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Congratulations! The Barcode
Wizard™ is the easiest and fastest way to perfect EAN-13, EAN-8,
Jan-13, Bookland (ISBN) Bar Codes, necessary to sell packaged products
all over Europe, Japan, and magazines all over the planet.
What was installed?
Once the Barcode Wizard™ app has been
added to your Applications folder, you can start creating bar codes
default, the application activates fonts internally for itself only. If
you need to use the fonts in the rest of your applications, click
"Activate fonts". They will become available to other standard macOS
applications, such as Pages, or Open Office. Note that if an application
is already running when you activate, you will need to quit it, and launch
it again, for it to become aware of the EAN13 fonts. Some applications
show them in the list in their own style. You will then see them as bar
If for any reason you required TrueType TTF or OTF PostScript fonts,
for instance for typesetting requirements, select “Save font files” in
the Files menu. Then select where you want the package to go. The
saved zip file will contain fonts in TrueType and OpenType PostScript
format (OTF), as well as this documentation.
You may need them to pass your work to a typesetter.
What else do I need?
To print bar codes that will scan fine
with all systems, you need dense, very dark black stripes. You must
make sure that the printer contains new toner and appropriate paper.
Especially with ink jet printers, common technology today, the right
paper must be used to insure proper density. If you are using this
package to devise labels that will be part of a 4-colors printing
package, please make sure in your desktop publishing program that all
color layers are used, so density will be higher.
Black ink by itself may not be dense enough for modern laser scanners.
It is especially important that you use blue ink so it reads with red
laser scanners (black ink is poorly seen in red and infrared).
Any standard application can print bar codes. They are, in fact, seen
by your system like any other font. Desktop publishing layout programs
may often be preferred because they manage better placement of the bar
code, especially in packaging projects. As a matter of fact, the
Barcode Wizard produces not only character chains (bits of “text”),
but also graphic BMP files, which can be used by your existing
programs. So you will not need to change your methods. Finally, the
printing module within the Barcode Wizard™ will help quickly produce
sheets of bar codes for a set of products, without any additional
program. Of course, you will need to purchase the proper label sticker
Note the references that appear when
you select File/Print or key Command-P before going to the store, if you
intend to print from the Barcode Wizard.
How will I decide on the content of
the bar codes ?
Millions of products have their own
individual UPC code (Universal Product Code) in the U.S, and millions
as well in Europe and worldwide using EAN. None of these codes is
generated at random.
In Europe, GS1 EAN International and
its local subsidiaries will assign codes, supplier’s codes and
retailer’s codes. Their web site is :
You must get a code assigned by this
organization to be able to market your product.
The organizations mentioned above will
help you apply their standards, so you make sure any scanner in the
world will recognize your product. Even if for the moment you need
only one bar code and find this procedure a burden, imagine what would
happen if two very different products, from two different companies,
had the same code. Let us say you create appliances, and discover that
the department store you worked so hard to approach scans it as a
$2.95 pink Teddy Bear ? You need your own unique code.
Barcodes assignments are the major key
to selling worldwide, and putting products on the shelf.
How does it work?
Bookland is a format derived from
EAN-13 used to enter ISBN bar codes for books and magazines. The code
always starts by 978, and can support additional (supplemental) data
for the price, in two of five digits.
EAN-13 bar codes are used widely in
Europe and gradually all over the planet to print product codes that
will be recognized by point of sales scanners, as well as robots or
hand held devices, used to manage inventory.
EAN-8 is rarely used today but is
present for legacy.
JAN-13 has been derived from EAN-13
and is used in Japan. For all intents and purposes, it is identical to
EAN-13, but usually reserved for Japanese products.
Bar codes are the closest graphic
representation of the series of zeros and ones used by computers to
represent numbers. Without going too much into technical details, bar
code fonts are not as easy to use as regular fonts, because computers
need to verify the value of the product code, and the way they “think”
is widely different from the human way. Because of that, some calculus
is required to print correct bar codes. This is the job of the
enclosed Barcode Wizard.
Our exclusive Barcode Wizard™ program
will let you very simply enter the product code, and process it to
obtain right away the data you need to print. Here is an example of
bar code created in seconds, then pasted as graphic into this document
Just for the fun of it, here is the
way the “check character” is computed for 123456789012.
The parity check character is
computed from the total of even position digits, multiplied by
three, plus the total of odd position digits, then subtracted from
the closest multiple of ten.
