Our Drumlin Publisher software enables you to convert your PDF files to our secure strongly encrypted format, with the permission settings you require. Files are converted locally, so the source PDFs never leave your site, only reference data is stored on our central Digital Rights Management (DRM) service. You can then distribute/sell the secured file(s) via emails, web download links or on physical media to your end users/customers/employees and our Digital Rights Management (DRM) service will check that the user is allowed to view that document via a system of authorization codes or licenses...
Our free Javelin secure PDF readers are available for MS Windows (pictured below), macOS, iOS and Android. All are very fast, secure and fully functional PDF readers, including markup and annotation facilities
Software and Service Components
The Drumlin Offline PDF Security service includes the following core elements:
- Drumlin Publisher Our PDF secure publisher software - this is used to create the secured (encrypted) PDF files from standard PDF files - available free of charge from here. DrumlinPublisher includes the core service management facilities that are needed to create and manage document access and to track and control usage, together with facilities for creating authorization codes and/or licenses for use with the documents that have been secured
- Javelin PDF reader software - this is the software that is required for end users - very small, fast and highly functional PDF readers. Versions are available for PC, Mac, iPAD/iPhone and Android devices - all Javelin readers are also free of charge. For PC and Mac users Javelin can be downloaded from here. For iOS and Android the Javelin readers are available at the App Stores for these platforms. For sites where no third party software installations are permitted or where there are strict corporate network access controls please see our online PDF security solutions, with web-browser based access to secure PDFs
- DRM Services - these are our in-network Digital Rights Management services for offline PDF security - the DRM service stores all the information required to provide the facilities for secure PDF file distribution, including authorization code details, document details, publisher details, and of course, is where the authorization codes and licenses are checked before allowing an end user with Javelin from being able to view a document
- Authorization codes and Document licenses - authorization codes are the standard means by which an end user can enable (authorize) a secure file (DRMZ or DRMX file) for viewing on a particular device. Each authorization code generated has an entry in our DRM service SQL database, together with a count value indicating how many times it can be used (i.e. on how many devices its use is permitted). A quota of codes per annum, provided as part of a subscription service order, is the main "commercial unit" for the Drumlin Security services. Document licenses are an alternative to the use of authorization codes. These are used to enable access to documents where the end user has installed and registered the Pro edition of Javelin. This facility is currently available for MS Windows and is generally used as part of a bespoke Corporate/Pro edition service
- Templates, guidance and cross-platform testing - With our large customer base and many years of experience, we can provide you with sample email templates, download guidance, free test file conversions, cross-platform testing of your files... and more. Initial and ongoing support of this kind is included in the service subscription fees
Step by Step instructions
The simplest way to create a secure PDF for offline use using the Drumlin Publisher software is first: Download, install and register the free Drumlin Publisher software. We strongly recommend you read the DrumlinPublisher and Catalog manuals (available here) before continuing! Then follow the steps below to produce a secure PDF. Secure PDF files require an authorization code or document license file before they can be viewed on a given device. Drumlin Publisher will offer you a free code for testing when you create single secure PDFs. See this link for: Video demonstrations (MP4 videos) - video demonstrations of using Javelin readers and DrumlinPublisher software - not always the latest version of software but a useful guide. Now proceed to create a secure PDF file as follows:
- Run DrumlinPublisher, login and select a test PDF on your PC for secure publishing. We recommend you select our .DRMZ file format for most purposes - also, use the SAVE SETTINGS button to save your preferred settings for secure publishing. Then use the other form tabs to set the options you would like to use as controls (e.g. View=unlimited, Print=Disabled, End date=31st December 2023, add an intelligent watermark), save your settings, and then press the Create Secure PDFs button. You need to have an active Internet connection at this stage
- DrumlinPublisher then sends control information (NOT THE PDF FILE ITSELF) to our DRM server. This includes the information necessary to identify your file as belonging to you (including the file name, your details and the permission controls you have applied) together with other security information. This information is stored on our DRM server. At the same time your PDF file is encrypted locally on your PC and protected by our security framework and this version is saved on your PC in your chosen location with the file extension .DRMZ or .DRMX. Your original PDF file remains unchanged. A test authorization code is automatically sent to you when you generate a single secure file at a time (not for multiple files) so you can check your file using our free Javelin PDF readers, as if you were an end user - select YES to save the free test code to a local text file. If you use Drumlin Publisher to create multiple secure PDFs in one go then no test code is provided. Ask us if you would like additional codes for test documents. Always TEST your secured file using Javelin3 for Windows (and optionally other platforms) before issuing it to end users. All Javelin readers can view PDF and DRMZ files but only the Windows and Mac versions can view DRMX files.
