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three-new-utilities

DCS 3.0.017: Three New Utilities to Manage DCS Config File

As part of the release of DCS 3.0.017, PEERNET Document Conversion Service users now have access to three new utilities all designed to make the management and maintenance of their DCS settings more streamlined.

The three new utilities are:

  1. DCS Backup and Restore
  2. Configuration Merge
  3. DCS Editior

All three utilities can be accessed from the Start menu under Document Conversion Service when you are running DCS version 3.0.017 or higher. For instructions on how to use each utility please watch the tutorial below:


DCS Backup and Restore

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This utility is primary used in conjunction with the updating/upgrading process. The install for DCS version 3.0.017 and higher will now automatically prompt to create and then restore from a saved backup zip file so that your previous settings can be restored easily.

If you are currently running a version of DCS earlier than 3.0.017, please contact support and our team can provide you with a link to the DCS Backup and Restore utility. Run this utility prior to upgrading to DCS 3.0.017 to save your settings before re-installing or upgrading to DCS 3.0.017 on a new machine.

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The DCS Backup and Restore utility will backup, and then restore, your DCS configuration file, Watch Folder Service configuration file and your Conversion Profiles. During the backup process, you can select which files to backup based on which settings files you have customized.

During the restore process, the utility will merge your saved settings files, identify any errors and allow you to edit the final merged version of the file before overwriting the new settings file. The benefit of this merge process is that you will be able to maintain all of your custom DCS settings while also gaining access to any of the new features released with the updated/upgraded version.


Configuration Merge

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This utility is useful for DCS users who are familiar with saving their DCS settings files using the manual method (used prior to the release of the DCS Backup and Restore utility). In the past, DCS users would have to save their DCS configuration file, Watch Folder Service configuration file and Conversion Profiles individually so that they could subsequently be used to overwrite the default settings files following an update/upgrade.

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The Configuration Merge utility will allow you to merge your previously saved DCS configuration file, Watch Folder Service configuration file and/or Conversion Profiles with the respective file from the updated/upgraded version of DCS. The benefit to merging the files, as opposed to simply overwriting the files, is that you will be able to maintain all of your custom DCS settings while also gaining access to any of the new features released with the updated/upgraded version.

Going forward, the install for DCS 3.0.017 and higher will prompt you to backup your settings and then restore your settings using the DCS Backup and Restore utility. If you have used the DCS Backup and Restore utility included as part of the upgrade/update process, you will not need to manually merge your configuration files and conversion profiles.


DCS Editor

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This utility facilitates more simplified editing of your DCS configuration file, Watch Folder configuration file and/or Conversion Profiles. Starting in DCS 3.0.017, when you open the start menu, go to Document Conversion Service, and select either: (1) Edit DCS Configuration File, (2) Configure Watch Folder Settings, or (3) Edit Conversion Profiles, the respective file will launch in the DCS Editor.

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The DCS Editor is color coded for easy editing, and includes collapsible sections to make the file more manageable when scrolling.

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The editor also includes action buttons at the top of the window to make it easier to save the file, search the file, and copy and paste within the file. When you highlight text, you can use the editing buttons to either cut, copy or paste the text. The Find and Replace button allows users to search the file for a specific term or replace all instance of a term.

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Furthermore, the DCS Editor is able to check the settings file for syntax errors which could potentially inhibit conversion. Syntax errors refer to incorrectly formatted settings lines. For example, if you were to exclude a necessary quotation mark, include an extra back slash, or delete a name attribute, the DCS Editor would notify you of the presence of an error and its location. You can check your file for errors by selecting the Validate button from the top of the window. The DCS Editor will also validate the file syntax when you save the file.

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Lastly, the DCS Editor allows you to easily move between DSC setting files by selecting the Open button from the top of the window. The side panel will allow you to switch between editing the DCS configuration file, the Watch Folder configuration file, and any Conversion Profile. Be sure to save any changes you’ve made to the previous file before moving to another file.

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The best way to get started with Document Conversion Service is by downloading our free 30-day trial. This is a fully functional trial of DCS Level I with a watermark added to all output files. As always, the PEERNET support team is more than happy to answer any of your questions and help you evaluate the trial.

dcs-convert-utility-net-library

How to Use the DCS Convert Utility .NET Library

What is PEERNET.ConvertUtility .NET Library?

Document Conversion Service includes the PEERNET.ConvertUtility .NET Library, which allows you to easily add document conversion to your own C# and VB.NET programs. If you are a solution provider, working with .NET, who needs to add into your application the ability to convert documents of different formats into TIFF or PDF file, Document Conversion Service and the includes PEERNET.ConvertUtility .NET Library is the solution you need.

The available file conversion methods (PNConverters) include:

  1. ConvertFile – Converts a single file
  2. ConvertFileList – Converts a list of files from various locations
  3. ConvertFolder – Converts all files in the folder, and optionally all subfolders
  4. CombineFiles – Converts and combines (appends) a list of files from various locations. The files are combined in the order in which they are given. The conversion settings can create either a single output file, or a serialized sequence of single page output files.

Code samples and additional information on how to work with the PEERNET.ConvertUtility .NET Library can be found in the PEERNET.ConvertUtility – Programmer’s Reference.

Why use PEERNET.ConvertUtility .NET Library?

PEERNET.ConvertUtility .NET library is the ideal tool for integrating Document Conversion Service into the workflow of your company when:

  • You are looking for complete integration
  • You want to embed Document Conversion Service’s conversion functionality directly into your workflow (ie. a step in an image archiving workflow)
  • You want to add file conversion to your own code (ie. as part of a web service)

Document Conversion Service and the included PEERNET.ConvertUtility deliver a stress-tested solution that can add automated file conversion into your own applications with just a few lines of code; saving the time and personnel that it would take to write your own automated file conversion code. Using PEERNET.ConvertUtility .NET library you can add silent, headless conversion of various document types, such as Office documents, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc., PDF file, HTML files, and various image formats, to TIFF images, PDF files or JPEG images directly into your own custom code.

PEERNET offers three methods by which to integrate Document Conversion Service into the workflow of your organization: (1) Watch Folder Service, (2) Command Line Tools, or (3) .NET Library.

Using DCS Conversion Profiles

PEERNET.ConvertUtility uses a collection of settings to determine the type of output file to create. These settings are saved in a profile file, what we call a Conversion Profile. Included with the installation of Document Conversion Service are 64 pre-configured Conversion Profiles.

The Conversion Profiles Folders can be accessed by selecting Start – Document Conversion Service – “Open Conversion Profile Folder”.

Conversion Profiles Folder

Creating and Editing DCS Conversion Profiles

If none of these pre-configured Conversion Profiles meets your needs, you can create a new Conversion Profile by copying a similar profile and pasting it into the same folder. Then you can rename this Conversion Profile and change the settings to meet your needs.

Create new Conversion Profile

A Conversion Profile is made up of a collection of name value pairs used to describe the type of output file being created. There is a large collection of settings available for controlling the output file type including how the files are converted, e-discovery options to manipulate documents, etc.

Edit Conversion Profile

See our video below on creating and editing Conversion Profiles to get you started. You can also find more information on available conversion settings in the Document Conversion Service User Guide. If you require any assistance editing a Conversion Profile, do not hesitate to contact the PEERNET support team.

The best way to get started with Document Conversion Service is by downloading our free 30-day trial. This is a fully functional trial of DCS Level I with a watermark added to all output files. As always, the PEERNET support team is more than happy to answer any of your questions and help you evaluate the trial.

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How to Use the DCS Command Line Tools

What are the Command Line Tools?

Included with the installation of Document Conversion Service are several command line utilities for converting files and folders, which we refer to as our “Command Line Tools”. The Command Line Tools can be called from scheduled tasks, batch files or any program that can call an external program in order to add document conversion to your workflow.

Document Conversion Service comes with a number of different convert utilities depending on your conversion needs. They are described in detail in the Command Lines Tools Reference Guide.

