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Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?

katlaughing 27 Jul 11 - 11:43 PM
katlaughing 27 Jul 11 - 11:46 PM
JohnInKansas 28 Jul 11 - 02:31 AM
Will Fly 28 Jul 11 - 03:51 AM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 28 Jul 11 - 04:00 AM
katlaughing 28 Jul 11 - 10:59 AM
Tootler 28 Jul 11 - 07:45 PM
katlaughing 28 Jul 11 - 08:04 PM
JohnInKansas 28 Jul 11 - 11:45 PM
katlaughing 28 Jul 11 - 11:52 PM
JohnInKansas 29 Jul 11 - 12:52 AM
katlaughing 29 Jul 11 - 04:04 PM
GUEST,Jon 29 Jul 11 - 04:13 PM
Tootler 29 Jul 11 - 04:52 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 29 Jul 11 - 06:34 PM
katlaughing 29 Jul 11 - 10:43 PM
JohnInKansas 29 Jul 11 - 10:45 PM
katlaughing 30 Jul 11 - 12:06 AM
JohnInKansas 30 Jul 11 - 02:22 AM
katlaughing 30 Jul 11 - 10:10 AM
JohnInKansas 30 Jul 11 - 10:44 AM
katlaughing 31 Jul 11 - 12:59 AM
GUEST,Greg in London 31 Jul 11 - 07:31 AM
JohnInKansas 31 Jul 11 - 04:46 PM
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Subject: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Jul 11 - 11:43 PM

I need to edit my pdf for the 2nd edition of my book, WindWords,(CreateSpace messed up the font a couple of other minor things:-) so went looking and found www.pdfeditor.org. When I went to download it, I got a warning telling me it doesn't have a valid signature which verifies its publisher, so I stopped.

Have any of you used it or know of another program like it which allows one to edit pdfs?

Thanks!

kat


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Jul 11 - 11:46 PM

Or, after further research, maybe I should use The Open Office pdf editor...who knew!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 02:31 AM

The absence of a signature is fairly common on downloads, and comes with some respectable programs and with some trashware/malware. It isn't necessarily a sign that a program is dangerous. It's just a lack of confirmation that distributer is a particular somebody.

Back in olden times when we were active in publishing, the rule was to NEVER EDIT A PDF. You do your composition and editing in Word - or other word processor - and save the original document, from which you make a PDF. If edits are needed, you edit (if you're wise, a copy of) the original document and make a complete, clean new PDF from it.

There are several very good file mangler programs, with which you can add comments and other markup to a PDF during editorial exchanges, but so far as I've seen none produce a "print-shop clean" PDF original that's really safe to use for publishing something. Even if the "visible layer" looks like what you want, an edited PDF probably contains "hidden layers" that can crop up unexpectedly in printing to bite you in the a**, and the AWSHITS can be random and really hard to find before you give the printed and bound copy to your newest lover or to "the boss of all things you desire here and in the hereafter."

Any PDF that you "publish" should ALWAYS be a new conversion directly from an original document of some appropriate other format.

You can cheat, and you might not be caught immediately; but you'll seldom come out a winner over a very long run.

The purpose of PDF is to make a "print-alike" copy of a real document, so that something that "looks the same" as the original can be printed on nearly any electronic devices without changing what it looks like. It is NOT A SAFE TOOL for directly creating, editing, or proofing, a document you care about.

You can use the PDF for markups, to "talk about the changes;" but you should make the corrections in the original document format and make a new PDF from the corrected original for the printers.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: Will Fly
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 03:51 AM

Wise words from John, Kat. Is it the actual text of the book that's been messed up by the publisher, or part of the title page or some other section?

I'm happy to help again, if I can - now that the cover's sorted - but the original doc format (Word, etc.) is really the thing to work from if you still have it. Anyway, email me if you think I can make some more input.

What's the font, by the way?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 04:00 AM

I used an online PDF creator for THIS having edited it first as a Word doc. This is a few years back now so I can't remember what it was, but it was quick, free and it worked just fine.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 10:59 AM

Thanks, guys!

I have to admit, I know I should start from scratch and redo the whole thing in WORD, then convert to pdf. I hate XP's WORD and trying to figure out the formatting to satisfy CreateSpace at Amazon. I was looking for a shortcut. CafePress lost the pdf, (after seven years of using it!) which had my font size correct at 12pt. Through various harddrive crashes, the only version I have saved is a first attempt at 10pt. Too small AND it leaves blank, numbered pages which looks amateurish and stupid. There are also a few small changes to be made.

