PDFs and Highlighter Not Working Properly

I’m getting a lot of strange behaviors with various PDF files and the highlighting tool. For example, if I highlight one sentence in a paragraph, and then highlight a different one, the first highlight disappears. Or I’ll highlight several lines and only the last one will get the highlight. Or, sometimes, the highlight seems to work in advance of the selection: I’ll highlight several lines to get other lines to highlight.

This doesn’t seem to be in all PDFs, but it is in many of them — I’m doing a large research project with PDFs coming from a variety of sources. Perhaps there are malformed PDFs which are interfering with Scrivener’s highlight feature. One of the PDFs that has had the highlight several lines and only the last line gets the highlight is from the UN: ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/S … -19-61.pdf

If it would be helpful, I could do a screen capture movie and send you a download link from my Dropbox folder.

I’m running a modern iMac with 5K Retina display with 4.0GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7 Haswell (4 cores) with 32GB running Mac OS X 10.10.5 (Yosemite). Scrivener is v2.6 (25480).

Thank you!

FWIW, a similar problem arose over in Devonthink Pro, where users (myself included) experienced this with several pdfs. They fixed the problem with an update a few weeks back – but figured I’d drop this note here, might help confirm that this isn’t necessarily a Scrivener problem – but more likely something to do with how OS X processes certain PDFs [*thud].

*That [thud] was me hitting the very low glass-ceiling of my tech-anything knowledge – so you can pretty much disregard anything said after the " – " in that last sentence as being verifiable! :slight_smile:

For anyone else who might have the same problem, I’ve discovered that I can right click on the file in the binder and “Open” -> “In External Editor” which opens Scrivener’s version of the PDF file within a full version of Acrobat (not the free version of Acrobat Reader) that I have installed. I can use Acrobat’s Commenting tools, which includes a highlighter, and then save. The resulting file inside of Scrivener displays the highlighting properly.

The same is true for Reader and even the free Preview that comes with the Mac. I generally prefer to view (and especially edit) PDFs in an external viewer anyway, unless I’m just reading the PDF in a linear fashion (proofreading mostly), then it’s great to have it in a split.

As for the glitch, we just provide a shortcut to an underlying access point in PDF Kit that allows highlighting (and overstrike). All Scrivener does is tell PDF Kit to highlight (I don’t believe it even handles the selection state), so yes, fixing a problem with it could be rather difficult. I don’t know anything about how DTP fixed it.