Straightforward and robust email archiving in PDF – just as you need it
pdfaPilot Desktop is the easiest application on the market to convert emails, PDF, office documents, images and even PostScript files directly into standards-compliant PDF/A documents. It runs on Windows or Mac, comes with a simple installer and works out of the box; simply drag-and- drop documents to convert them.
pdfaPilot Server takes the same capabilities and makes them available through hot folders. Files dropped into a dedicated input folder are automatically processed. With automatic fallback fixes for broken PDF files, pdfaPilot guarantees an extremely high percentage of files converted to PDF/A.
When closer integration is necessary pdfaPilot CLI offers a command-line integration for the pdfaPilot engine. This allows integration into ERP systems, document management (DMS) or enterprise content (ECM) systems, web portals and more. Ready-made integrations are already available for Open Source systems such as Alfresco. pdfaPilot CLI runs on Windows, Linux, Sun Solaris, AIX and Mac OS X. For closer integration a library, pdfaPilot SDK, is also available (C/C++, C# or Java) for the same platforms.
- Fully unattended conversion of emails into robust, searchable PDF or PDF/A files
- Uses the same rock-solid PDF/A technology that is used in Adobe Acrobat
- Captures the visual representation of each email, all relevant metadata associated with it and optionally all attachments
Why archive emails?
In many environments, there are regulatory requirements that all communication regarding specific topics has to be archived for a specific period of time. How long that is can differ widely – just as the requirements to archive other office documents vary greatly.
Because emails are usually handled by email servers with limited storage capacities, there are no guarantees that an email you receive today will still be on the server ten years from now. When you download the email from your server it is possibly converted into the proprietary format of the email client, and there is no guarantee that you will have such a client in the future. In addition, there are attachments to the emails that require a proper viewer for all file formats that may occur here. Luckily callas pdfaPilot lets you store these emails including all attachments in a PDF/A format that will be available and readable many years from now.
But even in environments where such regulatory guidelines don’t apply, there are good reasons to archive emails. In our modern society an amazing amount of business intelligence is captured in emails. Being able to maintain that information in a structured way and in the same format that is used for other documents and being able to efficiently search all of those documents including emails and their attachments efficiently will only become more important.
Archive emails with callas pdfaPilot
When it comes to long-term archival of documents, callas pdfaPilot Desktop is already the essential solution. It is capable of converting Office documents and existing PDF files into PDF/A: the worldwide standard for long-term archival. Because the solution is available as a desktop application, but also as a fully unattended server solution that can work with hot folders or through an easy-to-use command-line, it can be deployed in any environment.
Now callas pdfaPilot is also capable of converting emails (MSG or EML format) into fully standard compliant PDF/A documents. This does not require complicated setup or integration with your mail server; pdfaPilot simply converts all emails dropped into a folder into compliant PDF/A files according to your needs and delivers them to an output folder. Because the saved PDF/A files are searchable and have all relevant metadata embedded, they are ideally suited for long-term archival.
Your file attached – one format for all
Many emails today come with one or more attachments and often these are essential to understanding the full communication. pdfaPilot embeds the attachment in the generated PDF/A file so that it is preserved together with the email.
You can fully control how attachments are handled depending on the needs of your workflow. Attachments can be embedded in their original file format (as they were attached to the email), or they can be converted to a PDF or PDF/A file (when it’s a format that pdfaPilot can convert to PDF/A) or a combination of the two. When attachments are converted to PDF, they can also simply be appended to the PDF of the email itself – as additional pages. While converting attachments, pdfaPilot takes care to preserve the original ‘look-and-feel’ of the documents and preserves links in the documents.
Of course there are always file formats that pdfaPilot Desktop will not be able to convert to PDF such as audio or movie files. You can define how such cases are handled (a fall back option could be to simply embed the original attachment in the email, which is then saved as PDF/A-3).
Customisable to fit your needs
People are used to viewing emails in the same way as in their email application. Therefore callas pdfaPilot Desktop converts email files into a PDF file that has the visual appearance of the email as it is viewed in or printed by such email applications. Because the expectations can differ between different organisations pdfaPilot uses a template driven approach that allows extensive customisation.
The way attachments are handled is just as customisable. Depending on the needs of your organisation, attachments (such as Word or Excel files) can be left “as-is” or converted into plain PDF or into PDF/A files. Either the original or the converted file, or a combination of the both, can then be embedded into the PDF/A generated from the email file or the contents of the attachments are appended as additional PDF pages.
PDF/A and much more
Of course callas pdfaPilot Desktop fully supports all parts of the PDF/A standard: all flavours of PDF/A-1, 2 and 3. The solution’s flexibility really shows its worth when working with the newest PDF/A-3 standard that allows embedding arbitrary file formats into a PDF/A file. Examples include storing the original office or email file inside a PDF/A, storing accounting information as XML in a PDF/A archive (such as in the ZugFerd standard in Germany) or storing email attachments with the original email.
In such workflows the flexible, profile based conversion and validation lets you adapt how embedding is handled for specific use cases and how metadata required by PDF/A-3 is inserted and validated in those workflows.
The concept of using customisable profiles is simple yet extremely powerful. On top of the basic PDF/A validation or conversion, it lets you add specific business rules such as a validation of the fonts used, specification of what metadata is added to each document and much more. In total well over one thousand basic checks and several hundred fixes can be included in a profile to streamline pdfaPilot’s processing completely according to your workflow. No other product in the market offers the same amount of flexibility and customizability.
Handle EPUB and PDF/UA
Thanks to its unique checking feature for tagging structure in a PDF file callas pdfaPilot also offers optimised exporting to PDF/UA, the standard for accessibility. More and more legislation requires documents to be universally accessible for everyone, including people with physical disabilities. As a result, checking against the PDF/UA standard has gained importance for service providers, governments and enterprise customers alike.
But pdfaPilot lets you take advantage of PDF tagging in a very different area as well: The tagging structure can be used in order to automatically create EPUB files from PDF. This PDF to EPUB feature converts PDFs into eBook files that can immediately be used on mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets.
Automate and scale to your needs
Converting Office documents, emails and their attachments, fixing PDF files and converting them into PDF/A… all of those tasks can be handled in a fully automatic, unattended way with pdfaPilot Server. By setting up watched folders, all files dropped into such a folder are picked up and handled in a fully automated way.
Depending on the result of processing callas pdfaPilot drops processed files into specific output folders so that the rest of the workflow can be automated as well. If necessary, customised reports can be created to communicate problem files internally or return information directly to users. Because the reporting is done using easy-to-customise templates, you can even adapt reports to use your own organizational layouts. And of course reporting templates can be customised to show only the level of complexity that is really needed.
Scalable when needed
In order to be able to deal with increasing workload it is reassuring to know that callas pdfaPilot was built from the ground up to excel in workflows with distributed processing on load balanced computers. Through a simple licencing change pdfaPilot Server can easily be converted into a pdfaPilot Dispatcher that now does load balancing across several systems. And of course virtual environments such as servers in the Amazon cloud are fully supported as well.
Remain in control
Regardless of whether a single pdfaPilot Server is used or whether pdfaPilot Dispatcher shares the load across different systems, setting up and monitoring processing remains easy. The pdfaPilot Desktop application is used to do remote configuration across the network and can also be used to do remote monitoring of one or more pdfaPilot Servers. This allows for local testing on any Windows or Mac system using pdfaPilot Desktop before deploying fixes or checks to a server running on Windows, Linux, Unix or Mac.
So, when it comes to email archiving, do the real thing; archive your emails with pdfaPilot as standards-compliant PDF/A files.