Top 10 Adobe Reader Alternatives You Can Use

That a program is the most used does not always mean that it is the best. Adobe Reader is the best example of this : the most used PDF reader is neither the safest, as we said yesterday , nor the lightest.If you do not like this reader and want to change, in IEEnews we bring you a list with several alternatives to it . Without further delay, we go with her after the jump. If we take a look through the internet we will find different free PDF viewers for Windows and great quality. In this article I show you the best.The alternative PDF readers presented here range from the simplest, designed for nothing more than viewing PDF files to the most complete ones including annotations and highlighting. Some applications even include features you will not find in Adobe Reader, such as basic PDF editing tools.


Adobe Reader Alternatives? Adobe Reader , the PDF reader for Adobe, is almost by default the obvious choice when having a program to open such documents. However, it has a number of disadvantages that are concentrated on two fundamental points. On the one hand, its weight , we could almost call unnecessary, which exceeds tens of megabytes. On the other hand, the serious security vulnerabilities that the program has and that put us at risk. Therefore, it’s time to evaluate some alternatives to Adobe Reader that are lighter and safer . Adobe Reader Alternatives?

Adobe reader alternative 2016, adobe reader alternative reddit, Best free and alternative PDF readers to Adobe Acrobat Reader, adobe reader alternative 2017? Free alternatives to Adobe Reader, Adobe Reader Alternatives?

Portable Document Format, or PDF, was developed back in the early nineties as a way to replace a number of competing formats like DjVu, Envoy, Fallaron, PostScript etc. in the early years of the World Wide Web. With Adobe controlling it as a proprietary format until 2008, Adobe Reader has been the go-to PDF Reader on our computers for as long as most of us can remember. However, it is bloated, slow to load up and is certainly not the only option in the market if you’re looking for a free PDF reader. There are plenty of them available that comes with more features and are even less taxing on the resources than Adobe’s program, which is why we’ve decided to bring you our list of the top 10 Adobe Reader alternatives you can use on your Windows PC: Adobe Reader Alternatives?

The Portable Document Format (PDF) is a type of document created by the company Adobe more than 20 years ago, very versatile and useful that with the passage of time and the increase of internet speeds has become  standard for The exchange of documents. And it is that the PDF has its virtue in that it was designed to describe documents that must be printed , so that perfectly stores all the information relating to the layout or color space of the content for its final representation. Adobe Reader Alternatives?


One of the features that has made it popular has been its Adobe Acrobat Reader which is free (but not free) for different platforms being the most popular Microsoft Windows, so to view / print its contents is not necessary for a heavy program , But a small viewer.

However, to generate a PDF document Adobe offers the Adobe Acrobat solution , the official Adobe software for creating and manipulating or digitally signing PDF documents . Needless to say, this software is not exactly cheap .

On the other hand, in recent years the Adobe Acrobat Reader has gone from being a lightweight display program to a rather heavy and relatively slow one , which sometimes does not install properly.

Luckily for small and medium-sized businesses, alternatives to free and free software-based PDF have emerged in recent years , which will make life easier for us.  Adobe Reader Alternatives

That a program is the most used does not always mean that it is the best. Adobe Reader is the best example of this : the most used PDF reader is neither the safest, as we said yesterday , nor the lightest. If you do not like this reader and want to change, in IEEnews we bring you a list with several alternatives to it . Without further delay, we go with her after the jump.

1. Sumatra PDF

Adobe reader alternative 2016, adobe reader alternative reddit, Best free and alternative PDF readers to Adobe Acrobat Reader, adobe reader alternative 2017? Free alternatives to Adobe Reader, Adobe Reader Alternatives?

Sumatra PDF Adobe Reader Alternatives
Sumatra PDF Adobe Reader Alternatives

Sumatra PDF is one of the best free pen source PDF reader alternative for Adobe reader. Sumatra PDF reader is very easy to install and it is easily available for download. Some of the features of This great adobe alternative are good and fast user interface, intuitive UI, simple to use, and it’s very small in size, when compared to other adobe PDF readers. The best thing about Sumarta PDF I love is that it is just 4MB in size and do not eat up your computer resources. First released in 2006, and since it is an is an open source pdf reader, is hosted on github. This is one of the fastest PDF readers and that’s why it is on the number one position in our best adobe readers alternatives 2017 list. This PDF reader does not have all the features but it load PDF documents very fast and can also handle complex and bigger documents with ease. and is a free and pen source PDF reader that has a simple, intuitive user-interface, and is light on your computer’s resources.

