• Word in Office 2019 Resists Creating Hyperlinks in PDFs

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    This has been an intermittent problem for several years, and was also a problem in Word 2010 on a different machine. When any Word 2019 doc with hyperlinks is saved as a PDF, or printed as a PDF, most all the hyperlinks fail to transfer to the PDF. Here’s an example. The two logos in the header have hyperlinks embedded which work. But all the rest fail.


    Today I sent a support request to Tracker Software since I use their PDFX-Change Pro editor, and I attached the original Word file. But the hyperlinks fail to embed using any method, including the otherwise reliable PDF reDirect.

    Today I’ve already done the Office suite “Quick Repair”, and tried three different versions of PDFX-Change, and those things haven’t worked. In March I kicked Adobe’s Photoshop off this machine, and its Creative Suite bloatware manager.

    Viewing 5 reply threads
    • #2447622


      You’ve got me really worried! I just been back to a Word 2019 document, “saved as .pdf” containing links to a web site (IMDb) – works fine.

      • #2447662

        It seems that I’ve been especially lucky for many years, and that my PDF conversions from inside Word worked most of the time. Until it didn’t. In a few mins I’ll post Tracker Software’s reply about the work around to this problem.

    • #2447666

      Hello, Ask Woodyites,

      Here is my e-mail exchange with Tracker Software about this problem, and the latest file conversion (below) I performed with their software. I tried to remove the bolding when I copied and pasted it, but that bolloxed up its readability, so I instead put it back in:


      Hello Radi and Tracker,

      Thank you for your expeditious reply. The PDFX-Change converter automatically installed into MS Word *mostly* worked. The PDFX-Change converter misses one link, containing my name and linkedin page at the top of the doc. Would Tracker please debug that and provide an easy fix?

      Imagine my happy surprise that it did mostly work after futzing around trying to get it work for around 90 minutes, including cycling through 3 test installations of PDFX-Change versions 7.x, 8.x and 9.x., and repairing MS Word.

      I’m amazed. I found your company many years ago when I was searching for cost-effective alternatives to Adobe’s Acrobat bloatwares. I was very surprised that Tracker’s products worked well almost all the time.

      I’ve been using PDFs since maybe the year 2000. It was suggested to me when I was creating and commissioning an intranet (a revolutionary concept in its time) for what was then the world’s premiere gallery of vintage animation art. I eventually decided on using JPGs as inventory images for our intranet.

      I wore several hats with that company, including marketing, desktop publishing, media relations (we did live, commuter drive-time radio ads with animation luminaries in several US metro markets), and I was also the only one of our art consultants who’d client collectors in other nations, which included Japan, Belgium, and Canada.

      The process of “Saving As” inside Word, or the process of printing to PDF redirect had worked maybe 90% of the time for me without problems. And one would expect Microsoft to have sense enough to completely integrate such a widespread bit of tech as PDFs into their platforms, because that way it would keep the customers and their money flowing their way. But as most of us found out the hard way Microsoft often could hardly care less about its customers.

      Kind regards,


      Mr. Michael D. Austin

      The Soul Rider LLC

      Mike’s LinkedIn:  http://www.linkedin.com/in/michaeldillaustin

      Soul Rider endows Casual Saints™

      “The planet does not need more successful people. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers and lovers of all kinds.”  ~ Geshe Tenzin Zopa

      From: Radi Ivanov <support@tracker-software.com>
      Sent: Wednesday, May 18, 2022 10:20 PM
      To: Mike
      Subject: Re: Problems Making Hyperlinks from Word to PDFs

      Hello Michael,

      Thank you for the e-mail.

      When you print an MS Word document, Word expects you to print to paper so it doesn’t send any information to the printing device about the embedded links. They are always lost during the print operation.

      If you would like to keep the embedded links, you need to convert the document instead. You can do this if you have PDF-XChange Standard Printer and our MS Office add-in installed. This product is a part of your PDF-XChange PRO package so you should already have it installed.

      Go to the PDF-XChange tab in your MS Word and click on Convert to PDF. Make sure that link generation is enabled from the settings of the add-on (Edit Settings -> Links).

      If I can assist you further, please do get back to me. Kind Regards, Radi IvanovTechnical Support EuropeTracker Software Products support@tracker-software.com http://www.tracker-software.com

      On 19.5.2022 г. 03:50, Mike wrote:

      Hello Tracker people,

      I’m running MS Office 2019, and have just updated my PDFX-Change license to 9.x.

      When either saving the Word 2019 file attached as a PDF inside Word 2019, or when printing the Word file to the PDFX-Change Standard printer showing in Word, the PDF produced does not generate embedded hyperlinks.

