run the command against the original source file.

A sample scenario of how this could be useful would be a watched folder set up to run a command to upload all newly converted files to an FTP server or a web server when they are successfully converted, and to send an email with the name of the original file in the case of a conversion failing.

Command Window Mode

The default behaviour is to run the command in a Hidden window. We recommend setting the window state to Normal when you first add in a success or failure command until you have confirmed the command is working and that you are passing your arguments expected.

  • Hidden – do not show the window. (Default)
  • Normal – display the window in its normal state.
  • Min – display the window minimized to the taskbar
  • Max – display the window maximized.

Waiting for a Command to Finish

When running a command, the Watch Folder will either wait for the command to complete or not wait for it to complete and will move on to the next file immediately. The default action is not to wait for the command to complete.

When waiting for the command to complete, a maximum wait time controls when to stop the running command if it has not completed in a timely fashion. This timeout can be increased but it cannot be set to 0 and it is enforced. The default timeout is three minutes.

  • DoNotWait – does not wait for the command to complete. (Default)
  • WaitForCompletion – wait for the command to complete before continuing.
  • WaitWithExitCode – waits for the command to complete and emits the exit code in the log.

Passing Arguments to Your Commands

The following variables for are available to use in your command line parameters. These variables will be automatically replaced with their appropriate values when the command runs.

  • $(OutputFilePath) – this is the path to the converted file.
  • $(FailedFilePath) – this is the path to the original file in its failed location.
  • $(SourceFileName) – this is the file name of the original file.

Testing Command Lines.

The default settings are to run the command with the window mode Hidden and the wait mode set to DoNotWait for the command to complete before moving on to the next file.

When adding and testing new commands we recommend setting the window state to Normal and the wait mode to WaitForCompletion until you have confirmed the command is working and your arguments are being passed as expected.

Sample Usage

Below is a sample post-conversion setup using the fictional command line tools UploadToServer.exe and TriggerEmailFail.exe. These executable names are placeholders that you would replace with your own command line tools that fit your workflow. They are not part of Document Conversion Service.

Take note of the usage of HTML escape characters for the quotation marks around the variable names in the parameters in order to pass the parameters with enclosing quotes.

Running a Command on Success:



Running a Command on Failure:


Getting Help and Other Features

Command won’t run or not sure why it isn’t working? Are you looking for a feature that you don’t see here? Contact us and we’ll be glad to help.

Here are some other features of Watch Folder Service you might be interested in:

Configure DCS and Watch Folder for Optimal Performance


Document Conversion Service and the included Watch Folder Service start with default settings for controlling the throughput of documents to be converted. Send too many documents at once and you risk actually slowing down the conversion, the opposite of what you intended to happen.

In the steps below, we will show you how to adjust the configuration of the Watch Folder to ensure that both the Watch Folder and the Document Conversion Service are kept busy and running at capacity as long as there are files to be converted.

How Many Can I Do?

The first thing to establish is how many documents you can convert in parallel. There are two factors used to determine this– the number of CPU/Cores on the computer on which you are running Document Conversion Service, and the license level of Document Conversion Service that you are using.

The higher the license level of Document Conversion Service the more documents you can convert in parallel. Licenses start with Entry Level at a single document, Level I at three documents, Level II at six and so on. If you are running a trial version of Document Conversion Service, it emulates a Level I license at three documents in parallel.

The number of CPU/Cores on the computer will also affect how many conversions you should actually have running in parallel. The first check is the license level and DCS enforces this when the service starts. After that, the rule of thumb is the number of conversions is equal to the number of cores plus half, with a recommendation of an optional extra core or two to allow for operating system tasks. For optimal performance, we suggest adjusting this to one (1) core per conversion thread.

In short, if you have a Level II license for six documents running on a four-core system, you should only run four documents in parallel for best performance.

The opposite of this, when you have more cores than the number of documents in parallel allowed by your DCS license, the number of parallel conversions is limited by your license model.

Configuring for Performance

Once you have determined how many documents you can convert at a time, you may need to adjust the Document Conversion Service to use this setting. If your license level restricts you to less conversions than you have cores, there is nothing to change. Otherwise, follow the steps below to update your settings.

  1. If DCS is running, stop the conversion service. DCS reads and applies settings only on service start.
  2. Open the DCS configuration file by going to Start – All Programs – Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Edit DCS Configuration File.
  3. The configuration file will open in Notepad and is an XML-based configuration file. Scroll down or search for the setting NumberOfDocumentsInParallel.
  4. In most cases, you can leave this setting to Auto, but for our fictional sample above with four cores and optimal performance, we would change this to 4.

Save your changes and restart DCS. If you have the Smart Inspect logging console open, you will see the available conversion threads listed at the end of the Watches panel.

Working Together

With DCS configured to run optimally on your computer, the next step is to adjust the Watch Folder service to take advantage of the conversion threads in DCS and to keep those threads busy converting documents.

To do this, we need to match the number of files that Watch Folder will process in parallel to the number of conversions that Document Conversion Service is set to convert and increase it by a small amount. Increasing this number by one or two will allow us to keep the DCS conversion threads continuously converting as there will always be a document or two queued up waiting as long as there are files left to be processed.

Like DCS, Watch Folder’s configuration file is an XML-based file that you can edit in Notepad.

  1.  If Watch Folder is running, first stop the service by going to Start – All Programs – PEERNET Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Watch Folder – Stop Watch Folder Service. You can also stop the service in the Services control panel. Watch Folder reads and applies settings only on service start.
  2. Open the Watch Folder configuration file in Notepad by going to Start – All Programs – PEERNET Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Watch Folder – Configure Watch Folder Settings.
  3. Scroll down or search for the setting NumberOfDocumentsInParallel and set this to the desired number. For this example, we would set this value to 6.
  4. Save the changes and restart the Watch Folder service by going to Start – All Programs – PEERNET Document Conversion Service 3.0 – Watch Folder – Start Watch Folder Service.

See it in Action!

To see your changes in action, drop a collection of files into one of the drop folders for the Watch Folder service. If you have a custom folder you have added or an existing one that you have modified, then use that folder. If not, then choose any of the pre-configured drop folders that come with the Watch Folder Service.

Below, a sizeable collection of files, larger than the six documents in parallel set in the Watch Folder configuration, have been dropped into the ConvertToTIFF drop folder.

As Watch Folder begins to pick up the files to be processed, you can watch the conversion threads in the Watches panel in the Smart Inspect logging console for DCS. Each thread will show the state of the document as is converting. These threads should never show idle until you are down to the last set of documents equal to the number of conversion threads are being processed. Then, as documents are converted, you will see the threads become idle one by one.

What Do I Do If I Need More?

Once you have configured Document Conversion Service and Watch Folder Service to work together optimally, the next step to increasing your document conversion throughput is to scale up the number of servers and move to a clustered conversion approach.

The following articles and how to guides below will help you get started, and as always, our technical team is always available to answer any questions you may have.

High Volume Document Conversion with Clustering and Failover

Setting Up High Performance Clustering and Failover

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High Volume Document Conversion with Clustering and Failover

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If you are looking for a high volume document conversion solution with clustering support, we’ve got some great news with the latest version of our Document Conversion Service software. Meanwhile, if you’re not sure if you need this feature, read on for some info on what clustering support is, and why your organization might need it.

The amount of digital data that is being stored has grown exponentially over the last decade and continues to increase with every passing year. Many businesses are going paperless, storing their critical files in local archive systems or moving them to cloud storage solutions. These files can be Adobe PDF documents, email messages, images, Word documents, Excel spreadsheets or any of a myriad of other file types used to share information in our increasingly connected world.

Many companies archive all of this data to a common format to make it easily accessible for current and historical access. This can lead to thousands, or even tens of thousands of email messages, documents and other files to be converted each day. To convert this amount of files a document conversion solution that is highly available and allows for continuous uptime is required. This is where clustering support comes into play.

Overview of a Cluster

What is clustering?

In the computing world, a cluster is a group of computers that work in tandem, doing the same task on a shared set of data. This spreads the work out across each computer, or node, in the cluster and allows for load balancing and failover protection.

Configuring higher-powered computers in the cluster to perform more of the conversions spreads the work out, keeping each computer busy, but not overloaded.

With multiple computers running, the need to take one computer offline for maintenance will have minimal impact, as the other nodes will continue to convert files from the central location.

We are happy to announce that the newest version of Document Conversion Service now includes clustering support with its included Watch Folder service.

Do I Need Clustering?

While advantageous, clustering is not the correct approach for everyone. It is best suited for dealing with situations with large numbers of files to be converted. If you have a small daily volume of files, it may not be necessary.

It is a good choice when you have any of the following scenarios:

  • You need to be able to convert a certain number of files every day.
  • You have to convert an existing, very large, collection of data by a certain timeframe.
  • You need 100% uptime on your conversion ability.
  • Your desired user experience requires that you can create the converted file in a certain amount of time.

These are just a few examples of some common conversion requirements that will benefit from using a clustered approach to document conversion.

Many Hands Make Light Work

When dealing with large volumes of files to be converted, clustering is an easy, cost effective way to increase the number of documents you can convert in a given timeframe.

A classic case of many hands making light work, it is actually faster to have two or more clustered computers processing against the same document collection than to convert that same collection using a single, more powerful, computer running full throttle.

While it seems like the performance might be a one-to-one match, running a powerful computer at its maximum actually slows down the processing. Not only is the computer busy converting documents, it is also running the operating system and any other background tasks. When pushed to its maximum processing capacity, the time spent switching between all of these tasks and making sure each gets an equal time slice slows the performance of the machine.

Running two less powerful computers below capacity gives each computer the breathing room to perform the necessary background tasks without affecting the speed of the conversions performed on each computer.

Always Have a Backup

As much as we wish otherwise, there will always be times when a computer will need taken offline for maintenance. This could be scheduled maintenance or system upgrades, or a restart needed due to unexpected behaviour from software on the server.

In a non-clustered environment, having to perform maintenance or reboot the computer causes backups and delays in the file conversion performed by that computer. In a clustered environment, performing maintenance on one computer in the cluster does not affect the others. They will continue to convert files while the other computer is fixed.

The nature of clustered conversion is such that it also provides an inherent level of high availability to your system. For a system that must have 100% uptime this approach allows for the loss of one or more computers in the cluster while still providing an acceptable level of service, albeit at a possibly slower rate.

Balancing the Load

Clustering allows you to distribute the document conversion out across multiple computers to provide better overall performance. To make the most out of each computer in your cluster, it is also important to be able to load-balance the amount of documents converted by each computer.

Performing document conversion can be a CPU intensive task. The ability to fine-tune each computer in the cluster to work at its peak performance so that it is busy, but not overloaded, is critical to a stable system.

Each computer’s optimum performance depends on the amount of RAM, the CPU and the numbers of cores it has. Also part of the equation are other services and programs also running on that computer as they, too, take a slice of the performance pie, reducing what remains for conversion.

The true power of a clustered approach for document conversion becomes apparent when using a collection of computers of varying levels of processing power. Having the ability to tailor the work performed by each computer to match its individual specifications allows you to use what you have to get the work done and provides you with a flexible and scalable conversion system.

Clustering and Failover with PEERNET Document Conversion Service

PEERNET’s popular Document Conversion Service now includes clustering and failover support built in to the included Watch Folder tool. Designed from the start with large volume batch conversion in mind, DCS supports converting files from PDF, Office documents and other common formats to PDF, TIFF, JPEG and other image storage types.

Commonly used in the medical, insurance and legal industries, Document Conversion Service and the Watch Folder tool run in the background 24/7 and require minimal active monitoring once setup is complete.

The new clustering and failover ability allows you to direct multiple computers running DCS at a single shared location containing the files to be converted. This can be an existing mass collection of files, or a drop location that periodically receives collections of files to be converted. Each computer will independently convert files from the shared location, increasing conversion speed and allowing for high-availability and failover support.

If you would like to learn more about Document Conversion Service and clustering, or any of its other features, and how we can help you with your conversion needs, we’re happy to help out. Simply contact us with your organization and your requirements and we’ll get back to you shortly.

If you prefer a more hands-on approach, you can request a trial of Document Conversion Service to install and investigate at your leisure. The following articles below will help you get started, and our technical team is always available to answer any questions you may have.

save time on document conversion

5 Company Problems You Can Solve with the Right Document Conversion Tools

save time on document conversion

Undergoing a transition from a paper-based office to one that is more conscious of the bottom-line, and environmental tolls, that paper use can have, is an excellent move to make. However, within each organization, there has to be a catalyst for undertaking this process. Sometimes, that can include issues that your organization is already facing; issues that using the right document conversion tools can actually help you solve!

Here is a look at five common problems within the workflow operations of companies large and small, and how using the right document conversion tools can help address these issues – setting your organization up for a more successful future.


1. The problem: Your organization is wasting financial resources and those of your employees on the costs associated with printing.

In depth: The legacy costs associated with outdated ways of doing business can add up in more ways than one. When it comes to paper, there are a bevy of costs that can drive up your overhead and be felt in your bottom line. Beyond the cost of the paper itself, these can include Costs of printer maintenance – toner and cartridges, repairs; costs of ongoing photocopier maintenance; time spent by administrative staff storing and retrieving documents; the cost of items needed and space taken up to physically store the documents; the costs of associated with mailing or sending hard copy documents; and even things like shredding costs associated with documentation.

Possible solutions: The key to reducing paper use within an organization is to provide an easy alternative that is scalable to the needs of your organization. That is where having the right file conversion software, combined with a transitional plan, will make a world of difference.


2. The problem: Employees are converting documents already, but using a mishmash of different tools.

In depth: There are no shortage of websites out there that allow for document conversion to PDF, TIFF, or other commonly used formats in the corporate environment. But this array of tools can be problematic for several reasons. For one, many of these free online file converters are less than ideal from a security perspective. If you have sensitive corporate documents or client information, the last thing you want to do is to be uploading that to an unknown, untrusted server. And that can be just the start of issues with untrusted online file converters; some can include watermarks on the outputted documents; many will limit the amount of output options available to you; you might be limited by the manipulations you’re able to do; or it might not support the file format that you’re inputting or you want to output in.

Possible solutions: There’s nothing inherently wrong with online file converters. You just have to make sure that you’re using one that’s a trusted converter that’s supported by a respectable company. PEERNET’s ConvertMyFiles.com is an outstanding option for companies that don’t want to install software, but require a secure, easy-to-use and powerful online document conversion service. Best of all, memberships start at only $1.00.


3. The problem: Members of your staff are not technically savvy, so new software and protocols can be problematic.

In depth: Introducing any sort of document conversion tool can seem like a daunting task if your colleagues are still very used to using a lot of paper, and not what you would call “techies.”

Possible solutions: For a successful move to reduce paper in your organization, the process has to be easy. And one of the easiest ways to start converting documents to PDF, TIFF or other common file formats used in the modern corporate world is to make use of a virtual image printer. An image printer installs on your Windows system and functions as a print driver. What this means is that it makes file conversion as easy as can be. A user simply chooses File > Print on their document, like they would if they were printing a document to hard copy paper. Then, the image printer appears as an option on the print menu dialogue. They select it, and the file is outputted as a PDF, TIFF, or whatever particular format they have chosen in that instance.


4. The Problem: There’s little consistency in the format and formatting of the documents that your employees or colleagues are using.

In depth: Maintaining a consistent look and feel, from one document to the next – and one viewing device to the next – is critical in establishing a high level of professionalism for your company to your customers and clients. But when the people producing documents are making use of a variety of file formats, you can lose some of that professionalism. The problem can be magnified when document formatting doesn’t maintain from one computer to the next. The issue arises regularly with programs like Microsoft Word.

Possible solutions: The issue of inconsistent formatting is solved by converting documents into a graphical-based format like the raster version of Adobe’s Portable Document Format (PDF); or Tagged Image File Format, commonly known as TIFF. Because these formats are rendered as images, the formatting is, consistently, exactly the same from one device to the next. This takes the guess work over worrying if your client will have their margins set the same, or whether that pie chart will be on the correct page that you intended.


5. The Problem: Establishing a consistent system of document conversion seems time-consuming.

In depth: If you’re in a large organization, any corporate undertaking can be challenging. And if you’re processing a large amount of documents daily for conversion to the proper format, that in and of itself can take significant time and resources.

Possible solutions: Automate the process. Batch document conversion is the best way to go for organizations that require a high volume of files to be changed from one format to another. PEERNET offers our enterprise-level Document Conversion Service, built from the ground up for exactly this task. With a little bit of set up and configuration, the process can be completely automated, leaving your employees free to work on the tasks and directives that work towards improving your bottom line, rather than increasing any overhead.


What Problems Can PEERNET Products Help You Solve?

ConvertMyFiles.com: The online file converter that you can trust. No software to install, so it’s a really easy to way to make sure everyone is using the same protocol to convert their documents securely. It also offers enough flexibility and functionality to replace several different conversion tools, in one nifty online package.

PDF Creator Plus: A great way to start cutting down on your organization’s use of paper… at a price that won’t break the bank. PDF Creator Plus is built as a cost-effective alternative to Adobe Acrobat, offering the same great features you need to start creating PDF files quickly.

Convert to PDF: This product can fill a specific need: for those who need to easily and quickly convert files to vector-format PDF. Vector files offer the advantage of the text being editable and searchable.

PDF Image Printer: Helps your company start converting documents to PDF as quickly and easily as possible, in most cases. This tool allows PDF to show up as an option on the standard Windows print menu. For organizations that want to make the transition to paperless as painless as possible, and want to utilize the raster PDF format to get there quickly, this is a great option.

TIFF Image Printer: Same as above, but for outputting to TIFF rather than PDF. This is the virtual printer you need if you require an on-demand TIFF conversion option. Quick and easy to use, with the functionality you require.

Raster Image Printer: This is a highly functional, and easy-to-use tool that allows you to present your clients with consistently formatted documents each and every time. Raster Image Printer is an all-in-one solution that handles both TIFF conversion and PDF conversion (and can also output files in JPEG format). Essentially functions as a combo of PDF Image Printer and TIFF Image Printer. A great option for organizations who rely on multiple document format conversions, on-demand.

File Conversion Center: For users or organizations who require a range of options, this desktop application allows for batch conversion of documents, on an on-demand basis, to PDF, TIFF and JPEG file formats.

Document Conversion Service: The solution you need to automate your file conversion process, saving your organization incredible amounts of time and resources. The industry-leading automated, batch file conversion solution. Capable of converting documents in the background, 24/7. Used by trusted institutions and organizations around the world for their file conversion needs.

