August 14, 2019 | Important features, PDF

PDF 2.0 Support in GdPicture.NET

PDF 2.0 Support in GdPicture.NET

Hi everyone,

It’s been some time since the ISO (International Organization for Standards) has released PDF 2.0 (ISO 32000-2:2017), a long-awaited update of the standardized version of the PDF format, PDF 1.7 (ISO 32000-1:2008).

The “next generation of PDF” introduces a wide range of much-awaited features based on the collaborative work of the ISO technical committee and PDF specialists over the past years. It also delivers precise and clear definitions and enhancements to existing features that make implementation and improvements of PDF-related solutions much more straightforward.

Even if we didn’t communicate much about it at the time, we have worked hard on introducing and supporting PDF 2.0 features in GdPicture.NET toolkit since the release of the updated standard in 2017.

Now the time has come to let you know more about it, so let’s have a brief look at the most significant changes brought with PDF 2.0.


Improvements to security are never enough.

PDF 2.0 incorporates a possibility to add an unencrypted wrapper document to your secured files, that benefits from using the custom security handler. The wrapper allows opening those files within the self-explanation cover letter.

Next, there are several updates related to digital signatures, based on the PAdES/CAdES standards and ECC-based certificates. There is also enhanced support for long-term validation of signatures.
In conjunction with deprecating the AES-128 based encryption in PDF 2.0, the AES-256 has been revitalized and encouraged as a current-generation standard.

GdPicture.NET brings this feature since version 14.1.30 through PDFEncryption.
Before this, with version 14.1.26, we enhanced support for Unicode-based passwords, another of the PDF 2.0 features.


Accessibility is one of the key aspects of the next generation PDF.
The Tagged PDF section of the specification has been massively rewritten due to unceasing discussions around PDF/UA standard (more about PDF/UA here). PDF 2.0 introduces new tag types and attributes, the concept of namespaces for customized tagging, together with MathML support and pronunciation hints, to name just a few enhancements.

For those who haven’t updated the SDK in a while, GdPicture.NET offers to create tagged PDF documents since version 14.0.56.

Interactive PDF objects

Interactive PDF objects have been enriched and updated.
We find interesting new features like:

  • support for 3D annotations in the PRC format
  • RichMedia annotations
  • geospatial reference data support.

These are followed by improvements in transparency and blend mode attributes for annotations, polygon/polyline real paths, metadata for associated files as well as thumbnails for embedded files.

The 14.1.29 version of GdPicture.NET adds a couple of new methods when working with form fields or annotations, such as FlattenFormFieds(int pageNo) and FlattenAnnotation(int AnnotIdx). The pleasant outcome is that when the annotation contains the 2D representation of the 3D object, the toolkit preserves the document visual appearance during flattening.

Printing support

Significant progress has been made to refine printing support at the request of stakeholders in the graphic arts industry, namely in print color reproduction.

To list the areas of interest, we find:

  • page level-output profiles
  • black point compensation
  • spectrally defined colors.

We have worked a lot on printing speed lately, and version 14.1.26 shows major improvements in this domain.


However, coming with novelties, deprecations can arise.
By definition, a deprecation means that a feature should not be written in PDF 2.0 documents, like for instance:

  • XFA forms
  • RC4 encryption together with AES-128 encryption
  • changes in document information dictionary
  • PDF syntax features with no practical use
  • Movie and Sound annotations
  • and some more.

Now, are you ready for PDF 2.0?

Open your documents with the latest version of GdPicture.NET and enjoy the “evolutionary and revolutionary” PDF 2.0 world.

See you next time!