The available Command Line Tools include:

  1. DCSConvertFile – convert a single file
  2. DCSConvertFolder – converts folder of file (can process sub-folders)
  3. DCSConvertFileList – converts a list of files passed into the command line
  4. DCSCombineFiles – can take a list of files and combine them into a single file
  5. DCSExtractResults – extracts results from the result log files created by any of the above utilities
  6. DCSCreateFileList – searches a folder, and optionally any subfolders, and returns a list of files matching the search filter specified

Why use Command Line Tools?

Command Line Tools are the ideal mechanism for integrating Document Conversion Service into the workflow of your company when:

  • You need to convert files periodically throughout the day
  • You want to convert files only at a certain time throughout the day (ie. overnight)
  • You are looking for a conversion service that does not run all the time

Using Command Line Tools and a scheduled batch file, you can instruct Document Conversion Service to convert files when it works best for your work flow. Some organizations may prefer to have the conversion service only work overnight, converting all new Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, PDF files, AutoCAD drawings, etc. created by your staff during the day for archiving purposes. Alternatively, there may be a specific file (or folder of files) that is updated daily, therefore you may configure Document Conversion Service to convert that specific file at the same time each day so the most recent version can be made available to your staff or uploaded to your website each day. These are just two examples of how Command Line Tools can integrate document conversion into the workflow of your organization.

PEERNET offers three methods by which to integrate Document Conversion Service into the workflow of your organization: (1) Watch Folder Service, (2) Command Line Tools, or (3) .NET Library.

Using DCS Conversion Profiles

Command Lines Tools use a profile file, what we call a Conversion Profile, to instruct Document Conversion Service on which settings to use for the output file. Included with the installation of Document Conversion Service are 64 pre-configured Conversion Profiles.

The Conversion Profiles Folders can be accessed by selecting Start – Document Conversion Service – “Open Conversion Profile Folder”.

Conversion Profiles Folder

Creating and Editing DCS Conversion Profiles

If none of these pre-configured Conversion Profiles meets your needs, you can create a new Conversion Profile by copying a similar profile and pasting it into the same folder. Then you can rename this Conversion Profile and change the settings to meet your needs.

Create new Conversion Profile

A Conversion Profile is made up of a collection of name value pairs used to describe the type of output file being created. There is a large collection of settings available for controlling the output file type including how the files are converted, e-discovery options to manipulate documents, etc.

Edit Conversion Profile

See our video below on creating and editing Conversion Profiles to get you started. You can also find more information on available conversion settings in the Document Conversion Service User Guide. If you require any assistance editing a Conversion Profile, do not hesitate to contact the PEERNET support team.

The best way to get started with Document Conversion Service is by downloading our free 30-day trial. This is a fully functional trial of DCS Level I with a watermark added to all output files. As always, the PEERNET support team is more than happy to answer any of your questions and help you evaluate the trial.

dcs-watch-folder-service

Updated: How to Use the DCS Watch Folder Service

What is the Watch Folder Service?

Document Conversion Service comes bundled with a ready to use drop folder service called Watch Folder Service. Watch Folder Service will monitor specified “input” folders for new files to pick up, convert and then return to the specified “output” folders.

Why use Watch Folder Service?

Watch Folder Service is the ideal tool for integrating Document Conversion Service into the workflow of your company when:

  • You need to convert files to TIFF, PDF, and/or JPEG continuously throughout the day
  • You need files in one or more folders to be monitored for conversion
  • You have multiple users that need to quickly and easily convert files
  • You have a large volume of existing files to be converted using our high performance clustering support

Watch Folder Service allows your staff to drop Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, PDF files, AutoCAD drawings, etc. into the designated input folder to be automatically converted and dropping in the designated output folder. Users can also drop a folder of files. Watch Folder Service is able to retain the original folder structure and re-create these sub-folders in the output folder.

PEERNET offers three methods by which to integrate Document Conversion Service into the workflow of your organization: (1) Watch Folder Service, (2) Command Line Tools, or (3) .NET Library.

The Watch Folder Configuration File

The simple to use configuration file comes with 7 pre-configured Watch Folder sections to create TIFF, Faxable TIFF, Vector PDF, Raster PDF, JPEG as well as sections that demonstrate clustering and large volume conversion.

  1. ConvertToTIFF – creates 300dpi optimized TIFF image
  2. ConvertToFaxTIFF – creates 204×196 monochrome fax image
  3. ConvertToAdobePDF – creates searchable PDF file
  4. ConvertToRasterPDF – creates non-searchable PDF file
  5. ConvertToJPG – creates 300dpi JPEG file (one image per page)
  6. LargeBatchTIFF – convert large batch of files (ex. 10 files at a time)
  7. Clustered ConvertToTIFF – demonstrate how to setup clustering in any of the watch folder sections

The Watch Folder Configuration file can be accessed by selecting Start – Document Conversion Service – “Configure Watch Folder Setting”. You can then edit the configuration file in Notepad. You can enable or disable any of the previously mentioned default Watch Folder sections by setting the Enabled line as true or false.

Enable Watch Folder section

If one of the default Watch Folder sections matches or is similar to the settings you require, you can edit it directly. For example, if you want to create 300dpi colored TIFF Image use the default Watch Folder section “Convert ToTIFF” and just customize the location of the InputFolder and OutputFolder to match your workflow.

Edit InputFile and OutputFile Watch Folder locations

You can create a new Watch Folder section by copying a similar section and pasting it below the default Watch Folder sections. Then you can rename this Watch Folder section and change the settings to meet your needs.

Create New Watch Folder Section

Editing a Watch Folder Section

Each individual Watch Folder Section contains the following settings groups:

  • Folder & Output File Options
  • Preprocess Archive Settings and Preprocess MSG Archive Settings
  • Clustering Processing
  • Run Command at End on Success and Run Command at End on Failure

Folder & Output File Options:

These settings allow you to customize which folders Watch Folder Service will monitor and what file type will be created after converison. The Folder Options include the folder structure settings and file pick up options. The most important settings in this group are designating the InputFolder location and the OutputFolder location. Additional options include dated sub folders in the FailedFolder and the CompletedFolder, maintaining sub folder structure during conversion, and filter settings to only convert specified file types. The Output File Options control the type of file that will be created. You can specify the image resolution, the file type (TIFF, PDF, JPEG or other image format), whether to create color, grayscale or black and white files, and many other settings.

Preprocess Archive Settings and Preprocess MSG Archive Settings:

These settings allow you to extract and convert any files attached to email message files in addition to the original .MSG file.

Clustered Processing:

These settings allow you to configure Watch Folder Service to handle the conversion of a large volume of documents by setting up clustering. Clustering is a method of directing multiple computers running Document Conversion Service to a shared location to convert files. The group of computers together will work to convert the large volume of files. Clustering allows for faster conversion, load balancing and failover protection.

Run Command at End on Success and Run Command at End on Failure:

These settings allow you to run commands after each successful conversion and each failed conversion. For instance, you could configure the Watch Folder section to run a command that uploads all successfully converted files to an archiving system (a success command), and also sends you an email containing the name of the file for any files that fail to convert (a failed command).

You can find more information on working with Watch Folder Service in the Document Conversion Service User Guide.

The best way to get started with Document Conversion Service is by downloading our free 30-day trial. This is a fully functional trial of DCS Level I with a watermark added to all output files. As always, the PEERNET support team is more than happy to answer any of your questions and help you evaluate the trial.

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Ghostscript Security Vulnerability

On August 21, 2018, several Ghostscript security vulnerabilities with were found by a Google Project Zero security researcher. These vulnerabilities could allow a remote, unauthenticated attacker to execute arbitrary commands if a specially crafted PDF or PS (Postscript) file is processed.

Many of our Document Conversion Service clients use GhostScript to convert PDF documents. In light of this vulnerability, we wanted to address this issue as it relates to Document Conversion Service, and explain how our clients can protect themselves.


With the release of Ghostscript 9.24 on September 3, 2018, Artifex Software has stated that all found issues have been resolved. We have completed our integration testing of this version with Document Conversion Service and recommend installing GhostScript 9.24 or later as soon as possible.

