List Bookmarks with a Free Script (Updated for Acrobat 9)

This is an update of my List Bookmarks with a Free Script article which was for Acrobat 8 users.

The new script works with Acrobat 9 and now also includes page numbers.

Legal professionals use PDF bookmarks to mark important sections. Each bookmark goes to a different view or page in the document.

Bookmarks Panel

I do hear from quite a few customers who want to create a list of bookmarks found in a PDF.

For example:

Bookmark Listing

Since Acrobat is extensible using JavaScript, you can create a bookmark listing like the one above (for free!) using the steps provided in this article.

The key is to install a tiny JavaScript sequence file which is accessed using the Batch Processing function of Acrobat 9 Pro.

Read on to…

  • Download a free, pre-built sequence file
  • Install the sequence file
  • Create a new PDF which lists the bookmarks in your file

Download the Sequence File

Below is a PDF file containing the sequence file. Follow the instructions in the PDF to extract the sequence file.

list_bookmarks_A9_r1.pdf (32K) (Opens in a new window)

I’ve included a summary of the instructions below on the file itself.

Installing the Sequence File for Acrobat 9

The instructions below have been tested with Acrobat 9.

Caution
Use of the List Bookmarks sequence file is not supported by Adobe Systems Incorporated. The sequence file is made available as-is and without warranty. Use at your own risk!

The above obligatory warning aside, it works well for me.

You can skip steps 1-4 below if you have created a batch sequence of your own previously.

 

  1. Choose Advanced—> Document Processing—> Batch Processing

  2. Click the New Sequence button.

  3. Create a new Sequence and give it a name you can easily remember. ( E.g. seqtest. You can delete it later if needed)

  4. Click OK.

  5. Quit Acrobat if it is open.

  6. Extract the sequence file contained in the list_bookmarks_A9_r1.pdf to your desktop or other location you can find easily. Instructions are on the PDF.
  7. Select the List all Bookmarks .sequ file, right-click and choose Copy to place the file to the clipboard

Place the file in the appropriate location for your Operating System:

Installation Path for Windows XP
C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\Adobe\Acrobat\9.0\Sequences

Installation Path for Windows Vista and Windows 7
C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\ Acrobat\9.0\Sequences

Installation Path for Mac OSX (Intel)

/Users/username/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Acrobat/9.0_x86/Sequences/

Note about install paths
The Sequences folder is created the first time you create a Batch Sequence, so follow steps 1 to 4 above to create it.

The paths above are the default install paths that Acrobat uses.

Your install path could be different if you or your IT department customized your installation.

 

8. Restart Acrobat

Can’t see Files on Windows?

  1. Go to the Control Panel
  2. Choose Folder Options
  3. Click on the View tab
  4. Find Hidden Files and Folders in the list and double click to open it
  5. Enable “Show hidden files and folders"

I still can’t find a Sequences Folder. . .

Search for “seqtest” on your system to find the correct folder location. Your search tool will need to look for hidden files and folders for this to help!

 

Using the Script to Summarize Bookmarks

Create a new PDF listing bookmarks by following these steps:

  1. Open a PDF document in Acrobat Pro 9which contains bookmarks
  2. Choose Advanced—> Document Processing—> Batch Processing
  3. Do the following:
    A)Choose List All Bookmarks from the list and
    B) Click the Run Sequence button

Running the script

A new, temporary document titled “Listing of Bookmarks” will open.

4. Choose File—>Save to the location of your choice.

Troubleshooting

Sometimes, the List All Bookmarks sequence will not generate a summary if . . .

  1. More than one document is open in Acrobat
    Solution: Run the sequence with only a single document open.

  2. A document called “Listing of Bookmarks” is already open in Acrobat.
    This is the default file name for the summarized document.
    Solution: Save and close the summarized document before running the sequence again.

Need to do more with bookmarks?

Check out these Acrobat plug-ins which offer the ability to copy, list, audit and fix bookmarks.

Evermap’s AutoBookmark

ISI Toolbox Legal Edition

Credits

Many thanks to Brenda Dryburgh who posted a fix to the original script on the AcrobatUsers Forum.

The thread is worth a quick read as it covers some parts of the script you can customize.

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