Step by step - Learn how to use callas productscallas pdfaPilot callas pdfaPilot CLIDisplaying program information – Hints and trouble shooting

Displaying program information – Hints and trouble shooting

Displaying program information

Display program version

pdfaPilot --version

will display the currently used version of pdfaPilot CLI.

Display usage information

pdfaPilot --help

will give you a complete overview about all available commands for processing.

pdfaPilot --help <command>

will give you an overview about all available options for the command.

Display status

pdfaPilot --status

will inform you about the current license state as well as the possible return and reason codes (see "Results").

Hints and troubleshooting

Ensure sufficient free disk space

To ensure stable processing, it is recommended to have at least 4 times of the input file size of processed files available for intermediate file system storage (e.g. /tmp on Unix and similar on other systems).

Avoid stopping workflows on Windows

On Windows, you can prevent your workflow from stopping in case of a pdfaPilot CLI crash by setting the following registry entry:


If ErrorMode is set to "2”, crash dialogs will be suppressed. For further details, see:

Limiting the maximum memory used by pdfaPilot

Using Linux, you can limit the amount of memory used by a single process by an additional parameter:

--maxmemory=<max. memory in MB>

Processing will stop and result in an error if memory is exceeded.

Performance enhancement

If you want to enhance the performance of your pdfaPilot CLI processes, please keep in mind the following rules:

For embedding missing fonts your system font folder will be scanned unless defined otherwise (see "Font Embedding"). pdfaPilot will create a font cache to improve the performance time, but still it might be useful to remove fonts that are not needed from this directory.

If you are using any font embedding fixups, your system font folder will be scanned unless defined otherwise in the fixup configuration. A font cache will be created to improve the performance time, but still it might be useful to remove fonts that are not needed from this directory.

Creation of XML or PDF reports takes less time than the XSLT option (see "Report types").

Creation of reports takes additional time  even if a profile contains only fixups, an analysis will be executed for gathering report information.

Optimization of needed installation space

To reduce the pace needed by the installation of pdfsPilot, it is possible to delete some subfolders of the CLI component (in subfolder /cli) if their respective functions are not needed in the individual use case.

To avoid processing errors or unexpected behaviour of pdfaPilot any modification should be done well-considered.

etc/Actions If no Arrange action is used
etc/APDFL If no font embedding or PDF/A conversion is used (or if font situation is clear)
etc/Backgrounds If no layer/image mask report is used
etc/Certify If no preflight certification is used
etc/ColorConversion If no color conversion is used
etc/HtmlConverter If no PDF report based on HTML template is used
etc/Inventory If no inventory report is used
etc/MailConverter If no e-mails are processed
etc/PDFOfficeTool If no Office-files are processed
etc/PDFPSTool If no PostScript-files are processed
etc/Reports If no PDF/A-HTML Report or ZUGFeRD is used
etc/TPex If no tagged PDF to HTML/EPUB export is used
etc/UnpackTool If no archive files are processed
etc/Visualizer If no Comparison is used

Get in touch

If some necessary information is not provided by this manual or if there are any questions or feedback please contact the product management by using the "Contact Support" form on

You can also send an e-mail to

If you file a bug report please make sure your inquiry contains the following information:

  • operating system
  • pdfaPilot version (call pdfaPilot --version)
  • command line call
  • original PDF (please delete unnecessary pages to avoid long file transfers), used profiles or configuration files
  • converted PDF (if available)

You can also visit the support section on to get answers to common questions or find a reseller near you. The latter might be useful if you want to send a support request that is neither in English nor German.


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