Use Document Conversion Tools to Solve Your Company’s Problems

PEERNET offers a wide variety of file conversion products to help alleviate the inefficiencies in your organization mentioned above. For more information on how we might be able to help, please take a couple of minutes to watch the video below. It quickly runs through the benefits and uses of each of our products:

Additionally, we’re always happy to lend a helping land. Just get in touch with us to let us know what problems your organization is having trouble with, and we’ll get back to you to let you know how our document conversion tools can help solve your needs.

document converter

How to Convert to the Most Common File Types in Business

Here we’ll take a look at some of the most commonly-used file types in the corporate environments, (with a special focus on two of the most effective and most widely-used file types,
TIFF and PDF), as well as the best ways to convert files from one format to another.

document converter

JPEG:

JPEG is the likely the most common image format used on the web today. The reasons for its popularity have to do with its versatility, which allows it to suit a wide range of applications and made it the format of choice for Internet users. Primarily, JPEG files allow the user to maintain a high-level of quality on their images, while keeping file sizes down. This is due to its ability to use “lossy compression”, by compressing individual pixels in images to compress the overall file sizes.

TIFF

TIFF is fairly unique in that it is a format that almost bridges the gap from formats that are primarily used for images versus formats that are primarily used for text documents. That’s because TIFF is actually an image format that is widely-used for storing documents in the modern corporate environment.

The format has an interesting history that helps shed some light on its modern uses. Originally it was developed as a format conducive to transferring scanned documents onto the computer – that is, a printed page became a digital, image-based representation. Over the years, developers have added additional functionality to the original TIFF format protocol, and today it is the format of choice across many professional industries.

A few features of TIFF are particularly appealing. Because it is an image format, it displays identically regardless of what the user is viewing it on – and its wide adoption means that TIFF files are almost certain to be viewable on any device.

TIFF also boasts many different options for compression, which adds another level of versatility that makes it appealing to organizations of different sizes, depending on their need to balance quality and file size. Which is to say: the size of the file can be reduced through compression methods, while maintaining a high-quality outputted file. Additionally, its nature as an image format means that links, viruses and hidden data cannot be embedded in the files, which makes it appealing for organizations in this era of heightened alert against malware – and the need to protect customers’ sensitive information.

Document Formats:

Microsoft Office formats
.doc, .docx (Word), .xls, .xlsx (Excel), and others

Many businesses rely on the Microsoft Word suite of products for a lot of their document production. The ubiquitous nature of the software means that its native file formats (based on the .doc file ending for Word; and the .xls format for Excel) are widely used in the corporate environment. While their widespread use makes them convenient, the .doc/.docx file format does have some limitations when it comes to sharing documents with colleagues and clients – primarily due to the fact that in some cases, the formatting can be altered when the file is opened on one computer, smartphone or device in comparison to the one that it was created on.

PDF format

Portable Document Format, commonly known as PDF, are extremely common in the world of business. Their popularity is due to the fact that they act like a digital, visual representation of the printed page which everyone has been familiar with for hundreds of years. That means that formatting is maintained from one device to the next, regardless of operating system, screen size or other factors.

Because it’s so good at what it does, PDF formats are widely used across a variety of industries. Since it came about in the early 1990s, PDFs have been used for customer records, invoicing, sharing information, and much more.

The format has a wide range of other features and benefits not yet mentioned. For one, the format offers password protection for files, adding a layer of security to protect sensitive information from prying eyes. It also works well with multimedia elements; document creators can easily embed links, photos and other elements. And if required, PDF format documents can be uploaded to a company’s website, optimized for search engines, and downloaded by your clients and customers. All in all, the versatility of PDF makes it an ideal format for many companies to utilize quite frequently.

Converting to the Most Common File Types

Often, you might find that you need to convert files from one format to another. The reasons for this can be varied. In the case of a Microsoft Word document, for example, you might find it beneficial to convert the file to a format like PDF or TIFF to ensure consistent formatting – and so that the receiver of the document is able to view the document so that it looks exactly the same as you, the creator, intended.

Your choices for file converters are numerous, so this section aims to clarify which route is the best for you, depending on your particular needs. Options range from online file converters, to purpose-built virtual image printers, and all the way up to batch file converters, designed for enterprise level organizations.

Online File Converters:

Easy to use, no software to install

Sometimes, the simplest solution is to just do something online. In the case of file conversion, there are a variety of options that allow you to convert files from one format to another, including PEERNET’s own ConvertMyFiles.com.

With so many options available for online file conversion, it can be difficult to distinguish from one option to the next. Here are some of the ways that that you’re able to recognize a reputable, high-quality file converter online.

  • It is supported by a reputable, trusted company.
  • The organization that runs the website provides support for your conversion needs.
  • It offers the flexibility to convert to and from a wide variety of files.
  • It offers a range of customization options for the outputted files.
  • It allows you to output files without a watermark or other identifying information.

ConvertMyFiles.com checks all these boxes, and monthly conversion packages start from just $1.00 per month.

Virtual Image Printers:

Simple Way to Convert Files On-Demand

If you are working within an organization, you may find it beneficial to move to an actual piece of software for your file conversion needs. A good intermediary between an online file converter and a full-scale all-in-one document converter is a virtual image printer.

A virtual image printer is essentially a printer driver that you install on your computer. Once installed, an option will appear on the user’s usual Print menu dialogue. This makes it very user-friendly, offering extremely simple conversions from Word to PDF, Word to TIFF, and even to a variety of other formats (including JPEG, PNG and GIF). In PEERNET’s case, we offer:

  • PDF Image Printer: Converts files from other formats into high quality and small-sized PDF documents. Gives the user the ability to perform image adjustments to the outputted file, such as resizing, cropping, rotating, and more.
  • TIFF Image Printer: For users who require the ability to convert files to TIFF rather than PDF, our TIFF Image Printer is an outstanding option. It offers the same functionality as described just above, but is tailored to output files to the TIFF file format.
  • Raster Image Printer: The “Cadillac of image printers”, the Raster Image Printer combines the features of TIFF Image Printer and PDF Image Printer, into one tidy package.

Full-featured file converters

For high volumes of conversion

For organizations either large in size, or for smaller organizations that nonetheless require a high level of functional and fast document conversion, a step up to a full-feature file converter may be the right option.

For organizations with a serious need for regular file conversion — and even the ability to convert files on demand — you might want to consider PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service. The software is designed for high-throughput, and to convert files to TIFF, PDF or other formats automatically, without constant input from a user. Automated batch file conversion can save organizations significant time and resources by making the document creation as seamless and automatic as possible.

DCS allows for conversion from any printable Windows format, including file types generated by such commonly-used programs such as: Microsoft Word (.doc, .docx), Excel (.xls, .xlsx), Outlook, web pages (.html), Powerpoint (.ppt, .pptx), image editors (.png, .tif, .bmp) and many more.

Use the Right Tool for Your Document Conversion Needs

Using the right tool for your document conversion can be a huge time-saver and unlock new efficiencies within your organization, allowing you and your employees to spend more time on the tasks that really matter to your bottom line.

It should be noted as well that PEERNET offers a variety of other products to fill in some of the gaps between the ones mentioned in this post. Please click to view our complete line of file conversion software here.

If you need a bit more information on which direction you should turn to for your file conversion needs, please take a couple of minutes to watch the short video below.

And of course, if you need any further guidance or information, please don’t hesitate to reach out and contact us, and we’ll be sure to get you pointed in the right direction.

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Converting Microsoft Office Files to PDF or TIFF: What are the Easiest Solutions?

Microsoft Office is among the most widely-used suite of office products in the modern corporate environment. Microsoft Word, for word processing, and Excel for spreadsheets, in particular, are indispensable. Sometimes though, it’s necessary to convert these Microsoft Office files to another format. The reasons for not wanting to send clients or colleagues documents created by these programs  can be varied, including:

  • Compatibility issues: Though many people have Microsoft Office on their computers, many others do not. This is particularly the case with mobile devices, where adoption of the Microsoft Office suite of products is significantly lower than on traditional desktop computers.
  • Different versions: Because Office has been established for so long in the marketplace, different people have different versions of the software, which can lead to all sorts of issues, particularly relating to the next point…
  • Formatting Issues: Even if the user who receives the file has Microsoft Word on their computer, there’s no guarantee that the document will appear the same on the recipient’s computer or device as it looks on the sender’s.

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Those are just a few of the potential issues you can run into with sharing Microsoft Office documents. Those shortcomings can be addressed with converting your files to one of two popular formats that are widely used in the business world: PDF or TIFF.

A quick overview: Why are PDF and TIFF preferable?

The PDF (portable document format) and TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) filetypes share one major element in common: the document formatting appears the same to everybody, regardless of which device, computer or operating system it is viewed on. This makes these formats ideal for sharing – giving you, as the sender, the comfort of knowing that your document will be viewed exactly as you intended it to be.

This is because they are saved as raster files. That means that the outputted file is actually made up of rendered images, rather than individual text characters. That allows the outputted file – actually an image – to display exactly the same, whether it’s on a phone, a tablet, a computer, or even on a printed-out page.

(To be clear, there is another type of PDF file that does not output in raster, but rather vector. See details below on PDF Creator Plus if you have this requirement.)

Converting Word and Excel files to TIFF & PDF:

To convert Microsoft office files (including Word, Excel, Powerpoint and others) to TIFF and/or PDF, PEERNET offers a number of options that you may find useful, depending on your precise requirements and the resources of your company. These products offer support for all Microsoft Office file formats for conversion, including: Microsoft Excel (*.xls, *.xlsx, *.xlsm, *.xls, *.xlt, *.xltx, *.xltm, *.xlsb);  PowerPoint (*ppt, *.pptx, *.pptm); Microsoft Outlook (*.oft, *.msg, *.vcf, *.vcs, *.ics); Microsoft Word(*.doc, *.docx, *.docm, *.dot, *.dotx, *.dotm ), as well as generic filetypes that are readable in Office products, such as Rich-Text files(*.rtf), text files(*.txt, *.log, *.xml) and web files(*.htm, *.html, *.mht).

ConvertMyFiles.com

Converts Microsoft Office files to PDF, TIFF and more

This is an online file converter, ideal for those who have  a fairly limited requirement for file conversion, but would like to keep their options and flexibility open. Using an online file converter means that there’s actually no software to download and install. This, combined with its flexibility to support myriad file types, which is another appealing aspect for many users.

There are many online file converters out there, but ConvertMyFiles.com is able to set itself apart in a few distinct ways:

  • A user-friendly interface, designed to make submitting and converting files and documents as easy as possible.
  • Best-in-class features for online PDF creation: embedded fonts (searchable and selectable text), vector graphics and where possible hyperlinks and bookmarks.
  • A fully-responsive web design to make conversion easy on any device.
  • No watermarks on your document, ensuring the highest level of professionalism and consistency.
  • The ability to combine multiple files to a PDF file.
  • A variety of output settings, allowing you to customize your outputted document to find the right balance between quality and file size.
  • The peace-of-mind of uploading your files to a site that is run by a trusted, well-established company like PEERNET.

Using an online file converter is a great solution for individual users, or small organizations that have a limited, but regular need for file conversion, and are looking to keep costs as low as possible.

TIFF Image Printer

Converts Microsoft Office files to TIFF

This piece of software essentially functions as a virtual printer, or print driver. Its functionality could not be quicker or simpler. The TIFF Image Printer uses your Windows’ existing “Print document” functionality to create new outputted TIFF files.

While its functionality is rather simple, its set of features is actually quite substantial:

  • Probably the fastest and easiest way to convert Microsoft Office documents to TIFF
  • Control over the output settings of the document
  • Support for automation and custom naming
  • Ability to adjust outputted dots per inch, from 50 to 1200 – wide variation in quality available
  • Ability to perform image adjustments such as resizing, image rotation, cropping, trimming and more
  • Significant compression settings for your TIFF documents
  • Ability to add header and footer endorsements
  • Support for custom paper sizes
  • Version 11.0 is supported on all Windows platforms dating back to Windows XP.

PDF Image Printer

Converts Microsoft Office files to PDF

If you have a need to convert files to PDF, then our PDF Image Printer offers a nearly identical solution as TIFF Image Printer – except that it offers much of the same functionality, tailored towards PDF conversions.

In addition to the benefits offered above, a few of the top features of PDF Image Printer include:

  • Converts to high quality, small size PDFs.
  • Creates secure non-searchable, non-editable, PDF/A-1B compliant PDF files.
  • Supports password protection & 40-bit or 128-bit encryption, and permission levels to restrict access to document contents

Raster Image Printer

Finally, if you need a straightforward solution that gives you the ability to regularly convert Microsoft Office files to either PDF or TIFF, you may want to consider using Raster Image Printer. It combines the functionality of both PDF Image Printer and TIFF Image Printer into one convenient package. The main advantage of using this is that it gives you the functionality and flexibility to convert your Microsoft Office files into either of those prominent formats.

Other Options for Office to PDF or TIFF

For individuals or organizations with a need for more regular conversion of Microsoft Office files – or more powerful conversion features – there are a number of other options available as well.

Here is a brief rundown:

  • PDF Creator Plus – offers much of the same functionality as Adobe Acrobat, but at a more cost-effective price point. PDF Creator Plus allows you to combine, edit and merge all types of printable Windows documents (including Microsoft Office, of course), into an outputted PDF file. This is a standalone piece of software, in contrast to the Image Printers we’ve noted so far. With that comes plenty of annotation tools, customization options, and advanced features for power users. These files are vector files in contrast to the other options we’ve discussed in this post, which output into raster files. The advantage of vector files is that you can search for text in them, in the same way that you would in a Word document. This may prove beneficial for document searchability and discovery.
    As an added bonus, PDF Creator Plus has a Microsoft Word add-in built right in. This allows you to create PDF documents from Microsoft Word with your headings, outlines and hyperlinks intact by using the Save As PDF 7.0 Word Add-In included with the product.
  • Document Conversion Service – For organizations with a need for a high-volume document conversion program in order to change a large amount of Microsoft Office files into PDF or TIFF, PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service is the ideal file conversion solution. It runs 24/7 in the background, and allows for automated, batch file conversion, which can save your organization an incredible amount of time, money and resources over the long haul. It also offers a wide array of advanced features for IT departments and power users, to optimize the efficiency of your document conversion protocol.

For Converting Office Files to PDF or TIFF, We Have You Covered

Whether you need a solution for Word to PDF, Excel to TIFF, or any conversion in between, PEERNET has a product that can fit your needs. For further information, and to clear up what product might be right for you, please take just a couple of minutes to watch the video below.

And of course, if you have any further questions, or need any guidance in choosing the right Office to PDF or Office to TIFF solution, we are always here to help. Simply contact us and we will get back to you to help you find the product that’s right for your needs.

document converter features

The 9 Features You Need in a Document Converter

If you’re either making the transition within your organization to digital documentation for the first time, or just looking for a more efficient method of doing things, the solution is the same: finding and using the ideal document converter for your business’s needs. That can be a daunting task on first glance; there’s certainly no shortage of options out there. And getting it right is absolutely essentially to increasing productivity, lowering costs, and keeping your company competitive with others in your field.

document converter

If this is the stage you’re at, this post is designed is designed to help. Here are some of the main elements you should seek out in determining the right document converter for your needs.

Decide whether you need a piece of software that does one thing really easily and efficiently, or if you need software that allows for flexibility in your document conversion.

If you’re just starting on the path of choosing document conversion tools for yourself or your company, the first question you’ll want to answer is: what file formats do you intend to be using? This will really help define what sort of converter you should be looking for. For example, If you’ve already decided that you will only need to do basic conversions to the TIFF format, you might want to consider something like PEERNET’s TIFF Image Printer. That driver (along with its counterpart, PDF Image Printer) are designed to make conversions as easy as printing out a piece of paper.

If, on the other hand, you require document conversion to a number of different formats — or you’re not yet sure which formats you’ll be using — then keep your options open by going with a converter that allows for more types of outputted file formats.

If needed, seek out powerful features to customize document settings and increase efficiency.

A huge advantage to using professional document conversion tools over a bare-minimum piece of software (or even a free online converter) is the amount of options you have to customize your outputted settings. These can be relatively basic elements like compression (and more on that later), but can also run the gamut of powerful features to get the most out of your document conversion tools. Some of these will include manipulations to the outputted document, such as: cropping, copying, image rotation, resampling, margin trimming. As you move up to more advanced pieces of software for document conversion, your options increase. Some PEERNET software above the virtual image printer level, for example, includes features like right-click-to-convert, drag & drop conversion bins, and the ability to run scheduled conversion tasks. Power users are able to do things like integrate a document converter as part of an automated workflow, or run conversions from the command line.

Make sure the software has the ability to save settings.

Of course, having access to a wide range of output options is great, but be sure that the document converter you use allows you to save settings from one session to the next.

In making a selection, prioritize ease-of-use and user interface, to minimize employee training time.

Although the best document converter software offers robust functionality as mentioned above, there is also a balance to be struck in terms of usability. If tools that do a relatively basic task, like converting a Word document to a PDF, are difficult for a computer user of average skill to do, then many of the benefits of using a professional document conversion tool in the first place are lost. Our different tools and pieces of software offer different levels of customization and functionality, but all (aside from enterprise-level Document Conversion Service) are built with the average corporate worker in mind. Employee training takes time, and time is money, so our document conversion tools are built to minimize this. And our line of virtual printers, such as PDF Image Printer and Raster Image Printer, truly make conversion as easy as can be — utilizing your Windows’ system’s existing print dialogue box.

Be mindful of compression options, to balance the needs of document quality and storage space.

Ensuring the quality of digital documentation is a major requirement for some organizations. For others, it’s a secondary concern; not as important as ensuring that a massive quantity of customer records, client notes and internal communications are able to be kept on file. Every organization’s needs when it comes to document conversion are unique, and that’s why you should look for software that addresses that. A balance between document quality and the size of the files can be a tricky balancing act. The answer lies first in the file format used to store digital documentation (TIFF, PDF, etc.), and second in the compression applied to the outputted document. Basic document converters may lack this functionality; when determining software that’s right for your company, don’t forget about this crucial feature.

If you will be using the software to create PDF files, don’t forget about annotation and editing features.

Portable Document Format (PDF) is one of the file types that is most commonly used for digital documentation in the modern workplace. Their main benefit is that they can replicate the printed page (keeping formatting when transferred from one computer to the next, or when physically printed out). But one of the biggest advantages they have over a printed page is the way you’re able to make notes, highlights, etc. on the digital copy. This makes them great as a tool for sharing information internally with your team, or notating things to your customers or clients. PEERNET’s PDF Creator Plus is similar to Adobe Acrobat, but at a more cost-effective price than the alternative, and as such, includes nearly all the functionality you’ve come to know and expect out of such a product.

Seek out software backed by a reliable company with good quality customer service and support.

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of document conversion products on the market today. So in determining which sort of software is right for your business or organization, don’t forget to look beyond the software itself — and at the company behind it. PEERNET is based in North America, and has many, many years of experience since our start in 1997. We not only have the knowledge that comes with years of building ideal corporate document converter tools, but also supporting them with great quality customer service. Our products are used by many well-known international organizations around the world, including IBM, FedEx and BMW. These orrganizations place their trust in our reputation, quality of product and quality of service to address their needs.
Find a product or products with a cost that suits the needs of your organization.

