In this article we'll learn:
- Which processes are completed when uploading the print data
- How Preflight and Fixup application works
- How to analyze Print Data
- Which parameters are available in Print Data view
When print data is uploaded to the Workflow, certain processes are completed when Preflighting the data. The most important processes are:
- Storing a copy of the original file – The original print file is stored in its original state for both Articles and Print Items in the Workflow.
- Converted to a PDF – All print data that is not originally in PDF format is converted to PDF without making any corrections.
- Preflight – Print files are checked for certain constructs in the PDF file, based on the pre-selected Preflight Profile.
- Data Correction – Print data is corrected using a list of standardized Fixups and stored as the first version in the Workflow.
- Preflight Report – A Preflight Report is also created based on the applied Preflight Profile and any errors that were encountered.
While the first and second steps are applied by default (an administrator cannot make any changes here), step three and four are influenced using the options selected by the Workflow user.
Data checks are based on the Preflight Profile that you have set under Administration > Settings > Preflight / Fixup . The Preflight Profile: Default Preflight and Fixup  is selected by default. This Preflight profile contains the most common Checks used in the printing industry to find production-critical constellations. If an additional rule is required, custom define this rule via the toolbar . Read more about this in the section User-defined Check-in Templates. Other settings can be added by a specialist who is able to define check-in rules in callas software's pdfToolbox.
Figure 1: The Preflight / Fixup tab available under the menu item Administration > Settings.
The following list gives a brief overview of the most important checks that are included in the default Preflight during the check-in process:
- Page Geometry Size – Determines the Page Geometry dimensions for the TrimBox, BleedBox, Bleed, and MediaBox and ensures that the PDF coordinate system starts at 0/0.
- Resolution – Determines the minimum/maximum resolution for the uploaded file.
- Embedded Fonts – Analyzes all states (not embedded, fully embedded, or embedded as a font subset).
- Process Colors – Determines which process colors (CMYK) are contained in the PDF file.
- Spot Colors – Analyzes and finds Spot Colors with overprint status (overprint/knockout) and their dimensions.
- Device RGB – Finds all RGB objects that have no Source Profile assigned.
- Color Spaces – Determines which Color Spaces are used in the PDF file.
- Registration Colors – Finds objects that have been created using Registration Colors.
- Rendering Intents – Determines all embedded Rendering Intents.
- White Overprint – Finds all objects that use a White channel and are set to overprint.
- Layers – Determines all layers contained in the PDF file.
- Number of Pages – Determines the total number of pages contained in the PDF file.
- PDF/X Status – Determines the PDF/X status of the file.
- Includes numerous other Preflight checks.
The Split multipage files into individual Print Items  option automatically splits any multipage pdf that is uploaded by default within the Workflow.
During the Check-in process, Fixups can also be applied to the data by default. Certain Fixups are available in the Check-in Profile. Some are set to active and some to inactive. Depending on which settings have been selected in the General Settings panel  under Administration > Settings > Color Management, the Fixups listed here are additionally applied to the permanently active Fixups in the Preflight Profile.
Figure 2: The General Settings panel under the Color Management tab.
If warnings or errors were found during the Preflight, the number of Information , Warnings , and Errors  are displayed in the header of the area called Document Information and User-defined Fields. To locate the Preflight Results, open the Print Item view of an Article, Production Job, etc., and find the aforementioned area. Furthermore, the concerned area for Information, Warnings, and Errors is highlighted in yellow .
Figure 3: The information area Document Information and User-defined Fields of the Print Item view
To view listed Warnings click on the Warning symbol . To view listed Errors, click on the Error symbol . In both cases the Preflight results dialog will open, where both Errors and Warnings (if found) are displayed in individual tabs. Click on the drill-down arrow  to display detailed information regarding the Information, Error or Warning.
Figure 4: The Preflight results dialog
If you want to create a detailed Preflight Report as a PDF file, click on the Download Preflight Report symbol  (see Figure 3). This will create a Preflight Report with Bookmarks and download it locally to your system.
Open the Preflight Report in Acrobat Pro or Adobe Reader and select the Bookmarks tab . By selecting a Bookmark, the object(s)  affected by the Warning or Error will be highlighted.
This function is only available for users with additional licenses.
Figure 5: The Preflight Report contains Bookmarks which highlight specific Errors and Warnings in Acrobat Pro or Adobe Reader.
For the users of the Workflow, production-relevant information for a Print Item or Article is displayed in the Print Data view. You can access Print Data view as follows:
- Select the menu item Article > Articles, which will display the Article List.
- Search for the desired Article in the list using a Filter or by entering text in the search field.
- Double-click on the Article.
