PDF print drivers are products of the virtual printer type designed to convert various file types into PDF
. At the present time, given the available combination of features, they are the best method of creating documents in this format.
PDF print drivers are based on the principle of virtual printing. These software products install on a system like regular printers. However, they have nothing to do with physical printers. When a document is sent to PDF print drivers, they receive the data stream, convert it using the PDF specifications, and save the resulting file on the computer's hard disk drive.
PDF print drivers have two important advantages. The first one is their flexible nature. They will convert any file to a PDF document as long as the computer has proper viewing and printing software. The other advantage offered by PDF print drivers is great ease of use for the end user as compared to conventional conversion software.
Today's market offers a number of products belonging to the PDF print driver category. They include both commercial software and freeware. The former normally has broader functionality and is therefore used for "professional" conversion in corporate IT systems as well as by experts in various fields. Free utilities for reasons of more limited functionality are normally more suitable for home use where they characteristically handle a smaller number of documents to be converted and do not have batch processing capabilities. In addition, PDF print drivers serve as components of certain multi-purpose products.
See also: Virtual Printer
, PDF Server
, PDF SDK