Skip to main content

Integrate via shell client (CLI)

The command line application client (pdfclient) lets you automate conversion tasks in a shell script or as a scheduled task. The shell client application interacts with the Conversion Service via the REST API. The application creates jobs based on its input parameters. The jobs are then uploaded in parallel to the Conversion Service and the shell client monitors the completion before the output files are downloaded.

In verbose mode (option -v), a detailed report including all performed actions on the documents is written to the console. If warnings or errors occur during processing, they are reported.

Using the CLI

The pdfclient is added to the PATH environment setting during installation. When called without any arguments, it prints a usage message to standard output.

pdfclient [options] <input> [...] <output>
Generic options
-url urlService endpoint URL (default: http://localhost:13033/conversion/v1.0/rest)
-vVerbose mode
Job options
-w wfWorkflow to use for processing; otherwise the default workflow is used
-p profProfile to use for processing; otherwise the default profile is used
-sProcess all input files as separate jobs, output must be an existing directory
Input options
-pw pwdPassword, applies to subsequent input
-rRecursive, include files in subdirectories
Output options
-iPrompt before overwriting files
-uCreate unique file name instead of overwriting files
fileSingle file, e.g. input.pdf
wildcardAll matching files, e.g. C:\path\to\files*.pdf
directoryAll files in a directory, e.g. C:\path
fileSingle output file. If no extension is specified, it is added automatically.
directoryExisting output directory, required with option -s
Return codes
1Warnings occurred

Basic example

In this example, the CLI sends the file.pdf and encrypted.pdf to the Conversion Service through the REST API endpoint URL http://<hostname>:<port>/conversion/v1.0/rest and saves the result as output.pdf.

The option -v turns on verbose mode, option -url sets the service base URL, and option -pw supplies the password for encrypted.pdf. If the service base URL (-url) is not set, localhost and the default port are used.

pdfclient -v -url http://<hostname>:<port>/conversion/v1.0/rest file.pdf ^
-pw <password> encrypted.pdf output.pdf

Unless you have extended the PATH environment setting to include the installation directory of the Conversion Service, you have to specify the full file path to call the pdfclient.exe program.

Workflow and profile

Use the -w and -p options to select a specific workflow and profile for the job. In this example, the workflow is set to Archive PDF/A-2 and the profile is set to "myCustomProfile". If the options are not specified, the service’s configured default workflow and profile are used.

pdfclient -w "Archive PDF/A-2" -p "myCustomProfile" input.pdf output.pdf


Sends all files with extension .ext from the current working directory and all subdirectories to the Conversion Service, and saves the result as a single output document C:\path\to\output.pdf. pdfclient -s *.ext C:\path\to\output Process the files with extension .ext as separate jobs and save the results in C:\path\to\output. The output directory must already exist. Existing output files are overwritten by default. Output options such as creating unique filenames instead of overwriting existing files are explained in the usage of the tool.

pdfclient -r *.ext C:\path\to\output.pdf

Batch processing

Sends the files inside C:\path\to\input, including all subdirectories, to the Conversion Service. It saves the results in C:\path\to\output with the same file structure as in the input directory. Existing output files are overwritten. Output options such as creating unique filenames instead of overwriting existing files are explained in the usage of the tool.

pdfclient -r -s C:\path\to\input C:\path\to\output