- The Article with the Print Data tab selected is then displayed.
- Select the menu item Order > Orders, which will display a list of all Orders.
- Search for the desired Order in the list using a Filter or by entering text in the search field.
- Double-click on the Order.
- The Order is displayed with the Print Data tab selected.
- The Print Data for individual Print Items is displayed when you select it.
- Select the menu item Job, which displays a list of all Production Jobs.
- Search for the desired Production Job in the list using a Filter or by entering a text in the search field.
- Double-click on the Job.
- Select the required Print Item.
- The Print Data tab is displayed automatically.
The Print Data tab  provides various information. The individual areas are briefly described below.
Figure 6: The various information areas offered in the Print Data tab.
In the Preview area (marked in green), a preview image of the Print Item is displayed including guides that represent the ImageBox  and the Expected Bleed  (production format).
If you hover over the TrimBox button  below the preview image, a box is displayed in the same color as the button below the preview image. If the page geometry of a Print Item is set differently from the TrimBox, you can also view these boxes by selecting the corresponding PDF box in the drill-down list Set ImageBox . By selecting a different ImageBox, the box chosen will be used when imposing and rendering the Print Item.
Figure 7: The TrimBox on the preview image.
The Document Information and User-defined Fields area (marked with Cyan in Figure 6), displays the Preflight results when checking for Dimensions, Number of Pages, Resolution, Layers and the Output Intent. In the header you will find the detected Information, Warnings and Errors . The footer contains the most frequently used Fixups  grouped by topic. By clicking on the page navigation points  further information about the PDF can be viewed, access to User-defined Fields is also available here.
Figure 8: The Document Information and User-defined Fields area in Print Data view.
In the Production Information area (marked with blue in Figure 6), parameters used for production are displayed. Production Information includes: the size of the ImageBox or the expected Bleed, Winding Direction (important for label printing), Process Steps, the Substrate information and the applied Output Configuration for the Print Item.
In this information area, the user can change the applied Color Policy  and can set the Bleed .
Figure 9: The Production Information area.
In the Fonts area (marked with orange in Figure 6), Fonts contained in the PDF are listed, including their Status . The status can be either: fully embedded, an embedded font subset or not embedded.
The number  of fonts contained in the document is displayed in the header. The line below shows the minimum Font Size  and the minimum X-Height  found. The footer contains two Fixups: Embed missing Fonts  and Convert Fonts to Outlines .
Figure 10: The Fonts information area.
In the Process Colors area (marked with yellow in Figure 6), all Process Colors used in the PDF are listed.
The header shows the number  of Process Colors used. The footer contains the Fixup groups: Adopt Color Values , Black Handling  and Tonal Value Corrections  with individual Fixups in each drop-down menu. Rendering Intents contained in the PDF file can be displayed by clicking on the navigation point (gray dot) .
Figure 11: The Process Colors panel.
In the Spot Colors area (marked with red in Figure 6), all Spot Colors contained in the PDF that have not been flagged as Technical Colors by the user in the Workflow are listed. For each Spot Color, the ∆E reproduction value, Overprint status, and the Dimension the color, and the Spot Color Definition are specified.
The header displays the number  of Spot Colors used and the line below shows the selected ∆E calculation . The footer contains Fixups such as: Create and Edit Spot Color Definition  and Grid Charts  as well as the Fixup groups: Spot Color Tools  and Additional Channels , both drop-down menus contain multiple Fixups. Source Color Spaces are displayed by clicking on the navigation point .
Figure 12: The Spot Colors information panel.
In the Technical Colors area (marked with magenta in Figure 6), all Spot Colors used in the PDF that have been allocated as Technical Colors by the user in the Workflow are listed. For each Technical Color we see: the type (Cut Contour in this example), Overprint status, the Dimension of the color, and the Spot Color Definition used for rendering Lead In/Out.
The number  of Technical Colors used is displayed in the header. The footer contains the Fixup: Create and Edit Spot Color Definition  and the Fixup groups: Create Dieline  and Spot Color Tools  each containing a drop-down list of Fixups.
Figure 13: The Technical Colors information panel.
In the Separations area (marked in gray in Figure 6), all Separations used in the PDF are displayed, allowing the user to see very quickly where each color separation is and which overprint status each Print Item has. In order to measure color values, double-click on one of the separations to open the Separations dialog.
Figure 14: The Separations information panels.
Double clicking on the preview or directly on individual color separations will open the Separations dialog, where you can view more detailed information. To determine the color values for a Print Item, select the pipette tool  and move the tool to the desired position where a value should be measured . The corresponding values are displayed in the color values list .
Article Update: Version 1.15.2; July 2023