It’s common that customers need to quickly and easily generate a PDF from SAP for a document. Typically, we do this by setting up an output type that has a PDF output defined. But what if this is a last minute request from a user and no output is defined? 

An undocumented feature in SAP allows you to generate a PDF directly from an SAP print preview. Here’s how:

You can execute this in any transaction that has print preview. (Note: this works for documents in your spooler as well since the feature is incorporated into the preview app itself.) The only caveat is that this only works for SMARTFORM-based forms up to NetWeaver 701. Newer version support both form types.

Generate a PDF directly from an SAP

In this example, I’ll bring up VL03n and pull up a delivery note in print preview by selecting Outbound Delivery->Issue Delivery Output from initial screen.

Select the output type you want to use as shown below in Fig. 1 and press the print preview button (4th from the left).

Print output dialog

Fig. 1 Print output dialog

You’ll now be in the print preview app.

Document print preview

Fig.2 Document print preview

In the command window, type “PDF!” and press ENTER.

Command window entry

Fig. 3 Command window entry

You’ll now be in the PDF preview and can save the PDF to your desktop. (Of course, you could print the PDF directly from the print preview, but that isn’t new.)

PDF generated from SAP print preview

Fig. 4 PDF generated from SAP print preview

If you are on Netweaver 701 and newer, this feature is now available using a menu option by accessing  Go To->PDF Preview from the print preview menu.

PDF option in newer versions of SAP

Fig. 5 PDF option in newer versions of SAP

Hope this quick tip helps.

 

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