Illustrator AI files have the ability to save a copy of the artwork as PDF internally in the same AI file. That option (saving internal copy of PDF) make the AI file bigger but it have some advantage like native opening PDF/AI in both illustrator/Acrobat. my question is how to stop saving PDF copy internally in all my AI files in Illustrator CS6?

ps. I know its presented in the Save AS dialog box as [create compatible PDF file] my question is how to make this option off by default.

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    There doesn't appear to be a way to set this at a global level in Illustrator CS6. I'm not sure it's possible outside of the "Save As" dialog box.
    – bemdesign
    Jan 7, 2015 at 12:55

1 Answer 1


Whenever you want to change how a file starts when you open a new document you have 2 choices:

  • Edit the startup files (aka New Document profiles)
  • Create a template

Altering settings in these two areas ensures that all new documents begin with those settings.

In this case, you could open a startup file and re-save it with PDF compatibility set to off. Or you could simply open a new document, and save it as a template (.ait) ensuring you disable the PDF compatibility. Then start each new document with your template rather then the New command.

Editing startup files is fairly easy. Here is an Adobe Blog post explaining what's possible and how to edit them: http://blogs.adobe.com/adobeillustrator/2009/05/startup_profiles_a_great_tool.html

For existing documents, you would need to reopen them and then save them with PDF compatibility off. There is no default, automated way to alter the settings in unopened documents. Scripting and/or actions may be able to walk through files disabling PDF compatibility though.

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