Barcode Backends

KBarcode supports different backends to generate the barcode data. You should at least install one of them. Barcode writer in Pure Postscript is allready included in the KBarcode distribution and includes most 1D barcode symbologies. GNU Barcode supports most of the basic 1D barcodes. You should install at least GNU Barcode. PDF417 Encode can only create a PDF417 barcodes. If you do not need PDF417 barcodes, do not install it. TBarcode supports allmost every important 1D or 2D barcode. If GNU Barcode does not support the barcode you need, take a look onto TBarcode, developed by TEC-IT. A demo version is available for free download.


To enable barcode support you need also a working installation of Ghostscript. A complete list of supported barcodes sorted by barcode backend is also available.


Barcode Writer in Pure Postscript

This is the only barcode backend already included in KBarcode by default. Most 1D symbologies are supported by Barcode Writer in Pure Postscript.


For more information please look at

GNU Barcode

KBarcode is using GNU Barcode to create barcodes. Please see also:

GNU-barcode is meant to solve most needs in barcode creation with a conventional printer. It can create printouts for the conventional product-tagging standards: UPC-A, UPC-E, EAN-13, EAN-8, ISBN. Output is generated as either Postscript or Encapsulated Postscript (other back-ends may be added if needed). The package is released as both a library and a command-line frontend, so that you can include barcode-generation into your application.


Source Code:

GNU Barcode 0.9.8:


RPM Files:

GNU Barcode 0.9.8:

GNU Barcode 0.9.8 Development:


PDF417 Encode

KBarcode uses pdf417_encode to create 2-D Barcodes. Please see: for more details.


pdf417_encode converts ASCII strings into a PDF417 barcode. This is a two-dimensional barcode that includes error correction up to level 8. The input file will support text that can be specified for byte compaction (hex string), text compaction (ASCII string), and numerical compaction (decimal string). Output formats supported are Postscript and pbm.


Source Code

PDF 417 Encode Source Code:



TBarcode supports almost all important 1D and 2D barcodes. To list only a few: Code 11, Code 2 of 5, Code39, EAN, UPC, CodaBar, Code128, Deutsche Post Leitcode, Code 93, PostNet, Plessey Code, MSI Code, LOGMARS, PDF417, MaxiCode, QR-Code, Australian Post, Royal Mail, Data Matrix.


A free demo version can be downloaded at KBarcode will also work with the licensed version of TBarcode which does not draw a vertical bar over the barcode. For more information have a look on the documentation.


To use TBarcode in conjuction with KBarcode, you need KBarcode >= 1.5.0