I was working on formatting Prairie Child for release this year, but the formatting was driving me nuts, so my thinking was I'd do a second edition of WindWords to get it up quickly and easily on Amazon. Thanks to you, Will, for doing the cover. Unfortunately, they printed everything with an end of ink run or something and the colours look yellowed out and the black printing on the back is too faint. They will print a new proof, no problem, as they realise that was their problem, but the interior is up to me to fix. That means I have to start all over. I may well move on to Prairie Child, instead, just to get a new book out this year, if I have to mess with the formatting "adventure" anyway.

Will, you are too generous! I couldn't ask more after all you have done already. Thanks so much. I know I will get some book out and soon, I hope. I would like it to be WindWords, followed by Prairie Child. The grandson goes back to school in a month, so I'll have more free time, then. Maybe more brain cells, too.:-)

I shall try to start later today on the formatting. I do have a decent pdf creator, so no problem once I get it done.

Thanks, again!

kat


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: Tootler
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 07:45 PM

I recommend Open Office as an alternative to Word. I have been using it for nearly 10 years now and it has most of the functionality of Word - in fact in some ways it's better.

However, I suggest you go and download LibreOffice. Since Sun were taken over by Oracle they more or less stopped developing Open Office and most of the development team jumped ship and set up their own organisation to further develop OO which is now getting respectable backing. Like Open Office, Libre Office has a export direct to PDF function. Very useful, it means you don't need any third party PDF export tool.

Go to http://www.libreoffice.org/download/ to download a copy. It should detect your OS and offer the appropriate version.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 08:04 PM

Thank you, Tootler. I will take a look. I guess the reason I haven't used OO, before this, is it just seemed one more program to learn and I didn't have the time or patience. I think I shall have both when the school year starts, so will start exploring it.

Will, I've had some second thoughts. I'll email you over the weekend or early next week. Thanks, again!

kat


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 11:45 PM

Word was, for several decades, about the most powerful and versatile programs in existence if you were willing to learn a little about "professional level" formatting methods, and a few other mostly simple tricks.

Since Word 2007, they appear to have deliberately attempted to hide the most useful tools, although for the most part they're still all there - just impossible to find and scattered so that tools you'd like to use together are splattered at random across the 7 or 8 "ribbon tabs" with each ribbon populated by nearly 100 inane and useless icons.

To change all of a document that's in 10 pt to all in 12 pt, Alt-E,E should open the "Edit Replace" menu that used to be simple to find.

Leave the top "Find what" box blank, but click the "More" button, leave the "search ALL" box as is (it should be the default). Click the "Format Button, choose Font, and put a check at 10 pt.

When you hit the Tab to go to the "Replace with" box, a line that says "Font: 10 pt" should appear below the "Find" box.

Do the same thing in the "Replace with" box, blank box, Format Font 12 pt.

Click Replace All and the whole document (everything that was 10 pt) will now be 12 point.

Blank pages are usually caused by two page breaks with nothing in between, or by a single "forced break" immediately after a next page invoked by filling of the previous page. In the find/replace box, a page break is entered as "^b" so entering Find ^b^b and Replace with ^b should fix all of the "double forced breaks, although I'd suggest a "Find Next" so that you can confirm each replacement in this case.

You may need to go back through with Find ^b (a single manual page break) and delete the ones that don't work Set "Replace with" box blank with noting in it, and you an Replace ^b with "nothing at all" to do the deletes. Again I'd suggest stepping through using Find Next to check that you really want them all deleted.

There actually are a number of "breaks," and
"Breaks" that can cause a blank page have several forms:

Manual line break: Search for ^l (or ^11) [Shift-Enter puts one of these in when typing new stuff].
Column break: Search for ^n or (^14)
Page or section break: Search for ^12 but note that when replacing this always inserts a page break [Ctl-Enter puts a manual page break in when typing new stuff]
Manual page break: Search for ^m (also finds or replaces section breaks when the "Use wildcards" option is turned on)
Section break: Search for ^b, but in "new Word" you have to turn on the "Search Using Wildcards."

