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ISO 18565 & ISO 22550

AFP stands for Advanced Function Presentation and is a coordinated set of document creation, viewing, archiving and printing hardware, software and services that widely used for high-speed variable-data transactional printing. ISO 18565 is the ISO standard that defines a subset of AFP for the archival and retrieval of AFP documents. ISO 22550 is the standard that defines how PDF single and multi-page documents can be carried in an object container in AFP to get the performance and management needed in high-speed print environments.

While AFP has had the ability to include PDF data in object containers for many years, these standards allow for embedding the PDF pages in AFP to get the performance and management needed in high-speed print environments.

ISO 18565:2015, Document management – AFP/Archive

This International Standard specifies the AFP document architecture by defining a subset appropriate for long-term preservation and retrieval. This subset avoids ambiguity by assuring page independence and eliminating the use of resolution dependent fonts and images, device default fonts and external resources.

ISO 22550:2021, Document management – AFP interchange for PDF

This document specifies Advanced Function Presentation (AFP) interchange as a container for document objects by defining the AFP file format [Mixed Object Document Content Architecture (MO:DCA)]. It includes a means of identifying support for specifically including single and multi-page Portable Document Format (PDF) document objects within a container function set. It also includes a mechanism for pairing and managing resources associated with PDF.


Technical questions about ISO 18565 and ISO 22550 are most effectively addressed in the PDF Association’s official pdf-issues GitHub repo.


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ISO 18565 and ISO 22550 define an interchange of AFP (Advanced Function Presentation) to PDF and a subset for the archival of AFP documents.

Community: please ask us!

ISO Group Responsible: ISO TC171 SC2 WG5

ISO Status: status of all PDF-related ISO work

October 5, 2022


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