One of the main benefits of using document conversion software in the office is the fantastic cost savings that it can bring to your organization. This often manifests itself in a number of ways: reduction in paper costs, staffing costs, storage space, non-efficient use of time, and more. But the savings that you can potentially see go out the window if the software you are using to as a digital document creation tool is not in-line with the scale of your business and its document creation requirements. PEERNET file conversion tools are priced to meet the needs of businesses of different sizes: from one-person operations to international, enterprise organizations. Our software is built to be accessible to all those who have a need for file conversion.

For organizations with a need for ongoing file conversions, the ability to automate and batch convert documents.

Finally, for companies with such a regular need for file conversion that it becomes time and resource-prohibitive to have someone doing it manually, a batch document converter is the best option. For those organizations, software such as PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service should be seriously considered. DCS is built with enterprise organizations in mind, or those companies that simply have a need for a high amount of document conversions and/or digital document creation. It operates as a Windows service and is capable of converting files from some of the most common Windows formats to PDF, TIFF, JPEG and other storage types. Best of all, it converts in the background 24/7, so it doesn’t require active monitoring once setup is complete. DCS is commonly used in industries like the medical field, law, and public service; it’s truly the ideal, purpose-built file conversion solution for organizations who have a substantial need for image archiving or to convert a multitude of files, such as for mass TIFF archiving or document records.

Make the Right Choice, and Enjoy the Benefits for Years to Come

Choosing the right software as your primary document converter is one of the most important choices that you can make. Keep these elements in mind as you go through your search and it will help you make the right decision. If you need more help to guide your search, you may find further assistance in a few of these recent blog posts:

As well, please take just a couple of minutes to watch the video below for more information on which PEERNET document conversion software could be right to address the particular requirements of your organization:

Furthermore, if you need any additional guidance, we’re happy to help out. Simply contact us with your organization and your requirements and we’ll get back to you shortly.

file conversion solutions

The Best File Formats for the Modern Office

Today’s corporate environment is changing quickly, driven by new technology. To stay up-to-date, companies should be utilizing the latest in digital technology so that productivity does not suffer in comparison to its competitors.

Using digital documentation, in favor of the old paper-based methods of record keeping, offers a huge range of benefits to your company, going forward. Any successful use of digital documentation will largely be built on a solid foundation of using the right file formats.

modern file formats at the office

For most organizations, we recommend one of two formats for digital records: Either PDF (portable document format) or TIFF (Tagged image file format.) These file types are used around the world by organizations large and small, and by companies who have a need for reliability, dependability and ease-of-use in their company’s documents and records.

Let’s take a look at the advantages of using the right file formats; how they can help you become a more productive and efficient workplace; and some of the best file converter software solutions to help your company stay up-to-date.

The right file formats make it easier to work from anywhere

Today’s workplace is shifting to a more fluid, digital experience where the presence of a physical location is of minimal importance. The traditional norms of being present during certain hours at a certain place are starting to fall by the wayside. New devices and greater connectivity allows today’s younger workforce to work from anywhere – whether that’s in the office, on the road, or at home.

To facilitate this newer mode of collaborative working, digitizing your customer records is definitely the way to go. Digital record keeping allows your employees to access important records and files from anywhere. Rather than being reliant on antiquated methods (such as mailing, filing, etc.), utilizing formats like PDF and TIFF suddenly make it possible for your employees to detach themselves from the requirement of a physical office space, and plug into greater connectivity.

The right file formats help reduce the need for a large physical office /potentially can cut down on administrative work

Opening up the ability to work from anywhere allows for other potential opportunities to cut costs around the office. To start with, taking up less physical space with filing systems, cabinets and the like, can potentially allow you to cut down on office space.

Additionally, moving more of your files to digital form can actually allow you to re-allocate staff to the core objectives of your business. Rather than having them spending their time filing and sorting, they can be oriented towards tasks that serve the most important aspects of your revenue-generating operations. These transitions are fostered by making use of file formats like PDF and TIFF that allow a smooth transition towards a more paperless and digital office.

PDF and TIFF visible the same on all device sizes

With the proliferation of different devices, operating systems and screen sizes, document management from one system to the next has the potential to be problematic. When sharing documents from, say, a computer to a smartphone, you want to ensure that the documents display the same way. Beyond that, you also want to make sure that the format is actually viewable on all devices.

Let’s take a Microsoft Word file as an example; one of the most commonly-used file types in the modern corporate world. There can potentially be several issues that arise with these types of files. First, a file that’s saved in the format of .DOC or .DOCX generally requires that the end user have the Word software installed on their device to view it – and it’s fair to say that most people don’t have Microsoft Office installed on their smart phones (very few would even have it on their tablets). So right off the bat, you can run into issues there. Beyond that, even if the end user does have Word or another word processing program that’s capable of viewing the file, it’s not certain that the formatting will be maintained from one screen to the next. That could make you look highly unprofessional in the eyes of clients, or cause confusion amongst your colleagues. For those and reasons and more, sending documents in a format that maintains its consistency is a must, and PDF and TIFF are the ideal formats to make sure that happens.

It creates consistency in your company’s files and documentation.

Building on the last point, consistency from one format and device to the next can not only make things easier for your employees, but if you’re sharing documentation with clients, it can add a level of professionalism to your documentation. As well, using a consistent file format in PDF/TIFF, and utilizing consistent settings can help ensure that the actual quality of the outputted file is maintained, each and every time.

How to Create TIFF or PDF Files

A successful modern office gives users the tools of the trade to easily create the files that they need. In this section, we’ll look at the approaches you can take towards empowering your employees with this capability, and some of the best options in terms of file conversion software to make the idea into a reality.

Image Printers:

Image printers, sometimes referred to as virtual printers, are a very simple way to create the types of files that are ideal for the modern office environment. They are, basically, a simple driver that you install on your computers that allows for added functionality on your Windows computer’s Print menu. The primary advantage of an Image printer for PDF creation or TIFF creation is its ease-of-use and overall lack of a learning curve.

Recommended solutions:

To create PDF files, you can’t go wrong with PEERNET’s PDF Image Printer. It is the quickest and easiest way to convert your Windows files to PDF. The user simply selects PDF Image Printer from the dropdown menu in the print folder, and the file is outputted to a specified folder.

If you are going with TIFF files, then the TIFF Image Printer offers the same functionality, but for TIFF files.

If you anticipate requiring the regular conversion of files to both formats, then consider our Raster Image Printer product (we call it the “Cadillac” of our image printer family!) It features all the functionality of the two products mentioned above, including advanced image processing features, automation options, compression settings and more.

Purpose-built, on-demand file creation software:

If you need some more customization, you may want to consider making use of specialized software. This class of products allows you to create files on demand, by either selecting, combining or merging different files. The advantage of software such as this is that this class of product tends to offer more features and customization options than a standard image printer.

Recommended solutions:

If you regularly create PDF files but require something a little bit more advanced than simple conversions from one file format to another, you may want to consider a software solution such as PDF Creator Plus. This program offers much of the same functionality as Adobe Acrobat, but is offered at a price that is more cost-effective for users and businesses. Its core functionality allows users to combine, edit and merge other types of documents into a searchable, outputted PDF file. Of course, prior to creating your final outputted file, the software also gives you the option to edit and annotate your documents.

Enterprise-level automated batch file conversion solutions:

The other option, for companies that have a significant need for ongoing file conversion, is an automated file conversion solution that operates in the background. This type of solution does not require someone to manually input files to convert; rather, it can be set up to convert files automatically, saving significant time and resources.

If you need to regularly convert to a various number of file formats, our File Conversion Center may be a good solution. It converts from Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.), HTML (web pages), PDFs and more; and is capable of converting to non-searchable TIFF, JPEG, PDF and other popular image formats. If your organization has a regular need for file conversion but not at the level that you need to automate the process yet, this might be a good piece of software to explore.

Recommended solutions:

For ongoing, automated batch file conversion, PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service is a best-in-class solution. DCS offers truly automated file conversion. It supports a wide range of the most popular and common file formats, and is commonly used to convert files to PDF, TIFF, JPEG, and more. The newest edition of Document Conversion Service even allows you to create vector PDFs – making the documents searchable, and allowing for clickable links.

Document Conversion Service functions as a true Windows service, offers a robust set of features for power users and IT departments (including command line tools and workflow integration), and a wide variety of other advanced features.

Start Your Transition Today

Make the move towards a more modern workplace environment today! PEERNET products are the ideal solution to help you get there.

If you’re not sure about which product might be right for your company’s needs, please take a couple of minutes to watch the short video below, which should help clear things up.

And remember, if you ever need further assistance we’re always willing to lend a friendly hand. Contact us today!

document converter

7 Keys to a Successful Enterprise File Conversion Transition

Being a part of a large organization presents its own challenges and opportunities when it comes to implementing a strategy for efficient digital document management system. Primarily, the size and scale of the organization will inform the route you take in terms of software and solution section. Training and protocol is also an obstacle, albeit one that can be significantly minimized as part of a cohesive plan. As for the benefits of moving more documentation to the digital realm, they are plain to see.

enterprise document conversion

Organizations in all sorts of industries are already well on board with electronic document management practices, proving their effectiveness. For enterprise-scale organizations, replacing even a small percentage of your documentation with digital equivalents can add up to significant savings in terms of costs, time and resources.

When you see the need to start making more use of digital documentation, the best transitions start with thinking about all the possible considerations. Here are 7 things to think about to ensure a successful undertaking to make greater use of digital documentation in your organization.

1. Get the whole management team on-board, and buy-in from the employees.

Committing to eliminating some of your company’s paper waste and transitioning to a new era of digital documentation is the smart and prudent move at this point in time. The benefits are numerous. For a successful plan to take shape and be implemented, these favorable points must be communicated accurately. Here is a brief summary of some of the main benefits of document digitization, which you can use to get everyone on-board with an accelerated transition to utilizing digital documentation.

  • It can save significant time and resources for your employees.
  • It can save money from your company’s bottom line over the long-run.
  • It can help your employees collaborate more easily with each other.
  • It can help improve your company’s customer service, by providing more easily searchable and retrievable information.
  • It can open up new possibilities for your team to work from different locations.
  • It can help your company become more environmentally conscious.

2. Decide on the best file format(s) for your company’s particular needs.

Choosing the right file format or formats is a fundamental part of a successful transition to start using more digital documentation in your organization. Making the right choice will make everything else easier, and making the wrong one can hinder your company’s availability to productively make the switch.

A majority of enterprise-level organizations that make significant use of digital documentation in this manner make either PDF files or TIFF files the bedrock of their digital filing systems. Both formats have benefits and drawbacks; for more information, please see our post on PDF vs. TIFF.

3. Don’t downplay document security issues; consult with internal or external IT for best solutions.

If you work in a large facility, you probably have some physical security measures in place at your office building or place of work. They may include barriers to prevent entry, locks and/or passwords to view certain physical files or reach certain parts of the building. The same principles should be applied to your digital documentation. Some of the primary things to think about include:

  • Considering the various security features available in each of the main digital document formats used for record keeping in a corporate, institutional and/or enterprise-type environment.
  • Making sure that employees are not tempted to expose your company’s files to untrusted locations. For example, without an enterprise file conversion protocol in place, they may be tempted to use unsafe, free document conversion websites.
  • Ensure employees are familiar with the basics of strong passwords – a basic preventative step that nonetheless provide a vital line of security for your customers or clients’ sensitive information and records.
  • Make sure that digital documents are securely backed up on a regular basis.

4. Ensure a solid organization and naming structure is in place for files.

As with security, many of the same principles from physical, paper document organization apply with digital document organization. You want to establish a clear structure of folders, and where users can expect to find things. After all, one of the main benefits of digital documentation over physical printed documents is the ability to easily and quickly retrieve documents as needed. Here are a few of the foundational elements of establishing this.

  • The naming structure of your documents should be consistent across the board, to ensure that the files are easily scannable, and the correct file, easily retrievable.
  • It should be a simple enough structure that it’s easy to follow and not bothersome to follow. If it’s annoying to do so, employees likely won’t abide when working with their own files.
  • You also may want to consider using some sort of date notation within the name of the files themselves. This can make it easier to sort through, depending on the overall setup you end up going with.

5. When choosing your format, consider the importance of “searchability.”

One of your main determinants between choosing either PDF, TIFF or a combination of both file types should be how you and your team plan to search for information within documents. To wit, if you want to be able to easily search for specific text within documents, then you might want to consider using a format such as vector PDF – which renders individual text characters, and allows the user to do a standard text search to look for certain passages. A raster PDF, conversely, renders all text as images, so it doesn’t give you the same ability. With both types of the PDF format, however, there can be metadata embedded within the document itself for easier searchability and to allow the user to find the document they’re looking for. TIFF files can be integrated with optical character recognition (OCR) features that, as with vector PDFs, allow you to search for specific text characters within the file.

All in all, it’s important to be familiar with precisely what each format offers in terms of search ability and use that as a factor in your decision on file formats.

6. Consider the benefits of automating the file conversion/file creation process.

For enterprise-scale organizations, the best option is often to set things up-front and then let the process run automatically. This is definitely the case for organizations with an ongoing need for file conversion to TIFF, conversion to PDF, or other formats. Automating the process has several big advantages – primarily, the fact that the resources that would otherwise be spent manually converting or creating files are now handled by the automated file conversion solution you’ve put in place.

For this purpose, PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service is the industry-leading solution that’s available for enterprise organizations today. DCS is built with enterprise-scale document conversion in mind – scalable, fast, and boasting a robust set of features that make it a powerful asset for your organization’s document conversion needs.

7. Choose the right software for your organization to convert files to your chosen format.

Finally, choosing the right software can make all the difference in ensuring your enterprise file conversion efforts are a resounding success. They are the tools upon which success or difficulties will be built upon. Here is a brief look at some of the tools offered by PEERNET that have been used by previous enterprise and institutional customers to great effect when either moving to increase their efficiency with processing and creating digital documentation, or even starting from scratch.

To combine edit, and merge files into new PDFs: PDF Creator Plus. This is a software solution, offering functionality quite similar to Adobe Acrobat – at a price that’s actually quite a bit more cost-effective. If your organization has a regular need to create PDF documents from scratch by combining different elements, you can learn more about PDF Creator Plus here.

For Simple PDF Conversion from other Windows file formats: PDF Image Printer. This is a virtual printer that allows users to convert a document to PDF through the standard Windows print menu. Extremely easy to use, so it doesn’t require a great amount of training on the part of your employees. They just navigate to the PRINT menu as they ordinarily would, and select the PDF Image Printer instead of a physical printer. Their converted file is then simply outputted to the specified folder.

For Simple TIFF Conversion from other Windows file formats: TIFF Image Printer. This virtual printer offers the same functionality as described in PDF Image Printer above, except that it outputs converted TIFF files.

To convert to both PDF or TIFF: Raster Image Printer combines the functionality of TIFF Image Printer and PDF Image Printer into one sleek, convenient software package.

For on-demand enterprise file conversion: File Conversion Center. This is a time-saving desktop application that converts your Office, PDF, Postscript, HTML, and more file types into TIFF, PDF, JPEG and other formats. Features include the ability to run scheduled conversion tasks, command line interface, drag and drop conversion bins, and right-click-to-convert-functionality.

For enterprise-scale automated, batch file conversion: Document Conversion Service. As mentioned above, DCS is an industry-leading conversion solution that allows you to convert from a huge range of file types into PDF, TIFF, and other image formats. Features like Workflow integration, customizable drag and drop folders for conversion, and the ability to convert files 24/7 in the background make this the automated batch file converter of choice for organizations with a need for ongoing document conversion and creation.

Still Not Sure? Please take a couple of minutes to watch the brief video below, which runs through all PEERNET product offerings and should help you determine which product might be right for your enterprise file conversion needs.

And if you still need help with choosing software for your organization, whether you work in a large institution or a small business, you can always contact us for some advice and guidance.

save time on document conversion

How Document Conversion Software Helps Your Company Work Faster and Smarter

The companies that are truly flourishing these days have streamlined their processes relating to their adoption and use of technology in the workplace. Making use of digital documentation, with efficient file conversion and creation processes is one of the best ways to move your company in this direction.

If you use any files for record-keeping at all – be it TIFF, PDF, JPEG – you should make an up-front investment in professional file conversion software for maximum efficiency. It is almost certain to pay off, long-term, and allow your company to work faster, smarter, and more efficiently.

The Benefits of Digital Document Filing

If, like many other companies and individuals, you’re already thinking about the ways that moving some of your daily record-keeping to digital formats, then you’re ahead of the game. With proper naming structures and organizations, digital files can prove to be more easily searchable, discoverable and useful. Think of not only the reduction in time spent manually filing and searching for documents – but also, the intelligence that working with digitized data can provide.

PEERNET offers a wide range of file conversion software solutions that fit this mold of improving your company’s efficiency.

The Tools of the Trade

Before we get into exactly how these can help your overall objectives of working faster and smarter, here is an overview of the main tools we’ll be focusing on.

ProductDescriptionWorks well for…
ConvertMyFiles.comA website that allows you to quickly and easily convert to PDF, JPEG, TIFF and other file types.A cost-effective solution for users who have a regular need for file conversion and who do not want to install additional software on their computers.
PDF Creator PlusAllows you to combine, edit and merge Windows documents into a PDF file.The perfect fit for individual users or companies that are looking for a more cost-effective alternative to software such as Adobe Acrobat.
PDF Image PrinterA virtual printer that allows your staff to turn any printable Windows document into a PDF, with the click of a mouse.A good solution for individual users and companies, large and small, who have a need to convert various types of documents to PDF format.
TIFF Image PrinterIn the same fashion as PDF Image Printer, utilizes the Windows “Print a Document” prompt to quickly and easily create TIFF files.Suitable for companies or users who need a simple way to convert TIFF files, easily and on-demand.
Raster Image PrinterIncorporates the functionality of both PDF Image Printer and TIFF Image Printer, as well as the ability to convert files to JPEG in the same manner.Ideal for organizations who utilize both PDF and TIFF on a regular basis.
Document Conversion ServiceA full-featured, automated batch document conversion solution which is capable of converting documents in the background, 24/7.Built for organizations who have an ongoing need for file conversion from and to a variety of document and image formats. Widely used by enterprise-level organizations.

How these Document Conversion Tools Help Your Company Work Faster

Now that you’re familiar with some of the tools available, let’s take a look at how they can actually benefit your company’s productivity, and therefore, its bottom line.

Spend way less time on the actual conversion process, and more time on what matters to your company.

