How to Enable Confluence Export to PDF

Fri. 08 Dec. 20232533
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How to Enable Confluence Export to PDF

This guide is meticulously crafted to help you navigate through the process of enabling and executing PDF exports in Confluence.

Whether you are a project manager, a content creator, or a team member looking to distribute information outside the Confluence ecosystem, this guide will provide you with step-by-step instructions, tips, and best practices to efficiently transform your Confluence pages into professional and polished PDF documents. 

How to Enable Confluence Export to PDF

Let's get started with our guide on how to export your Confluence page to PDF. 

Step 1: Find your Confluence page under the "Content" tab

Image source: Atlassian

Step 2: Click on the three dots icon in the top-right corner of your screen

Image source: Atlassian

Step 3: Head down to "Export" and then click "Export to PDF"

Image source: Atlassian

Step 4: Wait for the conversion process to end, then download your PDF


How to Enable Confluence Export to PDF: Best Practices

Enabling and utilizing the PDF export feature in Confluence can greatly enhance the way you share and present your content. To get the most out of this functionality, it's essential to follow best practices during the export process. These guidelines ensure that your exported documents, whether they are technical documentation, blog posts, or general project information, are presented in a clear, professional format.

Understanding the PDF Export Process

The PDF export process in Confluence allows users to transform pages or entire spaces into a downloadable PDF file. This process is facilitated through the PDF export screen, where you can customize various aspects of the output.

Customizing the Export

  1. Table of Contents: Including a table of contents in your PDF file provides easy navigation, especially for lengthy documents. This can be set up in the PDF export feature before initiating the export.

  2. Export Scope: Determine whether you need a normal export of individual pages or a space export, which compiles all content within a given space. For space export, use the 'ChooseSpace Tools' option for comprehensive coverage.

  3. Folders and File Naming: Organize your exported content by creating folders with names that clearly indicate their contents. This helps in maintaining order, especially when dealing with multiple files and spaces.

  4. Custom Export Options: For specific needs, Confluence offers custom export options. This includes altering the style sheet for the PDF to match your branding or specific formatting requirements. Be cautious with advanced customizations, as unrecognized customization might lead to errors in the export.

  5. Handling Attachments: If your Confluence pages include attachments, consider how they will be presented in the PDF. Attachments like images are typically embedded, but other file types might need to be linked or summarized.

  6. Exporting Technical Documentation: When exporting technical documentation from Confluence Cloud or server versions, ensure that all relevant files in Confluence JAR are included, and consider using a custom XML export if needed.

  7. Reviewing the PDF Export Screen: Before finalizing the export, review the settings on the PDF export screen. This includes checking the layout, ensuring all desired content is selected, and verifying that the table of contents reflects the structure of your document.

  8. Handling Large Exports: For large space exports, Confluence might package the content into a zip file. Ensure you have the necessary tools to unpack and access these files.

By following these best practices, you can effectively use the PDF export feature in Confluence to create professional, well-organized, and easily navigable PDF files that reflect the quality and depth of your work in Confluence.

How to Enable Confluence Export to PDF: FAQ

How Does the Confluence Export Engine Affect the PDF Document?

The Confluence export engine plays a crucial role in the conversion of Confluence pages into a PDF document. It determines how content is translated from the web-based format of Confluence into the structured layout of a PDF. This includes interpreting the markup, styling, and embedded content to ensure they are correctly reflected in the final PDF.

Can I Customize the PDF Stylesheet for Specific Layout Needs?

Yes, PDF stylesheet customizations are possible in Confluence. You can modify the Cascading Style Sheet (CSS) properties to alter the default layout and appearance of your PDF document. This includes changes to font styles, sizes, headers, footers, and even the addition of CSS @Page rules for specific paper sizes.

What Are the Default CSS Rules for Confluence PDF Export?

Confluence comes with a set of default CSS rules that dictate how the content is formatted when exported to a PDF. These rules cover basic styling such as font sizes, margins, and the layout of elements like tables and lists. You can view and modify these rules to better suit your document’s needs.

How Can I Customize the PDF Layout for a Printable User Manual?

For creating a printable user manual, you can customize the PDF layout by adjusting the size property and margins to ensure it fits the intended paper size. Additionally, consider using the CSS :first pseudo-class to style the first page differently, and define leader characters in your table of contents for easier navigation.

What Should I Know About Confluence’s Documentation Space and PDF Export?

When exporting a documentation space to PDF, it's important to be aware of the guide to space permissions. Ensure you have the necessary access to Confluence to perform the export. Additionally, remember that large documentation spaces may lead to memory errors during export, so consider breaking them down into smaller sections if needed.

Are There Any Notes on Restrictions When Exporting to PDF from Confluence?

Yes, when exporting Confluence pages to PDF, there are some restrictions to note. These include limitations on the export size, memory usage, and potential issues with complex layouts or large numbers of images. It's also important to be aware of the limitations of PDF document formatting compared to the dynamic content possible in Confluence.

Can I Use Confluence PDF Export for Backup Purposes?

Exporting Confluence spaces to PDF can be used for backup purposes, but with some caveats. While it's an effective way to create a static record of the content, the exported PDF may not capture the dynamic aspects of the Confluence pages, such as interactive elements or linked content like Google Docs.

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