Note: Before updating GhostScript, or uninstalling the older versions, we recommend stopping your Document Conversion Service if it is running. Make the necessary changes and then restart and test that your conversion service is running as expected.

How Can I Tell if I am Using GhostScript?

By default the DCS configuration uses Adobe Reader for PDF conversion. In most cases, the DCS configuration will have been modified to disable PDF conversion using Adobe Reader; this causes DCS to use GhostScript to convert PDF files.

Adobe Reader Disabled DCS Configuration File
Ghostscript Enabled DCS Configuration File

If you are running DCS 3.0.014 or later, and have not modified the DCS configuration file to use a particular Ghostscript version, DCS will automatically detect and use the most recent Ghostscript version.

How Do I Set the Ghostscript Version?

For anyone using a version of DCS prior to 3.0.014, or if you have edited the configuration file to use a particular Ghostscript version, you will need to update your DCS configuration file to use the correct version of Ghostscript:

Ghostscript 9.24 Enabled DCS Configuration File

If you have any further questions or concerns about GhostScript, please do not hesitate to contact our support team.

Related Links:
https://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/332928

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Moving from FCC to DCS: Benefits

The primary difference between File Conversion Center and Document Conversion Service is the level of required user interaction. File Conversion Center is a desktop application and requires a degree of user interaction while Document Conversion Service is truly a fully automated software solution.

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File Conversion Center is PEERNET’s original batch conversion software. The software is the perfect solution for users looking for a time-saving desktop application to batch convert Microsoft® Office documents, Adobe® PDF files, PostScript files, web pages and more to non-searchable PDF, TIFF, JPEG or other common image file formats.

File Conversion Center includes convenient tools such as our Right-Click-to-Convert and Drag & Drop conversion bins. Conversion bins, or folders, can be customized to filter contents by file type to ensure only designated file types are undergoing conversion. These conversion tools can be integrated right into your desktop or windows explorer. Alternatively you can run scheduled conversion tasks using a command line interface.


File Conversion Center keeps batch conversion simple.

  • Create customized conversion menu items and bins.
  • Recursively process folders and subfolders, and save the converted files in the same location as the sources files, or save them in a new location with the same folder structure.
  • Convert and print your documents at the same time.

If you are looking to run scheduled tasks, batch files, or similar to convert files silently with File Conversion Center, you will require the Professional Edition of the software. The Standard Edition does not run without prompting.

How do I decide when it is time to make the move from PEERNET’s original batch converter, File Conversion Center, to PEERNET’s top-of-the-line automated batch converter, Document Conversion Service?

If you are considering the Professional Edition of File Conversion Center, this is a good time to compare your requirements with the features available in Document Conversion Service. In many cases we find Document Conversion Service the better choice for what our clients need/want.

Document Conversion Service is a fully automated, high volume Windows product, offering 24×7 automated batch conversion, complete with Watch Folder monitoring, command line tools, or a .NET library. Document Conversion Service is the perfect solution for those looking to convert a large existing collection of files, thousands of files daily, or need immediate conversion turnaround.

Top 5 Reasons to Consider when Comparing the Advantages of Document Conversion Service

.NET utility library API

Are you looking to integrate conversion into your own code? With Document Conversion Service’s .NET library features, you are able to integrate the conversion service into your own solution using a few simple lines of code.

File Volume

Has your file volume increased or do you have a project where you need to convert a large number of existing files? Document Conversion Service can be purchased at different licensing levels for converting multiple files in parallel while File Conversion Center only converts one file at a time.

In addition, Document Conversion Service, via its included Watch Folder Service, provides access to clustering capability. Clustering allows you to configure two or more servers to monitor the same original file folder from which to convert the files, thereby sharing the workload and improving conversion performance. An added bonus on using a clustering setup is that if one server shuts down or needs to be taken down, the remaining servers will continue working on the file list so conversion will not be interrupted.

Convert Outlook Email Messages

While File Conversion Center supports many input formats (see FCC support conversion table), it does not support conversion from Microsoft Outlook (*.msg). Document Conversion Service however is designed to convert MSG files in a completely automated process (see DCS supported conversion table). In addition, Document Conversion Service has the ability to convert MSG files and any attachments included in the email by means of the included Watch Folder Service. This feature is particularly useful for e-discovery applications.

Vector (searchable) Adobe PDF

File Conversion Center is capable of converting file to non-searchable Adobe PDF files (*.pdf). However, if the need arises to convert files to vector (searchable) Adobe PDF files (*.pdf), you will need to move to Document Conversion Service, which can convert files to searchable PDF in an automated process.

Watch Folder Service

Do you need to eliminate user interaction? File Conversion Center requires a degree of user interaction in order to initiate a conversion job, or utilize the Right-Click-to-Convert and Drag & Drop conversion bins tools. Document Conversion Service on the other hand is a fully automated batch conversion solution.

Watch Folder Service comes included with the purchase of Document Conversion Service. Watch Folder Service is an easily configurable drop folder service that will monitor one or more Input Folder for files to convert. When a file is dropped or saved to the Input Folder, Watch Folder Service will move this file to undergo conversion according to a pre-set group of settings, and then save the new file in a specified location (local or network shared).

For example, files dropped in Input1 can be converted to a 300dpi color TIFF files, while files dropped in Input2 can be converted to 200dpi black and white TIFF files; each being saved a different Output Folder.

If you need to integrate document conversion into your own code, are dealing with a large volume of files, are looking for the automation of a drop or watch folder service, or need email message conversion and attachment extraction, it may be time to think about making the switch from File Conversion Center to Document Conversion Service. As always, the PEERNET support team is more than happy to answer any of your questions and help you evaluate the trial.
 

automated-document-to-tiff-conversion

Automating Document to TIFF Conversion – Benefits of a Pre-Existing Solution versus “Code-Your-Own”

When faced with the task of automating your document to TIFF conversion, it can be hard to know where to start. The tools you will end up using will depend on where you need document conversion to fit into your workflow and the type of documents you need to convert.

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PEERNET offers a range of document conversion products in order to best meet the conversion needs of our clients.

It is common for our clients to be first introduced to PEERNET document conversion software with our TIFF Image Printer End User. For those looking for simple desktop conversion at the user-level to handle day-to-day conversion tasks, TIFF Image Printer End User is an ideal solution. TIFF Image Printer End User can convert any document to a TIFF image that can be opened & printed. This is great for companies that use web applications or proprietary software, but still require TIFF conversion. We recommend this solution for companies that need a user-initiated, hands-on approach to document conversion, and have a lower volume of conversion.


For higher volumes of document conversion and/or a hands-off, automated approach, we see our clients creating their own custom code to integrate TIFF conversion into their workflow. For this level of silent, non-interactive automation, the TIFF Image Printer Windows Service license level is required. This license level allows the TIFF Image Printer to be used for both interactive (desktop) and non-interactive (Windows service and scheduled tasks) sessions.

Some examples of common document conversion tasks that our clients will write their own code to achieve are:

  • Monitoring specific folders for files to convert, often at specific time intervals.
  • Silent, headless conversion by printing various file types to TIFF image printer, such as:
    • Office documents, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and other Office formats
    • PDF files
    • HTML files
    • Various image formats to TIFF
  • Writing the code against the different applications for each document type to open, print and close the documents, which includes but is not limited to handling and ensuring:
    • error, upgrade and licensing prompts are blocked and/or dismissed
    • third-party applications remain are stable and no rogue processes occur
    • the conversion works correctly in the environments in which it needs to run, such as in a web service or a Windows service

While it is certainly possible to write your own code in order to integrate our TIFF Image Printer into your workflow as desired, often our clients do not have the time or desire to dedicate personnel to what is often a time-consuming and tedious project.

That’s where our Document Conversion Service comes in!

We’ve done all the automation work for you, and have created a stress-tested software that can accomplish any of the examples listed above with just some simple configuration or a few lines of code.