PDF Creator Plus, PDF Image Printer, TIFF Image Printer, Raster Image Printer, Document Conversion Service

These tools all have something in common – they’ve been built from the ground up, based on years of expertise and knowledge, to provide users with easy, but powerful file conversion options. Here’s how:

  • They simplify your process. Established processes can save your organization significant time and resources, so if you’re converting customer records, receipts, or anything of the like into PDF or TIFF, it helps to have that process in place. Choosing and using the right file conversion software can be the main cog that your process is built around.
  • They allow you to use saved setting profiles. So you can set your preferences once and use them on an ongoing basis, rather than fiddling around with your output settings every time you convert a file. This takes a lot of the hassle out of file conversion.
  • They minimize training time. All but the highest-end professional document conversion software like that provided by PEERNET is designed to be very user-friendly. Our line of image printers, for example, requires only that the user is capable of printing a document – not much to ask, in this day and age.

Use single-purpose virtual printer tools to wean your business off paper and maximize efficiency.

PDF Image Printer, TIFF Image Printer, Raster Image Printer

  • Sometimes, the easiest solution is the smartest one. If you just need to start down the path of reducing your company’s dependence on physical printers, then implementing virtual printers is a terrific way to get started. Reducing your use of printers, and therefore paper, is one of the easiest ways to start working smarter. Our line of image printer products makes the transition painless. Built for speed and ease-of-use, replacing some or all of your physical printer usage with virtual printers save your company time, resources and money.

Use a web-based solution for conversions as you need them.

ConvertMyFiles.com

  • No software, no worries. For users who need to convert files to PDF, on any basis ranging from infrequently to regularly, an online file converter like ConvertMyFiles.com might just be your smartest choice. It offers conversions from and to a wide variety of file formats. Using a website gives you the flexibility to choose the package that fits your exact needs best – and the ability to use or discontinue the service depending on your requirements at that particular point in time. Or, let’s say you find that you don’t need many conversions one month, but the next you have a great need. Simply upgrade your conversion package from one month to the next.

Use a smarter choice for PDF creation.

PDF Creator Plus

  • Lower Cost, Same Great Functionality. Our PDF Creator Plus software allows you to create PDF documents from scratch by editing, merging or combining other Windows documents into a PDF file. Its core functionality is quite similar to that of Adobe Acrobat, but it is priced at a point that makes it accessible for everyone, including individual users at home, or small companies. The type of outputted PDF files created are vector files, which means that they make use of actual text characters rather than just graphical representations (raster files). That format of PDF file can save you and your colleagues significant time in finding information that you need. Plus, despite its product name, it allows you to use the same functionality to create files in different formats: you can also create TIFF, JPEG, Windows BMP images, and placeable Enhanced Metafile (EMF) files. For combining multiple files into a new PDF document, there’s nothing faster and that, combined with its lower cost to your company, makes it the smart choice.

Use one conversion solution that works for a number of formats.

Raster Image Printer

  • Provides the flexibility to use the format you need at any given time. Some users and companies know that they need to start using digital documentation, or move further towards that direction, but aren’t exactly sure what file format they’ll be using in the future. Other organizations require the flexibility to convert documents to a range of different formats.
    In either case, Raster Image Printer serves as the ideal solution. On its own, it can replace several tools. Whether you need to convert to TIFF, convert to PDF or convert to JPEG, Raster Image Printer can do it fast and efficiently – freeing up your employees or colleagues’ time and resources.

For maximum efficiency, you can completely automate the process.

Document Conversion Service

  • Automated batch document conversion: What could be more efficient than a solution that converts files in the background, 24/7? PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service is the ideal way to achieve this.
    Suitable for organizations of any size that have a need for ongoing file conversion, but commonly utilized by companies that are large in scale, Document Conversion Service is primarily an enterprise batch file converter that is trusted and relied upon by companies around the world. If you have a large amount of files that need regular conversion, Document Conversion Service truly makes your company’s operations as efficient as possible – the smartest and quickest way to get a handle on your file conversion needs.

Get Your Company Working Smarter and Faster

Working smarter at the office can give you the narrow edge you need to beat out the competition. The gap between companies is often narrow, so don’t let document conversion drag you down – use PEERNET products to help your company thrive.

Still not certain which PEERNET offering will most help your company’s productivity? Please take a few minutes to watch the short video below, which should help sum it up for you.

And if you still need a hand to get your productivity on track, please feel free to contact us. We’ll help you out by letting you know which product is really right for you.

pdf-or-tiff

PDF or TIFF – Which One is Better for Your Company?

Whether you work on your own, or as part of a medium or even very large, enterprise company, you probably have an ongoing need to maintain digital document records. For that purpose, two of the best formats are PDF (portable document format) and TIFF (tagged image file format). Both are widely-used throughout the business world, and both have their advantages and drawbacks.

In this post, we’ll compare the two file formats to examine which might be the best fit for your needs. Later on, we’ll suggest a few file conversion software solutions that make creating PDFs or creating TIFFs easy, and that can scale nicely to your requirements.

Advantages of Each File Type

File Quality: Both formats are capable of producing high-quality replications of original documents. TIFF was originally designed as a standard format for scanned documents, and it is a lossless format – meaning data in the original file is not lost when it is saved as a TIFF. This ensures a high quality output each time. TIFF does have some compression options available but generally, the outputted file will remain very high quality.

pdf-or-tiff

PDF, on the other hand, can run a wider range of document quality, depending on the user’s requirements. It is capable of maintaining extremely high quality (particularly the vector PDF formats), indistinguishable to the human eye. Conversely, the user can also adjust settings to create a much lower-quality PDF document, if there is a need to keep file sizes smaller. Overall, the advantage would go to TIFF, but PDF gives you the added flexibility to easily adjust quality as needed.

File Size: Generally speaking, the higher the quality of a file, the more storage space it will take up. In this category, PDF has the advantage. For all their benefits, outputted TIFF image files are often quite large in size. For smaller organizations or personal users with limited resources this could be somewhat problematic in the long run. If you or your organization has either (a) limited digital document storage space and resources or (b) a massive amount of digital documentation, then PDF could be the right format for you. A lower file size has not only the advantage of a reduced need for storage capacity, but also makes the files easier and more practical to share among clients and colleagues.

Document Security: If maintaining the security of your documents, and potentially the privacy of your customer/clients’ sensitive data, is a priority, then the best course of action is establishing a comprehensive IT security protocol. That includes processes, procedures, and software to keep your documents safe. But beyond that main line of defense, both PDF and TIFF offer some good security features that can provide an added layer of protection.

First, we’ll look at TIFF. The files cannot be embedded with links or other data such as malware, and malicious links are a big tool that hackers use in their arsenal of tricks. The high-quality output of the files also makes TIFF files difficult to edit convincingly, which is another mark in their favour.

PDF files, on the other hand, can be protected via password to prevent prying eyes from reading your documents without the password. Some software also allows the creator to specify certain permissions.

Depending on the specific use of these files and documents within your organization, you may find that either set of security features is more beneficial.

Multimedia Elements: TIFF is a pure image format, and as mentioned, elements like clickable hyperlinks cannot be embedded within the file. While this is a plus from the document security standpoint, it means that TIFF is not particularly well-suited as a multimedia format. PDF, on the other hand, allows you to make extensive use of crawlable text, clickable links and other elements. That makes it a good fit if you want to provide a document that prints out identically each time, but contains additional functionality when viewed on a computer. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that you’ll need to ensure that the image quality is high enough within the PDFs to be printed clearly on a physical piece of paper. With TIFF, you can generally rest easy that the quality is more than high enough to be printed clearly. For this reason (its high-resolution output), TIFF is generally preferred as the image format of choice for the publishing profession.

Searchability: Both formats have their plusses and minuses, and if you have a regular need to search and retrieve documents once they are converted, this is something to keep in mind. The first thing to know is that when we speak of PDFs, we’re actually talking about two different, main types of portable document format files. The first is a raster file, in which all information on page is rendered as an image. This means that any text on the page is not actually read by the computer as text, rather, a graphical image (i.e. you can’t drag your cursor over individual passages, can’t copy and paste the specific text, etc.) TIFF, being a pure image format, renders text in the same manner, so you would need to perform an optical character recognition (OCR) process on the file to convert that image into crawlable, searchable text. On the other hand, there are vector PDFs. In vector PDFs, text is rendered as clickable and crawlable. So if you are looking for a specific piece of information within a vector PDF file, you can just do a ‘Find’ command (ctrl + f in Windows), enter your search query, and it should find that exact text.

In terms of finding those documents in the first place, PDF files allow meta data to be embedded directly within the file, which can help make file sorting and retrieval an easier process. Large-scale organizations making use of TIFF for document storage and retrieval will generally have some sort of database to index the information contained in each TIFF file.

Cross-platform support: A big part of the success of both file formats is their widespread support and usage. Both formats are widely-used and supported on all major devices and operating systems – Windows, Mac, Linux and mobile platforms. This makes both formats a great choice if your employees are working remotely, or if you’re sharing files with a customer or client.

Annotation and document markup: If your company makes use of documents that require notes, annotations, highlights and the like, then PDF is the best option (you can utilize software like PEERNET’s PDF Creator Plus for these sorts of features.)

How to Convert to PDF or TIFF?

Now that you understand the benefits, drawbacks, similarities and differences between these two popular file formats, we’ll take a brief look at the best way to create these files within your own organization.

Online File Conversion

If you are a personal user or part of a small business and would prefer not to install any software on your computer(s), you can consider the use of an online file converter like PEERNET’s ConvertMyFiles.com. It’s an easy and convenient way to create PDF files or create TIFF files on the fly. Membership packages start as low as $1 per month. If you require more conversions, there are flexible packages to fit your level of conversion needs. One of the main benefits of ConvertMyFiles is its flexibility: the site allows you to convert an enormous variety of different filetypes to your preferred PDF or TIFF format, and your files are outputted with no watermark or identifying information on them (unlike some other file conversion websites out there).

Image Printers

PEERNET’s line of image printers makes creating TIFF files and creating JPEG files very easy. These solutions include TIFF Image Printer, PDF Image Printer, and Raster Image Printer (which combines the functionality of the first two into one package.)

Once installed, the image printers basically function as virtual printers, a.k.a. print drivers. So when a user goes to print a document in the usual manner, there is the option to simply “print to PDF” or “print to TIFF”.

This makes it an extremely useful solution to address your need for an easy, on-demand TIFF or PDF creation tool within your company. These image printers seamlessly integrate into your existing operating systems in place within your organization. That integration can save you significant time and resources within your company: there is little training involved, because if a user is capable of printing an ordinary document, they are now capable of easily converting files. The other way that image printers save your company resources is that they are capable of handling any Windows file that you can open and print into TIFF or PDF. So a solution such as Raster Image Printer can save you the trouble of employing multiple different pieces of software.

Ongoing, automated file conversion

Some organizations have a need for ongoing file conversion. This sort of automated conversion requirement is often seen within enterprise-level organizations, and institutions within fields like the medical profession, legal firms or financial services. For this level of requirements, the best solution is to batch convert documents on an ongoing basis; this is what PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service (DCS) is designed for.

DCS is purpose-built from the ground up to save organizations huge amounts of time and resources; rather than converting files to the required format as-needed, the work is done automatically, in the background on an ongoing basis. Document Conversion Service boasts a rich and robust set of features for advanced users to customize the outputted, converted TIFF files or PDF files. Large and prestigious organizations around the world entrust DCS for their PDF and TIFF creation needs.

Start Utilizing PDF or TIFF today

In the end, there is no overall superior file format between PDF or TIFF; both are extremely useful for corporate digital documentation systems. The best format to utilize in your company will very much depend on your particular needs. If you need some more information to decide which format is best for your organization, please contact us and we’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

Additionally, if you’re unclear about which professional file conversion software solution fits your requirements most closely, please watch the short 2 minute video below.

Convert to JPEG

Converting to JPEG

If you’ve used a computer in the last 20 years, you are surely familiar with the JPEG file format. It is the preeminent and, most likely, the most commonly used image format in personal computing today. Note that in some cases, the file format extension is denoted as JPG rather than JPEG, but it all refers to the same format. JPEG was first developed in 1986 and has proved to be an ideal for many applications, even some 30 years later.

Convert to JPEG

Much of the success of the JPEG format can be chalked up to its versatility. It has the ability to be used in a variety of manners, across all devices and operating systems. Here are some of the major benefits of using the format.

  • It offers lossy compression. What this means, in simple terms, is that it can compress large image files down to smaller file sizes by compressing the image and lowering the quality of it.
  • These smaller file sizes make the images more practical, and quicker, to use in a variety of ways – sharing images, posting them on websites, or saving them to your computer.
  • That being said, JPEG strikes a nice balance between quality and usability. Generally, files are higher quality and able to display a greater variety of colours than formats like bitmap or GIF; but they also maintain a smaller file size than an image format such as TIFF. The higher the quality of your outputted file, the higher the file size, but in many applications (such as web graphics), a lower quality file will be indistinguishable to the naked eye while taking less time to load for the user.
  • It is generally the standard format that digital cameras will shoot photos in (although most also have the option to shoot in RAW, which are extremely large files.)
  • The format is so widely-used that it’s likely to remain a standard file format for generations to come, even as devices change and technology continues to advance.

Why Convert to JPEG?

Your reasons for converting a file to JPEG could be varied and as mentioned, there is no shortage of file conversion products out there. Here are some common motivations for doing so with two of the file formats that are highly utilized in today’s corporate environment.

  • PDF to JPEG: If you have PDF documents that you wish to share on your website, you’re certainly welcome to do so; in fact, here is a guide on optimizing your PDFs for SEO (search engine optimization.) However, if it’s not a multi-page document, a JPEG image may be a more user friendly solution.
  • TIFF to JPEG: The TIFF file format has several advantages and is great for certain situations and applications. One of its main drawbacks, however, can be the size of the files. With JPEG, you can retain good image quality with much smaller file sizes, making them ideal for sharing through email, or on your company’s website, for example.

How to Convert to JPEG

There are a variety of options for JPEG conversion, ranging from options that are ideal for single users at home to enterprise document conversion solutions that are geared towards large organizations. Here’s a look at a few of the solutions available from PEERNET that can help you convert to JPEG.

Online File Converter: ConvertMyFiles.com

If you are an individual user or part of a small business, you might be interested in using an online file conversion website to create JPEG files. The advantages of using an online file converter is that there is no software to install, and it can be quite a logical choice from a cost-perspective.

PEERNET’s ConvertMyFiles.com offers a wide range of document conversion types, including conversion to JPEG. The website gives you the ability to convert to and from a huge range of Windows formats to JPEG, including other commonly-seen Windows formats, like TIFF to JPEG, GIF, .BMP, .PNG, and more.

There are a lot of online file conversion options available on the internet these days, and the question of which one you will use for JPEG conversion comes down to a number of factors, and what you or your organization’s priorities are. Here is a rundown of the factors that play in the favor of ConvertMyFiles:

  • The flexibility of different packages to meet your needs: ConvertMyFiles.com offers four different membership packages, ranging from our copper package (which is $1/month and allows up to 10 conversions per week of JPEG or other types of files), up to our gold package (which allows for file uploads of up to 200 megabytes, and 300 individual conversions per month.)
  • The peace-of-mind of a trusted site: ConvertMyFiles is backed by PEERNET, a trusted organization with extensive experience in serving file conversion customers, from individual users up to large enterprise-scale organizations. You can trust that when you upload JPEG files for conversion, they are being treated securely.
  • The professionalism of the outputted files containing no watermark – many of the free conversion sites will imprint their moniker on your outputted files.

Raster Image Printer

If you’re looking for something with some more customization features, and which is targeted towards individuals or organizations who have more of a regular need to for on-demand file conversion, consider making use of our Raster Image Printer. It is built as essentially a virtual printer, so that users can easily convert documents into JPEG, TIFF or PDF formats, in the same manner as printing a document.

In addition to the ease-of-use that entails, Raster Image Printer is also highly versatile, as it is able to convert any printable Windows document into the formats mentioned above.

Here is a quick look at some of the important features that make Raster Image Printer an excellent choice if you need to convert to JPEG:

  • Built to work on Windows 10 (in addition to earlier versions of Windows.)
  • The ability to create settings profiles – so you can use pre-specified conversion and output settings for your documents, or, specify them for each conversion.
  • Compression settings: take control over the quality and file size of your outputted JPEG file in order to create files at the ideal intersection of file quality and file size, for your needs.
  • Full control of page and image processing, including: auto-rotation, cropping, brightness, margins, and image resolution, and others.
  • Many more features for advanced users.

Raster Image Printer offers the ideal combination between ease-of-use, features, and price. The ability to work with popular formats PDF and TIFF in addition to JPEG make it a popular file conversion solution.

Document Conversion Service

For larger-scale enterprise level organizations with a need for ongoing file conversion, Document Conversion Service is an industry-leading option. It offers conversion to JPEG in addition to conversion to PDF, TIFF and other vital, commonly-used formats in larger organizations, or those that deal with a lot of digital documentation.

Here are a few of the main benefits of utilizing DCS for JPEG file conversion:

  • Document Conversion Service offers a robust feature set that makes it well-suited for companies that require an automated, batch file conversion solution.
  • It allows organizations to constantly convert files in the background, 24/7 – operating as a true Windows service.
  • As with Raster Image Printer, there are a great deal of document/file customization options available to the user.
  • DCS is capable of handling not only common and general filetypes such as Excel files, Word files, and Outlook, but also more industry-specific types – offering support for specialized formats like postscript file conversion, AutoCAD conversion and Design Review Drawing conversions, among others.
  • It allows advanced functionality for IT departments and power users, such as workflow integration for enterprise organizations, command line tools, and an unmatched scalability in the marketplace.

Recap: the Benefits of PEERNET products for JPEG file conversion

  • Consistent conversion, so you know exactly what you’re getting in an outputted file.
  • Ease of use, combined with powerful features, so that basic users can do what they need to, and advanced users can take total control over their files.
  • Support for a wide range of file conversion types.
  • The professionalism of knowing that your converted files will come out looking great, each and every time, with no watermarks or other extraneous visual elements.
  • The security of making use of one common platform/software solution for your file conversions.
  • Ongoing assistance, technical support and a wide range of how-to guides and FAQs if your particular questions are out of the ordinary.

Converting from JPEG to other formats

In the event that you need to convert files from JPEG, into other formats, PEERNET has you covered there as well. Click on the individual conversion to see a listing of the best options for your requirements.

