PDF export: Make links within same document functional

Use case or problem

I often generate PDFs from notes for others to read (think instruction manuals) and I use links to headers and blocks inside the same document for easy navigation.

Now external links (Markdown style) work fine in the generated PDF, Obsidian-type links (into the vault) and internal links like [[#Installation]] are displayed like links but don’t work.

I understand that links into the vault (i.e., outside the current document) will never work, but links within the same document should!

Proposed solution

Make internal links (within the same document) work in the PDF. This should be comparatively easy, especially since they usually look like this:

[[#A heading]]
[[#^3dc8bc|A link to a block]]

Current workaround

None found.

Related feature request

To make it easier for readers of the PDF, non-working links like [[Into the Vault]] should probably have a different color in the PDF (subdued? darker? lighter?), or none at all.

28 Likes

Fully supporting this feature request !

1 Like

Not for me (v0.12.19)
They look like to a link, but they not linked, is just a text.
Thanks,

1 Like

Is anything being done on this? It would make sending things via far better

I’m using 0.14.15 on Linux.

Yes, please. Really hoping we get this.

In response to https://forum.obsidian.md/t/cross-references-in-the-same-note-or-markdown-formatted-links-work-in-obsidian-but-not-in-the-produced-pdf/

When creating cross-references to other sections within the note in the following format, [[NoteName#cross-reference | cross-reference]] it works well in obsidian (I click it in Preview, and takes me to the section), but does not work in the exported PDF (the cross-reference is blue and underlined, but the cursor does not turn into a hand, and clicking on them does nothing). It would be great if it worked in PDFs too.

Moreover, hyperlinks in the following format [google](www.google.com) also don’t work in the PDF.

Website links work well in both obsidian and the PDF (cursor turns into a hand, and clicking on them opens the link in my browser).

E.g. In the following note

# introduction
bla bla bla

# section
Check the [[Untitled#introduction | introduction]] section

visit [google](www.google.com)

www.youtube.com

All three links are clickable in Obsidian preview mode, but only youtube.com is clickable in the PDF. Can we please have cross-references ([[NoteName#cross-reference | cross-reference]]) and markdown-formatted links ([google](www.google.com)) also work in the PDF?

EDIT: Turns out that the [google](www.google.com) links were not working in the PDF because there must be a bug in the Flatpak version of Obsidian. I am running Obsidian 0.12.15 from AUR now, and [google](www.google.com) links work. Cross-references are not working however

6 Likes

Oh, great call!

2 Likes

Thanks @ryanjamurphy, would that take a long time to implement, or is it something we can expect in the next release?

2 Likes

Hard to say, sorry. Depends on many factors, such as the popularity of the request, the ease of development, whether the devs are fixing/improving related issues…

2 Likes

Yes, please.

1 Like

Popularity of request +1

2 Likes

awesome idea but (based on my very limited programming knowledge) seems like it would be very hard to do. IDK though, if it wouldn’t be that hard to do, definitely would be amazing.

I’m not sure that I fully understand this feature request. Is it that if I have a .pdf file within the vault and it contains a wikilink or some other note referencing mechanism, that the reference should be clickable?

Edit: I’ve just tested a regular link in a PDF and it works. I think I might be referring to an entirely different feature request (if it doesn’t exist already), which is to parse all PDF text in the PDF viewer to search for wikilinks and other friends for obsidian graph traversal. This pertains to ANY PDF, not just what I assume to be PDFs generated from a .md

What I understand is that it’s being requested for links to other notes to be clickable when exporting .md files to pdf

No, internal links, links to headings. For example to make a table of contents work.

1 Like

Agree & Bump

Much needed feature.

thanks for the clarification!