Creating print ready file never completes

MulbinMulbin Reader Reader
Hi,
I've been bashing my head against this wall for 48 hours now. Now matter how I edit or tweak my pdf it absolutely never completes the print ready file preparation.

I'm using the official lulu settings file but nothing works. Sits there for a very long time at 90% (maybe an hour or so?) then finally says to speak to support with no explanation of the problem. I've seen other threads with this issued for 2,3,4 years ago... is it really not fixed yet?

Comments

  • MulbinMulbin Reader Reader
    Forgot to say, file is only about 60mb, with about 10-15 images. PDF is 100% in line with guidelines ( I use save template) so 1.3 version, embedded fonts etc.
  • Paul_LuluPaul_Lulu Admin Admin
    From the case you created (on 12/8) it looks like you've only received an auto response to acknowledge the case. I see one of our support staff was working over the weekend and is already looking into the issue. While we might not be able to determine exactly the problem, we should be able to at least find some possible issues and solutions.

    Try a docx?

    I would strongly recommend not using a DOCX for print books.
  • MulbinMulbin Reader Reader
    Paul_Lulu said:
    From the case you created (on 12/8) it looks like you've only received an auto response to acknowledge the case. I see one of our support staff was working over the weekend and is already looking into the issue. While we might not be able to determine exactly the problem, we should be able to at least find some possible issues and solutions.

    Try a docx?

    I would strongly recommend not using a DOCX for print books.
    Thanks Paul, keep me posted! It needs to get out by Christmas! I've got it all uploaded and working perfectly over at Amazon direct publishing (as an emergency backup) but frankly I'll only use them as a last resort... especially as I'm planning a hardback later!

    Agree, Docx not really an option as this is an illustrated book created in indesign, not a word document.
  • Paul_LuluPaul_Lulu Admin Admin
    You should hear from our support team soon, I just spoke with someone over there.
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius Lulu Genius

    I would strongly recommend not using a DOCX for print books.

    It's 90% of what I use, but only for all-text content and using a Lulu 'standard' font. I use jpgs for the covers.

  • MulbinMulbin Reader Reader
    Has a pretty usless response from support saying to make sure the dimensions are correct "please contact if you have any other problems". The dimensions are correct (the uploader would also have picked up on incorrect bleed size).... is this really all we get from support? A canned response? Amazon direct proofs arriving on Thursday so not long left to keep my business if you'd like it.
  • Paul_LuluPaul_Lulu Admin Admin
    Looking over the email chain, I don't see how this appears 'canned' as our support agent supplied detailed information about your file and errors we detected.
    The file appears to be 8.62" x 11.25", while our Full Bleed specifications are 8.75" x 11.25". It's possible that you output the file from InDesign without allowing for bleed on the inner margins. Our printers only print in single page, not double page (spread) which accounts for the bleed requirements on all four sides.
  • MulbinMulbin Reader Reader
    ...You're right! For some reason the last version I uploaded is the wrong dimensions. However the 10 versions I uploaded before are all correct and don't work either, so that's not the issue.

    I've just uploaded another at 8.75 x 11.25, using your save setting file and it's still not working. Still looking at an issue with your software, this file works fine over at amazon.

    What's the next move with getting your print file maker to do it's job?
  • Paul_LuluPaul_Lulu Admin Admin
    Did you try running the file through Adobe's Distiller?
    With a file so rich in images, I'm willing to bet there is something in the file settings that isn't aligning with our requirements. Most often Distilling the file using our Job Options will correct these kinds of things.
    I attached Job Options zip file in case you need that.
  • MulbinMulbin Reader Reader
    "running the file through Adobe Distiller".... ??

    Distiller is antiquated software for creating pdfs from postscript files... you can't open a pdf with distiller, only create them from PS files.

    I'm already using you job options file in InDesign. InDesign and acrobat DC both automatically distil the pdf using your settings which is why Distiller is obsolete as stand alone software.

    You might be on to something with images though, I just deleted all the images in the whole file and your server managed to make a print file (although this might just mean it didn't time out with the smaller file).

    Going to export bits of the book to see if it can even cope with a few illustrated pages.

  • Paul_LuluPaul_Lulu Admin Admin
    I'm not sure about the Distiller being particularly antiquated.
    But I did test your file (the most recent one uploaded at the time anyway) by Distilling it - saving as a Postscript and creating a PDF with our Job Options - and that PDF converted just fine. I dropped that file I tested in your Lulu account's My Files.
  • MulbinMulbin Reader Reader
    Well... it does now upload. Unfortunately it's a horrible mess with grey blocks all around the text and screwed up images. This is exactly why Adobe actively discourage the use of the antiquated (sorry, but it's 30 year old tech) distiller in all their advice as poor design practice, and have done for years. They only include it in CC for legacy support.

    I'm going to run a few more tests. I've got your site to process small bits of the file so I'll check the quality of these before I try to stitch anything together. If it's butchering these too I'll just ditch it. Life's too short, and Amazon have modern print processing software compatible with Adobe CC.

    Seriously though, many thanks for your persistent help, your customer support is actually really good. It's your overly temperamental tech letting you down, not your service!
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius Lulu Genius

    Gosh, I have no problems at all using Word's Save As (pdf) option  :)

    This, for example >>    http://www.lulu.com/shop/kevin-lomas/steam-vehicles-of-the-road/paperback/product-21260214.html

  • Paul_LuluPaul_Lulu Admin Admin
    Mulbin said:
    Well... it does now upload. Unfortunately it's a horrible mess with grey blocks all around the text and screwed up images. This is exactly why Adobe actively discourage the use of the antiquated (sorry, but it's 30 year old tech) distiller in all their advice as poor design practice, and have done for years. They only include it in CC for legacy support.

    I'm going to run a few more tests. I've got your site to process small bits of the file so I'll check the quality of these before I try to stitch anything together. If it's butchering these too I'll just ditch it. Life's too short, and Amazon have modern print processing software compatible with Adobe CC.

    Seriously though, many thanks for your persistent help, your customer support is actually really good. It's your overly temperamental tech letting you down, not your service!
    Man, I did not realize Distiller was that old...now I feel old.
    While I know it's not helpful in this moment, we are very much aware of some of these issues. Like a PDF that has some obscure and irrelevant setting that our system turns away for no real reason.
    In fact, we've got a new publishing wizard in the works that will replace the old one sometime later this year. If you're interested, you can see the new wizard here - https://xpress.lulu.com. On the xPress site you can use the new wizard, but only to upload and print (no retail). Just for fun, I tested the most recent complete (non-Distilled) version of your file and it uploaded there no problem.
    If you just need to get some copies printed asap, that might be a good option.
    Let us know if you run into more issues with the piece-by-piece uploading.

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