Release iText 5.4.2

New Java PDF library release of version 5.4.2. The C# and the Android port will follow soon. So will XFA Worker. These are some of the important topics taken from the changelog.

31st May 2013

New Java PDF library release of version 5.4.2. The C# and the Android port will follow soon. So will XFA Worker. These are some of the important topics taken from the changelog.

For the next release, we're working on better PDF/A support; that PDF/A-1 Levels A and B, PDF/A-2 Levels A, B and U, as well as PDF/A-3 Levels A, B and U. When you look at the changelog for iText 5.4.2, you can see that some of the work is already done; we hope we can finalize a first beta version for the next release.

Release notes


For 2013, we defined four goals, with the main focus on improving the products developed last year based on customer feedback, as well as starting a new R&D track oriented towards structured / unstructured documents.

In practice, this resulted in four new goals:

  1. Support for PAdES-5, more specifically signing XFA or XDP documents. This combines the R&D we've done with respect to signing with the R&D on XFA.

  2. Making it easier for developers to produce Tagged PDF to allow the creation of PDF/A Level A and PDF/UA on the fly. This way, we hope to increase the world's percentage of structured PDF documents. (According to well-informed sources, iText is in the top 5 when looking at the producer line of all PDFs produced world-wide.)

  3. Applying the results of our R&D regarding the creation of Tagged PDF to XFA Worker. This should allow customers using XFA Worker to start generating PDF/A Level A documents and maybe (if the source data is rich enough) even PDF/UA compliant PDFs.

  4. Improving the parsing process to examine unstructured documents.

iText Core 5.4.2

iText 5.4.2 shows that we're on track to reach those goals. We've made the Java library release of version 5.4.2 today. The C# and the Android port will follow next week. So will XFA Worker. These are some of the important topics taken from the changelog.


iText had its 13th birthday last February, which means our technology is mature. Nevertheless, we've found and fixed some really old bugs, as well as some bugs that were introduced recently.

A mighty old bug concerns generation numbers of objects when working in append mode. A recent bug caused images to be scaled incorrectly. These are things of the past now.


We've implemented PAdES-5 to sign XFA forms and XML Data Packages (XDP) using XML-DSig. We'd really appreciate people willing to test this functionality.

Parsing PDF

We've added some convenience methods to make it easier to interpret and enhance the results of iText's parsing process. We've improved the parsing process for Chinese, Japanese and Korean.

We've also released a new version of iText RUPS that fixes some annoying bugs we experienced when looking inside existing PDF files.

XFA Worker 5.4.2

Tagged PDF

We've selected a couple of test users who'll get a sneak preview explaining how to create PDF/A Level A using XFA Worker, which is a closed source add-on, written on top of iText and XML Worker.

We're talking about XFA Worker creating documents that are Tagged, respecting the structure of the original XML data as closely as possible. This should be a major breakthrough for customers wanting to create PDFs that need to be compliant with archiving and accessibility standards in an automated way. 

