Get a preview JPEG of a PDF on Windows?

I have a cross-platform (Python) application which needs to generate a JPEG preview of the first page of a PDF.

On the Mac I am spawning sips. Is there something similarly simple I can do on Windows?

Answer

ImageMagick delegates the PDF->bitmap conversion to GhostScript anyway, so here’s a command you can use (it’s based on the actual command listed by the ps:alpha delegate in ImageMagick, just adjusted to use JPEG as output):

gs -q -dQUIET -dPARANOIDSAFER -dBATCH -dNOPAUSE -dNOPROMPT \
-dMaxBitmap=500000000 -dLastPage=1 -dAlignToPixels=0 -dGridFitTT=0 \
-sDEVICE=jpeg -dTextAlphaBits=4 -dGraphicsAlphaBits=4 -r72x72 \
-sOutputFile=$OUTPUT -f$INPUT

where $OUTPUT and $INPUT are the output and input filenames. Adjust the 72x72 to whatever resolution you need. (Obviously, strip out the backslashes if you’re writing out the whole command as one line.)

This is good for two reasons:

  1. You don’t need to have ImageMagick installed anymore. Not that I have anything against ImageMagick (I love it to bits), but I believe in simple solutions.
  2. ImageMagick does a two-step conversion. First PDF->PPM, then PPM->JPEG. This way, the conversion is one-step.

Other things to consider: with the files I’ve tested, PNG compresses better than JPEG. If you want to use PNG, change the -sDEVICE=jpeg to -sDEVICE=png16m.

Attribution
Source : Link , Question Author : Gareth Simpson , Answer Author : Chris Jester-Young

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