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mje
Community Participant

Speedgrader / Crocodoc sensitive to pdf format variations

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We are experiencing that crocodoc is very sensitive to pdf format variations. Some pdf files are viewed correctly without issues, some pdf format variations have problems with math equations, and some enter a mode of "crocodoc is still processing the document" and never leaves this mode. The latter disables commenting and annotations in crocodoc.

By example, viewing the pdf through a browser it is correctly formatted (although equation isn't perfect):

183797_pastedImage_0.png

Viewing the same file in crocodoc:

183798_pastedImage_1.png

What do you recommend your users to do to work around the limitations in crocodoc?

By example we are using Mathcad for math and physics assignments. Our Mathcad version doesn't support native export to pdf so we print the file to a pdf printer to produce a pdf document. Different pdf printer drivers (adobe, cutepdf, etc) and different settings in the pdf printers seem to cause different results in crocodoc. What are the official recommendations / guidelines from Canvas / Crocodoc?

Kind regards,

Michael

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1 Solution

Accepted Solutions
emily
Community Champion

Ok, Canvas support said "Crocodoc didn't generate the preview correctly. The fast solution is to re-upload the file."

I re-uploaded my file, and it's working fine now. I think the issue might be whether the file was open in another window when I tried to upload it. I had created the PDF, and it opens in Acrobat once it's done. Try closing that file before you upload and see if your results are better.

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5 Replies
kona
Community Coach
Community Coach

 @mje , per this guide - How do I use Crocodoc in Canvas assignments? - it states that, "Canvas currently supports .doc/.docx, .ppt/.pptx, and .pdf Crocodoc file formats." If you're looking for something beyond that you might find it helpful to contact Canvas Support and see what they recommend/suggest.

mje
Community Participant

Kona, I'm aware of above mentioned list of supported formats. However the files we are working with _are_ .pdf files - we have a policy stating that students must upload solutions in pdf format. Problem is that there are several variations of .pdf files. By example there are various versions of the pdf specification and in addition the pdf specification includes various methods used to represent graphics and text (bitmaps, vector graphics, text, embedded fonts, system fonts etc). Problem here is that crocodoc seems to be limited in it's pdf processing capabilities.

kona
Community Coach
Community Coach

For something like this I'd definitely contact Canvas Support to see if they have additional/specific information about PDF's.

emily
Community Champion

 @mje ​ - did you ever figure out a solution? I'm having the same problem.

Emily

emily
Community Champion

Ok, Canvas support said "Crocodoc didn't generate the preview correctly. The fast solution is to re-upload the file."

I re-uploaded my file, and it's working fine now. I think the issue might be whether the file was open in another window when I tried to upload it. I had created the PDF, and it opens in Acrobat once it's done. Try closing that file before you upload and see if your results are better.

View solution in original post