Document Conversion Service is an enterprise-level, scalable and fully automated batch conversion software that converts PDF to TIFF, PDF to JPEG, Word to TIFF, Word to JPEG, Excel to TIFF, Excel to JPEG, etc. DCS is highly customizable allowing for seamless workflow integration by means of its many included tools, such as a folder monitoring service with post-processing capability, command line tools for batch and scheduled processes and a .NET library for more in-depth code integration.

Top 5 Reasons to Choose Document Conversion Service Over Programming Conversion Yourselves

Fully-Automated Windows Service Off-the-Shelf

In our experience, 90% of the reason our clients choose Document Conversion Service is for the complete automation it offers. Document Conversion Service does all the heavy lifting of managing the third-party applications used to convert the documents, as well as opening, printing and closing files to convert to TIFF. Any message boxes, security and update prompts and other issues that are common roadblocks to automation have already been handled for you.

Document Conversion Service is a true Windows® service and runs headless in its own environment. It will not interfere with any of the third-party applications running on the desktop.

Simplification of Code

Document Conversion Service can be seamlessly integrated into your workflow in several ways, from complete .NET code integration to using simple command line tools. It does not take more than one or two lines of code to direct Document Conversion Service to convert specific files, folders or file lists.

Included Watch (Drop) Folder Service

As mentioned earlier, it is possible to write your own code to make TIFF Image Printer Windows Service monitor specific folders for files to convert at specific time intervals, but in doing so, you would also have to write code for opening, printing and closing each file. You would also have to handle the many pitfalls of dealing with message boxes, security and licensing prompts, controlling the default printer, and many other issues Document Conversion Service handles for you.

Our Watch (Drop) Folder Service comes included with the purchase of Document Conversion Service. Simply tell the service which folders to watch, how you would like files converted, where to save the output file, and you’re good to go.

Rigorously Stress-Tested and Continuously Updated

Eliminate the stress, worry and expense of writing, and then maintaining, your own code to make TIFF Image Printer work in your service environment.

We guarantee that Documents Conversion Service has been rigorously stress-tested and is ready for production level operation immediately following purchase. We have many clients, including banks, hospitals, insurance companies and law firms, that use Documents Conversion Service for purposes critical to the regular operation of their businesses, and they have found DCS to be a reliable and robust software.

We take on the responsibility of testing and updating Document Conversion Service as 3rd party software and operating systems undergo changes in order to avoid any disruption in client’s services. In addition, our support team is always available to help with configuration support and troubleshooting should you need it.

Navigating COM Interface is Challenging

Whether you are using the Office automation or the TIFF Image Printer COM automation library, or both, it takes care and attention to detail to program against them correctly, and efficiently. Common mistakes such as not error-trapping correctly or not freeing COM objects when required can cause your conversion process to hang indefinitely, or cause rogue processes to accumulate in your running processes table, taking up valuable system resources.

Choosing Document Conversion Service eliminates these worries with its robust handling of third-party automation, freeing your developers up for other tasks.

document converter

A Document Conversion Service with Power


document converter

If you are looking to convert PDF, TIFF, JPEG & other image formats in an automated process, PEERNET’s Document Conversion Service is the perfect business solution for your document conversion needs. The software offers flexible and consistent results, scalability, and highly customizable powerful document conversion. It can be configured for continuous conversions from one folder to another folder (pickup folders, hot folders, watch folders). Alternatively you can integrate it into your workflow more closely either using a command line tool or callable API.

Not all document conversion services are created equal though. Here are 4 features to keep an eye out for when selecting a document conversion service for your organization:


1. High Volume Document Management

Owing to an increased usage of local archive systems and cloud storage solutions many companies are converting thousands, or even tens of thousands, of email messages, documents and other files each day. To convert this amount of files, a document conversion solution that is highly available and allows for continuous uptime is required. DCS supports high volume document conversion with clustering and failover.

2. Configuring for Performance

Take control of your conversion service by customizing the efficiency of conversion to meet the specific needs of your organization. DCS allows you to adjust the configuration of both DCS and the Watch Folder. Customizing the Watch Folders to align with your CPU/cores availability ensures the conversion service is kept busy and running at capacity, producing a more efficient conversion rate.

3. Save Time & Resources

For companies looking for an archiving or e-discovery solution, look for a document conversion service with the ability to extract and convert any supported file attachments in an Outlook Message (*.msg) file, as well as the email message itself. Automated conversion of all Outlook files allows for efficient review of email correspondences. DCS’s Watch Folder Service will convert outlook messages and their attachments.

4. Ultimate Automation

Improve the efficiency of your document conversion process by running post-process commands for each file that is converted. These commands can be batch files or other executables. This is ideal for organizations looking to integrate drop folder conversion into their workflow. Easily upload the file to a web server or send an email; the possibilities are endless. DCS offers completely customizable post conversion processing with our Watch Folder Service.


Document Conversion Service is a Windows® software product that runs in the background as a Windows® service and is able to batch convert on a 24/7 basis in a fully automated fashion a multitude of document formats. Play this video to see an overview of Document Conversion Service.

TravelTips

Merging Travel Documents: Travel Tips with PDF Creator Plus


Packing for a vacation can be surprisingly challenging. Between accommodating all the possible weather conditions and addressing all the various activities you have planned, plus meeting the weight restrictions, it’s easy to get overwhelmed.

One thing we all know that we need to take with us on a vacation is our travel documentation. But depending on the length of your vacation, printing off all your travel documents can mean lugging around quite a large and heavy stack of paper.

Have you ever considered "carrying" all your travel documents digitally on your phone, tablet or laptop?

Maybe your response is: "Yes I’ve consider it, but I don’t like the idea of having all of documents spread across my inbox where they are hard to find, instead of one place."

Next time you travel, give PEENET’s PDF Creator Plus a try!

PDF Creator Plus allows you to merge all your documents into one file, delete unnecessary pages, move pages to make your itinerary, and add annotations like packing notes, phone numbers or directions. When you are done editing your documents in PDF Creator Plus, you can save the project for editing at a later time, and you can convert the file to PDF, TIFF or JPEG.

Producing a single PDF file is ideal for storing your travel documents on your various devices during your trip. Upload the PDF to your Google Drive or Dropbox so that you can access them all from your phone, tablet and laptop. Also – be sure to share your travel documents with your friends and family staying at home so that they know where you’ll be and how to reach you. Having all your travel documents in a single PDF file makes sharing them quick and easy.

Watch the video below to see how quickly I can prep my travel documents electronically for a trip:

If ever have any questions or need assistance, you can always contact us for some advice and guidance.

ways to cut down on paper

5 Ways to Declutter using pdf or tiff: Save digital documents. Go paperless


ways to cut down on paper

Eliminate Paper at the Source

The best way to de-clutter is to keep the clutter out of your home, and off your desk, to begin with. Start with getting into the habit of sorting your mail at your recycling bin. This way the unnecessary paper doesn’t even make through the front door, or into a dreaded “I’ll sort it later” pile on your desk. Take paper elimination a step further by unsubscribing from paper mailing lists or making the switch to electronic bills and bank statements.

Scan & Save

If you’ve already paid the bill, reviewed the credit card statement or addressed a letter do you need to store the paper copy forever? Pay the bill, scan it and shred the hardcopy. This will keep you from filling up filing cabinets with paper.

But what do you do with all the paper in your already full filing cabinet? Review all the paper you have stored in there and decide which hardcopies you need to keep and identify what can be stored digitally instead. Now is also a good time to throw out any old statements and receipts that you have accumulated. A good rule of thumb for personal statements is to keep the past year of records. Before you start scanning, decide how you want to store your new digital documents. Scanning and storing all those individual hardcopies can actually produce a surprising amount of digital clutter on your computer when you store each statement separately. Try using one of PEERNET’s virtual printers to merge related documents into a single TIFF file. For example, why not save all of last year’s credit card statements as a single TIFF file using TIFF Image Printer. For the flexibility to produce PDF, TIFF or JPEG file formats, try our Raster Image Printer instead.

