November 2014 – February 2015: Design phase

We worked with closely with both memory institutions and industry to gather their requirements for the PDF/A conformance checker.

OPF and DPC consulted with their members, and held a webinar to explain the aims of veraPDF and get feedback on the following points in the functional and technical specification.

Functional specification:

  • scope of PDF/A validation;
  • policy requirements;
  • use cases;
  • interfaces;
  • integrations (e.g. with repository software).

technical specification:

  • implementation technologies, validation/policy profile
  • report formats, test framework, etc;
  • review of existing test corpora;
  • evaluation of PDFBox.

In parallel, the PDF Association’s Technical Working Group held regular meetings to:

  • identify ambiguities in the PDF/A standards;
  • form consensus at working group level to resolve ambiguity;
  • create test files and documentation to support resolution;
  • submit the above to the ISO committee for ratification;


The functional and technical design specifications were submitted to PREFORMA alongside a project plan proposal and community engagement plan for Phase 2 (prototyping).

The proposed software architecture was presented to the PREFORMA panel in March 2015.