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Gios PDF .NET library

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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

GeneralRe: Height must be greater than zero Pin
cleanlinez9-May-07 11:55
membercleanlinez9-May-07 11:55 
AnswerRe: Height must be greater than zero Pin
Member 1145156928-Jan-16 22:16
memberMember 1145156928-Jan-16 22:16 
QuestionWhat royalties do i need to add into the help file? Pin
Support12331-Oct-06 21:33
memberSupport12331-Oct-06 21:33 
GeneralRows Spanning multiple Pages Pin
Terry Slack26-Oct-06 13:00
memberTerry Slack26-Oct-06 13:00 
GeneralMono Version Pin
gaulive26-Oct-06 5:23
membergaulive26-Oct-06 5:23 
AnswerRe: Mono Version Pin
vhrc993-Apr-08 14:25
membervhrc993-Apr-08 14:25 
GeneralRe: Mono Version Pin
Paolo Gios3-Apr-08 22:04
memberPaolo Gios3-Apr-08 22:04 
GeneralSmall bug in PdfTextArea.OverFlowText Pin
__alias29-Sep-06 3:51
member__alias29-Sep-06 3:51 
JokeRe: Small bug in PdfTextArea.OverFlowText Pin
StiGMaTa_Dev29-Sep-06 3:57
memberStiGMaTa_Dev29-Sep-06 3:57 
QuestionCell [24,0] does not belong to the TablePage. Pin
species168829-Aug-06 21:16
memberspecies168829-Aug-06 21:16 
QuestionRe: Cell [24,0] does not belong to the TablePage. Pin
species168829-Aug-06 22:57
memberspecies168829-Aug-06 22:57 
GeneralPDF page displying only latest entered data.. Pin
VaibhavJ28-Jul-06 9:11
memberVaibhavJ28-Jul-06 9:11 
GeneralRe: PDF page displying only latest entered data.. Pin
VaibhavJ29-Jul-06 1:33
memberVaibhavJ29-Jul-06 1:33 
GeneralSaveToStream NotSupportedException Pin
species168821-Jul-06 17:51
memberspecies168821-Jul-06 17:51 
GeneralRe: SaveToStream NotSupportedException Pin
grisetma8-Aug-06 10:10
membergrisetma8-Aug-06 10:10 
GeneralRe: SaveToStream NotSupportedException Pin
species168829-Aug-06 21:17
memberspecies168829-Aug-06 21:17 
QuestionHow to print ? Pin
Lions_italy21-Jul-06 1:08
memberLions_italy21-Jul-06 1:08 
QuestionIndex was outside the bounds of the array. Pin
andrermagalhaes18-Jul-06 12:28
memberandrermagalhaes18-Jul-06 12:28 
Questionhow to do this??? [modified] Pin
binhminhtn17-Jul-06 22:17
memberbinhminhtn17-Jul-06 22:17 
AnswerRe: how to do this??? Pin
Ri Qen-Sin17-Sep-06 14:44
memberRi Qen-Sin17-Sep-06 14:44 
QuestionFrench or German Characters [modified] Pin
ashasikand28-Jun-06 4:33
memberashasikand28-Jun-06 4:33 
AnswerRe: French or German Characters Pin
Delia Sánchez17-Jan-07 8:07
memberDelia Sánchez17-Jan-07 8:07 
GeneralRe: French or German Characters and any other (non unicode) code page Pin
Domagoj Peharda12-Jun-08 18:08
memberDomagoj Peharda12-Jun-08 18:08 
GeneralRe: French or German Characters and any other (non unicode) code page [modified] Pin
Dragan T.4-Jul-08 5:23
memberDragan T.4-Jul-08 5:23 
GeneralRe: French or German Characters and any other (non unicode) code page Pin
turbomedo10-Oct-08 4:35
memberturbomedo10-Oct-08 4:35 

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Posted 18 Apr 2005


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