Creating a pdf / technical requirements for the document

File formats that will be accepted

You document must be an academic document that can be read with conventional reader applications. The size of the file should be "as small as possible". File names should not contain any special characters or spaces, i.e. they should be simple (e.g. Diss.pdf) since the name of the file will generally be visible upon publication. Currently, OPUS supports the following document types: pdf, doc(x), xls(x), zip, avi, mp3, mp4

No Digital Rights Management (DRM)

The document must not by copy-protected or locked in any other ways. This is a requirement of the German National Library so that long-term archiving of the document can be guaranteed.

If your work contains programmes, files, video clips, audio files etc. stored on a CD addendum,

it must be prepared as a compressed, zipped, ready-to-publish file and uploaded as well.

File size limit for uploading

The system will only accept files that are 250 MB or less. If you wish to upload and publish larger files, skip the uploading of the document during the publishing process and send us your document on a CD of DVD.

Uploading your file(s)

If you are having trouble uploading your documents, please complete the rest of the form and email your file(s) to opus.ub(at)

If you are having trouble uploading your documents, please complete the rest of the form and email your file(s) to

In OPUS, documents are usually published as PDF files. In order to ensure that your work can be long-term archived, each document must be saved as a standard, barrier-free PDF/A. This is an international format which was designed for archiving documents. When a file has been saved in PDF/A format, it can be read on any computer, even if the fonts used in the file have not been installed on the computer. Furthermore, all fonts and graphics are embedded in the document and all metadata is saved in a standard format as well.

Creating PDF/A documents

If you are unable to save your document as a PDF/A file, please send us a "normal" PDF and we will convert it.

In most word processing programmes, you can save your documents directly as PDF/A files:

  • Microsoft Word (2007 and higher, Service Pack 2): Office → Save As → As XPS or Publish PDF → Options →Tick ISO-19005-1-compatibel (PDF/A).
  • Microsoft Word 2007 without Service Pack 2: Saving your document as a PDF/A works as described above once you have installed this Add-On.
  • Older versions of Word: It is not possible to directly export pages from inside the application. However, you can use a PDF print program (see below) and then create your PDF file using Adobe Acrobat at a work station at the University Library.
  • File → Export → General → Tick "PDF/A-1"
  • LaTeX: You can also create PDF/A documents using pdfTeX.

In Adobe Acrobat (which is not to be confused with Acrobat Reader where you can only read but not edit PDF documents), you can create PDF documents this way: go to File → Save As → Further options → PDF/A. Alternatively, you can use a free conversion application such as PDF Maker (for Windows only) which can convert different types of documents into PDFs and also PDF/A files.

Tips for creating PDF files

  • Please do not lock your PDF file for printing or copying. These "safety features" will not protect your text from being misused. In addition, your document will not be included in the full text search in OPUS, hence your publication would be much harder to find.
  • All file names should be no longer than 8 characters and only contain the letters A to Z, the numbers 0 to 9 and an underscore (no umlaute, accents, special characters, or spaces). Please use a short file name that makes sense.
  • Please ensure that the document properties (File → Properties or File → Document properties) contain useful details about the title and author.
  • Further details about PDF format and generating PDF files can be found in the Online tutorial for electronic publishing in PDF Format by the University of Freiburg ("Elektronisch publizieren im PDF-Format").
  • At you can find a summary of details about the PDF/A standard (barrier free PDFs).
  • Please note that it is not possible to embed audio and video files into barrier-free PDFs. Contact us if your publication contains such files, please.

Editing PDFs

Many steps are only possible with original PDF maker software such as Adobe Acrobat (which is not free generally):

  • Merging several PDF files
  • Deleting, adding, re-numbering or rotating pages in a PDF file
  • Correcting small typos directly in a PDF file
  • Preparing the document for professional printing.

At the Central Library (at Feldkirchenstra├če 21), there is a work station on which Acrobat Professional is installed and available to you. Please make an appointment with Oswald Motschmann in advance. Phone: 0951/863-1568, email: opus.ub(at)

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