Get your Endless Stack of Online Recipes Under Control

Blogs, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, Tumblr – all invaluable sources of cooking advice and recipes, but unfortunately this means that our favourite recipes are no longer stored in an accessible cookbook, but are instead spread across various websites. Ensure that you don’t lose your favourite recipes amongst the clutter of all the recipes you are constantly printing off with plans to try, by “printing” these online recipes to PEERNET’s PDF Creator Plus. With this software you can edit the document before conversion. Add notes like “Family loved this one!” or “Too spicy – less jalapeños next time”, then save the document securely to your computer as a PDF, TIFF or JPEG file. You can even take it a step further and use a PEERNET image printers or PDF Creator Plus instead of an actual printer when you first find the recipe, and cook from your tablet instead of paper!

Online research – don’t print it off!

No matter your reason for researching – school work, home improvements plans, real estate options – replace your dependence on an actual printer with PEERNET’s PDF Creator Plus. You can “print” all your findings to a single PDF Creator Plus project, appending each document after the previous as you go along. Then you can go back and delete unnecessary information, move pages around, or add annotations like notes or hyperlinks. You can save this PDF Creator Plus project for editing at a later time, keeping all the information easily accessible at your fingertips without taking up space on your desk. Convert the whole project to PDF or TIFF for easy sharing with a friend, spouse, classmate, real estate agent, contractor, etc.

Meet your Suitcase Weight Restriction

Just like you take your e-book reader on vacation with you instead of a stack of books, trade in your extraneous paperwork for the digital alternative. “Print” all your email correspondences and booking confirmations (hotel, day trips, flights, etc.) to PEERNET’s PDF Creator Plus. With this software you can delete unnecessary pages (ie. that final blank pages when you print emails or webpages), re-order pages to match your itinerary, or even go as far as to write the corresponding date and trip day number on each confirmation. Now if you print this document you’ll have significantly reduced your page count, plus the pages are already organized. Alternatively, you can save this project as a single PDF file for safe keeping on your laptop or phone.


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.

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Celebrating 20 years of business!

Founding


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PEERNET Inc, a document conversion solutions company,  was founded on June 9th, 1997. As it seems is the case with any good start up story, Peernet came from humble beginnings – working out of a basement. We quickly outgrew that space and moved beyond, but we look back fondly on those early years of innovation and exploration.

The aim of Peernet was simple: produce high-quality, highly configurable, multi-purpose graphic and imaging software for the Microsoft Windows market. Our CEO & Founder, Robert Massart, often points out that he put his vision for Peernet right into our company’s name. The name Peernet was chosen to represent the collaborative nature of our company. According to Rob, “It was always [his] intention to make a company that values networking peer-to-peer among customers and employees, and evolves as a product of these interactions.” To this day, most innovation in our products can be attributed to the suggestions and requests of our clients.

When our company began document conversion and digital imaging was in its infancy. We’ve grown with the industry, while at the same time innovated to grow the industry ourselves. It’s been an honour to contribute to the paperless office transition with our virtual image printers & conversion software.

The very first product we developed was printer software for ID Card printers (PVC printers and thermal printers). Our focus quickly extended beyond software for physical printers to software for virtual printer drivers. At this point I could say “and the rest is history”, because at its core every product we have developed and sold these past 20 years is built upon this concept of virtual printer drivers.

Virtual Printers


TIFF Image Printer Software

Virtual printer drivers convert any printable document to an image. Or in other words this type of software allows the user to create an image from any document they could also print. At the time, our software was most commonly being used as a solution for creating faxable TIFF images and archive-ready TIFF images. The need to convert documents to TIFF was, and still is today, an essential aspect of doing business for bank, insurance, legal and medical companies.

Originally released in 1999 under the PEERNET.DRV product brand name and later renamed, the TIFF Image Printer became our flagship – and most popular – product. Other variations of virtual printers to create PDF files and other raster image files were soon added. These products filled the growing need for customizable desktop solutions that would work within a company’s current business practices (also referred to as workflow integration).

In many ways our TIFF Image Printer was the perfect solution because:

  • It creates one of the widest selections of different formats of TIFF images, including CCITT faxable TIFF and other fax formats used by fax software and other hardware.
  • Custom behavior could be added to the driver to automate handling of the created file; for example it could be automatically opened, faxed, or passed to an archive system.
  • Driver settings could be locked down to ensure the correct file was always created, helping to reduce user error in data entry.
  • The driver settings could be controlled from other programs.

The Move to PDF


PDF Creator Plus

Over the years, the PDF document format gained popularity in the business world. With the increased need to create PDF files by home users and small businesses, we saw an opportunity to create an affordable, easy-to-use solution for PDF creation.

We also wanted to provide home users an easy way to print documents from multiple sources and create a single PDF file.

Many of our clients were using our PDF Image Printer solution but also wanted the ability to combine multiple documents together into a single file – PDF Creator Plus fulfilled that need.

Originally released in 2004 under the name PEERNET ePublisherPlus and later renamed to PDF Creator Plus in 2006, PDF Creator Plus creates vector PDF using our proprietary graphics optimizer that converts Microsoft graphics into high quality PDF documents. This results in smaller file sizes than the raster PDF produced by PDF Image Printer, making it ideal for the home user or small business owner.

Batch Conversion


Document Conversion Service Software

As time went on, we began to recognize a desire from our clients to automate the conversion and storage of documents. This need for automation was largely driven by the transition to paperless offices which was occurring at the time.  The paperless office created an increase in the number of documents that needed to be converted on a daily basis.

Where they used to control the driver when printing from custom programs or at a user level, our clients began to incorporate our printer driver software into their own batch conversion programs. Automation would free up their employees for other tasks.

As more and more of our clients began to create their own batch conversion utilities in-house using our printer drivers, we acknowledged this need in our client base and created the first of our batch conversion solutions, File Conversion Center, and released it in 2002.

This software served many clients well for many years. As primarily a desktop solution, it bridged the gap between user-based batch conversion and fully automated conversion.

As time went on, and the volume of electronic documents needing to be converted daily still continued to grow, we realized that FCC, and our printer drivers had to grow as well. This led to our enterprise-level, scalable and fully automated Document Conversion Service solution, now one of our most popular products.

Released in 2012, Document Conversion Service was a game changer for file conversion and management. It allowed for batch conversion of PDF to TIFF, PDF to JPEG, Word to TIFF, Word to JPEG, Excel to TIFF and Excel to JPEG to name a few. It allowed this conversion to automatically occur continuous in the background, 24/7.

Arguable the most revolutionary aspect of DCS is the sheer amount of available customization and workflow integration tools, making it easy to adapt DCS to meet the conversion needs of any business. The included folder monitoring service providing easy setup for automatic conversion and providing specific post-processing tasks that can be customized for such tasks as uploading directly to a server or an archiving system. Command line tools and a programming API complete the toolset to give our customers the freedom they need to create the solutions they want.

Present


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Twenty years later Peernet continues our tradition of innovation and collaboration. The past two decades of business have shown us that there is always a need for high-quality, comprehensive business solutions. We take pride in the reputation for professional and reliable customer support that we have developed.

We continue to work with our clients, bringing them new file conversion solutions to match the current technological landscape. Document Conversion Service, for example, is regularly updated with new features including: clustering, load balancing and fail over protection; vector (searchable) Adobe PDF; and conversion of Outlook Email Messages and their attachments.

When asked where he sees Peernet in another 20 years, our CEO & Founder, Rob says:

“I see Peernet remaining as one of the most robust and stable document conversion solutions in the Windows marketplace, expanding to meet our clients diverse needs in an ever changing ecosystem.”

While the future of Peernet remains to be seen, it is a guarantee that we’ll still be relying upon inventive thinking, peer-to-peer collaboration and friendly, reliable customer support.

We look forward to continuing to innovate and produce solutions that meet the needs of our customers worldwide!

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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.

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.

TIFF file format

TIFF: The Image Format Businesses Need

With the multitude of image formats available today, from BMP (Windows Bitmap), to SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) it is difficult to determine which image file format is the best for which situation.

customer service

Some common file formats that you are likely to see on an average day include JPEG/JPG, GIF, BMP, PNG, and TIFF. This image file format blog post will go over the different formats, what situation each image file format is best suited for, and focus on which image is best suited for business needs.

