The primary purpose of ISO 19005 is to define a file format based on PDF, known as PDF/A, which provides a mechanism for representing electronic documents in a manner that preserves their static visual appearance over time, independent of the tools and systems used for creating, storing or rendering the files.
PDF/A defines a framework for representing the logical structure and other semantic information of electronic documents within conforming files. PDF/A also provides a framework for recording the context and history of electronic documents in metadata within conforming files. These goals are accomplished by identifying the set of PDF features that can be used, and restrictions on the form of their use, within conforming PDF/A files. In addition, PDF/A defines a set of requirements that PDF/A compliant processors (viewers) must implement.
Based on PDF 1.4, PDF/A-1 is the original PDF/A specification published in 2005 and defined two conformance levels:
PDF/A-1 does not support transparency.
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|PDF Association PDF/A-1 Technical Notes||Publication Date|
|Technical Note 0001: PDF/A-1 and Namespaces||March 14, 2008|
|Technical Note 0002: Color in PDF/A-1||March 14, 2008|
|Technical Note 0003: Metadata in PDF/A-1||March 18, 2008|
|Technical Note 0006: Digital Signatures in PDF/A-1||March 14, 2008|
|Technical Note 0008: Predefined XMP Properties in PDF/A-1||March 20, 2008|
|Technical Note 0009: XMP Extension Schemas in PDF/A-1||March 20, 2008|
Based on PDF 1.7 (ISO 32000-1:2008), PDF/A-2 extends the PDF/A concept to encompass the new features added to PDF between versions 1.4 and 1.7. PDF/A-2 requires that any attached file be either itself a PDF/A file or plain text.
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PDF/A-3 is identical to PDF/A-2, but permits arbitrary attachments to PDF/A-3 files.
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|PDF Association PDF/A, parts 1-3 Technical Notes||Publication Date|
|Technical Note 0010: Clarifications of ISO 19005, parts 1-3 for developers of PDF/A creators and validators||July 15, 2017|
PDF/A-4 is based upon ISO 32000-2:2020 (PDF 2.0). It also introduces the new PDF/A-4e conformance level that supports interactive 3D models for engineering workflows. The PDF Association also maintains a list of industry-approved resolutions to identified issues in PDF/A-4.
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|Description||Direct Download||Publication Date|
|PDF/A Flyer (PDF/A-1, PDF/A-2, PDF/A-3)||English||June 18, 2015|
|PDF/A in a Nutshell 2.0 (PDF/A-1, PDF/A-2, PDF/A-3)||English||May 23, 2013|
|PDF/A kompakt 2.0 (PDF/A-1, PDF/A-2, PDF/A-3)||Deutsch||May 26, 2009|
|PDF/A l'essentiell 2.0 (PDF/A-1, PDF/A-2, PDF/A-3)||French||Dec 1, 2014|
|Introducción al PDF/A (PDF/A-1, PDF/A-2, PDF/A-3)||Español||September 12, 2010|
|4th International PDF/A Conference Proceedings||English||October 1, 2010|
For more technical resources, refer to the PDF Association's Technical Resources.
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ISO 19005 is a series of standards known as PDF/A which defines a subset of PDF for representing electronic documents in a manner that preserves their static visual appearance over time, independent of the tools and systems used for creating, storing or rendering the files.
Community: PDF/A TWG
ISO Group Responsible: ISO TC171 SC2 WG5
ISO Status: status of all PDF-related ISO work
Errata: PDF/A-4 (ISO 19005-4)
Publications: PDF/A in a Nutshell 2.0, PDF/A Flyer