Working from Home Due to Coronavirus? Remember WinPDF Can Help

With more and more office workers now being asked to work from home, it’s probably a good time to revisit how PDF files can help with your day-to-day workflow. Here are a few tips:

  • First and foremost — Win2PDF makes it easy to go paperless! Just use PDF files for document transfers instead of printing and sharing paper! PDF is an acronym for Portable Document Format and it can be shared with any type of user using any type of operating system. If you send a Word or Excel file, a smartphone user or a coworker on an Apple iMac or Macbook may not be able to open the document if they don’t have a Word or Excel viewer installed. PDF files, on the other hand, are universal and can be read by Windows computers, Apple computers, Chromebooks, Unix and Linux computers, iPhones, Android phones, tablets, etc.
  • Second, if you’re using Win2PDF, remember to use the ‘Send file’ option to automatically attach a PDF file to a new email message. It’ll save you a few clicks each time you create a PDF file if you need to share it with others.
  • Fourth, even the free Adobe Acrobat Reader DC program (which is installed on most PCs) has basic tools to comment, annotate, and sign documents. It’s a good way to share feedback when you do send or receive PDF files.
  • Fifth, convert legacy reporting programs to paperless systems by using the Win2PDF Auto-name feature. Need to share different reports with different departments? Add separate copies of Win2PDF and configure them for users of each department. Once reports are in PDF format instead of paper, they’re easy to view and share with users wherever they are located.
  • And lastly, make sure Win2PDF is loaded on your home PC as well. Did you know that the Win2PDF end-user license agreement allows you to install the desktop software on both a work computer and a home computer at no additional charge? You do now.

New Year’s Resolution (part 3): Email as an alternative cloud storage solution

Our last post gave an overview of several cloud storage solutions for your PDF files. While we generally like all of these services, many users may also find it useful to just use an existing web-based email service (like Gmail, Yahoo, or Microsoft’s new Outlook.com) to archive and preserve copies of their PDF files.  This is also a viable alternative if your company or organization has a firewall or policy restriction when using the other services; this method just uses email to send PDF files.

Let’s take a look at a simple procedure at how a user with Win2PDF and a basic Gmail account can make a backup PDF file every time to print out a paper copy of a file. [Note: we like Gmail because it indexes PDF files for search.  You can search your Gmail account for any text that resides within the PDF file. In addition, you can automatically label the incoming emails to archive them without filling up your regular inbox. Other web mail accounts will do similar things, but our example uses Gmail for these reasons.]

For this example, make sure you have Win2PDF installed on your computer and have a active Gmail account. Then do the following:

1. Select your paper printer to be the default printer on your computer

2. Print to Win2PDF and select ‘Print file’ and ‘Send file’ (and ‘Delete after sending’ if you don’t want to keep a local copy of the PDF on your PC)

Send and Print file options with Win2PDF
Send and Print file options with win2PDF

The ‘Send file’ option uses the default e-mail client, or the free Win2PDF Mail Helper application (download Win2PDF Mail Helper).

3. A copy of the print will be sent to the default paper printer that you set up in step 1, but you will also create a PDF file that you can email to a Gmail account.

4. In Gmail, create a filter that matches your typical email and way of storing files. For example:

– From “[email protected] <mailto:[email protected]>”

– Subject has the words “pdf” and “invoice”

– check “has attachment”

gmail_filter_sm
Use search criteria to filter emails

and then after filtering, you can

– apply a tag (e.g. “Invoices”)

– mark as read

– skip the inbox

Create filter with Gmail
Create filter with Gmail

And that’s it… This will automatically create a backup of your printed paper documents off-site in your Gmail account. And they won’t clutter up your inbox — they’ll just be archived in with a label that you can reference in the future. And you will be able to use Google’s search features to find these documents in the future — and Gmail allows you to search for text within the PDF files.

Next week we’ll conclude this series by looking at how the different services and methods compare for PDF users…  Stay tuned…

How to transfer a PDF file to an Apple iPad (or iPhone)

We get this question frequently:  Can I send a PDF file from my Windows PC to my  iPhone or iPad?  Can I do this even if my iPhone/iPad isn’t connected to the PC?