JPEG or JPG

JPEG, interchangeably known as JPG, an acronym of Joint Photographic Experts Group is a lossy compression method. What lossy means is that some details from the original image may be lost in the compression process. This occurs because during the encoding process, some of the data is discarded and replaced with inexact approximations. This results in a significantly lower image file size, but also a lower quality of image or graphic.

In exchange for the benefit of smaller file size, JPEGs have the downside of an affect known as generational degradation. Generational degradation occurs when a JPEG image file is edited and saved over and over again, with each updated version retaining less quality than the last.

Most digital cameras will save images in the JPEG format, which will support 8 bit grayscale images and 24 bit colour images.

Best Uses for JPEG

As stated above, JPEGs make great use of compressing image files into more manageable sizes in exchange for quality. Because of this, JPEGs are best suited for photos where need to be shared, and giving up some level of image quality.

Instances where JPEG is recommended against include photos with text, large blocks of colour, or simple shapes. This recommendation is because the compression process will cause crisp lines to blur, potentially ruining aspects of an image.

GIF

GIF, an acronym of Graphics Interchange Format, is an image file format with the main drawback being its limitations to an 8 bit palette, or 256 colours. In spite of the limitations, GIFs do a wonderful job of storing images with few colours. GIFs make use of LZW lossless compression, which is most effective with images having large areas of a single colour, and less effective for photographic images.

Best Uses for GIF

GIF image file formats are best suited for cartoon style graphics that are simple, with few colours. This means simple diagrams, shapes, and logos. GIFs also have inherent animation capabilities, which make it efficient for image animation effects.

BMP

BMP, derived from Windows Bitmap, is an image file format utilized within the Microsoft Windows operating system. BMPs are usually uncompressed, and as a result are large and retain their original quality.

Best Uses for BMP

Because BMPs consist of a simple structure, it has the benefit of being widely accepted in Windows programs. BMP is also best used for images based on any type of bitmap, meaning they are pixel based. As stated above, they retain all of the images original quality, however the resulting image file can be quite large, so BMPs are best utilized when size is not an issue, and quality needs to be preserved.

PNG

PNG, an acronym for Portable Network Graphics, is an image file format originally created as a free, open source alternative to the previously explained GIF image file format. PNGs support 8 bit palette images and up to 16 million colours, as opposed to the 256 supported by GIF. PNGs also sport the function of optional transparency for all palette colours.

PNG is another image file format that utilizes lossless compression, retaining the quality of the original image. Unlike JPEG, which makes use of inexact approximations, resulting in blurred lines, PNG will retain the quality of images consisting of large, uniformly coloured areas.

Indexed-colour, grayscale, and TrueColor images are supported by PNG, and because of its ability to support alpha transparency, PNG images can demonstrate soft edges.

Best Uses for PNG

PNGs are highly effective when a smaller image file size is required with no loss of quality in web graphics applications, and on web browsers.

TIFF

TIFF, an acronym for Tagged Image File Format, is a computer file format used for storing raster graphic images. TIFF is a popular image file format among graphic artists, the publishing industry, as well as amateur and professional photographers alike. According to the Wikipedia article on TIFF:

“The TIFF format is widely supported by image-manipulation applications, by publishing and page layout applications, and by scanning, faxing, word processing, optical character recognition and other applications.”

TIFF is considered a very useful image format as it can handle images and data within a single file by including header tags, which specify size, definition, image data arrangement, and applied image compression, all of which define the image’s geometry.

Best Uses for TIFF

As one of the many image file formats available, TIFF can be seen as highly adaptive, and suits images for a lot of purposes. Because of the wide variety of images the format can support, and the functions available, it is easy to see why TIFF is a highly popular image file format to use. The best of these uses anticipate that the image quality must be retained for the possibility of print at some point in the future. The drawback of having such a lossless image is the large file size, which means TIFF should not be used for images on websites or applications, as they would take a long time to load.

The Best Image File Format For Businesses

Now that we have provided a brief description of some of the most popular image file formats, as well as their best use cases, it is time to narrow it down to one image file format that is best used for businesses.

All of the image file formats above had their limitations – some resulted in lost quality after compression, some resulted in huge image file sizes in order to retain details of the image, some only supported certain colours, and some caused the lines between colours to blur. But out of all of the image file formats described, one stands above the rest for its sheer ability to adapt to the situation needed.

It is obvious to see that the capabilities of the TIFF image file format mean that it can be widely-used, but is it really the better choice? Some additional criteria to weigh in on the power of the TIFF image file format are considered below.

TIFF Compatibility

TIFF has been around for 20 years, and because of its versatility, the image file format has seen support by most popular image editing tools on the market. If you need to edit a TIFF, it’s likely the software you have will be able to handle it, and all of the popular operating systems have built-in TIFF readers. This widespread compatibility also means that one user can send the TIFF to another with the confidence that it will be easily opened.

TIFF Compression

By default, TIFF will not use compression, resulting in retention of the original quality of the image. This unfortunately results in potentially huge files, however, some compression features are available if necessary.

TIFF: The Superior Image File Format For Businesses

When it comes to important documents that you need transferred electronically, or archived digitally, and you want to maintain the best quality possible, TIFF is the right image file format for the job.

If you’re dealing with a document that you need scanned and forwarded to your colleagues, the default format is often times TIFF, so why not maintain this level of quality for all your documents?

And despite their large file size, working with a TIFF to make edits and adjustments preserves as much quality as possible, and when the final draft arrives, you can convert to JPEG image file format with a higher compression, and maintain and almost identical level of quality, but easier to manage and send.

Are you looking to streamline your businesses document processes? Do you want to unify your archived files, and maintain a single image file format across your organization?

Anyone looking to make use of one of the more superior image file formats for their business should definitely consider TIFF, and using the TIFF Image Printer or any of our other products for your document conversion needs!

How Do I Get Started?

Hopefully this post has shed some light on some ways to improve your document processes and archiving standards. The easiest way to accomplish this increase in productivity and efficiency is through our TIFF Image Printer software.

To get started, follow our Convert to TIFF video to get an idea of what to expect from our professional conversion software, and how it might fit your needs. If you need more information, you can contact us with your needs and we’ll recommend the product that’s perfect for you. Or, check out our Document Conversion Product Guide for the software that’s right for you!

PDF for Business

7 Big Benefits of Using PDF for Business

PDF for Business

Portable Document Format, or PDF for short, was developed in the early 1990s. At that point in time, sharing documents between different computers and operating systems could be highly problematic, so the idea was to create a file format that would maintain fixed formatting.

Over time, it’s grown into one of the most widely-used document formats in the world.

PDFs are particularly useful for many companies in the business world. Whether you’re invoicing clients, maintaining customer records in a consistent format, or sending important memos, you can be sure with PDFs that the person viewing the document will see it as it was intended to be.

Here are 7 big benefits to making the PDF format a part of your business operations, and some options for how to create PDFs.

  1. Document format is maintained. One of the problems with sharing documents made in Microsoft Word or other word processors is that when you share a file from one computer to the next, the formatting can prove to be very different. This can cause confusion, or make you look bad to your clients or colleagues. You can rest easier with the PDF format, that your document will be presented exactly how you layed it out. It’s also ideal for sending documents that are intended to be printed out.
  2. The format is ubiquitous. Because it’s so good for what it sets out to do, PDF has been widely adopted all around the world. The format is easy to view and share, so whether you’re sharing a document with someone down the street, or on the other side of the world, PDF is a safe choice to send it in.
  3. They tend to have a small file size in comparison to other formats. The TIFF file format has many benefits beyond PDF, but the PDF format has the big advantage of compressing high-quality files to a relatively small file size. That’s ideal for saving hard drive space, particularly if you’re working with limited storage resources.
  4. The files can be protected by password. If you’re a business of any size, it’s possible, or even likely, that you’re handling some of your customers’ sensitive information. PDF files can be password-protected, giving you the ability make sure prying eyes are kept away from your important business documents.
  5. It works on any operating system. PDF works on all the major operating systems currently in use. So whether the viewer is on a PC or a Mac, or even on a newer mobile operating system like iOS and Android, there’s almost no worry about the receiver being unable to view the document.
  6. Easily integrate non-text elements (e.g. images, hyperlinks, etc.) PDFs allow you to maintain visually-pleasing layouts, and make use of links that will open up in the viewer’s web browser when viewing the documents on a computer or mobile device.
  7. It’s not likely to go away. Technology moves quickly, but PDFs are probably here to stay for the long-haul. The format is so widespread and has so much history behind it that it would take a fundamental shift in computing for everyone to adopt a different standard. An investment in PDF software now is sure to stand up in the long run, and give your company an excellent return on investment.

