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How can I print a larger page (A3) on multiple (two) smaller pages (A4)? This is sometimes called "poster printing", since the objective is to join the smaller printed pages together to form a larger page.

Some printer drivers do have a native option for this, but this question naturally concerns a situation where that doesn't exist.

Another assumption is that the program creating the larger page to be printed does not know how to split it into multiple parts for printing. If needed, the data format can be assumed to be PDF or PS, since you could easily create those from any print output by virtual "PDF printers" like PDFCreator.

I know ghostscript can be used to manipulate PS and PDF data - would it be able to do do this too?

Solutions for linux or windows are what I'm looking for, but I'm interested in hearing about other platforms too.

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5 Answers 5

up vote 6 down vote accepted

There is a Linux utility called, surprisingly enough, poster, which does this for PostScript files.

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4  
There's apparently also pdfposter which does the same for PDF files. pdfposter.origo.ethz.ch –  Ilari Kajaste Sep 23 '09 at 10:51

Poster Printer works with your existing printer to allow you to print documents at a much larger size than would fit on a single printed page.

alt text

(open source, Windows)

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This seems like a really good solution, but unfortunately I couldn't get it to work on Windows Vista. (I did file a bug report about that to their system.) –  Ilari Kajaste Sep 2 '09 at 8:05
    
Not usable on Windows 7 –  Peter Nore Jul 2 '11 at 21:25
    
Yes, too bad it does not work on Windows 7. I won't downvote this, but I upvoted the posterazor tip since it worked OK for me –  Palmin Feb 9 '12 at 16:03

http://posterazor.sourceforge.net/

As input, the PosteRazor takes a raster image. The resulting poster is saved as a multipage PDF document. An easy to use, wizard like user interface guides through 5 steps. PosteRazor is available as a Windows, an OSX and a Linux version. It is an open source, GNU licensed project which is hosted on SourceForge.net.

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It's worth noting that PosteRazor can be installed in Ubuntu via Software Center so it should be the easiest way for casual users. Note that this only supports raster images. Ubuntu users may use command line commands "pdfposter" or "poster" for more generic needs but I'm not aware of GUI for those. –  Mikko Rantalainen Dec 5 '11 at 9:36
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I could not open PDF files in posterazor. Only JPGs. –  Alex Mar 3 '12 at 16:27
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"As input, posterazor takes a raster image" like a JPG, not a PDF. To use Posterazor ON a PDF, one would first have to export a PDF to images with a tool like Acrobat or pdftk. –  Peter Nore Mar 4 '12 at 18:29

Never mind the name, have a look at The Rasterbator. I've used this to create a half-wall-sized b/w blow-up of the family cat, to great effect.

You can use it online or download it. I know it's not quite what you initially asked for, but depending on what you're trying to do it might be worth a look. :-)

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The Rasterbator is an application which creates rasterized versions of images. The rasterized images can be printed and assembled into enormous (or smaller, if you prefer) posters.

No installation is needed. Just select the source image in your hard drive and the program will automatically split it onto several pages. You select the size of the paper you wish to use and also choose either portait or landscape printing.

The Rasterbator will then save the image as PDF. After that, click the Rasterbate! button and the program will produce the output image. You can check how it looks like in your favorite PDF reader, right before printing it and hanging it on the wall.

This is an awesome program and I highly recommend it. The Rasterbator

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I could not access the website... has this program disappeared? –  Palmin Feb 9 '12 at 16:02

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