Parity check character = 2 + 0 + 8 +
6 + 4 + 2 = 22 * 3 = 66 + 1 + 9 + 7 + 5 + 3 + 1 = 92
Then, look for the closest multiple
of 10 to 92, which is 100 and subtract the total.
100 - 92 = 8 (Parity check
There is no doubt the Barcode Wizard™
will save you Aspirin™ and time!
First run of the Barcode Wizard™
The Barcode Wizard™ takes out of
creating bar codes all the cruel calculus usually needed for bar code
fonts. All you need to know is the product code ; the program will
automatically generate the intricate character chains needed to print
bar codes that scan.
Let us try it out. More follows, but
you will quickly see how simple it is to go from code, to bar code.
The Barcode Wizard is extremely simple
to use. Here is how you do it :
– Enter the item (product) code in the top box
You may copy the code from a household item. If you live in the US,
and there is a digit on the right hand side of the bars, chances are
it is UPC-A. In Europe, it is more often EAN-13 (one digit on the left
hand side, no digit on the right hand side of the bars). If you copy
from the cover of a magazine, chances are it is the Bookland standard.
Select your preferred format next to “Process”. Do not be concerned by
the last digit : it will be computed automatically by the Barcode
That’s it! Voila ! In two steps and a
few seconds, the Barcode Wizard™ has automatically created the bar
The bar code characters have been copied by the program into the
clipboard. If the fonts have been activated, you can now paste into
any standard Windows program such as word processors, desktop
publishing programs, Excel, Word, Access or any graphic program (even
Windows Paint). All you got to do to paste the result in your favorite
application is to use the Edit/Paste menu command, or the standard
Control-V keyboard shortcut (in standard Windows programs).
You may want instead to obtain a picture in the clipboard. Check "Copy
picture" on the app main window. You will then get a picture in the
clipboard, which can be pasted in app such as Photoshop.
Note that the size of the copied picture can be set in Preferences.
we need to explain that, because at the heart the app uses fonts, the
value at the center of the window is not a picture size, but a font size.
By default, the setting is approximately 478x366 pixels, which corresponds
to 300 points. That is probably optimum for a good printing in a desktop
publishing application. But you may choose much smaller, down to 30, or
much bigger, up to 1000. Adjust as needed.
You have seen in the previous chapter
how easy it was to generate a bar code. However, this program is far
from being a toy. It is really powerful. The Barcode Wizard can
generate 3 different standards, in 5 different aspects ratios (shapes
M1 to P2) and any font size. This means many different combinations to
suit best your needs.
From code to bar code
When you enter the product code into
the top box, and click “Process”, the Barcode Wizard™ creates several
pieces of useful information. The first one being the bar code you see
in the middle box of the program window. It has been copied into the
clipboard, so all you have to do to use it into any text program is to
go into it, place the cursor where you want the bar code, and paste it
(usual command is ctrl-V or Edit menu/Paste).
Please note that in case you entered a
product code shorter than the required length, it will automatically
be padded by zeros. The same thing occurs when you switch to EAN-8 and
back, as the product code will be shorter for EAN-8. On the other
side, do not concern yourself with the last digit of the product code.
In UPCA, for instance, you will not be able to enter it. Following the
standard, the Barcode Wizard™ will automatically calculate the last
digit, to insure the data integrity.
Once the bar code itself has been
created, it can be manipulated several ways to fit your documents.
First, you can change the size of the
font with the popup menu on the top right corner of the bar code box.
The default size is 80, you can push it up to 120 within the Barcode
wizard. In practice, these limits are only true within the Wizard. If
you want to produce very small or much bigger bar codes, you can paste
it into any application that uses font directly. Word, for instance,
can produce any size you enter directly in the font size box (at the
right hand side of the font name). For instance, paste into a word
document, select the bar code, and enter “300”. It will fill the whole
The aspect ratio slider changes the height of the bar code. As a default,
the generated bar code is pretty much square. If you push on the left,
other fonts, with different shapes, will be used, to make the lines
shorter (M1, M2). On the right, lines are taller (P1, P2).
In the present document, screen copies have been used, which are not very
sharp. The advantage is that they can be seen even if the fonts are not in
the system. For maximum resolution, though, you may need to use the fonts
with graphic programs such as Adobe Illustrator©, Corel Draw© or other
programs that do not quite understand fonts the way a word processor
would, so ‘Paste’ does not work quite the same way.