JPEG Conversion for Companies

Do you need a solution within your organization that allows your employees to convert to JPEG, but still aren’t quite sure which direction to go, or what level of software solution you require? We’re here to help you. First, we recommend that you take a couple minutes to watch the video below in order to better understand the offerings that our line of file conversion products can offer you:

If you still need a helping hand, feel free to reach out and contact us. Our friendly and knowledgeable team will be more than happy to point you towards the solution you need.

professional file conversion

10 Big Advantages of Using Professional File Conversion Software in Your Organization

In a wide range of white-collar industries, from financial services and enterprise organizations to the healthcare and medical sector, organizations are looking to improve their efficiencies and utilize technology in the best way. The move in this direction has been on for several decades, but with the proliferation of digital documentation and the explosion in device availability, we’ve seen the shift accelerate in the corporate environment in recent years.

professional file conversion

Now, more than ever, establishing efficient digital documentation can set your company apart from the pack to improve your company’s document management. And for organizations who exist on service, rather than sales (such as some of those in the healthcare field), keeping up with modern technological solutions is a necessity, to avoid falling further behind.

With all that in mind, here is an exploration of the top 10 biggest benefits of utilizing professional file conversion software.

1. It allows you to make use of ideal file formats for security, sharability and consistency.

For corporate documentation and record-keeping, two of the best file formats are called Portable Document Format (PDF) and Tagged Image File Format (TIFF). Professional conversion software allows you and your company to effortlessly create these files, through single-purpose software solutions such as PDF Image Printer or TIFF Image Printer, or through all-in-one solutions such as File Conversion Center or Document Conversion Service. The advantages of these file types are many. Here is a brief rundown of their advantages for use in the workplace and corporate setting.

PDF

  • Stands for: Portable Document Format
  • One of the most widely-used and adopted file formats for document management. Ubiqitous nature of the format means it’s nearly certain that recipient of the document will be able to view it.
  • Formatting is maintained across all devices and operating systems.
  • Smaller file sizes, generally, than TIFF.
  • Good compression to reduce size of high-quality files.
  • That small file size makes the documents ideal for sharing.
  • Password-protection features available for sensitive information.
  • Metadata can be embedded for easier file retrieval
  • Documents can easily integrate non-text elements such as web links, images and the like.
  • Commonly used across a huge range of sectors and industries within a corporate setting.
TIFF

  • Stands for: Tagged Image File Format
  • Lossless file format (what you see is what you get)
  • Maintains the highest image quality (but some compression options available.)
  • Difficult to alter (therefore, good for archiving)
  • Cannot contain links or hidden data, so quite secure from the threat of embedded malware/viruses.
  • Widely supported across devices, operating systems
  • Standard format for FAX
  • As it is an image format, your document formatting is maintained
  • Commonly used by the publishing profession; sectors with a high volume of document storage requirements (medical, law, etc.); businesses looking for a secure file format for their document management needs.

2. There are all-in-one solutions available, so there’s only one program/system to learn for your coworkers and colleagues.

Companies that have a significant need for file conversion can be bogged down by the multitude of programs and options available. If companies use one program to convert files to TIFF, and another to create PDF documents, and yet another for different sorts of file conversions, that ends up equating to multiple times resources being devoted to training and troubleshooting. With an all-in-one solution such as PEERNET’s File Conversion Center, or Raster Image Printer, for example, all your digital documentation needs are covered in one powerful, yet easy-to-use package.

3. Companies can realize significant cost savings with a unified, cohesive transition to digital documentation.

By significantly reducing the amount of paper that the office consumes through a well-planned transition to digital documentation, an organization can foster significant cost savings. These come about by saving money on things like the cost of paper itself; printing costs; reduced maintenance of printers and photocopiers; storage costs; mailing costs and more. There are also some hidden costs that you may not think about right off the bat. For example, reducing the cost of office space devoted to filing cabinets and documents; and, reducing the amount of employee resources devoted to manually retrieving documents. Of course, there are some costs associated with the transition, software, and digital storage space, but given the way that business is moving, it’s a long-term investment that’s certainly worth making sooner rather than later.

4. For companies with a need for ongoing, constant file conversions, there are automated batch file conversion solutions available.

Having the right software solutions in place for on-demand file conversion is one thing. But for those organizations that require a consistent stream of converted files, automated and batch file conversion could be the best solution. Solutions such as PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service make it feasible to have your own file conversion system running 24/7. That means that the files keep converting – no additional employee time and resources required. Here are 5 more of the best things about our automated batch file converter:

  • Built from the start to handle exactly this job efficiently: high-volume document conversion.
  • Once implemented, a huge time-saver.
  • Easily-configurable settings that can be saved and automatically applied, so your conversions are consistent every time.
  • An advanced feature set so that Document Conversion Service can be completely tailored by IT professionals and/or power users to the needs of your organization.
  • A highly versatile solution: converts from virtually any printable Windows format into TIFF, PDF, JPEG and more.

5. The ease of pulling documentation and integrating it with other systems (such as a CRM) can actually help your company improve and transform your customer service experience.

As you’ve probably noticed, today’s consumers are always on the go. They expect things to work perfectly on their devices as they travel around. Time is of the essence, and they don’t want to wait for internal corporate processes. And if your company deals directly in a customer-facing service role, they expect you to have their information on-the-ready as they talk to you, as soon as possible. This is where making use of digital documentation can be a boon to your company’s overall reputation for service. Whether that means emailing them digital invoices or quotes for work; sharing other sorts of documentation with them in a seamless manner; or even allowing your employees to access their clients’ information on the go, a digital documentation and file conversion process can accelerate your organization’s transition to the digital age and provide your customers the type of instantaneous service and support that they’ve come to expect in the 21st century.

6. In contrast to using a hodgepodge of different programs and protocols, making use of consistent formats and professional file conversion software can help lock down your document security.

Document security is absolutely key to maintain the trust of your clients, customers and the public at large. One needn’t look far to see examples of serious corporate security breaches littering the nightly news. Having a secure document conversion protocol in place can help you mitigate the risks of that happening to your organization. If, for example, employees are using some online file conversion service of unknown origin to convert your clients’ files, which could leave you at serious risk. It’s far more preferable to keep things in-house, with appropriate protections in place, and utilize trusted conversion software from reputable companies like PEERNET as a way to manage that risk. Here are some more tips on improving your document security in 2016.

7. Professional document conversion and file conversion software gives you a huge range of output options, depending on your document quality needs, storage capacity and workflow requirements.

Customization is key, and one of the primary benefits of using professional, purpose-built conversion software is the sheer amount of options you have for your outputted documents. Across the board, from single-purpose products such as PDF Creator Plus, to the Cadillac of our software solutions, Document Conversion Service, users have the ability to select – and save – conversion profiles that perfectly fit the ongoing needs of their organization. Whether you need perfect-quality conversions and storage space is not an issue, or conversely, lower-quality documents are fine because storage space is at a premium… or, somewhere in between … professional file conversion software allows you to select the settings that work for you.

8. With conversion to PDF or TIFF format, you can be sure that your clients or customers see a document with the same formatting that you do, in contrast to sharing file formats like Microsoft Word.

As briefly touched on earlier, one of the huge benefits of making use of TIFF and PDF for your corporate documentation needs are the format’s consistency across the array of devices, screen sizes and operating systems. If you send a Microsoft Word file to a colleague or a client, it can appear wildly different on their computer then it does on yours. This can obviously cause a bevy of issues, and generally make you look unprofessional.

9. Digital documentation using consistent formats, naming and filing structure can make your workplace a more collaborative environment.

A well-organized digital filing system can blow away even the most neat and efficient offline system. By employing some basic tenets of digital file organization, you can increase internal efficiencies substantially, allowing your team to smarter, quicker, and more effectively.

10. Making use of digital documentation can significantly cut paper waste at your office, underscoring your organization’s commitment to the environment – which is a big deal in the eyes of many consumers today.

Sure, the cost benefits of reducing your paper usage is a primary driver of interest for many business owners. But also consider the added benefit of improving your organization’s reputation by reducing your reliance on paper. In society today, more and more people are consciously choosing to deal with organizations that mesh with their personal belief system, and a commitment to reducing needless waste definitely follows that trend.

Ready to Utilize File Conversion for Your Organization?

Get started with document conversion software from PEERNET today. Here is a rundown of our main products and how they might help your company, business or organization.

PDF Creator PlusLooking for a more cost-effective alternative to Adobe Acrobat, with the same great features? Look no further. PDF Creator Plus allows you to create PDFs by combining and editing other files (any other type of Windows file that you can open and print.)
Convert to PDFFor those who require a virtual printer that outputs vector (which means editable and searchable) PDF, this is a great option.
PDF Image PrinterSimilar to above, but converts to raster PDF. Very simple, easy to use, and outputs files in a secure and sharable format. The virtual printer of choice for many organizations with a need for reliable PDF conversion.
TIFF Image PrinterThe virtual printer you need if you require an on-demand TIFF conversion option. Quick and easy, yet powerful features.
Raster Image PrinterAn all-in-one solution that handles both TIFF conversion and PDF conversion (and can also output files in JPEG format). Essentially functions as a combo of PDF Image Printer and TIFF Image Printer. A great option for organizations who rely on multiple document format conversions, on-demand.
File Conversion CenterFor users or organizations who require a range of options, this desktop application allows for batch conversion of documents, on an on-demand basis, to PDF, TIFF and JPEG file formats.
Document Conversion ServiceThe industry-leading automated, batch file conversion solution. Capable of converting documents in the background, 24/7. Used by trusted institutions and organizations around the world for their file conversion needs.

Need more information?

Please watch the video below for a quick explanation of what each file conversion product offers, or feel free to contact us to get you and your organization pointed in the right direction.

TIFF file format

The Best Ways to Convert to TIFF

The TIFF file format is widely-adopted and recognized as one of the most useful file formats for companies and organizations with a need for significant digital record keeping.

Initially developed and released 30 years ago, the TIFF format’s staying power is a tribute to its versatility; not only is it a vitally-important image format for use in the publishing industry, but it’s also an excellent format for FAX applications and maintaining digital records.

TIFF file format

Before we get into some of the most common uses for the format, and how to convert to TIFF, let’s take a look at some of the reasons why making use of this particular file format is a good option in comparison to other formats.

  • It’s an outstanding way to maintain image quality, particularly in digital photographs. Unlike other formats, such as JPEG or GIF, TIFF is a lossless format.
  • That being said, the modern standard of TIFF does offer some compression options, allowing the user to save on storage space as necessary.
  • For scanned documents, or files converted from other formats like PDF or .DOCX, TIFF retains its formatting across all screen sizes and devices. The formatting of Microsoft Word (.doc files) can be notoriously unreliable when transferred from one user to the next. While raster PDFs are a better option to maintain formatting, vector PDFs can also look “off” if one user is missing fonts. With TIFF, there’s absolutely no worry. What you see on one computer or device, is what you’ll see on the other.
  • TIFF is a proven file format, having first been established in 1986. That means that regardless of technological developments over the next few decades, its unlikely that TIFF will be phased out or replaced by another format.
  • By the same token, the widespread support for the format means that it’s almost certain that the TIFF can be properly displayed if you are sharing documents with clients or colleagues outside of your immediate work network.
  • Because TIFF is an image format, it cannot be embedded with viruses, malware and the like. You cannot embed hyperlinks, which keeps it secure from malicious attempts at phishing and related malware schemes.

COMMON USES FOR TIFF:

As mentioned, the quality and flexibility of the TIFF file format lends itself well to applications across a variety of industries.

Here are a few examples:

  • It is commonly used as a file format in the photography and publishing industries. For example, here’s how to create high resolution TIFF images for print.
  • Organizations with a need to maintain client records often rely on TIFF as their format of choice.
  • TIFF is one of the more secure document/file formats out there, so organizations with a heavy security requirement often make use of it. Due to its high quality and lack of vector capabilities, altering the files is somewhat more differently to do convincingly.
  • Businesses which make regular use of FAX may rely on TIFF to streamline their process.

5 GREAT WAYS TO CONVERT TO TIFF:

1. ONLINE TIFF FILE CONVERSION.

ConvertMyFiles.com:

If you have a need for quick and regular conversion to TIFF, consider making use of an online file converter such as PEERNET’s own ConvertMyFiles.com.

The online file conversion option offers several benefits for some people, particularly individual home users or small businesses:

  • An extremely cost-effective option, with packages starting as low as $1 per month.
  • No need to install extra software/drivers/image printers on you or your company’s computers and devices.
  • Quality file conversions with a good deal of conversion/output options available.
  • Support for a massive range of file formats and conversion types.
  • No long-term commitment if you need it on a temporary basis.
  • Download your converted file onto the device or system of your choice – PC, tablet or mobile phone

2. A SIMPLE (YET POWERFUL) PROGRAM TO CREATE TIFF FILES.

TIFF Image Printer:

To create TIFF files quickly and easily for your organization, you’ll want to make use of an image printer (sometimes called a virtual printer). Essentially, it’s a driver that you install to your computer or computers, allowing you to create TIFF files in a manner that’s as easy as printing a document to an ordinary printer.

For this purpose, consider use of our TIFF Image Printer.

TIFF Image Printer is intended for on-demand file conversion. It makes converting documents or files to TIFF a snap. First, you open any printable Windows document. Then, open the file > print menu as you otherwise would. Simply select TIFF Image Printer from the dropdown options available and press the print button; it’s as easy as that.

However, if you need more customization in your output options, TIFF Image Printer certainly provides an array of options you can dig into.

Need to adjust the settings of your outputted document? Many of these can be easily accessed from the ‘print settings’ menu. The settings you choose will be dependent on your intended use of the outputted file. This menu will allow you to specify quality settings such as:

  • orientation (portrait/landscape),
  • cropping and trimming features to refine the image during the output process,
  • print quality,
  • lightening/darkening,
  • DPI/resolution options/aspect ratio
  • color/black and white,
  • compression options,
  • “Copy to” and resample options – set your copying options to outgoing pages (similar to resizing an outputted photocopy)
  • Watermarking,
  • Endorsements (headers and footers)

3. AN ON-DEMAND SOLUTION FOR TIFF CONVERSION AND OTHER FILE FORMATS.

Raster Image Printer:

If you’re looking for the functionality of TIFF Image Printer, but require the ability to convert to other file formats, our Raster Image Printer is an exceptional option. It offers much of the same ease-of-use and variety of output options, with the added ability to convert to other widely-used formats such as Portable Document Format (PDF), and JPEG. We call it the “cadillac” of our image printer line.

As with our TIFF Image Printer, Raster Image Printer allows you to make a variety of image adjustments to your files before outputting the version that fits your requirement. And it also allows for output to standard FAX formats, streamlining that process.

4. AN ON DEMAND SOLUTION FOR BATCH CONVERTING FILES TO PDF, TIFF AND JPEG.

File Conversion Center:

If you’re looking for a desktop application capable of batch converting documents on an on-demand basis, consider File Conversion Center. File Conversion Center boasts seamless desktop integration, allowing you to convert files on demand with ease – whether it’s an individual file, or a larger group of files all at once.

There are a number of ways to convert files; either by simply right-clicking on a file to convert; by dragging it into a desktop converter bin, or right on to the one of the Convert To icons located on your desktop.

File Conversion Center allows you to convert your files from any Windows format that can be printed, into the common file formats of PDF, TIFF and JPEG.

5. AN ALL-IN-ONE, AUTOMATED ENTERPRISE-SCALE SOLUTION.

Document Conversion Service:

Finally, for organizations with a requirement for ongoing, automated batch document conversion, consider our all-in-one file conversion solution, Document Conversion Service (DCS). DCS is truly an industry-leading solution for your company’s TIFF creation needs. Designed from the ground-up as a batch file conversion option that handles TIFF and a huge range of other formats.

Document Conversion Service can be configured to batch convert files in the background, 24/7. It offers support for a wide variety of file formats (DOC, XPS, PDF, DWG, DWF, Excel, JPG, TIF, EPS, BMP, PCX, DCX, PNG, GIF, HTML, MHT, Outlook, PPT, PUB, Visio and Postscript), allowing conversion to TIFF, PDF, JPEG and other image formats.

For organizations that deal with a truly large volume of files, and need a TIFF archiving solution for their document records, Document Conversion Service is the most ideal solution for your needs.

 

SUMMARY OF TIFF CONVERTER PRODUCTS

ConvertMyFiles.comTIFF Image PrinterRaster Image PrinterFile Conversion CenterDocument Conversion Service
PRODUCT SUMMARY: An online file converter allowing you to convert from and to a number of popular file formats.
WHO IT’S BEST FOR: Individual users with a need for quick file conversion and who do not want to download software on their computer 
PRODUCT SUMMARY: A virtual image printer that makes converting files to TIFF as easy as printing a file.
WHO IT’S BEST FOR: Individual users or those at the office who regularly need to convert files to TIFF.
PRODUCT SUMMARY: Similar to TIFF Image Printer, with the added ability for you to convert files to JPEG and PDF as well.
WHO IT’S BEST FOR: Individual users or those at the office who regularly need to convert files to TIFF, JPEG or PDF
PRODUCT SUMMARY: Desktop application allowing for on-demand, batch file conversion from a number of Windows formats to TIFF, PDF and JPEG.
WHO IT’S BEST FOR:  Individual users with an on-demand need for batch file conversion.
PRODUCT SUMMARY: A high-volume solution for organizations and companies with a need for ongoing automated, batch file conversion capabilities.
WHO IT’S BEST FOR:  Enterprise-level companies or organizations of any size with a need for regular file conversion, archiving or document management solution.

EXPLORE THE BEST FILE CONVERSION SOFTWARE FOR BUSINESS.

Whatever the volume and regularity of your TIFF file conversion needs, Peernet has a product that’s right for you – from individual users to enterprise-scale organizations. If you’re not entirely sure which TIFF converter product is right for your needs, please take a few minutes to watch the video below. It sums up our line of product offerings and might give you more insight:

If you still need a little bit of guidance, feel free to reach out and contact the file conversion experts here at PEERNET. We’ll be happy to help you out!

virtual image printers

Virtual Printers: the modern way to reduce your printing costs

A typical mid-sized company can spend many thousands of dollars per year on printing costs. Some estimates put printing costs at 1 to 3% of your corporate revenue. Even businesses on the smaller end of the spectrum can feel the pinch; beyond the obvious costs associated with paper, there are the costs of new machines, maintaining the printers, and of course, the cost of toner and ink, which can add up very quickly. In the modern business climate, every dollar counts, and many companies are looking at ways to digitize their business operations in order to reduce those overhead costs.

virtual image printers

One of the easiest ways to go about this is to reduce your company’s dependence on physical printers, and largely phase them out in favor of a virtual printer solution. Choosing the right option can make all the difference in creating a more productive, efficient and cost-effective workplace.

What is a Virtual Printer?

A virtual printer is a piece of software installed on your computer that essentially simulates the printing process. The difference is that instead of outputting the document on a physical piece of paper, it outputs a file that is formatted exactly the same as a printed document. In essence, a virtual printer might be more accurately labeled an image printer driver, as it functions as a set of protocols and instructions that allow your computer to fulfill the task of “printing” a document (except, that the end result is a formatted file rather than a printed page). The virtually-printed document will maintain its formatting and consistency regardless of operating system, device or screen size. Most commonly, that means the file is in PDF format, or TIFF format.

