How Do You Make a PDF Smaller?

Problem scenario
You want your PDF to retain the same content. But you want the file size to be reduced. You have access to a command prompt of an Ubuntu Linux server with no GUI environment. What should you do?

Possible Solution #1
If the fidelity of the reduced size PDF is important, try this solution (as we believe it is relatively lossless).

1. Install Ghostscript:

sudo apt -y install ghostscript

2. Run the following two commands where "foobar.pdf" is the name of your large PDF file:

pdf2ps foobar.pdf
ps2pdf smallfoobar.pdf

Possible Solution #2
If a minor reduction in quality is acceptable and it is very important to reduce the size by a large amount, try this solution.

  1. Install this package:
    sudo apt -y install graphicsmagick-imagemagick-compat
  2. Run this command (where foobar.pdf is the name of the PDF you want to shrink):
    convert foobar.pdf -compress Zip small.pdf

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