How to Convert a File Format From a PRN to PDF Extension

by ContributorUpdated September 28, 2017

A PRN file extension is a Windows file format that allows you to use the "print to a file" option. You can convert a PRN file to the PDF file format by renaming it as a file of the PS extension if your printer is a PostScript printer. You can then run it with a program like GhostScript.

Install a PostScript printer driver, which is necessary to create PostScript files. You will likely find a driver on your Windows CD ROM. To install a PostScript driver, navigate to the "Start" menu, select "Settings" and "Printers." Click "Add a Printer." Select "Apple LaserWriter Plus" or its nearest equivalent. When prompted for the printer location, select the "Local printer" setting so you can print to a file. Do not make this printer your default printer.

Download and install the GhostScript (ghostscript.com) and GSview utilities. GhostScript is a PostScript interpreter. GSview (pages.cs.wisc.edu/~ghost/gsview/) is a graphical user interface used on Windows that makes GhostScript more user-friendly.

Install and set up GhostScript. To do this, double-click on the "GSview" icon and click the "Option" button. Next, click on "Advanced Configure." Change the fonts path to "-dNOPLATFONTS -sFONTPATH="c:\windows\fonts" (without quotes).

Create the graphic files. You can first create a PDF file from a PRN by loading your Sibelius file. Then select "Print" from the "File" menu. Navigate to the "Printer Name" box and select the nonexistent Apple LaserWriter. After clicking "Print," you will be asked to save your newly created PRN file. Save the file to your desktop for easy access in the future.

Open your PRN file in GSview. To do this, select the PRN file you saved on your desktop.

From the "File" menu, select "Convert." A list of the GhostScript conversion options will appear.

Select the "PDFwrite" option. This will effectively convert your PRN file to the PDF format. Make sure the resolution is set to "High." Click "OK" when done. Save your PDF file.

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