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Gios PDF .NET library

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4.90 (154 votes)
18 Apr 2005LGPL3
A .NET library for generating impressive PDF reports.

Image 1


This article describes how to use the Gios Pdf.NET open source library, a complete object-oriented .NET library for generating impressive reports with few lines of code.


I started writing this library because I really couldn’t find a good C# library for exporting my reports. When you open a PDF document with Notepad to find out if it’s possible to edit it… well… you change your mind!

...But if you download the PDF format specifications from Adobe’s official site… you can demystify everything!

In this article, it’s not my intention to teach “how to write a clone of my library” but “how to use it” … By the way, if you want to try to write your own library… try it: it’s not impossible and it's a good (and difficult!) exercise!

Using the code

Start instantiating the document with a new PdfDocument object. Remember to set the document format. In this case we specify width and height in centimeters. Document format is provided by the PdfDocumentFormat class:

PdfDocument myPdfDocument = 
  new PdfDocument(PdfDocumentFormat.InCentimeters(21,29.7));

Now we create a table of 100 lines, 6 columns and 4 points of padding:

PdfTable myPdfTable = 
  myPdfDocument.NewTable(new Font("Verdana",12),200,6,4);

Importing data from the datatables... (also column names for the headers!):


Set the format for correct date-time representation:


Now we set our Graphic Design: Colors and Borders...


With just one method, we can set the proportional width of the columns. It's a "percentage like" assignment, but the sum can be different from 100.

myPdfTable.SetColumnsWidth(new int[]{5,25,16,20,20,15});

You can also set colors for a range of cells, in this case, a row:


Now we set some alignment... for the whole table and then, for a column:


This is the most important feature of the library: each page generated by the table can be managed in all the details:

while (!myPdfTable.AllTablePagesCreated)
    // we create a new page to put the generation of the new TablePage:

    PdfPage newPdfPage=myPdfDocument.NewPage();
    PdfTablePage newPdfTablePage = 
      myPdfTable.CreateTablePage(new PdfArea(myPdfDocument,48,120,500,670));

    // we also put a Label 
    PdfTextArea pta=new PdfTextArea(new Font("Verdana",26, FontStyle.Bold), 
      Color.Red, new PdfArea(myPdfDocument,0,20,595,120), 
      ContentAlignment.MiddleCenter,"Contact List");

    // nice thing: we can put all the objects
    // in the following lines, so we can have
    // a great control of layer sequence... 


    // Now we create a loop for serching for people born in 1968. If we find
    // one, we will draw a circle over
    // the birthday cell. This is possible using the
    // the CellArea, that is the Area occupied by a rasterized Cell.
    for (int index=newPdfTablePage.FirstRow;index<=newPdfTablePage.LastRow;index++)
       if (((DateTime)myPdfTable.Rows[index][2].Content).Year==1968)
          PdfCircle pc=newPdfTablePage.CellArea(index,2).InnerCircle(Color.Blue,2);

    // we save each generated page before start rendering the next.


At last... remember to save the document!


And this is the result:

Image 2

Remember, you can also output the PDF to a generic Stream. These are the lines for a Web Response:



  • April 18, 2005 - Initial release.


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPLv3)


About the Author

Paolo Gios
Web Developer
Italy Italy
Freelance software ASPNET / C# Software Developer

I live in Torino, Italy

my homepage is:

Comments and Discussions

GeneralSuggestion: Font-Embed Pin
Carlos Alberto Loth28-Apr-05 5:16
memberCarlos Alberto Loth28-Apr-05 5:16 
GeneralRe: Suggestion: Font-Embed Pin
Paolo Gios28-Apr-05 8:54
memberPaolo Gios28-Apr-05 8:54 
GeneralSuggestion... Pin
Uri Guy26-Apr-05 9:37
memberUri Guy26-Apr-05 9:37 
GeneralRe: Suggestion... Pin
Paolo Gios28-Apr-05 8:56
memberPaolo Gios28-Apr-05 8:56 
GeneralAbout measurement units... Pin
Carlos Alberto Loth26-Apr-05 8:55
memberCarlos Alberto Loth26-Apr-05 8:55 
GeneralRe: About measurement units... Pin
Paolo Gios28-Apr-05 9:06
memberPaolo Gios28-Apr-05 9:06 
GeneralExcellent! Pin
A. Riazi25-Apr-05 21:30
professionalA. Riazi25-Apr-05 21:30 
GeneralRe: Excellent! Pin
Paolo Gios28-Apr-05 8:58
memberPaolo Gios28-Apr-05 8:58 
GeneralUnicode characters Pin
zaf24-Apr-05 23:09
memberzaf24-Apr-05 23:09 
GeneralRe: Unicode characters Pin
Paolo Gios25-Apr-05 0:15
memberPaolo Gios25-Apr-05 0:15 
GeneralPdf in browser Pin
halbersc23-Apr-05 10:47
memberhalbersc23-Apr-05 10:47 
GeneralRe: Pdf in browser Pin
Paolo Gios24-Apr-05 23:49
memberPaolo Gios24-Apr-05 23:49 
Questionhow about parsing msword/html into pdf? Pin
DaberElay22-Apr-05 13:30
memberDaberElay22-Apr-05 13:30 
AnswerRe: how about parsing msword/html into pdf? Pin
Paolo Gios25-Apr-05 0:12
memberPaolo Gios25-Apr-05 0:12 
GeneralRe: how about parsing msword/html into pdf? Pin
DaberElay25-Apr-05 10:35
memberDaberElay25-Apr-05 10:35 
AnswerRe: how about parsing msword/html into pdf? Pin
Chad Knudson26-Apr-05 3:25
memberChad Knudson26-Apr-05 3:25 
AnswerRe: how about parsing msword/html into pdf? Pin
westfale27-Apr-05 1:39
memberwestfale27-Apr-05 1:39 
GeneralRe: how about parsing msword/html into pdf? Pin
DaberElay29-Apr-05 5:28
memberDaberElay29-Apr-05 5:28 
GeneralRe: how about parsing msword/html into pdf? Pin
nyjetswin200524-May-05 10:03
membernyjetswin200524-May-05 10:03 
GeneralSome suggestions Pin
wout de zeeuw22-Apr-05 12:22
memberwout de zeeuw22-Apr-05 12:22 
GeneralRe: Some suggestions Pin
Paolo Gios25-Apr-05 0:04
memberPaolo Gios25-Apr-05 0:04 
GeneralReally nice Pin
Juergen Posny19-Apr-05 9:25
memberJuergen Posny19-Apr-05 9:25 
GeneralRe: Really nice Pin
Paolo Gios19-Apr-05 21:27
memberPaolo Gios19-Apr-05 21:27 
GeneralNice But... Pin
FZelle19-Apr-05 5:54
memberFZelle19-Apr-05 5:54 
GeneralRe: Nice But... Pin
Paolo Gios19-Apr-05 6:12
memberPaolo Gios19-Apr-05 6:12 

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Posted 18 Apr 2005


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