You might have to search for more than one, but most cases likely in your kind of document would come where someone forced a page break to make it "look better" if a paragraph was split at the bottom of a page or just "crowded against the bottom." If something else later affects how the pages split automatically, the single (^b) break causes a new page inappropriately. These manual breaks would not have been needed in most cases if you had set "Format Paragraph," on the "Line and Page Breaks" tab, to put a check in "Widow/Orphan control," since that setting prevents splitting most paragraphs across multiple pages. (A "standard typesetting" rule is that a break in a paragraph is ok as long as there are at least three lines before and at least three lines after the break. Some people have other opinions, but that usualy works fairly well.)

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Jul 11 - 11:52 PM

Thanks, John. Once I'd figured out the formatting back in 2004, I had no problem with blank pages with numbers, etc., once I changed the font to 12pt. The trouble is that pdf file has been lost. The only copy I have is with 10pt which results in the blank pages and which, from what you folks are telling me, I should not edit in pdf format.

I am grateful for the instructions on how to easily change the entire font size for all of the text, but, now, am looking at reformatting the entire book, including the extensive Table of Contents. I wish I had WORD from back then...I'd find it much easier to do! And, I've got three more novels to do this with, too!:-)

kat


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 29 Jul 11 - 12:52 AM

kat - If you can remember the short cut key strokes that were so useful in the old versions, nearly all of them still work (at least in Word 2007). The problem is that none of the menus pop up until the last keystroke so you don't get any hints about what options are available when you're halfway there. You have to remember the whole string of inputs.

Another rule of good word processing is that you should be able to create a Template that contains all the paragraph styles you intend to use, and should contain NO OTHER STYLES. In "new Word," you can create the styles you want in a new document, and save it as a template, but the "built in styles" that you can't delete (nearly 120 of them) are still there. You can sort of hide them by showing only styles used, but that means most of yours aren't visible to be selected until you've used each of them at least once.

(Note: Most reputable book publishers are offended if you use more than about five different paragraph styles in the same book.)

The old Style Manager is "sort of" still there, if you click the arrow below "Change Styles" on the "Home" tab of the $!@#%! Ribbon, but so far as I've been able to see it's a lot less flexible and less powerful than the old one.

Microsft claims they tried to make it more user friendly, but all their help is a bit like trying to fix mama's chair with a dozen "helpful" kids asking

"whatchadoin Why'dyadothat What'sthisfor Areyagonnadosomethingelse Billiehitme Whenareyagonnabedone Sallypulledmyhair Suziejustwentinthehousewithyourhammer Bobbyhasanailinhisfoot WillthisgluecomeoutofJimmieshairwhenitdries Idrilledaholeinthisforyou Bobbieturnedthepowersawondoyouwantmetoturnitoff ..."

Ya just gotta work around all the CHILDISH "help," in order to get anything done.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 29 Jul 11 - 04:04 PM

That was brill, John!LMAO! That's exactly what it is like.

I don't know if I can remember the old ones, it's been so long, but I will try my best. I don't use any style for paragraphs except what they require as far as single spacing, first line indent, chapter title centred and pages numbered and one style of font.

I wonder, does Open Office have the same problems with "built in styles?"


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 29 Jul 11 - 04:13 PM

I don't know kat, but try it (or as suggested above LibreOffice). It's free and worth a look.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: Tootler
Date: 29 Jul 11 - 04:52 PM

Open Office does not seem to have the same problem with built in styles. You can define the styles for your document and save as a template but sometimes the old styles pop up or you have problems if you vary a style from its settings but there are fairly straightforward ways to deal with that.

The menu structure for Open Office is fairly similar to Word 2003 which means that converting from Word is not too difficult and LibreOffice is essentially the same. Open Office will open and save to Word format and will read Word *.doc and *.docx documents and will save to Word *.doc format. It also has a direct export to pdf which is available on the File menu and as a button on the default toolbar so you don't need to go hunting for it.

Above all it's free and maintained and upgraded by folk who know what they are doing.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 29 Jul 11 - 06:34 PM

Hey Kat - Max has given you an advertisment for a free PDF converter at the bottom of the home page.

Just go back to Basics. Convert to text. Proofreed. And then you can stretch, and edit in anything you like. Why you could even use. Word-Perfect.

Good Luck. No use crying over a spilled type case.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 29 Jul 11 - 10:43 PM

Thanks, Jon and Tootler. I will look into LibreOffice, too.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 29 Jul 11 - 10:45 PM

The best is to keep the original document, whether it's .doc, .xls, etc.

