Adobe InDesign’s Preflight is a powerful tool that integrates into your workflow and gives you piece-of-mind during production. It can identify possible issues such as missing links, incorrect color spaces, incorrect fonts, and etc., while you work, as well as when you are preparing for production.
Setting your Preflight Profiles
You can set your preflight profiles from the preflight palette (Window > Output > Preflight) by selecting the preference icon in the upper-right corner and selecting Preflight Profiles. Create a new profile in the column on the left.
Here are the settings that I commonly use and why:
- Links Missing or Modified – Alerts you to missing or unavailable links.
- Inaccessible URL Links – Alerts you to missing or unavailable links.
- [Registration] Applied – Registration is not black and should never be used in lieu of black. This can cause issues with production on traditional, digital press, and your local laser printer.
- IMAGES and OBJECTS
- Image Resolution (Minimum options checked with default values (e.g., color 250, greyscale 250, and 1-bit 800) – Alerts you to low resolution images that are hard to spot in the preview mode.
- Overset Text – Alerts you to overset text. No overset text will ensure that something has not shifted of off a frame.
- Font Missing – Alerts you to missing fonts that can be problematic in production.
- Glyph Missing – Similar to the above.
- Cross-References (Both out of date and unresolved checked) – If you use them, you know why its important for them to be up-to-date.
- Unresolved Caption Variable – Same as above.
Other useful settings include not allowing spot colors for instances where your print shop has defined and Bleed/Trim Hazard for large full-bleed documents.
Using Preflight While you Work
As you work, Preflight will monitor your document based upon the assigned preflight profile. If an issue is detected, you will be alerted through the indicator at the bottom of your document window.
Reviewing the Preflight palette show full details in regard to the errors and where they are located.
Using Preflight for InDesign Books
In a proposal situation with multiple InDesign documents created and modified within a collaborative environment, InDesign Preflight becomes an invaluable tool. Your book’s preflight status is shown in the book’s palette as red, green, or ?
To run Preflight on all of the InDesign documents in your book, select “Preflight Book” from settings accessible in the upper right hand of the book palette. Ensure that your custom profile is selected and “Generate Report” is checked.
The report, generated as a PDF, is handy when reaching back out to collaborators for missing links and etc.
Preflight is a powerful tool for your proposal workflow. Whether you are working on a 30-page proposal or a 2,000-page proposal, InDesign gives you the tools that can make your life easier.
Justin Sligh is Marketing Manager for Moss & Associates’ Central Florida division and National Criminal Justice Public Safety division. He is a native Floridian and resident of Orlando with his wife Breana and son Sylar. Comments, corrections, and suggestions welcome.