Adding Metadata to PDF File

How do I add custom metadata to PDF files using Acrobat Pro 11?
I need to add metadata to a magazine that is saved as a PDF file. The magazine has several articles, so I need to embed 1) metadata for the magazine as a whole (e.g., publication title, year, month, volume, issue), but also 2) for each article within the magazine (article title, author(s), page numbers, general description).
I have tried to download the PDF’s XMP file, edit the XMP file adding the aforementioned fields and metadata using XML Notepad, and importing the XMP file back into the PDF. For the first scenario, I edit the XMP file creating each article title as a parent and its subsequent metadata as children. The XML looks good. But, I get an error message (“Unknown error”) when I try to import the XMP file back into the PDF file. I think it is rejecting the parent/child structure. For the second scenario, I do not use parent/child structure, instead I associate the article metadata using a naming convention (Article_1_Title, Article_1_author(s), Article_1_Pages, Article_1_General_Description). I am able to import the XMP file using this second approach, however the General Description text is getting cut short. The General Description text is fine when in the XML editor, but when I import the XMP file into the PDF, the text gets cut off. I think there may be a character limit. The General Descriptions are about a paragraph long. The third scenario, I merely use the Custom tab in the Document Properties dialogue box to add the additional metadata fields, however, once again the General Description text is getting cut short. I was looking into javascript solutions, but I have not found one yet.
Ultimately, how can I embed this metadata into the PDF (including the full document description)?
Is there a character limit? If so, is there a way around this issue?
Why am I getting the “Unknown error” message when trying to import the XMP file containing the parent child metadata XML? IS there a way around this issue?
My ultimate goal is to have each PDF file (magazine) contain all of the metadata corresponding to its component articles, so that 1) the metadata will travel with the file as it moves and 2) so that a program can be developed to extract and display the metadata in a catalog display.


Nicholas Olijnyk


1 Answer

This can easily be done through the UI. Keywords can be entered on the "General" tab and custom keys and values can be entere on the "Custom" tab. These entries will be add to the XML metadata.

One can also use the "info" property of the doc object.

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George Kaiser   


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