What are the size limits and PDF format restrictions on PDF files I can use?
Filesize is determined by the memory handling facilities of the target devices. For PCs and Macs large file sizes (e.g. 100Mbytes or more) should work in most cases, but on mobile devices their memory handling is much less sophisticated and they slice the memory up into 64Mb chuncks per application. We recommend that for distribution reasons (reliable downloading/fast downloading) and for memory management reasons, files should be kept to under 50Mb and preferably under 30Mb - the number of pages does not really matter - it can be 1000s. PDF files can be saved in a reduced size manner to ensure files are not too large and of course for screens (which have relatively low resolution) there is no need to use hi-resolution print-ready PDF formats - some publishing systems, like InDesign and Word, allowing you to export the conten as "For screen display" or "Minimum filesize" so this is the recommended approach. If the files are still too large then we recommend splitting them into 2 or more "volumes". As the files are viewed interactively it is important to include a Contents list (also known as a bookmark tree or outline) for fast navigation, [articularly for mobile devices. PDF files converted should not be set with Adobe-style protection and should not include embedded media such as 3D models or video clips. To provide video and audio support use links to separately hosted mp4 and mp3 files. See also our "All about PDF files" page: here
What operating systems are supported?
All modern mainstream operating systems and variants are supported in the Javelin end user software (secure PDF readers): MS Windows, Apple OSX, Apple iOS and Google Android. The DrumlinPublisher and AdminApp software requires MS Windows with .NET4.5 or later. Windows 7 users who wish to take advantage of using the Javelin3 readers must make sure they have .NET4.5 or later installed otherwise the program will not run! Windows Server users with Remote Desktop (RDP) access should contact us for advice on implementation, but this environment is supported. Windows touch screen/RT devices are not supported - a keyboard and mouse are required. Publishers and end users should be aware that each mainstream operating system has many variants and implementations, so it is vital that the appropriate version of Javelin for their target platform is installed. Soome operating system and hardware setups may experience problems from time to time, e.g. after a major operating system "upgrade" and it is helpful to us if users and publishers report any such issues to us so we can check these
Can other file formats, for example Word, Excel or PowerPoint, be converted and made secure?
Yes - to convert Word, Excel or PowerPoint files they are typically first converted to PDF using the Export to PDF facility in the MS Office suite - this produces the best/highest quality results
E-commerce: Do I need special software or services to use the Offline DRM service to sell books, newletters, newspapers etc?
There are two main options: (i) accept orders via your existing e-commerce platform and then manually send an email to the customer with the authorization code they need for that file - this method is easy and ideal for small volume sales of one or two titles; or (ii) accept orders via some automated facility that send the emails out automatically, with the necessary authorization code included in the email. In this second scenario there are several options: (a) if your existing e-commerce system supports digital distribution with either "license codes" or "codes" etc then you can use that facility - for some e-commerce platforms this is a standard facility, for others it is available as a third-party add-ins or plug-ins, and for others it can be provided via a development using their toolsets and APIs (requires a developer of course); (b) there are several web-based services that specialize in providing digital distribution, including GetDPD, SendOwl, PayLoadz and others; (c) for PayPal-based sales we can provide a managed service which enables you to sell direct from your website or via a catalog page on our website, with all purchase receipts going direct to your PayPal account (there is no commission charge from us for this service, although we do charge a setup cost and monthly service subscription for codes and support)
How do I send secured PDFs to end users?
Secure (drmz) files can be sent to end users in several ways. The recommended method for multiple files delivered to multple platforms (desktop, laptop and mobile) is to use catalogs. See the Documentation page for more details. For single files delivered to desktops/laptops, simple file attachments to an email or provision of the file on a hosting service is fine(e.g. a web site or service like Dropbox). If users have problems downloading files they can be placed in a zip file first and then users can download the zipped copy (of one or more files) and unzip the ones they require. All Javelin readers also include a built-in downloader, so this can be used and is often suitable for single file distribution to mobile devices, although we recommend using very simple URLs and filenames to avoid end user problems with typing in the URL. Note that once a drmz file is generated you can change its name without affecting the file or its authorization or documentID - e.g. to a short name with no spaces or special characters. See also the email and download template samles we provided here
What watermarking options are provided?
PDF files can have a static watermark added to selected pages or all pages before converting to our secure offline format. A "tiled" watermark on every page adds a significant level of additional security to the source file. Dynamic watermarks are displayed on the PDF pages, as an overlay, if set when the secure files are created. The content of the default dynamic watermark can include fixed text plus fields such as the authorization code, deviceID, logged in username etc. For more details please see the DrumlinPublisher manual
Do the Javelin readers support markup and annotation?
Yes, highlighting of text and adding of notes is supported for all platforms. However, because the PDF files are encrypted and remain encrypted they cannot be directly augmented with markup and annotation/notes, i.e. these elements are not stored within the secured PDF. Instead these elements are stored in separate files for each document, with pointers to where they should appear in the document. If the document is amended and re-issued or a new document provided with the same name but a different documentID, the elements 'may' no longer be available.
How long should file conversions take?
Typically file conversion takes 1-2 seconds per file. Note that the source PDF file never leaves your site/is not uploaded to our DRM server, so remains secure on your site. Only metadata relating to the file is uploaded (e.g. your registered userID, the source PDF filename, the date/time of the conversion etc)
Can I update an existing file I have issued and keep the same documentID?
Yes, you can augment previously issued files, with corrections and/or additions, as long as you ensure that the newly generated file has exactly the same PDF filename as the previous one
Is there a limit on the number of PDF files I can convert? And can I bulk convert files if I have lots?
There is no limit on the number of files you can convert and there are bulk conversion facilities built into the DrumlinPublisher software (multi-file selection and conversion, plus folder-based multi-file selection)
What filenames are accepted for conversion?
