Indesign CC 2015 - show progress bar when exporting PDF


I read a lot of posts about using Background task bar to show some kind of progress bar while exporting a PDF in Indesign. the problem is none of the solutions worked in Indesign CC 2015.

I’ve tried to make a progress bar myself, but it obviously didn’t work because I can’t insert it in the PDF exporting process. So what I want to know is if someone has a solution for that. Any kind of progress bar will work, just for me to have an idea about how long the process will take.

Thanks a lot,

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Progress bar for a background thread in a script?

I’ve done that a while ago. Don’t find the code but the idea was:

Export a pdf using asynchronous pdf export
Get a list with all backgrounds tasks and find yours (unfortunately you can’t get an ID on start) by name.
Check it’s status (eg. 24%) and display this via progress bar.
Repeat that until your task dissappears.

Note: very small pdfs export faster than you can check the task. Keep that in mind.

If your question is more: where can I see a progress bar: check windows menu > tools > background tasks


Thanks a lot. I read about the asynchronous but it was not working as I needed, so I made some changes in my script and it’s okay. Now I’ll go and try those other steps you wrote, great idea and I’m pretty sure they will solve the whole problem.

Thanks again!

I think I’m too dumb to do that. Background task is running okay but even finding that the element has a “status” and “Percent done” properties, I can’t make it work.

I just want to know when it’s done to show a dialog, save and close the document.

Any suggestion? Sorry about that.

If you just want to perform an action ONCE the process is DONE (without showing the progress) you may just use standard export!

tell application id "com.adobe.InDesign"
    tell active document
        export format PDF type to myDestination using nameOfPDFPreset without showing options
        my doSomething()
    end tell
end tell

on doSomething()
   display dialog "Closing document now!"

If you need to get the CURRENT PROGRESS there’s no way around threading! This is a way more complicated task.

Thanks, Jonathan Engelhardt.

I was already exporting as you suggested. The problem is I work with hundred pages files, full of images, and sometimes exporting takes a lot of time, and it’s good to have an idea about the exporting status.

For now I’ll keep the asynchronous and keep an eye on the Background task bar until I find a way to merge both. :wink:

Thanks a lot!

Exporting asynchronous takes as long as Exporting on main thread. The advantage of multithreading is it doesn’t block your main thread. But If you don’t use InDesign while exporting you could also take standard export and therefore wait for the result.


Understood but there are two scenarios:

1. Asynchronous
Pro: I can see the progress
Con: I cannot set an action to be done after the task, like Save and Close.

2. Non-asynchronous
Pro: I can set an action to be done after the task, like Save and Close.
Con: I have no way to see the progress, can just be looking at the wheel. :slight_smile:

I’m not worried about using Indesign while exporting. I usually put the PDF to export and go for a coffee. My problem with the progress bar is to check, when I get back, if I still have 10 minutes or 30 of waiting. :slight_smile:

But don’t worry, please. As I said I’m using Asynchronous now and saving manually later. I’ll keep trying to find a way to have the better of both worlds.


You CAN get the progress from asynchronous export. You need to identify the background task and repeatingly check the percent done value of it.
Once it dissappears or reaches 100% you may trigger an action


Thanks. Today we have a holiday in here so I’ll have time to try. Thanks a lot. As soon as I can do it I’ll share it here.

Have a great week,