The second piece of information
generated by Barcode Wizard™ is the character chain used to generate
the bar code with the EAN13 Match™ font. In effect, what a standard
font would show instead. This information can be useful to understand
the complexity involved, if you where to use the font without the help
of this lifesaver program! This bit of information can also be useful
for printers and programmers. Essentially, it is the very same as what
is copied to the clipboard, but with a standard font.
In Illustrator or other vector-based programs, the entry of text
may be separated from the actual rendition with the font. So, you can
set usage for the font you want, for instance ‘UPCA-M1’, and enter the
character chain, or simply paste the bar code in the text field, to
get the proper bar code digitized.
Using a picture instead
Let us imagine you want to place the
bar code on a cardboard layout, to hang in a self-service display, a
widely used way of applying bar code. You may use the font in a text
field. But in some layout programs, it is much easier to use a
picture. Well, in the file menu, you will find the command “save as
picture”. It will create from the current content of the Barcode box a
Jpeg picture file, which you will then be able to use in your layout
program. This is also convenient if a business partner or customer
wants a picture of the SKU (another current name for product code).
Printing an assortment, printing
You can also print the bar code, to
see how it will look on paper, by using the File/Print command, as in
any standard Windows program. For a quick glance, the “sample print”
will show you various sizes and label types, so you will gain an idea
of how it may look.
We also added a few standard labels,
both in US Letter size, or in European A4 sheet size. In general, this
application is convenient if you create labels for a product in your
store, and want to assign an SKU for a limited number of products.
Please note that for optimal results, you will need to nudge the
margin sizes until the code fits on each label. This is usually
obtained with the Printer setup command. We recommend you start with
the smaller possible margin (seldom zero, more often ¼ inch), and the
increase carefully. This will require a few sheets of paper, until you
are satisfied and can switch to stickers. This feature is difficult to
use and is provided only for small operations or quick print, when
creating a layout is not possible or necessary.
Bar code printing size has been set
for optimal rendition. You can change the size of the accompanying
Most U.S. Made products use a
different bar code standard, called UPC, which is quite different. In
general, EAN-13 codes do not start by zero, but rather by 3 (France)
or 5 (Germany) for instance. Another difference is that usually, UPC
bar codes have small digits on each side of the bar code, when EAN
codes usually do not have small digits on the right hand side. At any
rate, if you enter an UPC code in the Barcode Wizard™ for EAN-13, it
will not look at all like the original, where an EAN-13 bar code will
look identical. You can change the standard by using the standard
popup menu, at the bottom left corner of the Barcode Wizard™. If
possible, the bar code is changed to the new selected standard.
Otherwise, you may need to click ‘Process’ again.
Fonts, printing, sharing
The TrueType fonts used by
the Barcode Wizard™ can be digitized for optimum rendition. No
limit has been placed on their usage. They can be transformed into
vectors for PDF or PostScript documents (PSF or .PS files). They
can be embedded into PDF documents.
If you rather want to use the fonts themselves for Desktop
Publishing, you must first save the fonts, then install them into
Font Book. Save the fonts as a zip file by pressing ‘Save fonts’ on
the main screen, then double click on the zip file to extract it.
Inside, select the fonts and drag them over Font Book. You can also
click on each font file and click Install.
Using the fonts in a document is pretty simple : after you have
generated a bar code with the Barcode Wizard, the styled bar code
font has been copied to the clipboard. So in most standard Macintosh
applications, just hit Command-V, or use the Paste option in the
Edit menu. In some Desktop Publishing programs, you may have to
select one of the EAN13 fonts first.
For typesetting, when passing
both documents and fonts to the printer, please make sure no to forget
the appropriate UPCA xx or EAN13 xx font in the package. In general,
competent printers can today use OpenType OTF fonts. If that was not
the case, read below where to locate TrueType fonts.
Plain and simple efficiency
This simple to use, affordable package
is not meant to introduce users to the beauties of rocket science
EAN-13 parity check calculus, as some other packages out there seem
to. Our goal is rather, to provide a convenient tool for the business
community. With a simple font set and program, you can start producing
bar codes in 4 different standard formats that scan, to package your
products in minutes, and center your energies towards selling, the
very reason why bar codes are so widely used today.
If you need more assistance, you can
send a message here
We will reply right away.
Disclaimer : This document is copyright
Match Software. All rights reserved. Match Software™, Barcode Wizard™,
EAN13 Match™ fonts, are trademarks of ABCWARE, LLC dba Match Software.
All other intellectual properties, such as copyright and trademarks,
mentioned in this document, belong to their respective holders.