Obtaining a PDF/A-1b thesis with Latex, XeLaTeX and pdfLaTeX
Our institution requires that the final version of the thesis is submitted as a PDF/A-1b ISO-19005-1:2005 document. If your document has a good deal of equations and you like to have also some fancy stuff in the document, like bookmarks and so on, then the task of obtaining the such a document may not be straightforward.
There is a general pdfLaTeX package named pdfx that is supposed to do this job as one of its options. However, there are many instances were the package fails to produce a PDF/A-1b file. Here an alternative to 'pdfx' that is somehow more robust is introduced. The package package is called pdfathesis. It can be used with pdfLaTeX, XeLaTeX, LaTeX and some other LaTeX processors. In addition to the regular files generated when processing the document, the package creates two additional files to be post-processed by the latest version of Ghostscript in order to obatain the PDF/A-1b file.
If you do not know how to install it, please read the documentation included.
If you have already formated your thesis, just include the package near the begining of yor preamble with the command
and remove all references to the packages 'hyperref' or 'bookmarks'. If you are lucky enough, after runing LaTeX or XeLaTeX of pdfLaTeX and post-processing with Ghostscript you will have a PDF/A-1b document ready. It may also happen that the fancy stuff that you want in your document is not compatible with the PDF/A specification and, sadly, you might need to get rid of it if you want to graduate.
The package 'pdfathesis' also can be called as a LaTeX class and in such a case it will do the basic formating of your document. Enclosed in the package, there is a self-explanatory template called pdfathesis_template.tex that may help you to start this job.