- Once you have created your secure file, which will typically have a .DRMZ extension, you do not need to generate it again for each customer - the same file can be sent to all end users/customers. If you want individually personalized files sent to each user (e.g. from a list) there is a special "Personalization" option specifically for this.
- You can now send the DRMX or DRMZ version of your PDF file to anyone you wish or place it on a web site for downloading. DRMZ and DRMX files are secure and cannot be used/read without Javelin plus a valid and available authorization code or license file for that specific secured PDF.
- To make the file readable on a target device the user needs a copy of our Javelin PDF reader and an authorization code, which you will provide. Normally codes can only be used once, but you can ask for/generate a set of codes that can be used 2 times or more (up to 5 by default) if you wish - we can also enable you to be able to create special codes with larger number of usages. For subscription service customers the Codes option in DrumlinPublisher is available and enables publishers to create their own authorization codes (typically from 5 to 50 at a time per document), without having to contact us. DrumlinPublisher also provides code reset, tracking and reporting functions
- Sample email templates: https://www.drmz.net/email-templates/email.htm - a "universal" web-page based set of instructions for installing Javelin and downloading secure PDFs, with separate versions for each main operating system. See below for guidance on emailing files to end users
- Your customer, the end user, will need to know what to do in order to read your secured PDF. Typically you will send them an email, with simple instructions, possibly linked to a web page as described above. In most cases your email will also include an authorization code for them to use. Your customer now has the software installed and registered, your DRMX or DRMZ file, and an authorization code from you for that document. As noted above, you can provide this by email or automatically via your online service (e.g. using your own shopping cart system or a PHP product like Linklok from Vibralogix), or via a commercial service such as Fetchapp, Getdpd, SendOwl, PayLoadz or SoftSeller. The end customer opens the file and enters the authorization code they have been given when prompted. The code is checked centrally to ensure it matches the document ID and is a valid and unused/available code, and if so, exchanges information with the end user's PC/Mac/iOS or Android device to enable the DRMX or DRMZ file to be viewed. Note that authorization codes are simply look-up codes, and do not have any encryption/decryption function
Emailing with attached secure files
If you were just emailing a secured document to a small number of clients or end users you might wish to send the secured version of the PDF as an attachment. In this case the following instructions work well, but apply for desktop/laptops rather than mobile devices. We strongly recommend the use of our CATALOGS facility for distribution of files to mobile devices, and this facility can be used for all platforms. If a simple email is the distribution option you prefer, then sample instructions are:
To use this file on your PC or Mac please follow the three steps below:
1. Save the attached file to your DOCUMENTS folder
2. Download Javelin (for PC or Mac) from our : downloads page (https://drumlinsecurity.com/javelindownloads.php) and install it as per the web page guidance (this only needs to be the very first time you use the system)
3. Run Javelin, select the File menu, Open… option and open the file you have saved. It will ask for a code. Copy/paste or type in the code: xxxxxxxxx (9 characters, no space on the end of it) into the field when prompted and press OK. The code will be checked over the internet and if OK, will allow you to view the document (this only needs to be the very first time you authorize the file)
If you have a corporate firewall that blocks access to or from our authorization server please let us know and we will explain how to resolve this problem.