Creating a PDF bookmark list

PagePlus pdf bookmarklist Creating a PDF bookmark list

Bookmarks are optional links that appear in a separate pane of the Adobe Reader when a PDF file is displayed.

Typically, a bookmark links to a specific location such as a section heading in the publication, but it can also link to a whole page or specifically to an anchor attached to an object. You can insert bookmarks by hand, or PagePlus can apply automatic generation to produce a nested bookmark list up to six levels deep, derived from named styles in your publication.

If you’re exporting a multi-page or multi-section publication to the PDF format for on-screen viewing, creating a bookmark list will make the content a great deal more accessible. In general, the list should include top-level headings such as chapter heads, contents, or menu. You’ll be able to view all your bookmarks at a glance, organize them into a hierarchy of entries and subentries, and create, modify or delete existing bookmarks as needed.

To use styles to automatically generate bookmarks:

  1. Select PDF Bookmarks… from the Insert menu.

  2. In the dialog, click Automatic…. You’ll see a list of all the style names used in your publication. Check boxes to include text of a given style as a heading at a particular level (1 through 6). For example, for Heading 1, Heading 2, and Heading 3 at three hierarchical levels:

    PagePlus dlg pdfbookmarks Creating a PDF bookmark list

    To remove all bookmarks in the list, clear all check boxes.

  1. Click OK to generate bookmarks. You’ll see a list of automatically inserted bookmarks presented in a tree structure according to the levels used.

  • Check your publication to make sure these styles are used consistently.

  • Each time you generate bookmarks automatically, the previous bookmark list is overwritten. In the process, any existing bookmarks (such as those you’ve added by hand) are overwritten. You can generate an automatic list first, then add new bookmarks by hand, and then go back and organize or modify the bookmark list, as explained below.

The mechanics of creating a PDF bookmark list by hand are simple. For example, bookmarking a specific location (for example, a piece of text or a graphic object) entails placing an anchor at that location; the anchor serves as the target for the bookmark link.

To insert bookmarks by hand:

  1. Select PDF Bookmarks… from the Insert menu.

  2. In the bookmark tree, display the entry below which you want to create the new bookmark. (Check Create as sub-entry if you want the new bookmark nested as a “child” of the selected entry.)

  3. Click the Create… button.

  1. In the Create Bookmark dialog, enter the text for your bookmark in the Bookmark Title field. This text will be displayed in Adobe Reader as the bookmark name.

  2. Click to select the bookmark destination type, then enter the destination.
    To bookmark a specific page in the publication, set Destination Type to be Page, then select the target page’s Page Number.
    To bookmark to a specific location, set Destination Type to be Anchor, then select the target anchor’s Anchor Name.

  3. Click OK to confirm your choices.

  4. You’ll need to have created an anchor in advance to allow it to be bookmarked. You can create PDF bookmarks automatically when creating anchors. (See Adding anchors to objects.)

To delete bookmarks:

  1. Select PDF Bookmarks… from the Insert menu.

  2. In the bookmark tree, select an entry for deletion, then click the Remove button. You’ll be asked if you want to remove unused anchors.

  3. A bookmark, if using an anchor, can also be deleted when the anchor is deleted (via Insert>Anchor…).

Unlike hyperlinks, bookmarks also work as actual links within PagePlus publications. You can use the bookmark list as a jumping-off point to any bookmarked entry.

To locate a bookmarked entry:

  1. Select PDF Bookmarks… from the Insert menu.

  2. Select the bookmark and click the Go To button.

To organize or modify bookmarks:

  1. Select PDF Bookmarks… from the Insert menu.

The dialog displays the bookmarks in your publication as a tree with collapsible entries and sub-entries. The Create… button lets you add new bookmarks by hand, as explained above.

  • To move a bookmark to a new location in the tree, drag it into position.

  • To edit a bookmark, select it and click Modify…. The Modify Bookmark dialog appears, and you can edit the bookmark text or redefine its destination.

  • To delete a bookmark, select it and click Remove.

Tips for PDF bookmarks

  • As a publication designer, keep in mind that to the user, a bookmark list is a convenient jumping-off point to the major sections. In Adobe Reader, it’s always available (can even be undocked as a floating window) regardless of where the user happens to be in the document.

  • Double-check your spelling! Bookmark errors won’t get trapped by the spell checker!

  • You may want to consider creating a table of contents either as an addition or an alternative to a bookmark list. Despite their convenience, bookmarks are harder to browse than a detailed TOC. If the document structure has lots of headings or nested subheadings, scrolling the bookmark list and expanding bookmark levels becomes a challenge for the user. A table of contents can show the whole expanded structure, and it’s printable as well. With some extra effort, you can even add hyperlinks to each page listed in your TOC.

Creating a PDF bookmark list