What Program Should I Use to Create PDF?

PEERNET offers a variety of software which is designed to suit your needs. Whether you’re a home user or part of a large corporation, we have a PDF Converter or creator that’s right for you.

PDF Image Printer: PDF Image Printer functions as a virtual printer, so you can “print” any Windows document to PDF format. It’s perfect for people who need to archive and share files in a secure PDF format, and allows for password protection and encryption.

PDF Creator Plus: A cost-effective alternative to Adobe Acrobat, which allows you to create PDF files by combining and editing other files. Convert from any Windows document to PDF. Ideal for home use or at the office.

Document Conversion Service: Our enterprise-level software which allows for around-the-clock batch document conversion. Ideal for converting a variety of document types to TIFF, JPG, PDF and other image formats automatically, often as part of a workflow.

If you have any further questions about converting files to PDF, feel free to contact us.

TIFF Image Printer, Raster Image Printer, Document Conversion Service collage

Why File Conversion Software Is a Great Business Investment

There are many file conversion programs on the market, and the features and functionality of those programs can greatly vary. So if you have a regular need for document conversion at the office, it can be difficult to know which level of product might be right for you.

At Peernet, our software is designed for three main categories of users:

  • Individuals at home for personal or business uses.
  • Individuals at the office for one-off, batch, or automated documents conversions.
  • Enterprise solutions for IT & end users with workflow integration.


Future of Document Conversion - PDF, TIFF

In this post, we’ll take a look at why professional file converter software makes sense for business users.

In general, businesses often require a higher level of security, reliability, professionalism, consistency and flexibility from their file conversions than what personal, “one-off” users might require.
With that in mind, here are some of the big reasons why it makes sense, even for very small businesses, to invest in proper enterprise-level conversion solutions.

SECURITY & RELIABILITY:

If your business operations call for regular file conversions, your employees may take it upon themselves to download some piece of untrusted software on their computer. That’s not a comforting thought, particularly if your documents contain important information that could be compromised.

With trusted software like the products provided by Peernet, there’s no worry about the types of programs that you or your staff are downloading. Our software is highly secure, and trusted by clients around the world – including large multinational organizations.

There’s also the potential concern of, once you upload your files for conversion, where do they go? Again, many businesses have sensitive customer data on file, and this information should not be trusted to anything less than a highly secure conversion system.

And when you’re using a Peernet file conversion product, there’s no worry of downtime, incomplete conversions, or server time-outs. Our software is rigorously tested, designed with reliability in mind. You can have confidence that the conversions are getting done, and done correctly.

PROFESSIONALISM:

A free online file converter has its uses, but is not always appropriate for a professional business to be using. For one thing, free file converters often stamp a wordmark on your converted documents. That’s not ideal for an organization trying to establish a professional identity with their clients.

Another drawback of online file converters is that you may be limited in your conversion options. Finally, online file converters are not built for a high volume of conversions, and not built with speed in mind.

Peernet products give you the control you need to easily output professional document conversions, every time. And software like our Document Conversion Service are purpose-built to handle high-volume document conversion.

CONSISTENCY:

An all-in-one piece of software such as Document Conversion Service can replace many other programs. With one program, or a suite of software in place, you can ensure several things:

  • Your conversions are consistent on an ongoing basis;
  • Your team all has the same knowledge about how to use the software;
  • Files are outputted at a consistent quality, so you can be assured there will be no surprises in your converted document;
  • Files are outputted at a similar size, so you can accurately forecast your file storage needs.

FLEXIBILITY & CUSTOMIZATION:

A collection of output settings that works well for one organization may not be right at all for another one. That’s why it’s important to have control over the output settings of your document and file conversions. Our top-level suite, Document Conversion Service, even has the ability to add additional image conversions beyond what’s included out-of-the-box.

Along the same lines, some businesses have document conversion needs that are somewhat specific to their industry. As an example, one of our clients recently expressed a need to convert wide-format text documents, which was no problem. Peernet takes all our client’s requests into account and sometimes even programs new features specifically to fit the custom needs of our varied client base.

EASE OF USE:

Even though some of our software is designed with business users in mind, that doesn’t mean that it’s difficult to use. We’re dedicated to creating software that carries out complex conversions, while remaining easy-to-use for the everyday user.

Our line of Virtual Image Printers makes it so easy to create PDF, TIFF, JPEG and more. In simple terms, the image printer is installed, where it then can be accessed in the exact same manner as any ordinary, physical printer. So if you or your staff members can print a document, you can use our virtual printers to create image files.

As well, all of our products run on Windows, so there’s instant familiarity with the software’s menus and navigation for the vast majority of users.

EXPERIENCE THE DIFFERENCE THAT PROFESSIONAL FILE CONVERSION SOFTWARE MAKES.

Don’t trust your company’s important file conversions to untrusted software, or an overseas website. No matter the size of your company or the industry that you’re in, Peernet has a file converter that’s right for your business.

If you’re not sure which piece of software you need, view our conversion software page to get started! Or contact us any time so we can help you discover which product is perfect for your needs.

Document Conversion Service box shot

Adding New Image Conversions to Document Conversion Service


Document Conversion ServiceOur high volume conversion software solution, Document Conversion Service, already includes support for converting the industry’s most commonly used image formats of JPEG, BMP, TIFF, JPEG and BMP.

But as any business owner knows, you may run into situations where you will need to convert image formats other than these common formats.

As part of our commitment to our clients, we have included the ability to add support, as needed, to convert additional image and document formats within Document Conversion Service.

How Does it Work?

Document Conversion Services leverages part of the Windows operating system for viewing and editing images called Windows Imaging Component to allow for the dynamic addition of different image and document formats.

These different formats are added by installing what are commonly called codecs. A codec, sometimes also called a plugin, or an extension, is a small program that knows how to read and write one or more image or document formats.

dcs-wic-integration-diagram

What Formats Can I Add?

As the Windows Imaging Component is part of the Windows operating system, codecs are included for the JPEG, TIFF, GIF, PNG, BMP, ICO and HD Photo image formats.

Document Conversion Service includes its own native support for JPEG, TIFF, GIF, PNG and BMP so the initial configuration only uses the codec for ICO and HD Photo formats.

A few third-party companies provide collections of codecs for a modest fee. One of these is FastPictureViewer Codec Pack, which supports over 45 image formats and over 500 raw digital camera formats and gives you access to formats such as Adobe Photoshop files and Adobe Digital Negative files.

Support for the DejaVu file format (*.djvu) can be added through the DjVu Shell Extension Pack.

Microsoft has provided a free Microsoft Camera Codec Pack that that provides support for some of the most popular digital cameras such as Canon, Fujifilm, Kodak, Olympus, Sony and many others.

As the idea behind the Windows Imaging Component is to provide support for images, many digital camera vendors also provide individual codecs for their proprietary raw image format as well.

How Do I Add A Codec to Document Conversion Service?

When downloading and installing codecs it is also important to remember to match the bit-ness to your operating system. As Document Conversion Service only runs on a 64-bit operating system, you will need to download the 64-bit version of any codec, or codec package, that you are interested in.

When installing a codec for Document Conversion Service, the conversion service needs to be stopped and the codec installed under the correct user account. Most codecs also require a system restart as part of the install.