The Advantages of Virtual Image Printers

Reducing your company’s dependence on printers – and thereby, reducing your organization’s dependence on paper – can have a variety of great benefits. Here are some of the biggest advantages to making use of virtual printers.

  • As mentioned above, the costs of physically printing documents can burden your company’s bottom line over time. With virtual printers, the cost Is primarily in acquiring the software up front, which oftentimes can be significantly less than a business-oriented physical printer. The actual costs of doing the virtual prints, which are essentially document conversions, are negligible.
  • Digital files, as created by a virtual printer, can be more versatile than a printed page. With an outputted file, you can easily share information through email, on corporate intranets, and even on the web.
  • Building off this last point, transitioning towards a digital filing model can also save huge amounts of time and resources on both storing and retrieving documentation. Digital documents make it much easier to search, and the only limitation on files is your amount of virtual storage space, not constrained by physical restrictions.
  • For users who are not especially technically-savvy, one of the huge upsides of using virtual printers is that they are extremely easy to use. Basically, if someone can print a document on their computer, they can easily make use of a virtual printer to convert documents seamlessly.
  • A virtual printer option integrates with your existing Windows software, rather than existing as its own program that you must open each time you need to do a conversion. This is a benefit if you’re regularly creating documents in that it can save you and your colleagues a significant amount of time.
  • The formats that are output by a virtual printer are generally either PDF or TIFF, both of which are widely used throughout the business world and aren’t likely to go away. This means that making use of a virtual printer essentially future-proofs your operational workflow and mitigates any fears about having to change your processes down the line. Making use of these formats also makes certain that your outputted files can be viewed on any Windows or Mac machine, and even modern devices such as smartphones and tablets.
  • If your company still makes regular use of faxes, a virtually printed document is a great route to go: choose from a number of standard fax profiles, or customize your options by selecting your resolution, paper size, scaling and alignment.

Virtual printer software

PDF Image Printer

PDF Image Printer Software

To convert files to PDF, one of the best solutions is to make use of our PDF Image Printer software. PDF Image Printer is designed to be the easy way to seamlessly convert documents to Portable Document Format. This is suitable for individual users or corporate employees with a need for on-demand PDF file conversion.

As mentioned in the general discussion on virtual printers above, making use of PDF Image Printer is essentially as easy as printing a document. This means that there’s a very minimal learning curve involved, saving your organization valuable time and resources that can be better allocated to support your core business initiatives.

While using PDF Image Printer is a snap, it also contains some advanced features: from compression options, to processing preferences; text extraction, endorsements and more. So whether you need something to just do the job quickly, or need to closely control some options PDF Image Printer can be a great fit for your company.

TIFF Image Printer

TIFF Image Printer Software

Some organizations and industries are more likely to use TIFF than PDF, on a regular basis. TIFF is often utilized as the format of choice for places that maintain a lot of records: for example, financial records, legal documents, or patient information in the medical industry. While companies with a continuous, ongoing need for file conversion might be better suited for an automated batch document conversion solution like our Document Conversion Service, for those that require on-demand conversion to TIFF, our TIFF Image Printer is a fantastic solution.

TIFF Image Printer converts any printable Windows-format file, so anything that you can open and print out to a regular old printer, you can print to the image printer (the same goes, by the way for PDF Image Printer above, and Raster Image Printer, below.) Like the other virtual printers in the PEERNET line of products, TIFF Image Printer also allows for a great deal of control in your output settings, for users who need that functionality.

Raster Image Printer

Raster Image Printer Software

For the best of both worlds, consider our Raster Image Printer solution which combines the functionality of PDF Image Printer and TIFF Image Printer. We call it the “Cadillac” of the PEERNET Image Printer family. In addition to the ability to easily print to PDF or TIFF, you can also convert to formats such as JPEG, GIF, PNG, PSD, PCX and DCX.

The beauty of Raster Image Printer is that it combines the functionality of a handful of different software solutions into one convenient package.

Which Virtual Printer is Right for You?

The virtual printer you ultimately end up choosing and installing on your company’s systems will depend on your specific needs. If you already know that you have a regular need to quickly convert PDF files, then PDF Image Printer is a no-brainer. The same goes for TIFF files and TIFF Image Printer, respectively. And if you anticipate a need to convert a wider variety of files regularly, then Raster Image Printer is best for you.

Need More Features?

Now, if you require functionality above-and-beyond what a virtual printer/image printer can deliver, be sure to check out our products page for more information on the range of software provided by PEERNET that can meet your file conversion needs. Here’s a quick overview of how our products can help address your file conversion needs:

PDF Creator Plus offers similar functionality to Adobe Acrobat, with a more cost-effective price tag. It’s a great fit for companies or users who need a little bit more customization in creating their PDF documents than what a virtual image printer can offer. PDF Creator Plus stands as a separate program where you can combine, edit and merge an array of Windows document (any type that is printable), to create a new, outputted PDF. In contrast to PDF Image Printer, it creates vector files, which means that the text within the outputted file is selectable. It also gives you the tools that you expect out of an Acrobat-type program, like annotation, editing and watermark functionality.

ConvertMyFiles.com by PEERNET is an online file converter. It’s ideal for users who do not want to install software to their computer. Subscriptions can be had for as low as $1.00 per month ($10 per month gets you 125 conversions and the ability to upload files up to 100 MB in size.) ConvertMyFiles is a highly versatile solution, allowing you to convert an enormous variety of file formats into PDF, TIFF, PNG, JPG, GIF or BMP.

Finally, if you require an ongoing document conversion solution, be sure to look into Document Conversion Service. It’s an industry-leading installation for batch, automated file conversion. Generally, Document Conversion Service is best suited for either enterprise-level organizations or smaller organizations with a need for an automated document conversion process, as it is capable of converting documents in the background, 24/7. It offers a robust set of features that allows your company’s IT department to tailor it to your specific needs.

If you need a bit more guidance, please watch the short video below.

File conversion software as a business investment is one of the best decisions you can make. So as always, just contact us if you need more help choosing a solution for your company. We’ll be sure to point you in the right direction.

file conversion solutions

Securing Your Company’s Digital Documents in 2016

As you might be aware, digitizing your company’s documents has several amazing benefits:

  • Cost savings from reducing your organization’s dependence on paper:
    • Paper
    • Ink
    • Mail & supplies
    • Photocopying
    • Printing
    • Shredding
    • Etc.
  • Easier access to information for colleagues and clients
  • An easier collaboration and revisions process;
  • Making documents and information more searchable and information more easily discoverable;
  • Reduced administration time among employees searching for the right information;
  • Potentially reduced costs stemming from office space to hold the actual physical files

Factors to Take Into Account for Document Security:

digital document security

Of course, while saving on all sorts of costs related to hard copies of documentation is very appealing, one of the aversions that some companies have to moving their client documentation to the digital realm is the important matter of security. And it’s no surprise: we’re often inundated in the news with stories of large organizations that suffer security breaches. Not only can this cause a direct financial hit to the organization, but it can bruise the company’s reputation for years to come.

So, while we of course highly recommend moving any paperwork and documentation you can to digital, it’s vitally important to have a good plan for security in place. With that in mind, here are some things your organization can do to help make the transition smoothly and safely: five things you should do to ensure your company’s digital document security in 2016.

1. Choose the right file format.

Not all document formats are created equally. Here’s a brief rundown of the security features of some of the main types of the main document formats used in the modern business environment. For enterprise organizations, three of the most common formats used for documentation are your standard Microsoft Word files, in addition to Portable Document Format (PDF) and Tagged Interface File Format (TIFF). All have their advantages and disadvantages but, for now, let’s take a look at the different formats from a document security perspective.

  • Security Features of Word files:

    Microsoft Word files are designed to be edited and shared with ease, and it’s not an inherently secure format. This is one of many reasons why Microsoft Word is not ideal for sharing documents at the office, or with your clients. For a better and more secure solution, look towards formats like PDF, and TIFF.

  • Security Features of PDF files:

    A PDF file can actually come in a few different types of files. To start, there is a separation between raster PDF (where all text is rendered as an image) and a vector-based PDF, where all text is actually rendered as textual elements.

    A raster PDF means that the text is very difficult to manipulate. Someone is not able to copy the text from a document and paste it to a Word processor, for example – they would have to actually re-type the information, if they were so inclined.

    A vector PDF, conversely, allows the user to select actual text in the document. This can be helpful for search and information retrieval, but does remove one barrier from people copying out the document’s information, if that is a particular concern.

    All types of PDFs can also be protected by password, protecting them from prying eyes. This is a nice security feature to have, particularly when sharing documents via email, file sharing services, or unsecured platforms. PDF also offers other security features such as encryption, and watermarking, making it a good choice for corporate document security.

  • Security Features of TIFF files:

    The TIFF file format is used by many industries and professions with a need for significant need for privacy, to protect their clients’ information – like the legal industry, financial services or the medical profession, for example.

    What sets TIFF apart from a format like PDF, for example, is that TIFF is strictly an image format. Because of that, it’s very difficult or impossible to have code, or links embedded within it. This is a great security feature, and one that makes it somewhat of a more secure choice than other document formats.

    Beyond that fact, TIFF files do not have the inherent security features built in to PDF files, such as password-protection.

2. Never use untrusted websites for your file conversion.

Choosing a file converter is an important part of your overall transition to digital documentation, but also to your security strategy. Online file conversion sites definitely have their place in the world and their own set of benefits: they’re often low in cost, don’t require a software install, offer a pretty versatile selection of file conversion options. One of the big risks though, particularly for companies and corporate users, is running your files through untrusted connections for conversion. You don’t truly know what’s happening to your files when you upload them, and that could leave you vulnerable to all sorts of issues, from malware to security breaches.

Alternatively, if you want to make use of an online file conversion option, use a website that you know has a trustworthy company behind it, rather than a random home developer based overseas. PEERNET’s ConvertMyFiles.com offers file conversion packages beginning from $1 per week, or $4.99 per month. Don’t take chances with your company’s important documentation online.

3. Get Your Team on Board with Using Good Practices

There are some basic tenets of a successful document security protocol. Regardless of whether your company is a small business or a multinational corporation, employing some of these good practices can help secure your company’s documentation.

  • Keep only the minimum of customer data on file. The less information of customers that you keep on file, the less you expose your business to the risks of a security breach. Companies should never, ever keep their customers’ credit card numbers on file, of course… and in general, keep as little info as they need.
  • Train your employees on suspicious links, emails, etc. A little bit of education can go a long way. Ensure your employees are familiar with common tactics, such as email phishing attempts.
  • Install anti-virus and anti-malware software on all their computers. There are all sorts of nasty viruses out there that can easily infiltrate corporate networks. One particularly nasty strain that has emerged in recent years is what’s known as ransom-ware. This is a bug that gets installed on the users’ computer and locks them out from their files. It then demands a payment made to retrieve the information again – A hospital in California recently fell victim to this scam and was forced to pay significant money to retrieve their valuable, sensitive patient information. While these attacks may not be 100 per cent preventable all the time, installing, regularly updating and running anti-virus software is a good preventative measure that should be done regularly throughout your organization, particularly if your networks’ system contains sensitive customer data.
  • Teach them the basics of strong passwords. Passwords are a basic line of defense, but when they are weak, they`re easily breakable. Spread some information around the office about the importance of strong passwords, and encourage your employees to make a habit of changing their passwords regularly.

4. Automate Your Document Conversion to a Secure Folder

For organizations that have a substantial need for file conversion, one of the most straightforward ways to ensure that your files are reaching a secure destination is by using an automated document conversion solution. Using a solution such as Peernet’s Document Conversion Service (DCS) can be a huge benefit to those organizations that do handle a lot of digital documents. With DCS, you can make sure remove the human element of the secure document handling process, by running automated, batch file conversions. The converted files can then be outputted into a secure folder that is accessible only by the appropriate, authorized parties.

5. Ensure Regular Document Backups to a Secure Location

Just as physical, printed documents aren’t immune from threats like theft, water or fire, the very same thing applies to digital documentation. But should the worst happen, and your company’s security be breached, it can provide some peace of mind to know that you have backups of your company’s important files. Document backup can be an automatic process and more and more, companies are making use of cloud services, which can provide relatively cost-effective offsite storage. Look into the options that suit your companies’ needs best.

Secure Digital Documents: The Competitive Advantage Your Company Needs

The proliferation of digital documentation in the corporate world, from mom-and-pop startups to enterprise level organizations, continues on. Ensuring that your company’s digital files are secure from attackers is a crucial part of maintaining your clients, customers and the public’s trust. Making use of some of these ideas should put you in a good position to ensure your company’s digital security for many years to come.

Digital Document Conversion Solutions

If you’re still looking for the right digital documentation creation and file conversion solution, be sure to check out our range of products at PEERNET. Whether you are looking for a PDF conversion solution, a TIFF creator, or an enterprise-level batch document conversion solution, we have a product out there that should cover your needs. Please take a couple of minutes to watch the video below to find out which product might be right for your file conversion needs:

And should you need any more assistance in determining a product that’s right for you, please reach out and contact us.

PDF for Business

The Best Ways to Convert Files to PDF

Portable document format, commonly known as PDF, is one of the most useful and versatile formats used in the corporate business environment. Whether you work in an enterprise-office environment, you work in small business, or you just have a personal need to process documents, you’ll find that PDF is a convenient and useful digital document format — and a good way to help improve your company’s document management.

Among the advantages of the PDF format include:

  • Widespread use, so the eventual viewer of the document is likely to have software that allows them to view it.
  • A small file size in comparison to similarly-designed formats.
  • Document protection via password, making sure that only the intended recipient can view the document, if required.
  • The ability to use elements such as internet hyperlinks, and easy integration of images and other rich document elements.
  • The fact that unlike other document formats, like .docx (Microsoft Word), the document formatting is maintained from one device to the next.

Now that we’re familiar with the benefits of using PDF, let’s take a look at some of the options to convert to PDF.

How to Convert to PDF

PDF for Business

So you’ve got your file in any number of Windows-based formats. Maybe it’s a spreadsheet with your sales projections (.xlsx). Or a Word document of a report you’ve been working on and are ready to share with the team (.docx). Or any other number of file formats. How do you convert to PDF? And how to choose document conversion software?

There are a number of different software options that you can easily integrate into your Windows installation that makes document conversion a snap.

Let’s take a look at a few of them. All of the following have trial downloads available, if you are interested in trying out any of these solutions for your home or business needs.

PDF Creator Plus

If you’ve worked with PDF creation in the past, you may be familiar with Adobe Acrobat, which is purpose-built software to create a wide variety of PDF documents. PEERNET offers a cost-effective Acrobat alternative that allows you to create documents via combining, editing, and merging other documents to an outputted PDF.

PDF Creator Plus outputs PDFs in the vector format. Vector offers its own set of benefits in comparison to Raster PDF. Using a vector PDF makes your outputted PDF file searchable. This can be a highly useful trait for document management and discovery, particularly if your organization processes a large quantity of documents.

PDF Creator Plus makes PDF conversion easy and quick and easy. Here are a few of the most commonly-used and popular advanced features:

  • PDF Creator Plus allows you to drag in and visually merge multiple files into an outputted PDF file.
  • It allows you to convert from any Windows file;
  • Easily annotate your document, highlighting important segments or blocking out sensitive portions.

PDF Image Printer

An image printer is a very simple, elegant solution to convert documents to PDF; it functions as a virtual printer, installed in the Printers and Faxes folder. Essentially, if you can print a document to paper, then it’s just as easy to print a document to PDF. That’s how PDF Image Printer functions, making it easy as can be to convert any Windows document you can open and print, to PDF. Anytime you go to File > Print from a Windows document, you’ll have the option to send the file to PDF Image Printer 11.0. Simply click that as your option, print, and your file is quickly outputted into PDF format.

PDF Image Printer converts documents into raster PDF format. This format absolutely ensures that document formatting is maintained from one device, screen size, or operating system to the next. While this means that the document is non-searchable, and you can’t copy and paste specific lines of text, this does provide some great benefits as well:

  • It ensures that the document cannot be manipulated easily;
  • Because of this, the file type could be considered more secure than other sorts of formats;
  • No need to worry about the document recipient having the same fonts as the document creator; everything is rendered simply as an image;
  • File size can generally be smaller than a vector PDF.

ConvertMyFiles.com

If you have a need for quick, online PDF conversion without the need to install any software on your home or company computer, consider the website ConvertMyFiles.com.
Starting from just $1.00 per month, the site allows you to upload your documents for quick and easy online PDF file conversion from any device with a web browser (computer, tablet, mobile phone, iPad, iPhone). Users are able to convert to vector PDF, raster PDF, and a variety of other formats, making it a versatile and cost-effective choice for any consumer.

If You Need to Convert to More than Just PDF:

Document Conversion Service

If your organization requires automated file conversion and/or batch file conversion to PDF on an ongoing basis, consider PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service. DCS is designed as a high-volume file conversion solution for enterprise organizations, ideal for converting a variety of document types to TIFF, JPG, PDF and other image formats automatically, often as part of a workflow. Like most of our other software, it allows for conversion from any printable Windows format, including file types generated by such commonly-used programs such as: Microsoft Word (.doc, .docx), Excel (.xls, .xlsx), Outlook, web pages (.html), Powerpoint (.ppt, .pptx), image editors (.png, .tif, .bmp); and a huge variety of other types of files that are commonplace in the modern corporate environments. It also offers highly-advanced functionality that making it a well-suited part of a corporate document workflow process. Most often, it’s used within organizations with a substantial need for document management and archiving; including, but not limited to, governments, law firms, financial services organizations, medical and healthcare establishments, and more. DCS is truly a powerhouse of a document conversion solution, so if PDF conversion is part of your needs, but not the only part, it may be a great solution for your organization.

Raster Image Printer

If you’re looking for a file conversion solution that includes, but is not limited to, PDF conversion, you also may want to consider our Raster Image Printer – our so-called ‘Cadillac’ of image printers. In addition to the Print to PDF functionality that is inherent in PDF Image Printer, Raster Image Printer also allows you to convert any printable Windows file to JPEG and TIFF formats. This is an ideal option if you need on-demand conversion that is easy, yet offers powerful functionality and output options, and is suitable for both home users and corporate workflow environments.

Which Software Solution is Best for PDF Conversion?

The PDF Conversion solution that’s best for your needs will depend, on what exactly your needs are, and to some extent, the frequency and volume of the PDF conversion you require.