Sometimes we do not need a PDF reader with many features, but just something that reads quickly and without complications. Sumatra PDF does this: it’s just a PDF reader . The interface is as simple as possible, with the navigation bar and the rest of the screen, for the file. It is a free PDF, XPS, DjVu, CHM, CBZ, CBR for Windows document viewer. Its main virtue is to be very light, fast and minimalistic (the installer only occupies 4.5 MB), even having a portable version that does not require installation. It can also be integrated with Firefox or Internet Explorer.

The reality is that with Sumatra we will not be able to do much more. Its advantages lie in speed and weight, but we will simply be able to open PDF documents to read them, without much more. It uses very few system resources to operate, and those with previous operating systems, where reading PDFs was not so simple, will be grateful. More modern users, who have Windows 8, can make use of the native PDF reader.

Sumatra PDF is free software, is in English and for Windows, and has a ZIP version that does not require installation . A good program to have it on a USB and that can get us out of a hurry. In the second place of our alternatives to Adobe Reader we find Sumatra , another reader of PDF documents that is a bit more advanced. With this application we will not be able to do anything advanced, but it helps us to alleviate the biggest mistakes that Reader has: namely, weight and vulnerability. Sumatra is not only a very lightweight application, but also has a portable version to carry with us on a USB stick. Sumatra PDF is perhaps one of the most basic and functional PDF readers we can find today. Its interface is very simple. We will only find a navigation bar. The rest of the screen is dedicated to the file. Sumatra PDF is free and is only available for Windows . It offers a version in ZIP that does not require installation, something that can come very well to get us out of more of a hurry.

Although sumatra pdf software lacks some of the features from its rivals but it is still one of the best pdf viewers and a definite contender for adobe reader alternatives. It has large number of keyboard shortcuts that you can use to navigate quickly. You can also install it quickly on other desktop pc’s or laptops because of it’s portability, as it comes in both portable and installer versions. You can easily view PDF documents with this PDF tool and other most striking feature of this PDF viewer is that you can also use this tool as ebook reader and it supports various other book reading file formats, such as ePub, Mobi, XPS, CHM, DjVu, CBZ, CBR etc.

2. Foxit Reader

1 Foxit-Reader Adobe Reader Alternatives
Foxit-Reader Adobe Reader Alternatives

It is one of the most popular alternatives to Adobe Reader. It takes up little disk space and loads quickly . In addition, it has a plugin to read the PDFs directly in Firefox, tabs to see several documents in the same window and the possibility of adding plugins. Foxit PDF Reader is free and available for Windows and Linux. For me, the best alternative to Adobe Reader.

The second in our list of alternatives to Adobe Reader is Foxit , an interesting program that will also allow us to open PDF documents easily. In itself, it does not provide us with a series of amazing features that make us change, but it is lighter and faster. On the other hand, for those who are more reluctant to change, it is a good alternative since it maintains an interface similar to the Adobe program.

In addition to the interface, we can also find many of the basic functionalities found in Reader. We can add notes, zoom in certain parts of the document, search inside the text, and look at the document without loading the images. If what we are looking for is a change that is not too drastic, this is one of the best alternatives, which will mean a significant improvement in terms of time.

It’s not just a PDF viewer or a PDF editor, Foxit reader is a complete all in one Tool for PDF documents. It is one of the best, fast, reliable and complete PDF viewer and PDF editing tool that can stand against Adobe reader, and will do the justice to it’s namesake, and yet it is free. Also, has a paid version with more power. Foxit reader is another best alternative to the cult Adobe reader, it has medium file size, comes with more feature, can open and edit PDF files and many more features. Some of the features of foxit reader are:-

  • You can easily annotate and highlight text of your pdf documents,
  • You can also use foxit pdf reader to fill pdf forms.
  • Foxit reader also has safe reading mode which makes sure that documents remain safe from any malicious links.

