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JDF or PJTF output can include PostScript marks flats that contain custom bar codes for preventing collation and folding errors in postpress equipment. The finishing equipment scans the coded text-mark variables in each mark to check that all the signatures belong to the same job and are in the correct sequence.

Note: Before adding PostScript-coded marks such as bar codes to a job, you must select the Output PS marks flats for PJTF/JDF check box on the Output tab in the Preferences dialog box.

When deciding where to place a bar code mark, be sure to apply any guidelines provided by the finishing equipment manufacturer. You typically place the bar code in the spine or grip area, positioned so that the bar code scanner will be able to read it. 

The bar code that you select depends on the target equipment that the mark was designed for, in accordance with the manufacturer's requirements. The software includes bar code images that can be read by Müller Martini and Wafer Systems Technologies (WST) optical scanners during job finishing:

  • The MM-barcode128c.eps bar code for Müller Martini's automatic signature detection (Asir3) or compliant equipment, contains the job ID (0-4999), signature ID (0-99), and total number of signatures in the output.
    Note: This description explains how the information is defined in the bar code mark. The Asir3 format is proprietary, and bar code readers other than Müller Martini's may display the human-readable bar code in a format that does not match this description.
  • The WST-bar2of5.eps WST-compliant bar code contains the job ID (0-99999) and signature ID (0-99), and the WST-bar2of5w-text.eps mark also displays a human-readable version of the numbers represented by the bar code symbols.

Each mark contains the job and signature ID text-mark variables, with a defined number of digits allocated for each variable. Leading zeros automatically fill the bar code when fewer digits are required. Otherwise, the value is truncated from the front to the defined number of digits:

  • If a bar code allocates two digits for a signature ID, and the actual job signature number is 5, 105, or 205, the bar code represents the signature as number 05.
  • If a job ID is allocated five digits, and the actual job ID is 123, the bar code uses number 00123. If the actual job ID is 12345678, the number 45678 is used.

Note: All ID numbers must contain digits only. The job will fail to preview or print if an applicable ID contains any characters that are not numeric. If the job does not contain a job ID and the bar code requires the job ID, the job will still print, but the job ID portion of the bar code will be set to all zeros.

Bar code marks are cross-platform compatible. However, they can be previewed only on the same platform (Microsoft Windows or Mac OS) on which the press-run layout was created. 

If you have a solid understanding of the PostScript language and bar code technology, you can edit the number of digits for the signature and job ID.

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