PDF Creator PlusPDF Image PrinterConvertMyFiles.comDocument Conversion Service
  • WHAT IT DOES:

    PDF Creator Plus is a cost-effective alternative to Adobe Acrobat which allows the user to create PDF by combining, or otherwise editing other types of Windows files.
  • TYPE OF FILE CREATED: Vector PDF
  • WHO IT’S GOOD FOR: Individual home users, or office users, who require a product similar to Adobe Acrobat, at a more affordable cost.
  • WHAT IT DOES:

    PDF Image Printer is a virtual printer, allowing you to create a PDF directly from any printable document.
  • TYPE OF FILE CREATED: Raster PDF
  • WHO IT’S GOOD FOR: Individual users at the home or office, or IT departments in organizations with a need to create PDF files on an on-demand basis.
  • WHAT IT DOES:

    It’s a website that allows you to buy a cost-effective, monthly membership, in order to upload and convert files on demand.
  • TYPE OF FILE CREATED: Raster PDF, Vector PDF, and a wide range of others.
  • WHO IT’S GOOD FOR: Primarily, anyone with a need for easy file creation; do not want to download software, need to use from anywhere on any device.
  • WHAT IT DOES:

    Document Conversion Service is a powerful, enterprise-level file conversion solution, allowing for batch file conversion and automated file conversion.
  • TYPE OF FILE CREATED: Raster PDF, Vector PDF, and more.
  • WHO IT’S GOOD FOR: Generally, enterprise-level organizations with significant, ongoing, file-conversion demands.

Get Started with PDF Conversion from Peernet today.

Converting your files to PDF is not only a great way to increase your company’s efficiency, but for some organizations, it’s a necessary step to improve their workflow. Get started today by trying out the PDF solution that’s right for you. All of the products mentioned above have trial downloads available, so you can test it out for yourself to ensure that the software solution is the right fit for your requirements. If you still need a little bit more information on what product is right for your company’s needs, please take a few minutes to watch the video below.

And if you still require a little bit of extra guidance, feel free to drop us a line and we’ll get you pointed in the right direction.

file conversion solutions

The Best Ways to Improve Your Company’s Document Management

In today’s increasingly fast-paced office environments, saving on processing time relating to documents is a critical part of keeping pace. To do so can seem like an overwhelming task at first, but by making some manageable changes over time, you can make sure that you’re keeping up with and surpassing the efficiency expected from you out of your clientele or customers – and making sure you’re serving them faster and better than any competitor might.

digital document management

Some common concerns that business owners have in the document management space include:

  • Ensuring that their organization is best making use of digital resources.
  • Reducing their organization’s dependence on physical paper documentation.
  • Making sure that they have a great protocol in place for managing, distributing and storing digital documentation and/or files.
  • Reducing the time and resources spent on these operational tasks so that it can be properly allocated to core operations of your organization.

With those in mind, let’s look at some relatively straightforward ways that organizations can improve their document management.

This can allow your employees/colleagues to work faster, smarter, and have a range of benefits beyond the big one – your organization’s bottom line.

  1. Establish a standardized system for document filing and file naming. If people within your organization are manually converting files, establishing a common system for the actual naming of the outputted files is a good place to start. You first want to ensure that everyone dependably knows where a given file ought to go, to make it easy for other colleagues, or clients, to locate it. In determining your filing system hierarchy, you’ll have some options. For internal documents, the best bet might be to separate out your invoices, leads, and other documents by type, into their own folders. You might also find it beneficial to break these down by year.

    In terms of actually determining a structure or naming template to use, you’ll want to be sure that you find a balance between being detailed enough to provide a good description of the document’s contents, but also making sure that it’s quickly evident – and easy to replicate. If it’s too bothersome overtime to follow the format, your employees likely won’t buy into to your document naming scheme. Ensuring that files and documents are named and filed according to established standards can save significant time over the long haul and is a big part of improving your company’s existing document management.

  2. If your company has ongoing conversion needs, investigate if a batch file conversion solution might be a good fit. Batch file conversion is the process of converting many documents or files at once, rather than on an as-needed basis. This can obviously come in very handy for companies with a need for large scale file conversion or document conversion. Converting files in batches can save your organization huge amounts of time and resources, and is an excellent way to improve your company’s management of internal documentation or client information. For more information on batch document conversion, you may want to look into PEERNET’s line of batch document conversion products: Document Conversion Service, or alternatively, File Conversion Center. Both are built for organizations with high file conversion needs, and offer solutions for optimizing that process.
  3. Along the same lines, consider an automated conversion process. Companies that process a large amount of documents (financial industry, medical industry, etc.) can sometimes require ongoing, automated file conversion. For example, your organization might receive information in one file format, and need it to be converted automatically to a different format. This is where automated file conversion really shines as a way to improve the management of documents in a corporate workflow environment. Check out our recent post on File Conversion for Enterprise Organizations for a lot more info on how automated batch file conversion can be a boost to your company’s productivity.
  4. Cut down on confusion by making use of a file type that maintains formatting across all devices and operating systems. If your organization is regularly dispatching or sharing digital files with people outside of the organization (or even just internally), that can sometimes lead to unnecessary confusion. Making use of a format such as PDF offers a huge benefit over sharing Microsoft Word documents, for example. While both are ubiquitous, document formatting is maintained on PDF regardless of device, operating system, screen size, and other factors. So, with PDF, not only can you be nearly certain that the recipient will be able to open and view the document, but you can be almost as certain that the way that you formatted the document is the same way that the recipient will be viewing it. Another option which is commonly used as a file storage option is the TIFF format. TIFF, which stands for Tagged Image File Format, is actually an image format which was originally designed to handle scanned documents, so it’s quite well-suited for corporate document sharing. And like PDF, TIFF maintains its document formatting regardless of the specifications of which device or system it’s viewed on. PDF and TIFF are two of the best formats for sharing documents; making use of these common and consistent file formats is a great way to increase the efficiency of your company’s document management protocol and systems.
  5. Stop using free web-based file converters for your business.

    File converter websites can certainly serve a purpose for individuals at home. However, in general, their use should be discouraged in a corporate environment. The issues with them can be numerous:

    • SECURITY CONCERNS: You’re never quite certain where your company’s documents are going during the conversion process, which can definitely be cause for concern (especially if your company is holding secure customer information.) You don’t want to be handing over information to anyone who can set up a basic file converter and have it rank in search engines. As well, some of these sites may not exactly be trusted destinations that you want your company’s computers browsing to.
    • RESTRICTIONS: Many free file converter sites are not truly ‘free’ – they’ll do things like stamp a watermark on your document, for example. You may want to check out the “terms and conditions” pages of some of these sites before handing over your information.
    • INCORRECT SETTINGS: Often, these sorts of sites will offer limited functionality and not allow you to specify the settings of your outputted documents. As well, you’ll likely have to re-set your conversion settings every time.
    • LACK OF BATCH CONVERSION OPTIONS OR AUTOMATED CONVERSION. Many of these online conversion sites offer a clunky conversion interface, taking too much time to run their conversions on underpowered servers, or worse, only offering options to convert one file at a time if you need regular, ongoing converisons done, or more than one file converted at a time.

Moving away from these sorts of free online file converter tools, and into a purpose-built software product for your company or organization is a fantastic way to improve your company’s document management, both from a workflow perspective, as well as a security and customer trust perspective. If you’re looking for an online file conversion tool that is secure enough for companies to trust, do check out ConvertMyFiles.com.

Improve Your Organization’s Document Management in 2016

Whether you are part of a large enterprise organization, or just a small little start-up, resolve to improve your organization’s document management protocol and capabilities this year. If you’re looking to get a jump on things, PEERNET’s line of file conversion software can definitely help.

  • If you have a need for on-demand conversion to a specific filetype: Take a look at our single-purpose conversion options, referred to as virtual image printers. To convert to PDF, we have PDF Image Printer available, and to convert to TIFF, we have TIFF Image Printer. Finally, our Raster Image Printer offers functionality for conversion to both formats as well as others. As mentioned, converting your files into these formats ensures that they can be read on all devices, with the same formatting maintained.
  • For more PDF creation options. Our PDF Creator Plus 7.0 software is an alternative to the pricier Adobe Acrobat, which offers much of the same features and functionality. This gives you the ability to combine and edit any Windows file that you can open and print into an outputted PDF file. This is very useful software to have on hand for many business owners and organizations.
  • To Convert Files to Searchable PDF: You’ll want to take a look into our Convert to PDF software, which converts from common formats like Word, Excel, Powerpoint, HTML and others into the portable document format.
  • For batch conversion, on demand: Peernet’s File Conversion Center can make a huge impact towards creating a more productive workplace, giving your staff a full set of conversion tools at their disposal to transfer files to PDF, TIFF or JPEG, on demand.
  • For automated batch file conversion: Our Document Conversion Service is a widely-used file conversion solution in enterprise environments, and organizations with an ongoing need for regular conversions to be done.

For more guidance on which Peernet products can help you improve your company’s document management in 2016, please take a couple of minutes to check out the video below.

As well, if you’re still not quite sure, feel free to reach out and contact us. We’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

batch file conversion for enterprise

File Conversion Options for Enterprise Organizations

For organizations of a large scale – generally referred to as “enterprise” level companies – integrating and optimizing your file conversion process can be an excellent way to improve efficiency within your company or institution.

batch file conversion for enterprise

This newly-found efficiency can manifest itself in a number of ways:

  • Replacing several pieces of conversion software with one integrated conversion solution.
  • Greatly reduced time spent manually converting documents.
  • A more efficient workflow by having your team members collaborate on digital documentation rather than paper copies of documents.
  • The acceleration of processing time, via the reduction of time spent before documents are available in their proper formats.
  • Reduced costs relating to paper purchasing, printing, distribution, and associated costs.

For these reasons and more, selecting and integrating a document conversion solution for your enterprise organization is a task that can ultimately free up resources from the top on down.

File Conversion Options:

File conversion solutions can be broken down into two main types:

  • On-demand file conversion: Files are converted as needed. Output settings can be manually selected each time, or pulled from saved settings.
  • Automated file conversion: Files are automatically converted on an ongoing basis.

Additionally, some enterprise-level organizations may benefit from batch file conversion, which is the process of converting many documents at the same time, rather than individually converting one at a time.

What is Batch File Conversion?

For some organizations, on-demand file conversion is done on an as-needed basis. And for many organizations in the corporate world, that works quite well (in fact, we’ll discuss more about your on-demand options later in this post).

But for many larger-scale organizations, or companies who require consistent and regular file conversion, batch file conversion is an appealing option.

Batch file conversion is essentially the act of converting many documents at the same time. Generally these will be converted using pre-specified settings, but they can also be adjusted or specifically tailored on an ongoing basis.

PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service is an industry-leading Batch File Conversion tool that is ideally suited to the needs of enterprise organizations.

The Benefits of Batch Conversion with Document Conversion Service:

  • Document Conversion Service is designed from the ground up for high-volume document conversion. For companies with a regular need for file conversion, this can provide exceptional cost savings over time.
  • Beyond the directly-attributable cost savings, batch document conversion saves your organization significant time. By converting many files at once, that frees up time for other work than can directly contribute to the goals of your company.
  • File conversion can be truly automated: run conversions 24/7 in the background, allowing documents to be converted without constant attention from an employee or a member of your IT staff.
  • Conversion settings can be set once and used across multiple conversions, saving you time and worry.
  • The quality of your converted document is guaranteed to be the quality that you specify.
  • For more advanced users and IT departments, the software can be operated from the command line, again, to save your organization significant time.
  • Settings can be tailored through the application configuration file to control all aspects of the conversion process.
  • New for Document Conversion Service 3.0: DCS now supports conversions to vector PDF. This allows for searchable PDF documents, converted from a wide spectrum of different file formats.
  • Document Conversion Service offers workflow integration via the PEERNET.ConvertUtility .NET utility library (callable from any language; C++, C#, VB, PowerShell, and others).
  • DCS does not rely on the system default printer, allowing for true parallel processing of documents.
  • It also gives you the capability to control which file converters are running at any time, freeing up resources, memory and processing power to devote to your main conversion tasks.
  • Document Conversion Service is built as a true Windows service, and does not require a signed-in user to operate. Conversion processes are monitored as a service, so they’re automatically restarted to minimize downtime.
  • It offers support for Outside-in ActiveX Control from Oracle ®, adding the ability to convert into 500 more formats as needed.
  • DCS gives organizations the ability to convert text-based reports from older mainframe applications into a versatile, modern format such as PDF or TIFF.
  • It can easily create faxable TIFF files.
  • You’re able to set up a watch folder service to monitor multiple folders.
  • The operator can consolidate disparate information by automatically combining multiple files into a single file, such as a PDF.

Document Conversion Service is highly-specialized, and tailored to the needs of enterprise level organization. It offers seamless workflow integration, and meshes well with any existing content management and file organization processes in place. Take a look at some more of the features that make DCS the most robust enterprise file conversion service on the market today. Here’s a short video on what i can do for you.

What Sort of Organizations Require Automated Batch Document Conversion?

A number of different industries have a need for automated batch conversion of their documents and files. These could include, among others:

  • Medical profession – clinics, hospitals, offices;
  • Legal profession – law offices;
  • Municipalities and government organizations;
  • Banking and financial services;
  • Insurance organizations – agencies and brokerages;
  • National and multinational corporations;
  • And a wide variety of others.

One benefit of converting files into one particular format is that it standardizes your company’s record keeping. It also keeps the ultimate viewer of the document, internally, from maintaining multiple pieces of software, or opening up those various programs each time that they need to view a document. But changing files into widely-used and supported formats — such as PDF and TIFF, for example – also offers you the ability to easily share documents outside of the organization as well. So as an example, if there is an invoice generated by some other enterprise platform that you need to share with a client, conversion through Document Conversion Service makes this readily option readily available.

What Files Types are Supported for Batch Conversion?

Document Conversion Service supports a wide range of files for batch document conversion and automated file conversion applications. Among the most common:

  • PDF files
  • Excel files: .xlsx, .xls, .xlsm and more
  • Image files: JPEG (JPG), TIF (TIFF), BMP, PNG, GIF, and more.
  • Web pages: HTML files, secure HTML files
  • Powerpoint Files, shows and templates: .ppt, .pptm, .pptx.
  • Word Files and word processing files: .docx, .doc, .txt., and many more.

And here are a few more specialized file types that you may find Document Conversion Service useful for in your industry:

  • Design Review Drawings (*.dwg)
  • AutoCAD drawings (.dwg).
  • Postscript files (*.ps)
  • Publisher files (*.pub)
  • And many more. Please see our Supported Conversions page for a full list of supported filetypes that can be converted with Document Conversion Service.
  • We are adding support for new formats all the time, so please reach out and contact us if you require support for a format that you don’t see listed.

On-Demand File Conversion for Enterprise Organizations

Perhaps your enterprise-level organization requires regular file conversions but not to the point of needing an automating solution. There are a number of different directions and software solutions you can look towards to fulfill your requirements if this is the case.

Although the software is primarily built and targeted towards individual end-users, File Conversion Center offers on-demand, desktop file conversion that could serve as an intermediate option for some enterprise-level organizations that require regular file conversion, across multiple formats, but don’t quite need an automated batch processing solution.

Here are the basic features of File Conversion Center:

  • Converts from formats including Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, etc.); PDF; HTML and PostScript.
  • Converts to formats PDF, TIFF and JPEG.
  • Makes use of drag-and-drop file conversion – drop a file in a given folder, and the converted file is outputted automatically based on previous settings, or settings that you specify.
  • Offers you the flexibility to either convert one file at a time, or convert multiple files at the same time.
  • Offers a wide range of conversion settings to tailor the outputted document for what you’re looking for. Options include basic selections such as file type and output location, and more advanced file customization options – for example, resolution, multi-page file creation, auto-rotation – and a range of different options.

File Conversion Center offers the option to run scheduled tasks, so there is the opportunity, for example, to leave it running its conversion processes before heading home for the evening, and then have the converted files ready for you the next day.

Single-Purpose File Conversion Tools

Some enterprise-level companies, businesses and organizations may only require the use of software that is built specifically to convert to one file format. Although these options do not offer batch file conversion functionality, they are excellent solutions for individual end-users to convert files as needed. If your organization requires regular use of the PDF format, for example, then PDF Image Printer, which converts to high-quality, non-searchable PDF format, might be a great fit. Likewise, if you keep records in TIFF format, our TIFF Image Printer makes TIFF conversion fast and effortless (one of the most common uses of the software is to convert PDF to TIFF.) As well, if you make use of both formats, then you may want to consider Raster Image Printer, which allows for quick document conversion into TIFF, JPEG, PDF, GIF, PNG format and an array of others.

Enterprise File Conversion: Get the Full Scope of Options

For more information on the product options available to your enterprise organization, check out our full product line of file conversion software. If you need more information on which product might be right for your company, please take a couple of minutes to watch the video below:

Or, if you have any further inquiries or questions about file conversion for your enterprise organization, feel free to reach out and contact us. We’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

ways to cut down on paper

20 Ways to Cut Down on Paper in 2016

The end of paper usage and the idea of the paperless office has been discussed and predicted for several decades now. And while the notion of a business that uses absolutely no paper is still more of a dream than a reality, we’re getting closer each year.

The benefits of reducing your paper use are clear. Not only can you cut down on overhead costs, improve customer service, increase productivity and streamline your business operations, but you get the added benefit of being able to say that you’re an environmentally conscious organization – something that consumers are paying more and more attention to these days.

The start of a new year provides an ideal starting point to reduce your organization’s dependence on paper.

ways to cut down on paper

Make it a new year’s resolution to cut down on paper by following any or all of these suggestions:

If you must print on to physical paper:

1.Speak with your colleagues about the importance of reducing paper usage around the office and encourage them to “think before you print.” Set clear expectations on how you wish to reduce the office’s paper consumption in 2016, and make sure everyone knows about it.

2. Make sure your employees are familiar with the “print selected page” functionality rather than printing entire documents when it may be unnecessary.

3. Encourage your colleagues to double check their work before the print, to reduce wasted paper.

4. Reuse paper whenever possible. If it’s not going out to a client, there’s no harm in getting the most out of each sheet of paper.

5. Use both sides of the page. This can be done through the Print Settings menu of most Windows-based software programs.

6. Establish a document template with thinner margins. This allows more text or information to go on each page, cutting down the amount of overall pages.

Around the office:

7. Print receipts to a file, rather than paper, using software such as PDF Image Printer to Print to PDF. This can allow for a significant reduction in paper, and make everyone’s life easier; more on this, below, in point #20.

8. Make sure all of your company’s billing is received digitally. Companies large and small alike have gotten on board with this, and it should be a readily-accessible option in most cases.

9. Reduce the amount of junk mail your office receives. Even if you cut down your paper use within the office, there are still lots of opportunities to cut down on external uses. Contact companies and let them know that you do not wish to receive their mailings, or prefer them in digital form.

10. Display presentations on a screen rather than printing everyone a copy. You can always email them a copy afterwards.

11. Send your clients an e-card rather than a printed card around occasions like the holiday season. The thoughtfulness will still be appreciated.

Paper Saving Projects:

12. Move your new employee handbooks and the various corporate guidebooks you have online, rather than handing out bulky printed documents. If they’re in a format such as vector PDF, this makes them more easily searchable than a physical, printed copy.