iText Core 5.4.2

  • Changes made by Paulo Soares
    • Improved ArabicLigaturizer by replacing a binary search with a HashMap.
    • Added support text extraction for CJK fonts with Identity-H encoding and a known ordering.
  • Changes made by Kevin Day
    • Added a method to create a RandomAccessSource from an existing file channel to RandomAccessSourceFactory
    • Added an isChunkAtWordBoundary() method to LocationTextExtractionStrategy to check if a space character should be inserted between a previous chunk and the current one.
    • Added a getCharSpaceWidth() method to LocationTextExtractionStrategy to get the width of a space character.
    • Added a getText() method to LocationTextExtractionStrategy to get the text of the current Chunk.
    • Added an appendTextChunk(() method to SimpleTextExtractionStrategy to expose the append process so that subclasses can add text from outside the text parse operation.
  • Changes made by Alexander Chingarev
    • Refactoring for more convenient PDF/A-2,3 verifications (ongoing, we target for the next release)
      • Changes in the PdfIsoConformance interface.
      • Added PDF/A-2 transparency check.
      • Added Jpeg2000 to the PDF/A conformance checks.
      • Added optional content groups to the PDF/A conformance checks.
      • Added the possibility to tag artifact objects.
      • Fixed an XMP metadata bug that cause problems with PDF/A compliance in some cases.
    • Made FontFactoryImp threadsafe by making a block of code synchronized as suggested by Jonas Neukomm.
    • Now any IAccessibleElement can be artifact if user chooses "Artifact" as its role.
  • Changes made by Michaël Demey
    • Images that weren't supposed to be scaled, were scaled anyway because of a change in the defaults about a year ago (refactored by Raf).
    • moved BaseFont.getResourceStream() to StreamUtil.getResourceStream().
    • removed insureOpen() (a method with a typo in the name) and isOpen() from RandomAccessFileOrArray.
    • Fixed some error messages (Localization).
    • Applied some code formatting and fixed Javadoc info on numerous places.
    • Added some getInstance() methods to the Image class that allow adding an unrepairable broken TIFF to a document without throwing an exception. iText will do a best effort to store the TIFF into the PDF document. The result won't be correct, but iText won't throw an exception if the boolean value handleIncorrectImage is set to true.
    • Added scaleToFit() and scaleAbsolute() convenience methods to scale an Image based on a Rectangle's dimensions.
  • Changes made by Pavel Alay
    • Implemented signing XFA forms and XDP packages using XmlDSig (iText only; will not be in iTextSharp until next release).
  • Changes made by Eugene Markovskyi
    • When annotations are added, it should be possible to inherit the graphics state (more specifically the CTM), otherwise links can be added in the wrong places in certain circumstances.
    • Better handling of the graphics state in PdfContentByte
    • Added an inverseTransform() method to the AffineTransform class.
    • Made the methods openMCBlock() and closeMCBlock() public instead of protected.
    • Added null-check to CompareTool to avoid NullPointerException.
    • Fixed the append() method in the Chunk class.
  • Changes made by Raf Hens
    • Translated some JPEG2000 and OCG error messages.
    • Fixed self-reference in PdfCopy.
    • The scaleToFitLineWhenOverflow variable in the Image class was also used to scale to available height (this was undocumented, and it caused several scaling problems; see fixes by Michaël and Bruno). We've now introduced a scaleToFitHeight variable. This defaults to true for backward compatibility, whereas scaleToFitLineWhenOverflow defaults to false again, which was the default for its original purpose.
  • Changes made by Bruno
    • Images that weren't supposed to be scaled, were scaled anyway because of a change in the defaults about a year ago (refactored by Michaël).
    • Fix InlineImageUtils to deal with unexpected color space values. Suggestion by Lucek, see Stack Overflow.
    • Fixed a bug reported by Lauri Lehtinen: BDC / EMC operators risk getting unbalanced because the balance counter is decremented too early.
    • Added an isTagged() method to PdfReader.
    • Added classes that allow you to count the number of documents and bytes processed by the different writer and reader classes in iText.
    • Implementation of NOTE 1 in section of ISO-32000: "The first element of the ID array generally remains the same for a given document."
    • Fixed generation number problem for PDF objects in a file with incremental updates. In previous versions, we never looked at the generation number, we always used 0 as generation number, even in append mode. This causes a problem, for instance when filling out forms that have widget annotations with a generation number greater than 0.

XML Worker 5.4.2

  • Changes made by Eugene Markovskyi
    • Fixed rendering of tables with fixed-width columns.

iText RUPS 5.4.2

  • Changes made by Bruno Lowagie
    • Fix: isXML() never returned true, because PRStream.toString() doesn't return the content of the stream.
    • Fix: in some cases, pages were missing in the page tree. This was caused by the order in which the objects are processed; /Pages entries always need to be parsed first.

Compatibility Matrix

Use our easy compatibility matrix tool to find more information about the compatibility between your current iText Core/Community version and our add-ons and 3rd-party standalone applications

Add-ons 7.1.5

iText 7 Core


iText 7 Community



2.0.0 - 2.1.2



More add-ons 7.1.5










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