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Placing All the Pages of a PDF Inside InDesign

About a year ago, we discussed several options for importing multi-page PDF files into InDesign. Then, last autumn, I created a free video tutorial for MOGO Media that shows how you can import or export multi-page PDF files. In that video, I showed Scott Zanelli's free Page Exporter Utility script for exporting PDF files as individual pages. [In that movie, I said I didn't know where you could find the script. Fortunately, Scott updated the script and we've posted it here.]

In the MOGO movie, I also showed a script that let you place multi-page PDF files into InDesign, one page a time. That script (PlaceMultipagePDF) was written by Olav Martin Kvern and ships free with InDesign. But today I just received a new Zanelli script, called PDFplacer, which does the same thing... but even better. (Ironically, Scott didn't even realize Kvern's script was available when he wrote this. He just knew he needed something to do this, so he wrote his own.)

Scott wrote about some things his PDFplacer.jsx script does that the PlaceMultiPagePDF.jsx script doesn't do:

" allows the user to choose a page range from the PDF being placed, the crop type to use when placing, the page in the InDesign document to start placing on (adding new pages as needed), where to place it on the page (upper right, centered, etc., and using an optional offset), and whether to scale the PDF to the existing page size. If an InDesign doc isn't open, it will read the size from the PDF and create a new InDesign document at the size of the PDF before placing the pages."

Here's a screen capture of the script's main dialog box:


When I asked him if we could post the script for anyone to download, he said: Yes! So here it is, free. After you unzip the file, read the enclosed PDF file for more information about installation and use.

Original CS3 version

New 2.5 version (added March 2010)

Newest version, updated by Jim Birkenseer, which should work in CS3, CS4, and CS5.

I can't guarantee it will work perfectly for you, but it seems to be working great for me so far. It's so great to automate this stuff. Thank you Scott!

David Blatner
David Blatner is the co-founder of the Creative Publishing Network, InDesign Magazine, and the author or co-author of 15 books, including Real World InDesign. His InDesign videos at are among the most watched InDesign training in the world. You can find more about David at
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227 Comments on “Placing All the Pages of a PDF Inside InDesign

  1. Hi, I think this script is just what I’m looking for. But when I try to use it it keeps telling me “JavaScript Error. Error number: 55…” It says the object doesn’t admit property or method cropContent… muy JavaScript knowledge is really limited, any clue what’s going wrong?

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