Yes and yes. There are several ways of doing this, but the easiest method that we found is to just create and email the PDF file to your iOS connected email account.  This is quite easy and can be achieved in 3 simple steps.

1)  On your Windows computer, open and print the document you wish to view on your iPad or iPhone.  Using our Win2PDF software, for example, there is an option on the file save window to “Send file…” (see screen shot below). When this option is checked, the PDF file will be created and attached to a new email message.

Win2PDF Send PDF option

2) Send the PDF file to the email account associated with your Apple iPhone or Apple iPad device.

iPad PDF email attachment

3) On the iPhone or iPad, touch the PDF document and you will be able to open and view the PDF file.  If you choose “Open in…”  You can save the PDF file permanently to your device.  Just select the built-in iBooks application, or another iOS application (like Adobe Reader, if you have the app installed) to save and view the PDF file.

Open PDF on iPad

That’s it.  To see step-by-step instructions for each platform specifically, click for iPhone instructions or iPad instructions.

And here’s the support topic for Apple’s iBook application that provides more detail as well.

How to send your PDF files to a Kindle

If you’re looking for an easy way to send PDF files to a Kindle device, Amazon provides several options for transferring files.  Some of these methods require the Kindle device to be connected to a PC by a USB cable, which may not be the most convenient.

Amazon Kindle
Emailing PDF to Kindle from Win2PDF

The easiest way we’ve found — and one that can be quickly used with Win2PDF — is to send the PDF file as an email attachment directly to the Kindle device. The Amazon Kindle ebook reader supports PDF files through Amazon’s Kindle Personal Documents Service.  In order to use this service, you must first tell Amazon to accept email from your email address.  Use the following steps to enable email to your Kindle:

  1. Go to your Kindle Personal Documents Settings page.
  2. Under Approved Personal Document E-mail List, add your email address.
  3. Under Send-to-Kindle E-Mail Settings, find and record your Kindle’s email address.  This address should end in @kindle.com.  This is the address that you will send PDF files to.

Once the Amazon Personal Document Settings have been configured, you can send PDF files directly to your Kindle by sending an email with the PDF file attached.  Win2PDF users can send the e-mail automatically when saving a PDF file (see these instructions under “How to email a PDF file after creating it?”).

Win2PDF Send PDF as Email Option

Please note that Amazon charges fees for sending files to your Kindle for some devices.

• For Kindle devices with Wi-Fi only (no 3G), there is no charge to receive PDF files.  The Kindle must be connected to a Wi-Fi network to receive PDF files.

• Kindle devices with 3G, Amazon charges a small fee to deliver the PDF files over 3G if the Kindle is not currently connected to a Wi-Fi network.  To avoid fees on 3G Kindles, you can use @free.kindle.com as the email address to prevent PDF files from being delivered over 3G.

This topic is covered in the Win2PDF How To Articles section of our online user guide.

How to automatically attach a PDF to Gmail (or any web-based email)

Here’s another question we see quite frequently.  Win2PDF has a feature to “Send file” that can be enabled on the file save window (see below).

Send PDF option in Win2PDF
Send PDF from Win2PDF file save window

When this option is checked, Win2PDF will create the PDF file and automatically attach it to a new email message using the computer’s default MAPI email client (which is typically Microsoft Outlook or Windows Live Mail).

But what do you do if you want to attach the PDF to a web-based e-mail client like Gmail or Outlook Web Access?  Since these programs don’t install as a full-fledged email client, how can you use these programs with Win2PDF?

There may be other ways to do this, but we found a software program called Affixa that has a handy way of solving this issue.  Many applications have the built-in capability to send emails, including Win2PDF, but most rely on an external email client.  Affixa  effectively resides in the background and acts as a connector to these web-based email services.  When you use the “Send file” feature in Win2PDF, for example, it will automatically create a draft web email message with the PDF attached.  Voilà!

Affixa Software

Affixa is free for personal use and only about $3 per license for business use.  And it works for any application that has a similar ‘Send to email’ capability, like Microsoft Word.  And it can be configured to work with multiple accounts (like Gmail, Outlook Web Access, Yahoo mail, etc.)

[Note:  we have no affiliation with Affixa – we just found their solution to be quite useful when used with our Win2PDF software].

For more information, please refer to this and other how to articles at our Win2PDF online user guide.