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How to Perform OCR Using Adobe Acrobat Professional

These instructions are for those who wish to scan documents and make changes to those documents. To do this you need to utilize an OCR (optical character recognition) software such as Adobe Acrobat Professional or Omnipage.

For the majority of customers Adobe Acrobat is the preferable software as it offers more office type benefits and is usually more readily available. The exception to this is for departments scanning mostly graphics. Omnipage software works better with graphics and text combinations. There are separate instructions available for using Omnipage and Adobe Acrobat Professional.

If you need assistance determining which is the best OCR program for you to work with you can either consult with your department’s computer technician or contact the Copier Program at x.55329.

The first step is to open the document on which you would like to perform OCR. To do this, follow these steps:

Select File and then Open

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Browse to your document, select it and click Open

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Now that your document is open, select the "Document "menu.

Select "Recognize Text Using OCR".

Select "Start".

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The "Recognize Text" box is the next dialog box that pops up. From here you can select any of the options to recognize text on "All Pages", just the "Current Page", or specifically select a sequence of pages by using the "From Page" option.

If you would like to see or change the options for scanning, click the "Edit" button and follow the next set of steps.

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When you click the "Edit" button, this window pops up and asks you a few questions. These are generally the defaults and it is good to leave these options alone.

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The first option you may be interested in is the PDF Output Style.
If you have text in your document, you must leave it at "Formatted Text & Graphics."

The searchable image file types have a bitmap image of the pages in the foreground and the converted text on an invisible layer beneath.

If you are unsure which option to choose, select "Formatted Text & Graphics."

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The next option is Downsample Images. This is a compression technique you can add to your document. Always leave it at "600dpi" no matter what resolution you scanned your document.

If you choose the other numbers, 300, 150 or 72, and continue performing OCR you will notice your documents will not have the high contrast the original did.

Note: All documents scanned at resolutions higher than 600dpi are automatically downsampled to 600dpi for OCR recognition by Acrobat. This is a software limitation.

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Now that you have your settings correct, click the OK button to begin the OCR process.

The OCR process takes only a few seconds per page and should finish quite quickly. At the bottom left of the program, you will notice a progress bar move very quickly. When it is completed, your document is ready to be saved. Follow these steps to save your document.

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Select File, and choose Save As.

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In this window, give your document a name, and save it somewhere safe. Click the save button to finish.

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