13. Only display your business’s digital contact info on your business cards; this can make it more likely that when your contact needs to reach out or send you some documentation, they’ll utilize those methods. Alternatively, eliminate business cards altogether and instead just follow up with an email containing your contact details.

14. Take advantage of the range of digital signature solutions. In many jurisdictions, an electronic signature now holds the same weight as a handwritten signature. There are a number of solutions that allow signees to simply draw their signature on their device, or click/tap to sign off on digital documents.

15. Reduce your business’s dependence on fax machines. Instead, make use of emails, scanned documentation, or wholly digital documents.

16. Coordinate with your company’s IT or digital team to move client/customer forms online. Not only is this just more convenient for many people these days, but it can also allow for better document organization, information retrieval, data manipulation and analytical insights.

17. Create a digital document filing system that is superior to your old paper-based filing cabinets. The best way to get “buy in” from your colleagues is to improve on the status quo.

18. Shift your company’s accounting practices to be more digitally-based. Speak to your accounting department to discuss ways to reduce paper usage in that sector of the business; even if they can’t eliminate paper entirely, there are some tools that can significantly impact the amount of paper used for tasks like expensing and invoicing.

19. Send employees a TIFF or PDF of their pay stubs rather than printing them. A lot of people rarely even look at them anyway. If they need to, they can easily print them off on their own.

20. Invest in software that makes image printing and file conversion efficient, and easy. A new generation of the workforce has grown up with computers and is comfortable with the tools required to make a significant dent in your office’s paper consumption habits. The simplest way you can start is by encouraging your team to print to file, rather than printing to paper. This involves installing a piece of document conversion software, or driver, on your computer systems, that can integrate seamlessly with the PRINT functionality of their existing software programs. In many cases, the user can simply select from a dropdown menu to print to file; this converts the existing document into an image format that can easily be stored and shared with others.

Software Tools for Reducing Paper Use

There are a number of software solutions that can significantly ease your transition towards a paperless future at your office.

Print your documents to PDF:

As mentioned in idea #20, above, “printing” to a file rather than a physical piece of paper is one of the easiest and most versatile changes that you can make to your company’s daily workflow. The PDF format is, for many companies, ideal for this purpose – and software like PDF Image Printer is perfectly suited to this purpose. Once you have the outputted document, you end up with a true-to-form virtual version of a printed page (and if that page absolutely needs to be printed, you can entrust that the physical copy will look identical to the on-screen, virtual copy.) This file can be used in a wide variety of ways – great for sharing internally or with clients/customers, or even posting on your company’s website. If you need added functionality in assembling your PDF documentation, an option such as PDF Creator Plus might be right for you.

Print your documents to TIFF:

TIFF is a widely-used file format in the corporate world, particularly in industries where there’s a need to store or archive a lot of client information. The format is widely used in the legal profession, and medical community, for example. TIFF Image Printer makes it easy to convert a Windows document into TIFF format. TIFF stands for Tagged Image File Format, and as an image format, that makes it a more secure alternative to many file formats – malware, viruses, hidden links or malicious code cannot be embedded within the actual document. Another big benefit of TIFF is its high-quality output; the degradation that you see as a result of image compression in formats like JPEG, for example, are not evident within TIFF (though the format does offer some compression options, if desired.) If you still need to print a TIFF file to physical paper, it will appear on the printed page exactly as it appears onscreen, providing the resolution and settings are correct, making it an easy way to maintain document formatting.

Print your documents to TIFF, PDF, and other formats:

If you expect that you’ll have a need for various formats of outputted files, a piece of software such as Raster Image Printer could be a good fit for you. Raster Image Printer combines the functionality of TIFF Image Printer and PDF Image Printer into one easy-to-use package. It also allows the user to convert to JPEG, convert to PNG, GIF, and a variety of other formats. Documents can be digitally printed from all of the main, common formats that most businesses would be using on a daily basis; for example, Excel, Word, PDF, Powerpoint, text files, HTML pages – any file that you can open and print to paper, you can print to file as well. Some of our existing customers’ common uses for this piece of software include using it to convert PDF to TIFF, or PDF to JPEG. Raster Image Printer also offers the ability to customize your settings (print quality ranging from 50 DPI to 1200 DPI), and allows image manipulation and adjustments before outputting your completed file (for example, resizing, rotating, cropping, and more.)

A New Year, a New Commitment to Paper Reduction

Whether you’re a single individual user, or an enterprise-scale organization, PEERNET has a product to fit your image printing and document conversion needs. View our entire line of file conversion products. If you need more explanation on the benefits and differences between our range of offerings, please take a few minutes to watch the short video below in order to discover the product that’s right for your needs:

And if you need further guidance, we’re here to help. Simply contact us with a little bit of information about your requirements, and we’ll happily get you pointed in the right direction.

Happy New Year from all of us at PEERNET!

How to Choose Document Conversion Sfotware

How to Choose Document Conversion Software

There is a world of choice out there when it comes to document conversion software. Whether you are personal user just looking for occasional one-off or an enterprise organization with a need for consistent batch file conversion, your options are virtually endless. So once you’ve decided that you need a dedicated document conversion solution, what’s the best way to wade through the bevy of options to identify the software that’s right for your needs? This guide should help point you in the right direction.

Assessing Your Needs:

How to Choose Document Conversion Software

Before you go searching out a piece of software or a solution for your file conversion needs, it’s helpful to reflect on exactly the types of features you’re looking for.
Finding the right program or system to handle document conversion or file conversion can be broken down into some of the following main categories and questions:

  • What Volume of Document Conversion Do You Need?

    If you’ve started to think about a file conversion solution in the first place, then you likely have some need for it. But to what extent? Do you anticipate converting documents a few times a week? Or a few times a day? Or, even down to multiple times per minute? Taking stock of your needs will help significantly in starting the process towards your final choice.

  • What Sort of Budget Do You Have in Mind?

    File conversion solutions and software can vary greatly in price, but by the same token, vary greatly in functionality. They can range in cost from totally free (although, as a note of caution, these usually come with caveats – more on that later) to enterprise level license pricing. In general, you are likely to get what you pay for in terms of power and functionality as you move up the chain of file conversion programs.

  • What Types of Files Do You Need Outputted?

    The file formats that your business is making regular use of will be a crucial determinant in choosing your file conversion software. Some programs are likely to handle any file format that you want, while others are more built for a singular purpose (for example, to convert files to PDF, or convert to TIFF.) Keep this in mind when researching potential software solutions.

It’s essential that you take these questions into account when developing a strategy for document conversions.

Answering some Key Questions:

Before we get into a rundown of your various software options, let’s review a couple of important questions that people commonly have regarding file conversion protocol.

Free or Paid File Conversion?

When looking for a file conversion solution, you may be tempted to look at what free options are out there. And for some people, that may be fine. But for the majority of business, enterprise, and even home users, there can be drawbacks to using a typical free online file conversion website. These drawbacks can include:

  • Watermarks on the documents. Almost all free file conversion sites will stamp some sort of mark on the outputted, converted document. This can look highly unprofessional if you’re using the document for anything related to business purposes.
  • You probably don’t know exactly where your documents are going. This is potentially a huge issue in this era of heightened concern over digital security; and particularly, if the information in the document is sensitive in nature or contains your customers’ information. You’ll want to know that the server that you’re uploading this information to is secured, or at very least, run by a trusted, reputable organization.
  • You may be limited in the settings of your outputted files. As a result, the files may be too low-quality, or too large of files for your particular needs. As well, there are often low restrictions as to the size of file that you’re able to upload.
  • You also may be limited in terms of the supported file types. Many of these free online file conversion sites offer quite limited functionality.
  • Conversions can be slow. Some larger files may take up to several minutes to convert. If you have a need for consistent conversions, this is a less-than-ideal use of time.

If you’re really just interested in file conversion for small business or personal use, consider making use of a site like Peernet’s ConvertMyFiles.com. It is a membership-based website with packages starting from as low as $1.00 for one week of conversion time. This $1 Copper package allows you up to perform up to 10 conversions per week. From there, as you need more conversions, there is some outstanding value provided in the bronze, silver and gold packages offered.

Best of all, ConvertMyFiles offers support for a massive range of file types:

  • Adobe PDF Documents (*.pdf)
  • AutoCAD Drawings (*.dwg)
  • Design Review Drawings (*.dwf,*.dwfx)
  • Image files(*.bmp, *.gif, *.jpg, *.jpeg, *.png, *.tif, and many more)
  • Microsoft Excel (*.xls, *.xlsx, *.xlsm, *.xls, *.xlt, *.xltx, *.xltm, *.xlsb)
  • Microsoft PowerPoint (*.ls, *.xlsx, *.xlsm, *.xls, *.xlsb)
  • Microsoft Outlook(*.oft, *.msg, *.vcf, *.vcs, *.ics)
  • Microsoft Publisher(*.pub)
  • Microsoft Visio(*.vsd, *.vdx, *.vsdx)
  • Microsoft Word(*.doc, *.docx, *.docm, *.dot, *.dotx, *.dotm )
  • Microsoft XPS(*.xps, *.oxps)
  • Postscript files(*.ps, *.eps)
  • Rich-Text files(*.rtf)
  • Text files(*.txt, *.log, *.xml)
  • Web files(*.htm, *.html, *.mht)

Give it a try and convert files online today!

What Are the Main Advantages of Using Business-Focused Document Conversion Software?

Here are 10 good reasons why using professional document conversion software is the smart choice to make:

  1. Your conversions will be consistent. This adds dependability to your file conversions, ensuring that your outputted files have a professional appearance.
  2. Rather than bouncing between various websites or programs, training time is limited when making use of one piece of file conversion software.
  3. It’s easy to use. Building off of the previous point, our software is designed with user experience in mind, developed to make file conversion simple.
  4. Professional document conversion programs offer flexibility and customization to tailor your files as needed, depending on size and quality concerns.
  5. Using secure software ensures that any sensitive data contained in converted documents remains protected.
  6. Similarly, acquiring the file converter itself is done through a safe, secure environment, so you wouldn’t have to worry about what your employees are downloading.
  7. A wide range of supported file types. With all-in-one solutions such as Document Conversion Service or our File Conversion Center, you have output files in a wide range of file formats, so if unusual needs spring up, you’ll be covered. Even with software like PDF Image Printer, you have the option to convert from any Windows document file that can be converted, into a PDF document.
  8. In most cases, you don’t have to worry about time or employee resources wasted through server downtime, or internet connectivity issues.
  9. It works on your existing operating system. File converters like those developed by Peernet are compatible with Windows-based operating systems, the dominant OS used in offices and corporate environments throughout the world.
  10. There is a highly-trained and expert support team that stands behind their products and is happy to help with any issues you may run into.

Choosing Your Document Conversion Software:

So, with all that in mind, here is a brief rundown of the software you should choose, depending on your particular needs that you’ve already assessed.

To Convert to TIFF:

  • TIFF Image Printer functions as a virtual printer, allowing conversion of any Windows file you can print.

To Convert to PDF:

  • PDF Image Printer converts Windows documents to non-editable (raster) PDF files.
  • PDF Creator Plus is built as an Adobe Acrobat alternative, allowing you to work with various Windows documents to create vector PDFs (searchable).
  • Convert to PDF is a powerful, yet easy-to-use PDF Converter that allows you to create searchable PDFs, and allows for automated PDF conversion.

To Convert to PDF, Convert to TIFF, and others:

  • Raster Image Printer combines the functionality of PDF Image Printer and TIFF Image Printer into one package, and expands it to allow for conversion to JPEG, PNG, GIF, and a wide range of other file formats.

For Businesses with a Need for Desktop Batch Conversion:

  • File Conversion Center offers an all-in-one solution to convert files to TIFF, JPEG, PDF and a range of other image formats. Conversion tasks can be scheduled and automated document conversion is available for power users.

For Businesses with an Ongoing Requirement for Batch Document Conversion:

  • Document Conversion Service is our top-of-the-line solution for batch file conversion. It offers powerful command line functionality and can convert files in the background, 24/7. It is a highly scalable product with a robust feature set that is suitable for businesses with a need for consistent or constant file conversion, and enterprise organizations.

Make The Right Choice:

If you still need a little assistance in choosing the right document conversion software for your needs, please take a couple of minutes to watch the video below, which should help steer you in the right direction.

As well, if you still have questions about document conversion software, feel free to contact us here at Peernet – we’ll be happy to provide some insight and offer you some guidance on what sort of software solution might fit the needs of you and your organization.

document converter

The Best Formats for Sharing Documents in Business

Sharing digital documents between various users at the office is more common than ever before. Many modern businesses operate outside of the traditional desk-based workflow — with BYOD (bring your own device) policies becoming more and more commonplace.

The issue that this can pose for some companies is that once you have employees working on such a variety of operating systems, devices and the like, the formatting of document can become an issue if they are inconsistent from one worker’s computer/device to the next, or worse, when sent to a client.

The Document Formatting Problem

file transfer at office

Let’s take a look at one of the most common programs used daily in the world of business: Microsoft Word. While its wide use makes it a good format to share word processed documents, it also comes with its own set of issues when sharing documents with others.

In simple terms, it’s quite likely that the document will look very different on the recipient’s computer or device than it does on the sender’s computer.

This can be problematic for a number of reasons.

  • If you’ve broken a document down into sections, they might seem not to make sense when viewed on the recipient’s system.
  • If you have put page breaks in specific places based on the layout of your document, they might seem strangely placed to the viewer of the document.

So why does this happen?

If the sender’s computer has different fonts installed than the recipient’s computer, the recipient’s computer may try to substitute in the closest match. Since individual characters can be different sizes from one font to the next, some lines of text may need to be broken up earlier; or, the substituted font may be able to fit more characters into a given line.

  • One user’s margins or printable area may be set differently than the other users.
  • “Style” settings from one user’s version of Word to the next can make alignment and headings different.
  • Differences in screen resolution can make document format wildly different from one user’s computer to the next.

All of these issues can play havoc with the formatting of your document. And the problem can be compounded when there is more than one issue at play.

Because of these factors, sharing Microsoft Word documents is really not an ideal or professional way to produce reports, bills or other communications for clients, and is not even a great practice to use internally at your office.

The same issues that can cause documents to appear differently on one computer or another is not restricted to the Word, .doc, or .docx file format. Some of these issues can also affect files commonly produced by software such as Excel (.xlsx), Powerpoint (.ppt) and a variety of other file types that are shared around the office.

How to make sure that document format stays the same?

Thankfully, there is a fairly simple way to address this issue. By using the right document formats you can ensure that the viewer of the document is able to see the file exactly as you had laid it out.

There are two main file formats used in the business world for the purposes of ensuring that your document’s formatting remains the same:

  • Portable Document Format – PDF (Raster style)
  • Tagged Image File Format – TIFF

Both of these two file formats have their advantages and drawbacks. Let’s take a look at the benefits of sharing files in each of these formats.

PDF: The Benefits of Sharing files in PDF format

As its formal name of portable document format suggests, the PDF format was designed and has evolved to enable the easy sharing of documents between one user and the next. PDF was developed with portability in mind, and a big part of that is ensuring that document formatting maintains consistency from one platform to the next. Of course, with the proliferation of mobile devices, tablets and the like, one could argue that the format has become even more useful, with the greater variety of device sizes and operating systems used today. One of the strengths of PDF as a file format is that it is extremely versatile.

PDF files can be broken down into two main types:

  • Raster PDF
  • Vector PDF

For the purposes of maintaining absolutely consistent document formatting, raster PDF is the way to go. This is the same format that is generally used when scanning a physical document into your computer. A raster PDF essentially functions in the same manner as an image on your computer. That means that when you try to highlight some text, your cursor will actually grab the whole page at once, as all the elements essentially function as one image.

A vector PDF, on the other hand, renders the individual lines and text on page, making use of embedded fonts. This is advantageous for some uses, such as copying and pasting text, keeping file sizes lower, and maintaining document quality upon zooming; however, you may run into the same issue that you may run into a Word document.

Some of the other main benefits of the PDF format include: wide scale adoption throughout the business world; a wide range of options to customize the quality and file size of your outputted digital documents; and password-protection functionality on individual files.

How to Convert Files to PDF?

Converting files from other Windows file formats to PDF is actually quite easy to do. There are a number of software solutions offered by Peernet that are purpose-built to ensure easy conversion to PDF, giving you consistent layout on your documents — no matter what system they’re eventually viewed on.

For Online File Conversion (no software required): Peernet’s online file converter, ConvertMyFiles.com is a great solution for PDF conversion, for individual users or companies with a relatively infrequent need for file conversion. Membership to ConvertMyFiles is available starting at just $1.00, which allows you up to 10 conversions per week.

If your organization has a need for more conversions, ConvertMyFiles offers a variety of membership levels, each allowing you more conversions and the ability to upload and convert larger files.

For quick and easy raster PDF creation: PDF Image Printer. This program allows you to convert Windows documents, such as Word, Excel, Powerpoint, text, or any other type of printable Windows file, into PDF format. As mentioned, raster PDF is the ideal format for maintaining document layout from one system to the next.

TIFF: The Benefits of Sharing Files in TIFF format

The Tagged Image File Format (TIFF, or sometimes denoted as TIF), began its development as a format to be ideally suited to the scanning of physical documents. In the 1980s when many companies first started to adapt computers into their workflow, there was a need for a format that was built to handle scanned documents. TIFF was built for that purpose. Its lineage makes it a perfect format that is both shareable, and sure to maintain formatting.

Like a raster PDF, a TIFF is an image-based format. That means that the text and fonts are not rendered individually, instead, the entire document or ‘page’ is rendered as a single image.

Some of the other main benefits of the TIFF file format are: high-quality files with the ability to very accurately replicate an original document; a range of compression options depending on file size concerns; good security features; viewable on almost all modern devices.

How to Convert Files to TIFF?

For easy TIFF Creation: TIFF Image Printer is built specifically to allow for fast and easy conversion of any Windows document that you can open and print, into the TIFF File Format. While it’s easy to use, the software also gives you a great deal of control over your output settings, image adjustments and preferences, should you need it.

Raster Image Printer combines the functionality of PDF Image Printer and TIFF Image Printer into one package, and adds in the ability to easily convert printable files to JPEG format as well.

ConvertMyFiles.com, mentioned above, also allows users to convert files to TIFF.

Convert Documents to PDF or TIFF to Maintain Formatting

PEERNET has a variety of options available to set you or your organization up with a method of sharing files and documents in the best formats available. Our range of software products extends beyond what we’ve mentioned in this article, even to enterprise-level batch file conversion software like our Document Conversion Service. The right product for you or your company will depend on a number of factors related to your organization, including the frequency of your file conversion demands. To get a better sense of which product might be right for you, please watch the video below.

If you still have any questions remaining, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us here at PEERNET and we will be happy to point you in the right direction.