All in all foxit reader is a complete PDF reading and editing tool and you can say that it is one of the best free alternatives to adobe pdf reader in 2017.  oxit PDF Editor is a very easy-to-use PDF editing program. When it comes to PDF editing, Foxit’s functions match those of a word processing software. This PDF editor locates text boxes automatically and allows users to edit paragraphs within text boxes.

If you are a first time user of foxit reader then you will find it very ease to use, as it has an intuitive user interface and also incorporates MS- office in it’s interface. You can also download and install extra addons in foxit reader. You can also convert PDFs to other document file formats by using one of foxit reder addons.


3. PDF X-Change Editor

3 PDF-XChange Editor Adobe Reader Alternatives
PDF-XChange Editor Adobe Reader Alternatives

This PDF editing and reading tool comes in both free and paid version and is a definite contender for adobe reader replacement. You can choose PDF exchange editor as an alternative to adobe reader without any hesitation. PDF exchange free version also has a good amount of features. It’s paid version comes with premium features. PDF exchange free version allows you to insert and extract pages, it also has a feature called OCR (optical character recognition) using which you will be able to scan any printed or photocopied document and save the text as PDF.

we recommend PDF-XChange Viewer, a perfect substitute for Acrobat Reader that has options for viewing and editing. One of its main advantages is that it offers encryption to protect documents. It is also capable of extracting texts or giving life to integrated mutimedia elements.

PDF Exchange Editor is yet another excellent choice as an Adobe Reader replacement. It comes in both paid and free avatars, and while the paid versions offer premium features, the free version is also fairly feature-packed when compared to some of the other programs in the market. With the free version, you can not only insert or extract pages, but it also comes with a great little feature called OCR (optical character recognition) that allows you to scan any printed document and save the text as a PDF.

PDF X-Change editor has 256-bit AES encryption, other features are page markup, text extraction from pdf documents and custom stamps. If you are using free version of PDFX-Change you will not be able to create a PDF document. You have to buy a paid version of this PDF editing tool to do that
Download:Free, $43.50

4. STDU Viewer

Science and Technical Documentation Utility (STDU) Viewer is a good alternative to adobe reader in 2017. STDU viewer file size is very tiny as low as 2.5mb download. This PDF and Image viewer software supports variety of file formats ranging from PDF to TIFF and it also supports image viewing formats like JPEG, PNG and more.

STDU viewer also supports many other popular file formats like, DjVu, XPS, JBIG2, FB2, TXT, e-books (ePub and Mobi), comic book archives (CBR and CBZ), TCR, PalmDoc (PDB), AZW and DCX.

STDU viewer supports these popular image formats, It can open JPEG, PNG, BMP, PCX, PNG, WMF, EMF and.

The ideal viewer for navigating multiple documents. This document viewer is meant to be the only application you use for all your technical documents, books and other readings. STDU Viewer supports TXT, comic files, PDF, DjVu, MOBI, EPUB , various image files and many more document formats.

STDU Viewer is a solid suite for managing multiple documents at once. Not only can you open documents in tabs and expand a navigation pane, you can also create and navigate bookmarks and highlights, view thumbnails of open documents and split windows to compare different pages within the same document. Another interesting feature is that you can invert the colors, such as black to white or white to black, which can reduce visual fatigue.

STDU Viewer does not have all the features of Nitro and Foxit Reader, yet it is a great alternative for those who have to read or review a large number of digital documents.

Other important feature of STDU viewer is that it has multi language support. You can choose between three languages English, russian and french. This pdf viewer tool comes has all basic PDF feature that should come with a free PDF viewer. Some of the feature are:-

  • you can view PDF documents
  • Supports PDF thumbnail view
  • You can also search by text layer
  • It also supports page rotation
  • You can also export a page as an image.

STDU viewer is free for students and educational use. You can also use it’s free version for non-commercial use. Although for companies and businesses you have to buy its paid version.