      These behaviours are despite the facts that I’ve done a “Quick Repair” of the MS Office installation, and changed to PDFX-Change 9.x from my earlier 7.x and 8.x licenses.

      Please advise on the solution to this problem. I won’t send over along the fonts in the file unless you need them.

      Thank you.

      Mr. Michael D. Austin

      The Soul Rider LLC

    • #2447683

      I did a little testing and found that if I clicked on a mailto: link with Outlook CLOSED it would not open a new email. However, If I opened outlook then clicked on the mailto: link in the a PDF file it would open.

      I did a little googling and found that doing an ONLINE repair of OFFICE fixed the problem.

      To Repair:

      1. Go to Settings –> Apps
      2. Click on Microsoft 365 – en-us  (or your equivalent)
      3. Click on Modify
      4. Ok the UAC prompt
      5. Click on Online Repair
      6. Click on the Repair button
      7. Wait!


      May the Forces of good computing be with you!


      PowerShell & VBA Rule!
      Computer Specs

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2447698

        Thank you. I might try that. I’d had to reinstall it once on the machine and it worked. Yesterday I’d tried the “quick repair” rather than the “online repair”.

        I’ll sit with the idea of an online repair, and reason through a cost/benefit analysis, because everything else with the machine works OK, and I want to avoid causing a new problem with didn’t exist.

        I’m running a local-only license on that machine. Purchased here.

      • #2448988

        Thanks RG. I tried that method just now, and it failed to change the conversion results of the PDFs. At this writing Tracker Software is giving me better results, although imperfect.

    • #2448980

      This is still an ongoing concern although progress has been made. The short version is that Word 2019 isn’t converting hyperlinks in its process of saving to a PDF. I’ve been cautious about the idea of doing the Office 2019 “On-line repair” for many reasons, and had not taken that step although I did the “Quick repair”.

      The progress below is encouraging, although the problem is not resolved. Tracker Software has seen my Word file, and seen my two conversions of it using their PDFX-Change 9.x. Even their software had incomplete results using their recommended methods. In a previous section of this post I showed the file(s).

      Here is their reply to my inquiry to them about why PDFX-Change would convert most, but not all of the hyperlinks in my original Word file:

      “Thanks for this Mike.

      We have two issues here.:

      1. The Office Add-In is failing to create the three links you referred to.

      We will fix this. I have reproduced the issue and raised a formal Support Ticket for it. While for internal use only, should you refer to RT#6105: Office Add-In :: Incorrect links created on conversion of Word to PDF. in correspondence with us then any support staff member can get yo a status report.

      2. Drag and Drop to the Editor fails to convert the links in the body of the Word file.

      We are seeing inconsistent results here. I was able to reproduce the reported issue on my workstation, however for the developer looking into this the conversion worked flawlessly with regards these links. We are investigating this right now and I will let you know if a ticket is raised for this.

      Thanks for bringing these issues to our attention. I hope to see it all resolved for the next scheduled release of the software in a couple of months time.
      As soon as I have any updates I will be sure to pass them on to you.

      Paul O’Rorke
      Tracker Software Products (Canada) Limited”


      Here is the e-mail they received from me:

      “On 2022-05-24 5:05 p.m., I wrote:

      Hello Paul,

      In trying the Drag and Drop of the Word file into the PDFX-Change Editor, that method converts only the two header links, and does not convert the rest of the links in the file.

      The Word 2019 file original is attached.

      Indeed, the 1st conversation you saw was via your program’s plug-in inside Word 2019, “Convert to PDF”, within the PDFX-Change tab.”

    • #2449011

      Hello, not sure if this is the same issue, but we had a similar situation with MS365 Word (it’s on the latest version) were a document was converted to PDF using the Adobe Acrobat 2020 plugin, and the embedded links (unless it was expressly spelled out – standard URL, such as https://www.askwoody.com works) wouldn’t translate into a clickable link once converted to PDF.

      The solution, the document was in “Compatibility Mode” and once we save it as the current version, then coverted to PDF, all embedded links worked.

      For the AskWoody authors, I wonder if an article could be done on what exactly is “Compatibility Mode” document in Word and the ins and outs of opening a document that has been identified as such?  Realize a “Compatibility Mode” document is created / saved in an early version of Word, but that’s it.

      Take care,

      IT Manager Geek

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2449037

      The solution, the document was in “Compatibility Mode” and once we save it as the current version, then coverted to PDF, all embedded links worked.

      Thank you. That method worked to create hyperlinks in all the body text of the Word 2019 doc. But it didn’t resolve the problem of transferring the hyperlinks of the two images in the document’s header. And in the document’s footer it made unwelcome font dimension changes. Although a hyperlinked text in the footer, a “mailto:” was also correctly converted using that method.

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