Ideally filenames should be as simple and concise as possible, avoiding the use of special characters such as symbols or accented characters or national variants, and using latin alphabet if possible. Files must be in standard PDF format and should not include Adobe-style protection
What security features are provided as standard?
There are several elements to the security framework: (i) conversion of the source PDF to our secure 256-bit encryption formats; (ii) protection of the applications (Javelin readers) from hacking; (iii) control of access to documents on a device and/or user basis, with authorization code control as standard and license-based controls as optional for Corporate clients using the Windows platform; (iv) overlaid dynamic (optionally user-specific) watermarking; (v) usage tracking by user and document, including tracking of attempted misuse and of events such as printing and opening (Windows Pro editions of Javelin); (vi) all document handling takes place in memory so no insecure files are ever available on disk/permanent storage; (vii) https based hosting if we provide the hosting environment
What are the pros and cons of Offline PDF security?
PROs:(i)strongly encrypted files; (ii) optional printing; (iii) high speed display, zooming and text searching; (iv) usage tracking including attempts at misuse; (v) available for use offline with no internet connectivity; easy use across multiple devices; CONs: (i) requires installation of proprietary PDF reader (Javelin); (ii) initial authorization requires brief internet connectivity (not required for Corporate users of Pro editions of the Windows reader)
Can printing be enabled? And if so, what are the recommended settings?
Yes, printing can be enabled for desktop and laptop devices (Windows and OSX versions of Javelin) but we recommend it is only enabled if necessary - printing can be of all pages or a specified number of pages (i.e. across multiple print attempts) and can include static and dynamic watermarking. Double-sided printing is not supported. Protection is provided against attempts to print to non-physical devices (e.g.PDF and Image writers). We recommend that publishers set the Print Count to "unlimited" and then the Print pages count to the total number of pages they wish to allow the user to print. e.g. with a 100 page document printable twice, you might allow 200 or 250 pages to be printed. The reason for doing this is that an end user may print 1 page as a test, then decide to print 10 pages, then another 10 etc and that would be 3 print events, so if you set the print count to 3 they would no longer be able to print - also, many users have problems when printing, such as paper jams, running out of ink etc, so may have to print more times than you expect. Please see the documentation for guidance on all aspects including printing, available via the Documentation page on our website or directly here: https://www.drumlinsecurity.com/DrumlinPublisher.pdf - page 6 relates to printing. If a user has a problem because the print count has expired, then they can use the Javelin reader's File menu, Remove authorization option to clear their settings, and then re-open the document and re-enter a valid authorization code for that file, and they will have a new quota of printing based on the settings made for that file when it was generated
My secured file is enabled for printing but I get a message saying I cannot print to the device I have specified?
Protection is provided against attempts to print to non-physical devices (e.g.PDF and Image writers). The software does this using a large list of known valid printers so it may be that the printer you are trying to use is not recognized, or that the operating system is trying to print to a "nominal" print device with a naming that is not a known printer or an in-network software service that may provide printing but is not a physical printer. In all these cases you can either (i) attach your device to a physical printer if that is possible; (ii) use another device, e.g. at home, which has a real printer attached; or (iii) ask the publisher if a printed copy is available; or (iv) use the file on a tablet device (i.e. portable) in lieu of being able to print. If necessary you can also use the File menu, Log file option tand then send us the log file to check. If the device details do indicate a genuine "new" printer device then we can enable this for you with a software update
What prevents the end user providing the secured PDF and their authorization code to someone else to use?
When a secured PDF (drmz file) is authorized the file remains encrypted - it is the device that is enabled to view that specific file. If the authorization code has a usage count of 1 initially and the end user has authorized their file, the usage count available will be 0, so the code will no longer be valid. Sending the secured file and the authorization code to someone else to use will fail and any attempt to do this will be logged centrally and is available to publishers to check. If a license file rather than an authorization code has been provided to the end user, the file is unusable on any other device so again protects the secured PDF file from misuse
Can I add my own branding to the Javelin viewer?
Branded versions of the Javelin3 and/or Javelin3Pro reader can be amended to provided a level of branding. Standard branding includes: branded/tailored opening screen; selectable toolbar elements; color selectable catalog header and background; branded icons in program including About form and catalogs; renamed program; bespoke installation kit. Excludes special requested developments and ongoing updates. Contact us for more details and a quotation and/or see the Pricing menu, One-time purchases
Can I host the converted PDF for use on my own servers?
Yes, the drmz files are simply files that are available and encrypted. Links to drmz file can be protected, e.g. with secured links and/or by making them available behind an access control facility, but in general this is not necessary because the files always remain encrypted.
How much does the service cost?
The offline service is free to try and all our standard software is free - the only charges are for services, typically being for authorization codes (starting at $99/month for up to 3000 authorization codes per annum or from $599 for a fixed block of 500 codes). E-commerce solutions are available on a similar basis, with an initial setup fee depending on the number of documents and publisher requirements. Please Contact us for more details and a quotation
If I take out a subscription what happens if I want to cancel or suspend my subscription?
Subscriptions are monthly (or can be paid for annually in advance) and can be cancelled at any time. Document details for publications that have been generated and issued to end users will be retained and supported
Can I change my subscription (upgrade or downgrade the service level)?
You can change your subscription at any time - simply take out a new subscription using the same email address as before to replace your current subscription service level, or use a new email address to create an additonal (new) subscription and then cancel the previous subscription via PayPal, Worldpay or contact us to cancel your old subscription on your behalf
My customer is using a current version of Javelin but cannot access the service - what is the problem?
The probability is that their network is blocking access to or from our DRM server. Please see the Help on common issues, item 2, for details on how to resolve this