5. Nitro PDF Viewer

2 Nitro-Reader Adobe Reader Alternatives
2 Nitro-Reader Adobe Reader Alternatives

Lovers of the Ribbon interface, Nitro PDF Reader will love it . This reader integrates so well the toolbar that it looks like we are working with the Office suite. And it’s not only graphically well done, but it’s also functionally level. Moving further with the alternatives to Adobe Reader, we have Nitro PDF Reader . Unlike the two applications mentioned above, it has more features. It is faster, and simpler to use than Reader, and has a free and a paid version. With the free version, we will be able to convert files to PDF, but we will have to hold a watermark. With the paid version we have a series of advanced functions.

Nitro Reader allows us to export text and images from the PDF file , and also allows us to do the reverse process : convert images or texts, including Word or Excel files, to PDF format . Like Foxit, we can also see multiple files in tabs. Within these advanced functions we find the possibility of editing a document in a collaborative way. While slightly heavier than the previous alternatives, if what we are looking for is a document creation suite, it is ideal. Although this feature is available in more advanced word processors such as the latest versions of Word, it is possible that many end up needing it.

Nitro Reader is free and available for Windows.

Nitro PDF Reader is one of the preferred PDF suites available on the market. The 64-bit Nitro PDF reader is paired with a great interface for reading, creating or importing PDF files with ease.


  • Nitro’s PDF reader has a great capacity for optimization.
  • The tool is equipped with leading features in its class.


  • Nitro PDF reader is not an open source application.
  • OCR fails on large documents.

You can also create PDF Files from scratch. Nitro PDF reader is a complete PDF viewer with many great features. It has an interface which looks similar to MS Office. You can use Nitro PDF viewer to annotate your PDF documents, you can also highlight text in your documents ad can also add sticky notes. Other feature is a split-screen view that allows users to compare two different PDF files side-by-side. Nitro PDF viewer also supports drag-and-drop feature. Which you can use to create new PDF document by simply dragging any document on the Nitro desktop icon.

I present an alternative to Adobe Reader called Nitro PDF Reader , a program that has a very current interface and offers several options with which we can even annotate.

One of its advantages (with respect to Foxit Reader), is that at the time of making any annotation in the document will not appear any type of watermark ; In addition, you can highlight sections of the document, add text , sticky notes and even place your signature. Another important aspect of Nitro PDF Reader is that it allows you to extract unprotected PDF graphics and text.

Perhaps its only bad point is that it is a eater of RAM, since unlike similar but light applications ( Foxit Reader , for example), Nitro consumes up to 8 times more RAM . This even exceeds the percentage of memory used by Adobe Reader. But come on, if you want to have high functionalities and you have RAM memory to spare, running Nitro will not be a bigger problem.

Overall, it is definitely a program worth checking out if you’re looking for a free alternative to the Adobe Reader.
Download:Free, $159.99 

6. SlimPDF Reader

Adobe reader alternative 2016, adobe reader alternative reddit, Best free and alternative PDF readers to Adobe Acrobat Reader, adobe reader alternative 2017? Free alternatives to Adobe Reader, Adobe Reader Alternatives?

Slim PDF Reader Adobe Reader Alternatives
Slim PDF Reader Adobe Reader Alternatives

SlimPDF Reader is a small and lightweight PDF reader available for desktop Windows. The program weighs in at just 1.4MB, it is the lighter PDF reader available on the market. It is 10% of the size of Adobe Reader but views 100% of PDFs. Eliminate bloatware and help your computer run faster.

  • View any PDF File just like Adobe Reader
  • 100% Free
  • The smallest desktop PDF Reader in the World.

SlimPDF Reader doesn’t have a portable version.

7. Evince

Evince Adobe Reader Alternatives
Evince Adobe Reader Alternatives

One of the good things about GNOME and KDE desktop environments is the number of built-in applications they have. Among them are, of course, PDF readers . In KDE it ‘s Okular and GNOME Evince , and both do the same: read PDFs quickly. You do not have to worry about installations, nor what is the default. Just by clicking on a PDF file you will have the reader in front of your eyes.

The two readers are similar, and in addition to PDF they also support various formats , such as images or documents. Both are in Spanish, and are free software. The best alternative if you are on Linux . And so far this compilation. If you know a reader of PDF that is not here, do not hesitate to say it in the comments so that we all know it.

