Thursday, September 20, 2018

#1 2018-08-28 07:04:29 am

From:: South Tirol
Registered: 2008-07-04
Posts: 569

Merge pictures into a PDF

My goal would be to merge picture files nested in sub-folders into a PDF file.
I've a lot of sub-folders which picture files needs to be merged, so doing it manually or with automator isn't exactly the way wanna go...

I found 2 articles related to my research, but unfortunately, the first post is outdated, at least for me as I installed my Os fresh over snow leopard.. The second posts merges just PDF files, and fails with picture files.
Some suggestion?



#2 2018-08-28 05:59:30 pm

Shane Stanley
From:: Australia
Registered: 2002-12-07
Posts: 5448

Re: Merge pictures into a PDF

This should get you started:


use AppleScript version "2.4" -- Yosemite (10.10) or later
use scripting additions
use framework "Foundation"
use framework "AppKit" -- for NSImage
use framework "Quartz" -- required for PDF stuff

set inFiles to (choose file of type {"public.image", "com.adobe.pdf"} with prompt "Choose your files:" with multiple selections allowed)
set destPosixPath to POSIX path of (choose file name default name "Combined.pdf" with prompt "Save new PDF to:")
my combineFiles:inFiles savingToPDF:destPosixPath

on combineFiles:inFiles savingToPDF:destPosixPath
   -- make URL of the first file
   set inNSURL to current application's |NSURL|'s fileURLWithPath:(POSIX path of item 1 of inFiles)
   -- make PDF document from the URL
   if (inNSURL's pathExtension()'s isEqualToString:"pdf") as boolean then
       set theDoc to current application's PDFDocument's alloc()'s initWithURL:inNSURL
       set theDoc to my pdfDocFromImageURL:inNSURL
   end if
   -- loop through the rest
   set oldDocCount to theDoc's pageCount()
   set inFiles to rest of inFiles
   repeat with aFile in inFiles
       -- make URL of the next PDF
       set inNSURL to (current application's |NSURL|'s fileURLWithPath:(POSIX path of aFile))
       -- make PDF document from the URL
       if (inNSURL's pathExtension()'s isEqualToString:"pdf") as boolean then
           set newDoc to (current application's PDFDocument's alloc()'s initWithURL:inNSURL)
           set newDoc to (my pdfDocFromImageURL:inNSURL)
       end if
       -- loop through, moving pages
       set newDocCount to newDoc's pageCount()
       repeat with i from 1 to newDocCount
           -- get page of PDF
           set thePDFPage to (newDoc's pageAtIndex:(i - 1)) -- zero-based indexes
           -- insert the page into main PDF
           (theDoc's insertPage:thePDFPage atIndex:oldDocCount)
           set oldDocCount to oldDocCount + 1
       end repeat
   end repeat
   set outNSURL to current application's |NSURL|'s fileURLWithPath:destPosixPath
   -- save the main PDF
   (theDoc's writeToURL:outNSURL)
end combineFiles:savingToPDF:

on pdfDocFromImageURL:inNSURL
   set theImage to current application's NSImage's alloc()'s initWithContentsOfURL:inNSURL
   set theSize to theImage's |size|()
   set theRect to {{0, 0}, theSize}
   set theImageView to current application's NSImageView's alloc()'s initWithFrame:theRect
   theImageView's setImage:theImage
   set theData to theImageView's dataWithPDFInsideRect:theRect
   return current application's PDFDocument's alloc()'s initWithData:theData
end pdfDocFromImageURL:

Shane Stanley <>



#3 2018-08-29 11:11:25 am

From:: South Tirol
Registered: 2008-07-04
Posts: 569

Re: Merge pictures into a PDF

Great Shane,
Works exactly as expected.
I tried to modify your previous script by myself but that kind of coding isn't yet in my reach. Still I read your code with interest.
Doing the same with Automator requires a lot of fiddling, some 3rd party actions and then the results aren't optimal.
Thanks for sharing AppleScriptObjC with us all! (PDF is always useful) cool



#4 2018-09-08 01:34:05 pm

Registered: 2018-09-04
Posts: 8

Re: Merge pictures into a PDF

Shane's suggestion is excellent and clearly the script to use.

I have no knowledge of scripting additions and thought I would try to do this with basic Applescript using utilities included with macOS. I've copied my script below.

A significant flaw of my script is that it uses to merge PDF files, and it is very slow. Substituting another utility--such as PDFtk Server, cpdf, or Ghostscript--is easily done and would eliminate this flaw (although Shane's script is still preferred). My script has been tested on Sierra only.


--Set variable to temp folder.
set tempFolder to "/Users/bob/Temp/"

--Prompt for picture folder.
choose folder default location (path to home folder)
set pictureFolder to quoted form of (text 1 thru -2 of POSIX path of result)

--Set variable to picture files.
   do shell script "find " & pictureFolder & " -type f -iname *.png -or -iname *.jpg"
   set pictureFiles to paragraphs of result
on error errorMessage
   display dialog "The Find utility reported an error while searching for picture files." buttons {"View Error Message", "OK"} ¬
       cancel button 2 default button 2 with title "Picture Merge" with icon stop
   display dialog errorMessage buttons {"OK"} ¬
       cancel button 1 default button 1 with title "Picture Merge"
end try

--Notify if no or a large number of picture files in the selected Folder.
set pictureCount to (count pictureFiles)
if pictureCount = 0 then
   display dialog "No picture files in selected folder." buttons {"OK"} ¬
       cancel button 1 default button 1 with title "Picture Merge" with icon stop
else if pictureCount > 200 then
   display dialog (pictureCount as text) & " picture files in selected folder." buttons {"Cancel", "Continue"} ¬
       cancel button 1 default button 1 with title "Picture Merge" with icon stop
end if

--Prompt for PDF file name.
choose file name with prompt "" default name "Merged Picture Files.pdf" default location (path to desktop folder)
set pdfFile to result as text

--Set variable to PDF file name.
if pdfFile does not end with ".pdf" then set pdfFile to pdfFile & ".pdf"
set pdfFile to quoted form of POSIX path of pdfFile

--Convert picture files to PDF format.
set fileNumber to 0
repeat with aFile in pictureFiles
   set tempFile to "Picture_merge_temp_" & (text -4 thru -1 of ("000" & fileNumber)) & ".pdf"
   do shell script "sips --setProperty format pdf " & (quoted form of aFile) & " --out " & tempFolder & tempFile
   set fileNumber to fileNumber + 1
end repeat

--Merge temporary files.
set pdfUtility to "'/System/Library/Automator/Combine PDF Pages.action/Contents/Resources/'"
do shell script pdfUtility & " -o " & pdfFile & " " & tempFolder & "*.pdf"

--Delete temporary files.
tell application "System Events" to ¬
   delete (every file in folder tempFolder whose name begins with "Picture_merge_temp_")

Last edited by peavine (2018-09-15 08:09:16 pm)



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