The last step is to tell Document Conversion Service to use the codec for that particular file extension. The file extensions supported by the FastPictureView Codec Pack, Microsoft Camera Codec Pack and the DjVu Shell Extension Pack have already been added and cover most of the image and camera vendor raw image formats and their file extensions so in most cases no changes are needed.

A complete step-by-step how to guide, How to add Windows Imaging Component Codecs for Document Conversion Service is available to help you add these codec packs.

As always, if you want to add support for any of the above codec packs and aren’t sure where to start, don’t hesitate to contact us – we’re always happy to help!

File Formats for Small Business Tasks

What are the best file formats for my small business tasks?

File Formats for Small Business Tasks

If you’re running a small or medium-sized business, you’re probably expected to wear many hats within the organization. In a typical day, you might be communicating with clients, sending faxes, interacting and exchanging documentation with suppliers, emailing internally with colleagues, responding to customers, or many more tasks.

While the modern office environment makes all of these tasks feasible through digital means, it can be a challenge for some people to know which format is best for each of these tasks.

Here’s a quick guide that hopefully makes things easier:

I want to…

…send official external communications (releases, resumes, etc.): PDF

In documents where formatting is important, Microsoft Word or other text document formats (e.g. .rtf) are not ideal. Depending on the viewer’s computer and Word Processor configuration, the text can appear wildly different than the sender intended. In most cases, the most efficient, logical format to use is PDF. PDF files maintain their formatting regardless of where they’re being viewed, and is widely- known, so even if the recipient is not computer-savvy, there’s not likely to be any confusion about how to view the file.

…organize client and/or customer records: TIFF

Tagged Image File Format has become a leading standard for professions like the medical industry. TIFF is preferable to PDF in many industries for a number of reasons. Many of the best solutions for document capture are designed with TIFF in mind. As well, TIFF offers added security for important documents, as their files cannot be embedded with viruses or other malware.

…quickly create faxable documents: TIFF

Yes, many businesses out there still use the fax in their day-to-operations. Peernet offers programs that easily allow businesses to easily create faxable TIFF files.

…get some branding /design work done or a new logo for my business: Vector

If you are having new branding designed for your small business, any designer worth their salt will give you copies of the graphics in vector format. This ensures that the logo or images will remain clear regardless of where or what they’re printed on — so it will look the same whether it’s printed on a business card, or on the side of a building.

…upload some common graphics for display on my company’s website: JPEG or PNG

There are a few different considerations when deciding which image format you should use. In most cases, JPEG and PNG are the standards for website design, as they maintain good enough quality for computer screens while keeping page loading times reasonable.

…include some images in a document for publication, and make them print out clearly: TIFF

If you’re putting together some handouts, cards, brochures or the like for your business, the TIFF file format is your best bet. While JPEG is ideal for computer screens, their lower resolution will often render them grainy on the printed page. TIFF is a lossless, compression-free format, so you can be sure that how you see it on the monitor is how it will appear on the page.

…send emails with images in them, and keep the file size down: JPEG or GIF

Many corporate email accounts have size limitations for each email. If you’re using images in an email, it’s best to make them as small in size as possible while still maintaining the desired quality. For small graphics, the GIF format might be an acceptable solution. For photos, or more complex and colorful images, go with JPEG, which maintains a high enough level of quality for most uses while keeping the file size relatively low.

If you are involved with running a business, check out PEERNET’s line of document conversion software, which features products that are built with business in mind. If you’re just starting out and need to do quick, less frequent file conversions, we invite you to try our free online tool at ConvertMyFiles.com.

What image file type should I use?

What Image Format Should I Use?

GIF or TIFF? JPEG or PNG? If the mention of these acronyms makes your head spin, fear not. There are lots of different formats for digital images, and they all have their purpose.

When it comes to image types, there are a few things to keep in mind when determining which one will fit your needs best.

In this post, we’ll take a look at four of the most common image formats currently used around the home or office and explain the benefits or drawbacks of each format.

Type of Use:

The way you’re planning on using an image will have a big impact on which file format you decide to go with. Will you be printing it? Emailing it? Uploading to a website? The main influences in your decision can be broken down into the following three basic factors:

Compression: Is it important that the particular image remain true, or is it okay to sacrifice some quality in exchange for a faster loading or sending?

File Size: Do you have more storage space than you’ll ever fill up, or are you working with limited hard drive or server space?

Speed of Transmission: Do you plan on sending the file frequently, like within emails, or documents?

GIF:

In the early days of the web, the GIF was widely used because of its ability to compress images into very small file sizes. Back when everyone was on dial-up Internet connections, that was crucial. As people started to adopt cable and DSL connections over time, the popularity of GIFs gave way to JPEGs, which are larger files, but boast better image quality than GIF. But the scrappy GIF has made a comeback in recent years, because of animated GIFs: – small image files that load quickly and are essentially looping mini-movies.

BENEFITS: Small file size allows for quick loading.

DRAWBACKS: Standard GIFS can only render from a 256 color palette; are not suitable for use in professional applications like publishing.

JPEG:

This is probably the type of image file that you see most often in your day to day life on the Internet and with most digital cameras. JPEG is a compressed image format which drops unneeded color information that can’t be detected by the human eye from the image. This is known as lossy compression and is what allows JPEG to achieve such small file sizes.

JPEGs work best when dealing with photographs and documents with smooth variations of color. It is not a good choice for textual documents or documents with solid color objects as the sharp lines between colors will create artifacts in the image, causing the text or objects to have a ringed appearance.

BENEFITS: Most widely-used image type, widely adaptable. Compression can be adjusted to achieve a balance between the quality of the image and the file size.

DRAWBACKS: JPEGs use lossy compression which means that image quality is lost in exchange for size; not suitable for text documents.

PNG:

PNG is a lossless compressed format, which makes it good for both photographs and text documents. A PNG will generally be larger than a JPEG, and sometimes smaller than a TIFF.

Interestingly, it was originally developed to replace the GIF, but the formats are drastically different, and both have a place in today’s computer environments. PNG supports more colors than GIF images as well as improved transparency. It is a useful format for line graphics and wordmarks as the lines and text will show up crisply and cleanly in the output image.

BENEFITS: Compress images without losing quality; suitable for text documents.

DRAWBACKS: Larger file size than JPEGs; not suitable for professional quality print graphics.

TIFF:

TIFF is a very adaptable format that allows for multiple pages in a single file, similar to a PDF document. TIFF also supports both lossless and lossy compression, allowing for each page to be compressed differently. Of all the image formats, this one is the best solution for digitizing workplace documents.

TIFF can be compressed using JPEG compression, which is lossy but combines the reduced file size with the ability to have multiple images in one file.

Like PNG, TIFF can be a lossless format, which means that essentially, what you see is what you get. It is commonly used in the layout of newspapers, magazines and the like, because a TIFF (or TIF) will appear on the printed page just as it appears on a computer monitor. That also makes it a good choice for scanned documents – and actually, that’s exactly what the format was first developed for in the 1980s.

BENEFITS: Can have more than one page per file (multipaged); can be lossless to allow editing and re-saving without losing image quality; the choice of document archiving and publishing professionals worldwide.

DRAWBACKS: Not all TIFF image viewers support viewing multipage TIFF images.

And a couple other formats…

  • BMP (Bitmap): This is an old image format that is still used on rare occasions, but mostly has been surpassed by other formats that are more useful in the modern computing environment.
  • Vector images or vector graphics (variety of file extensions): These are images that are composed of paths, with a start and end point, and other points along the way to describe lines, squares, arcs and curves to create simple or complex images. This allows them to be scaled to virtually any size with no loss in quality. Vector formats are widely used in the professional design community and are created by such applications as Adobe Illustrator.
  • RAW (variety of file extensions): Digital cameras have the option to shoot in this format, and most professional photographers prefer it as it allows them to save their image with minimal loss of information to be later edited. RAW images are very large and the files must eventually be converted to a different format such as JPEG to be viewed and shared practically.

Need to convert an image or graphic into a different format?

Check out Peernet’s online tool, ConvertMyFiles.com , which allows free one-off file conversion for your convenience. Or, for businesses large and small, use our line of file conversion software for your document or image converting needs.