(My personal opinion is that there's no need to keep a Power Point original, since it's only real use is to keep you busy, make you turn the lights off so the boss can take a nap if you use a projector, and give the ILLUSION that the boss gives a crap about your opinion about something.)

You make a pdf from the original.

If you need a revision, you revise the original and make a new pdf.

KEEP BOTH THE ORIGINAL AND THE REVISED ORIGINAL; but you can throw the obsolete pdf away - usually.

Gargoyles suggestion about converting the PDF back to text is a valid one, but the kind of pdf you'll have to work with varies a lot. With most "simple" pdf makers you have little control over the specific "flavor" you've made.

PDFs that are just pages of "page images" - usually .jpg based but fairly often .tif - are probably the most common. To convert one of these back to text so that you can edit it depends on the "pictures" being recognized and converted to text via an OCR program. There are some "common" OCR utilities that often come embedded in PDF manglers, and others that can be used as "stand-alone" programs. Some of the separate OCR programs can extract the images from a PDF and put the text, or both text and image, back into a new PDF; but with some you'll need an image editor to extract the page images as individual page files before using the OCR on the images.

PhotoShop Elements can do the "extraction" of images, File|Import|PDF, which really means "import each image in the pdf as a separate file."

A problem with image extraction is that most "PDF Makers" recommend a scan at 200 dpi or better to make a PDF, but the saved pdf, if done as anything less than "publishing quality" reduces all of them to 100 dpi or less. The best you can extract is what's in the pdf, so you can't get an image of appropriate resolution to make a new PDF.

The results from most OCR programs are sort of "passable" as far as recognition of the characters, but nearly all create Frames or Text Boxes, or something similar, to lock text block positions to maintain simulation of the original document appearance, especially if there are "headlines" (titles) and margin variations (indents, outdents, etc) so that correcting the immediate OCR output is a really crappy task, and reformatting everything back to your original style sheet requirements is even worse.

If your OCR puts something in Frame to "locate it," you can right? click on the margin of the frame in Word, choose Format Frame from the drop down, and then choose "remove frame" from the next set of choices. The stuff that was inside the frame will probably go "somewhere else" and you may have to hunt for it, but it will be retained.

If your OCR puts something in a text box to tie down where it sits, you must copy the content of the text box and paste it somewhere outside the box before you "delete text box" (same click (right or left?) on a border and follow the choices) since the contents of a text box disappear when the text box does.

The above two steps that are necessary to make an editable text document can be time consuming (and always give me a headache if there are more than a few).

There are only a few OCR programs that are better than about 95% on recognition of text characters, although a couple advertise 99%. I can't vouch for the exact percentage, but the ones with the better claims tend to do a better job, although none are perfect. (And none of the better ones are free.) While a 1 or 2 percent error rate doesn't leave a lot of corrections to be made, they're usually randomly scattered. You can "spell check" to find many, but with the imperfect reputation of Spill Kickers you may end up with "bringing the dependant to trail on the 25th" instead of having a trial for the defendant. (The classic error most feared by attorneys which probably is less scary for most of us.)

If you really must convert a pdf back to text my recommendation would be that you "extract all the images" if you don't have originals, run the OCR (or the PDF conversion that includes OCR), save the text conversion as "plain text" (.txt), spell check and proofread the plain text, and then bring it back into your "real document" and reinsert images and reformat from scratch. You can then make a new pdf from the finished document. It's always ended up being more efficient for me. (YMMV but I doubt it)

You can sometimes get it done that way, but depending on the PDF you start with success is "iffy."

There are lots of simpler methods you can use to get results that may satisfy you for your "personal use," but if you're publishing a book you really need to maintain a respectable, and conventional, quality level and that means "do it right" - from the start and until you're done. (And save the originals.)

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Jul 11 - 12:06 AM

Thanks, again, John. You have always been so patient and thorough in helping those of us who don't know all of this. I do have my original text files, so it's no problem to start from scratch and judging by the above, I think it'd be a lot easier, less of a learning curve I *think* than conversions, etc. I did have the 12 pt original that was lost on a PC which cratered. Wish CafePress still had it, but their system malfunctioned and there it went. I know, I know, backup. I do have CDs on which my daughter backed up everything when I was waiting for surgery, but she only got the 10pt one. I now have an external HD to backup everything!:-)

I'll have to get to it asap as orders are coming in and the one available at CF is the smaller font, i.e. looks amateurish.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 30 Jul 11 - 02:22 AM

Kat -

If the entire document is 10pt and you want the entire document 12pt, of course you can Ctl-Home, Shift-Ctl-End to select the whole document (or just click Ctl-A), and then just click 12Pt. Even if you want something different for titles and such, making it all one size would probably give you a "clean" start.

