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Unable to export PDF | InDesign

  1. InDesign User Guide
  2. Get to know InDesign
    1. Introduction to InDesign
      1. What's New in InDesign
      2. System requirements
      3. Common questions
      4. Use Creative Cloud libraries
    2. Workspace
      1. Workspace basics
      2. Toolbox
      3. Set preferences
      4. Touch workspace
      5. Default keyboard shortcuts
      6. Document recovery and undo
      7. Capture extension
  3. Create and lay out documents
    1. Documents and pages
      1. Create documents
      2. Work with parent pages
      3. Work with document pages
      4. Set page size, margins, and bleed
      5. Work with files and templates
      6. Create book files
      7. Add basic page numbering
      8. Number pages, chapters, and sections
      9. Convert QuarkXPress and PageMaker documents
      10. Share content
      11. Understand a basic managed-file workflow
      12. Save documents
    2. Grids
      1. Grids
      2. Format grids
    3. Layout aids
      1. Rulers
  4. Add content
    1. Text
      1. Add text to frames
      2. Threading text
      3. Arabic and Hebrew features in InDesign
      4. Create type on a path
      5. Bullets and numbering
      6. Glyphs and special characters
      7. Text composition
      8. Text variables
      9. Generate QR codes
      10. Edit text
      11. Align text
      12. Wrap text around objects
      13. Anchored objects
      14. Linked content
      15. Format paragraphs
      16. Format characters
      17. Find/Change
      18. Spell check and language dictionaries
    2. Typography
      1. Using fonts in InDesign
      2. Kerning and tracking
    3. Format text
      1. Format text
      2. Work with Style Packs
      3. Tabs and indents
    4. Review text
      1. Track and review changes
      2. Add editorial notes in InDesign
      3. Import PDF comments
    5. Add references
      1. Create a table of contents
      2. Footnotes
      3. Create an index
      4. Endnotes
      5. Captions
    6. Styles
      1. Paragraph and character styles
      2. Map, export, and manage styles
      3. Object styles
      4. Drop caps and nested styles
      5. Work with styles
      6. Leading
    7. Tables
      1. Format tables
      2. Create tables
      3. Table and Cell styles
      4. Select and edit tables
      5. Table strokes and fills
    8. Interactivity
      1. Hyperlinks
      2. Dynamic PDF documents
      3. Bookmarks
      4. Buttons
      5. Forms
      6. Animation
      7. Cross-references
      8. Structure PDFs
      9. Page transitions
      10. Movies and sounds
      11. Forms
    9. Graphics
      1. Understand paths and shapes
      2. Draw with the Pencil tool
      3. Draw with the Pen tool
      4. Apply line (stroke) settings 
      5. Compound paths and shapes
      6. Edit paths
      7. Clipping paths
      8. Change corner appearance
      9. Align and distribute objects
      10. Linked and embedded graphics
      11. Integrate AEM assets
    10. Color and transparency
      1. Apply color
      2. Use colors from imported graphics
      3. Work with swatches
      4. Mix inks
      5. Tints
      6. Undertand spot and process colors
      7. Blend colors
      8. Gradients
      9. Flatten transparent artwork
      10. Add transparency effects
  5. Share
    1. Work with InDesign Cloud documents
    2. InDesign cloud documents | Common questions
    3. Share and collaborate        
    4. Share for Review
    5. Review a shared InDesign document
    6. Manage feedback 
  6. Publish
    1. Place, export, and publish
      1. Publish Online
      2. Copy, insert graphics
      3. Export content for EPUB
      4. Adobe PDF options
      5. Export content to HTML
      6. Export to Adobe PDF
      7. Export to JPEG format
      8. Export HTML
      9. DPS and AEM Mobile overview
      10. Supported File Formats
    2. Printing
      1. Print booklets
      2. Printer's marks and bleeds
      3. Print documents
      4. Inks, separation, and screen frequency
      5. Overprinting
      6. Create PostScript and EPS files
      7. Preflight files before handoff
      8. Print thumbnails and oversized documents
      9. Prepare PDFs for service providers
      10. Prepare to print separations
  7. Extend InDesign
    1. Automation
      1. Data merge
      2. Plug-ins
      3. Capture extension in InDesign
      4. Scripting
  8. Troubleshooting
    1. Fixed issues
    2. Crash on launch
    3. Preference folder read-only issue
    4. Troubleshoot file issues
    5. Unable to export PDF
    6. InDesign document recovery

Learn how to troubleshoot problems that can occur when you export an InDesign document as a PDF.

Binary sorting of the document

Binary sorting of the document helps in eliminating the issue coherently.

  1. Export a single page or group of pages at time.

  2. Locate the corrupted page or link.

Troubleshoot plugins

Remove third-party plugins from the InDesign Plug-ins folder, and then restart InDesign. If the problem recurs, move the plugins back to the InDesign Plug-ins folder. If the problem doesn't recur, identify conflicting plugins:

  1. Choose one of the following options as per your Operating System. 

    Windows: Help > Configure Plug-Ins

    macOS: InDesign > Configure Plug-Ins

  2. Select All Plug-Ins for the Set and then clear all the options in the Display section except Third Party. Create a list of these plug-ins.

  3. Quit InDesign and move these plug-ins out of the Plug-ins folder:

    • Windows: /Program Files/Adobe/Adobe InDesign [Version]/Plug-Ins
    • Mac OS: /Applications/Adobe InDesign [Version]/Plug-Ins
  4. Restart InDesign and try to reproduce the problem.

If the problem does not recur, repeat steps 3 and 4, adding some third-party plug-ins back to the Plug-Ins folder. If the problem recurs, contact the developer of the plug-in you last moved, to inquire about an update.

For more information, see Troubleshoot InDesign third-party plug-ins.


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