Evince is that it allows users to copy, convert and print PDF files that are protected by DRM restrictions.
Download:Free (Windows, Linux, Unix-like)

8. PhantomPDF

Adobe reader alternative 2016, adobe reader alternative reddit, Best free and alternative PDF readers to Adobe Acrobat Reader, adobe reader alternative 2017? Free alternatives to Adobe Reader, Adobe Reader Alternatives?

It is one of the top 10 Adobe Reader alternatives you can use on your Windows.

  • ConnectedPDF Security – grant and revoke document access.
  • ConnectedPDF Document Management
  • Professionalize documents by adding stamps, watermarks, headers, footers, bates number, etc.
  • Merge PDF documents together or split PDF apart.
  • Drag and drop pages within a document or from one document to another.
  • Crop, delete, add, swap, flatten, and rotate PDF pages
  • Create PDF, PDF/A, PDF/X, and PDF/E from Microsoft Office and virtually any file format.
  • Create PDF Portfolios to tie multiple files together and PDF Forms to collect data.
  • Convert webpages to PDF from the Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Firefox browsers.

9. pdfDocs

  • Edit, OCR, collate, split files, redact and stamp documents with Bates numbering
  • Mark up and annotate documents for review

pdfDocs is used daily by over 250,000 people around the world to create, edit, and collate PDFs. Over 100 government departments use pdfDocs to create electronic binders. pdfDocs is compatible with Microsoft Office 2016 and Windows 10. Powerful collation and binding capability can save up to 3 hours per week


10 Proview (Mac)

Adobe reader alternative 2016, adobe reader alternative reddit, Best free and alternative PDF readers to Adobe Acrobat Reader, adobe reader alternative 2017? Free alternatives to Adobe Reader, Adobe Reader Alternatives?

Compatible with Mac OS X, Proview is a PDF editor that uses a wide range of functions to edit documents and also to create new PDF documents. With this software, users can delete or add PDF files, or make changes to various parts of a PDF text. All its functions are fast and easy to execute.

Price: $ 42.26


    • Comprehensive and interactive tools, with greater formatting functions including transparency.
    • The Clipping, Purging and Art Box tools, plus the ability to label multiple pages.


  • The fact that the documents edited by the trial version carry the watermark ‘Demo’.
  • Its inadequate functions compared to Acrobat X Pro.

11 PDFCreator.

Possibly the best free and free tool for creating PDF documents. It installs as a virtual Windows printer, so to generate a PDF we will only have to release an impression by this printer. It has multiple options for generating the PDF, such as signatures, color space, document restrictions, etc.

12 PDF Maker and Virtual Image Printer Pro. 

Both are programs from which we can generate a PDF documents from any windows application, as they are installed as a virtual printer operating system.

13 PDF Split and Merge. 

It is a utility that will allow us to cut and cobulate PDF documents. With 12 built-in plugins, it will allow us to reorder the pages, rotate them, encrypt them, decrypt them, establish metadata or make a visual composition of documents, among many other functions.

14 PDF Edit. 

PDFedit is a free open source pdf editor and a PDF document manipulation library, released under the terms of the GNU GPL version 2. It includes a PDF manipulation library, graphical user interface User, a set of command line tools and a PDF editor. It is not only editor but also visualizer.

15 PDFBooklet
It is an application written in Python Gtk that allows to make books or pamphlets from the PDF files. You can also adjust margins, rotate, scale, merge files, or extract pages. These are some of the free applications we can find to work with PDFs, which as a whole can completely replace the usual functions needed by an SME.

16 Cool PDF

We return to a more minimalist approach with Cool PDF , which will allow us to open this type of documents without too many additional frills. As Sumatra, we will be able to do several things while reading the document, but with a lighter weight, a greater speed, and without complications as we might expect from Adobe Reader. It is ideal for those who are looking for nothing more than this, but who want to get rid of the Adobe program urgently.

It is a very light and lightweight PDF viewer . That way, if you’re tired of Adobe Acrobat Reader not fulfilling this task, do not hesitate and try Cool Reader. Although it is a fairly simple program, it has some interesting functions. For example, it allows you to extract images and texts from documents, as well as convert PDF to various image formats. It supports multiple languages ​​and can be used without the need to install it.

With Cool PDF we will be able to zoom in the documents that we have open, move between pages, and nothing else. If we wanted something more elaborate, we can opt for other of the applications in this list. But if what we are looking for is a supreme minimalism in which we can simply read a PDF and go on with our lives, then this is the application we were looking for, without adding anything extravagant.