The Edit|Replace method mentioned earlier would change only what is 10pt to 12pt. It's a good method to know, but you may be able to do it the simpler way.

If you're really as pissed over "the new Word" as I am, you'll ignore the "Clown Ribbon" and with the whole doc selected just use Alt-o,f (Alt-o = fOrmat, which won't show anything, but when you hit the "f" you'll have chosen Font and the menu will pop up). Click 12 in "Size" and hit Enter.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Jul 11 - 10:10 AM

John, I'd kiss yer feet if they weren't stuck in Kansas mud.**bg**

Thank yew!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 30 Jul 11 - 10:44 AM

Actually kat, it's been so long since we've had a decent rain I don't think you could find any mud here. The hogs are usin' bicycles 'cause the hard baked clay busts their toenails.

'Bout two or three weeks ago there was a disturbance in the last mudhole behind the house and from up in the yard it looked like somebody must 'a turned an alligator loose down there. When I got the binoculars out it was just a pair of 15" snappy turtles "courtin'." That last mudhole went bone dry a few days ago, and I think it was one of the same turtles up on the road trying to hitch a ride north where they've had a little bit of rain. Don't know what happened to the other lover.

(But it's even worse down in the panhandles.)

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: katlaughing
Date: 31 Jul 11 - 12:59 AM

LOL..well, I coulda meant *virtual* mud ala Mudcat!

(I do wish it would cool off and rain in a bunch of places. So many people need that as well as the flora and fauna.)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: GUEST,Greg in London
Date: 31 Jul 11 - 07:31 AM

I publish books via www.lulu.com, which seems to have better European Cover than CreateSpace, which seems mostly American from their website (which is a shame as they have more flexible ISBN arrangements.)

Anyway - they accept files direct from Word, but mangle the formatting sometimes, so it is better to convert it yourself first, except a lot of converters don't embed the fonts fully, which is a number one headache in Lulu publishing. The one that was recommended on their forums is doPDF v7 but this may have been upgraded at http://www.novapdf.com/ - or maybe that's the paying version, I haven't fully checked as what I have works !

On the other hand, I tend to make my own decision about which sites I do or don't trust and ignore the 'no digital signature' warning as different browsers and versions of windows seem to render them differently, making the warnings (imo) unreliable.

I would agree about getting the document right in Word, Word Pro, Open Office or whatever first, but you may have to go through something else to do a Kindle edition if you have lots of pictures.

Hope that's some help.

Greg


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ever used pdf editor dot org?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 31 Jul 11 - 04:46 PM

The appearance of "no digital signature" merely means that the file doesn't include a "registered" name in the "Properties" of the file. While it's rather rare for malware infected files or pirated copiies of files to have a signature, many "fringe distributors" (like Adobe and HP) quite often don't include one, so it's necessary to guess whether you're downloading something authentic and good. Many times it is necessary to ignore the warning and charge ahead If you want to get anything at all accomplished.

Another "warning" that pops up occasionally is that a website has "no certificate of authenticity." This means that the site as a whole has not "registered with some proper authority." As with the "signature" this indicates that you should "pause and think" in case there might be a problem with what's about to happen; but in most cases any of us are likely to encounter either can be ignored for "recognizable" sites and programs.

So far as I know (I haven't checked lately) mudcat has never displayed a "certificate" and I don't worry about coming here. Whether you get a notice of either kind of certification depends a lot on what "whims and hallucinations" went through the few functional brain cells of whoever wrote the last update of your browser or AV suite, although sometimes the warnings are actually helpful.

A "digitally signed" browser add-on (sometimes called a "bho" for "browser helper object") that you add in recent versions of IE usually goes into a cache of "trusted add-ons." An unsigned add-on goes in a separate cache. The "functional difference" is that you can delete an add-on from the unsigned cache using Tools (Internet Options) in IE. You can disable, but you can't delete a "trusted add-on" using just the Tools in IE. This difference may have existed in older versions, but it's specifically spelled out for IE8 and IE9, and possibly as early as IE6(?) although I haven't looked back that far. This difference shouldn't affect any use of the browser or be a concern to the users.

I haven't seen any similar differences in how signed/unsigned programs are treated, once they're installed.

John


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