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kanoko, MS Office Guru
Category: Microsoft Office
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Experience:  5+ years of Microsoft Office expertise
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I have an excel file that i am trying to save a pdf. The sheet

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I have an excel file that i am trying to save a pdf. The sheet has many charts. When I try saving as pdf or converting into pdf (I have adobe acrobat standard XI), the process takes well over 15 minutes and in the end fails to actually create a pdf. What I mean by this is that the pdf that is created, when opened, has no pages and I am told by Adobe that there are no pages. When I remove many of the charts or all of the charts, adobe can create the pdf in a matter of seconds. I have also tried using XPS writer and this has failed too. I have also tried saving as a pdf and this fails as well.

Here is what i'm looking for:
1) Someone who can take the file located at:
2) Retain all the formatting and figure out a way to create one single pdf of all pages in a reasonable time frame (e.g. <2 minutes).
3) If you successfully do #2, I'll need details so I can replicate on my master file which I cannot share.

I have excel 2010 and windows 7 professional.

Additional information: The file is large and there are many formulas and formats. That said, if I remove all the majority of charts and keep the format as is, I can create a pdf absolutely no problem.
2 minutes may be a stretch, it's a 380 page document....
When you tried making it a pdf, did you do it from within excel?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes I did it from within excel and outside excel. The file is 191 pages. I just downloaded it again to double check. Not sure why you're seeing 380 pages.


Also, I have used microsoft's XS format cleaners on this file just as an FYI.

My conversion has been going on since 10:15 and it's up to page 151, 380 probably means the number of pdf pages.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Ok because everytime i've managed to create any sort of pdf it always lists 191 as the total number of pages at the bottom even if it does not successfully create them. If you print to PDF or use the PDF toolbar, it takes over an hour (as you're seeing) to create the pdf (and it does so successfully). Saving as PDF usually allows for faster pdf creation but in this case it's just all a nightmare.

What happened when you tried print to pdf?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

It eventually created the full pdf after an hour and a half (everything was in place and looked great). I just want a way to avoid an hour and a half for each document.

That's the way I was doing it, you forgot to mention that in the original question, but I should have guessed when you said you tried the XPS writer....
I'll check out some other options.

I'm not having much luck either finding a fast way, even saving as an xls file didn't speed things up.
I'll opt out in case any other experts have a faster way.....











Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks for looking into

I would be glad to help. I cannot guarantee my method will take under 2 minutes since this ultimately depends on the speed of your computer, but the tool I use that provides the fastest PDF conversion is:

But you will also need to configure this tool to make it run fast. After installing, go to Start > control panel > devices and printers. Then right-click 'CuteDF Writer' choose 'Printing Preferences' click the 'Advanced' button and under 'Print Quality' choose the lowest option which should be '72 dpi'.

Then try printing your document from Excel and choose the 'CutePDF Writer' as the printer. Please let me know how long it takes to convert using this method.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My settings are already there with adobe acrobat (i've already played with these settings) and unfortunately it did not help. I've used cutepdf as well with no luck.


Computer I use has a 3rd generation ivy bridge intel i7 3820QM and 16gigs of RAM., I would repeat these steps with these two PDF print utilities as well:

each one uses a different imaging engine, so if you have a modern processor like an i7 you may see a considerable speedup if their engine utilizes enhanced instructions.

Still make sure to lower the dpi setting for each. and make sure you choose the correct printer in the print dialog menu in excel.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Have tried those in the past as well as tried again. Still not working. Bbefore responding and telling me what to try, could you please try on your end to make sure the solution works. I provided a copy of the file as you'll see in the thread.

I have done this, but I have a much higher end processor, so this is why my machine is able to perform the operation in 2-4 minutes. There are a few other settings you can change in the Pritner preferences that may speed things up for you.

PostScript Output OPtion -> Optimize for Speed
PostScript Language Level -> 1
Advanced Printing Features -> Disabled
ICM Mehotd -> Disabled

Try confirming these settings on all three PDF printers that I mentioned to see if they improve the speed.

Also, how long are each of them currently taking to complete?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

They take over 1.5 hours to complete. I will also try with the settings you mentioned above. Could you please let me know specifically what type of machine / process / set up you have? I'm curious to know given you said it's much higher than the one I'm currently using.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Tried all of these settings on all three and i'm still stuck in the same place. >1.5 hours per. What processor are you using?

I have an i7-3930K which is a high-end desktop CPU that retails for $500+. It appears your CPU is a mobile chip primarily used in latops. Are you using a laptop for these PDF scans?

Another option you may want to try is using Google Docs to manage your file. You can upload your Excel file and convert it to Google's format and make the file accessible to anyone online.

Is there a particular reason that this file needs to be in PDF format? would another popular document format be acceptable?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks for the response. Yes, I'm using an Alienware m14x which retails for quite a lot and the i7-3820QM, while not the 3930, is still a pretty heavy duty chip. I've also tried doing the pdf off of two other computers (desktops), however, the chips on those are weaker and it takes much longer than the laptop. I'm happy to try using Google Docs to manage the file. Could you please send me the instructions on how to do that?


As a side, would you be willing to use something like screenleap (or any other screen sharing service) to show me that you can actually convert to pdf the exact file I provided off of wikisend? If you're willing to do that and can show me you successfully converted, i'll gladly give you a bonus on top.

Unfortunately we do not allow screen sharing on this site for privacy and security reasons.

To setup the Google Docs option, you will first need a Google account, which you most likely have if you use any of these services: G-Mail, YouTube, Picasa, Android.

Then simply go to '' and log-in with your account. Then choose the upload button (disk with up arrow). Choose your file and make sure conversion is enabled.

The upload may take a while depending on your internet connection. Afterwards, you can open the document, and enable the share feature, which will allow you to share this file with anyone using the Share link that is provided.
If my previous solution was able to help you please let me know by using the RATING button.

If not, please let me know what else you are having trouble with.
Were you able to set up the Google Doc version of Excel file?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hey -- Yeah that was helpful but in the end it'll have to be new hardware in order to be able to print pdfs and actually print the document. You are 100% certain you could create a pdf in 2 to 4 minutes on your machine? If yes, then i'll be upgrading my computer based on what you're saying given it seems to be purely hardware issue. Thanks so much!

I can't guarantee that it will take 2-4 minutes just by using that processor, since there are many other aspects of the hardware and software that will affect this including but not limited to:

1. Speed of RAM
2. Size of RAM
3. Speed of Hard Drive
4. OS Version (Windows XP is faster than Winodws 7, 8)
5. number of background processes running

Secondly, it doesn't seem econmoical to spend $500+ just to improve the performance of a single operation by a few minutes. Instead I would recommend optimizong your workflow to reduce the time spent converting. A few ideas I have are:

1. Reduce the page count of the Excel file by any means necessary (reduce font size, reduce column and row size, eliminate any duplicate or redundant information)
2. Consider using a different file format (non-PDF) for your conversion. Image based conversion is generally faster.
3. Consider using a cloud based file fromat for creation (like Google Docs) that does not require localized copies to be made and converted.

I say this, because you will most likely encounter performance issues in the future (even with updated hardware) if you don't address these issues first. Is there a reason the Google Docs option will not work for you?
kanoko, MS Office Guru
Category: Microsoft Office
Satisfied Customers: 284
Experience: 5+ years of Microsoft Office expertise
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Please let me know if the previous advice was helpful, or if you still ahve any questions about a solution.

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