16. Web Browsers: Firefox, Chrome and Edge

Firefox was the first web-browser to integrate the PDF viewer functionality

Whether you’re using Google Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge, your browser already has a built-in PDF reader.You will not have all the features but the browser as a PDF reader is a quick way to read PDF documents and you will save a lot of system resources.

It should be noted that PDF browsers are not always compatible with all types of PDF files, apart from lacking advanced features such as filling forms, signing documents or annotations.

* Egde: In Windows 10, Microsoft Edge is both the default browser and the default PDF reader. PDF files are opened in an Edge browser tab. The only thing that distinguishes them from a normal webpage is the PDF toolbar at the top. You can search the document, adjust the zoom level, print and save the file.

* Chrome: The Chrome PDF reader interface is similar to Edge. You’ll find controls for the zoom level in the lower right. In addition to everything Edge does, you can rotate the document.

* Firefox: Among the PDF readers in the browser, Firefox offers the most complete package. In addition to the standard features offered in Chrome and Edge, you can extend a sidebar, turn both ways, and turn the hand tool on or off.
Download:Firefox (Windows, Mac, Linux)
Download:Chrome (Windows, Mac, Linux)

The Best Adobe Reader Alternatives For Your Windows PC
While the aforementioned programs are all excellent choices as Adobe Reader alternatives, they are not the only choices you have. If you’re running Windows 8 or 8.1, you also get a native PDF viewer that’s simply named ‘Reader’. Most Office suites, like MS Office and Libre Office, also allow users to read, create, annotate and edit PDF files, so if you have either installed on your computer, you can easily use either MS Word or Libre Office Writer to get the job done. So now that you know about so many Adobe Reader alternatives, which one are you most interested in? Do let us know in the comments section below.


PDF tools come in handy when you need to work with PDF files to combine or split pages, add a header, footer or watermarks, highlight areas or add notes to PDF documents or convert any PDF format and vice versa.

In this article, programs designed to combine multiple PDFs, split or reorder their pages and other general functions gathered in a single application are analyzed under the heading  General Tools . Applications designed for more specific tasks are grouped under the heading  Specific Tools .

General Tools – Merge, Divide, Reorder, and More

PDFill PDF Tools is my favorite for its clean and nice interface, covering most functions, such as joining pdf files, splitting or reorder pages, rotating or cropping pdf pages, adding headers and footers with page numbers, etc. .

You can incorporate watermarks in the form of text by typing a word (such as ‘DRAFT’ to indicate that the document is pending review) or a background image can be added to the PDF.

It also supports some additional functions, such as encryption and decryption with security options; Formatted multiple pages to turn them into one; Delete, flatten or list fields in PDF forms; Convert PDFs into image and vice versa; And convert PostScript files into PDFs.

The installation package must include a second program, PDFill PDF Editor, which is not free. However, once installed you can use PDFill PDF Tools without problems. The free part of this software does not support some functions like convert PDFs to text, create annotations, etc. But in the next section, Specific Tools , you have a list of programs available with all these functions.

PDFTK Builder is an alternative practice. The great advantage of PDFTK Builder is that you can combine or reorder the selected pages from a single PDF file, which greatly simplifies things if you have a lot of work to do.

PDFTK Builder also allows you to split, rotate, add stamps or logos as document background and encryption functions. Apart from those mentioned, it does not have any other additional features.
The worst thing about PDFTK Builder is that it lacks a basic feature (which you will find in PDFill PDF Tools ) such as adding text as a watermark to PDF documents. This function will seem important to you if you need to mark your documents as ‘Confidential’, ‘Draft’, etc.

If the most important thing for you is to have the maximum number of functions in a single free program, jPDF Tweak will be a good choice. However, its user interface is not as good as the previous two applications. In the ‘input’ tab are all the options for combining, dividing and reordering. Then a new document is generated and accessed in the ‘output’ tab.

With this complete program you can rotate, insert watermarks and format multiple pages, change page numbers and chapter markers. In addition, jPDF Tweak also includes encryption functions and allows you to add attachments to PDF documents.

Yet another thing, jPDF Tweak allows you to adjust viewing preferences and document properties, including title, author, theme, and keywords.

PDFsam (PDF Split and Merge initials) is worth trying if you need to visualize how to reorder or compose many pages of PDF files.

You can mix, merge or extract, split and rotate pages by specifying page numbers. In addition, PDFsam allows you to rearrange PDF pages thanks to thumbnails. The job is made easier with thumbnails also to combine, delete, rotate or reorder pages of a PDF and save the result to another PDF file.

Since PDFsam is a Java application, it can run on any operating system that supports Java. The basic version of PDFsam is free to use, while the enhanced version requires a donation.

For Linux users, PDF Shuffler will give you tasks like rearranging the pages of a pdf document, or combining and dividing pdf files.

Once you import one or more PDF files into PDF Shuffler, the program introduces you to all the thumbnail pages so you can easily access options to combine, reorder or delete pages. You can right-click on a thumbnail to rotate or crop a page before exporting the new pdf.

PDF Shuffler is a small application to run on Linux. Some distributions, such as Ubuntu, include PDF Shuffler in the repository to simplify download and installation.

Specific Tools

The free applications we discuss in this section are useful for specific functions that we have not found in the General Tools .

Edit a PDF file

The Oracle PDF Import (formerly Sun PDF Import) extension for allows you to create a hybrid pdf file with LibreOffice or OpenOffice Writer. A hybrid pdf is basically a pdf file that includes all embedded odf source code. The good thing about this type of file is that you can not only see with a normal PDF viewer, you can also open it to edit the text with LibreOffice or OpenOffice Writer maintaining the original design with absolute fidelity. See the article in English A PDF File Allows Editing in 100% Accuracy Layout to know more.

If you need to edit a standard or non-hybrid pdf file, LibreOffice or OpenOffice Draw is the free options available. You can use them to edit small parts of text, add or delete images and similar tasks, but unfortunately does not automatically adjust the template.

Convert PDFs to Text

Some PDF to TXT Converter is a lightweight tool that preserves the original text and design and allows drag and drop, batch conversion and pdf file encryption. You can also try the latest version of Nitro PDF Reader , which has the option of keeping any part of the text in paragraphs so that it is easier to realign them or divide each line width from the given number of characters that you yourself. is a good program of scanning and OCR (Optical Character Recognition) that allows to extract text of a PDF originated when scanning a document. Alternatively, images from scanned PDF documents can be selected and placed on the clipboard. Also try , an online solution for OCR recognition.

Convert PDFs to Word / Excel

Some PDF to Word Converter allows you to eliminate manual line breaks and keep paragraphs with automatic line breaks. Supports batch conversion and encryption of pdf files and maintains images. The version we have analyzed does not preserve the hyperlinks.

You can convert documents online thanks to Nitro PDF and its PDF-to-Word Converter and PDF-to-Excel Converter . Select the file you need to convert, click on the “Convert” button and you will receive the converted files in your inbox.


Convert multiple formats to PDF

7-PDF Maker is a powerful tool to convert a wide variety of formats to PDF. Not only is it possible to convert files generated by Word, Excel, Powerpoint, LibreOffice, OpenOffice, StarOffice, Maths and AutoCad, but it also converts images, texts or files based on a webpage into PDF. The installation includes the option to choose whether to handle it from the command line or integrated in Windows Explorer; The user interface is in both English and German (although the program web is only available in German).

If you use office applications such as LibreOffice or OpenOffice , or word processors like Jarte , all include the option to export documents into PDF. The latest versions of Microsoft Office also come with a free add- on for saving documents as PDF.

If you choose to work with 7-PDF Maker or with any of the above applications, you will see that PDF files converted or exported retain the function of clicking the hyperlinks or markers and the original design of the page remains the same.

Another option that may interest you is to install a virtual PDF printer, such as Bullzip , to create a PDF by sending text or other content. However, hyperlinks and bookmarks usually do not work in the resulting PDF.

If all you are interested in is to convert several image files to PDF, my favorite is i2pdf . It works even better than the “Convert Images to PDF” tool that includes PDFill PDF Tools. Download and unzip i2pdf and run directly (no installation needed). It’s a portable and easy-to-use program – just drag and drop the images into the program window, click the “Build PDF” button and you’re done. In the output settings the “paperless” format is useful for converting portraits and landscape photos to PDF and viewing them on the screen with no white margins around.

How to convert files to PDF online? 7-PDF Web Portal and many other websites, such as kool Converter or Document Converter eXPress offer conversion to PDF online.

Extract images from a PDF

Some PDF Images Extract is a good choice. You can extract all images from multiple PDFs in batches or extract only the images from the pages you select and convert them to a PDF. Images can be saved in jpg, bmp, png, tiff, gif or tga format.

Insert Notes in PDF Documents

PDF-XChange Viewer allows you to insert notes into PDF documents. Various operations can be performed, such as highlighting, cross-marking or underlining text; Draw shapes; Seal and fill PDF forms with their built-in writing tool. The bad thing is that some advanced functions are only achieved with the Pro version, for payment. Specifically in the free version you can not create a new bookmark or rename a bookmark in a PDF document.

The good news is that now Foxit Reader has included this particular feature along with many other basic tools to insert notes, and they are free. If you are looking for an alternative, Foxit Reader is fine.

For Linux users, Okular is a good choice. Allows you to add notes, highlight text, draw lines and shapes, add text boxes and stamps, select and save a portion of documents as text or image format.

Create and Edit Bookmarks

JPdfBookmarks allows you to create and edit bookmarks in PDF files you already have. You can add bookmarks to jump directly to a particular page of PDF documents, link to another PDF file in the file system or go to a website in a browser.

Bookmarks can be easily renamed or edited. To create a bookmark so that when you open the document, jump to a certain paragraph, right click on a bookmark and select “Set Destination” and then “Replace Current”. When you finish, save the file as a new PDF and you’re done.

Create PDF Forms to Fill

PDFescape is a very useful web application to create online PDF forms directly from the browser. In addition to creating and editing forms to fill in, you can add text, links and sticky notes (post-it type), correct errors (like with tippex) and draw basic shapes. PDF Escape is now free. If you want to save your work and come back at another time you have to register.

Crop Pages in a PDF

Briss is a cross-platform application in Java with which it is very fast and easy to crop pages of a PDF. Simply load the pdf file and mark one or more rectangles with the mouse to trim the parts of the page you want and then save it as a separate file. If you open a pdf with many pages, you can see the odd and even pages superimposed and cut them easily at once.

Set Viewer Preferences and Metadata

BeCyPDFMetaEdit is quite a find. Allows you to edit most metadata, customize viewer preferences, slide show with transitions, labels on pages, etc. Tweak PDF is another option with a simple user interface but without the option to create slideshows and some other features.

Digitally Sign a PDF File

DigiSigner is a handy tool for digitally signing PDF files and verifying signatures. This process allows you to ensure that important PDF documents, such as invoices or contracts, are not counterfeit. The free version of DigiSigner supports smart cards, USB tokens, Windows key certificates and standard Personal Information Exchange (PFX) files.

You can also use the online version here , with which you can take advantage of the fact that the user interface is the same as the desktop version and you do not need to install the program.

Note: You can easily create a PFX file with the free Make PFX tool , giving the files and passwords a Software Publishing Certificate (SPC) and a Private Key (PVK).

Recover Forgotten Passwords

PDFCrak test , which applies to both Linux and DOS (the DOS version can be downloaded here ). The only functionality of this software is to recover passwords and / or contents that you have created but whose access you have lost, as indicated in your FAQ .

Brochure Printing

Gimposition (or Govert’s Simple Imposition Tool ) allows you to reorder and reformat pages of a PDF document and prepare them for printing as booklets, print them on a double page by folio with separation lines or place two copies of the same page together with clipping marks on the first page. It does not need to be installed, it simply decompresses the downloaded file and starts the executable.

Other Functions

To attach files to a PDF, try PDF Bundle ; To compress a PDF file, try Free PDF Compressor or follow this method explained in our Freeware Forum.


The following free applications offer very specific functions, some of them available in the programs that we have already analyzed. They come from user contributions in the comments of this article and other sources. Here I have listed with brief descriptions and links to the corresponding sites for easy reference.

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