List of PDF software

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This list of PDF software includes links to articles on software used to manage Portable Document Format (PDF) documents.

Multi-platform[edit]

Converters[edit]

These allow users to convert PDF files to other formats.

NameLicensePlatformsDescription
deskUNPDFProprietaryMac, WindowsConverts PDFs to Word, Excel, Text, HTML
GIMPGNU GPLLinux, Mac, WindowsConverts PDF to raster images
ImageMagickApacheLinux, Mac, WindowsConverts PDF to raster images and viceversa
PDFLiteGNU LGPLWindowsConverts PDF to other file format (text, images, html, ...)
LibreOfficeGNU LGPLBSD, Linux, Mac, Windows (Java based)Import from PDF (extension included by default), export as PDF including PDF/A.
OpenOffice.orgGNU GPLLinux, Mac, WindowsImport from PDF (with restrictions) (after installing an extension[1]), export as PDF including PDF/A.
Poppler-utilsGNU GPLLinux, Unix, WindowsConverts PDF to other file format (text, images, html, ...)
pstoeditGNU GPL ?Converts PostScript to (other) vector graphics file format
QPDFArtistic License 2.0Linux, Windows[2]Structural, content-preserving transformations from PDF to PDF
pdf-parserPublic DomainPython scriptExtraction and analysis tool, handles corrupt and malicious PDF documents
Solid Converter PDFProprietaryWindows, Mac OS XPDF to Word, Excel, HTML and Text; supports passwords, text editing, and batch conversion
SWFToolsGNU GPLLinux, Windows, MacSWF conversion and manipulation suite containing a standalone PDF to SWF converter along with a Python gfx API ( requires Xpdf )
Nitro PDFProprietaryWindowsConverts PDF to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, raster images
Able2extractProprietaryWindows, Mac OS X, LinuxConverts PDF to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, Open Office, AutoCAD, HTML, Text, Images
Mobipocket CreatorProprietaryWindowsImport from PDF and create HTML and MOBI output

Editors[edit]

These allow users to modify an existing PDF file.

NameLicensePlatformsDescription
LibreOfficeGNU LGPLWindows, Mac OS, Linuxnative PDF opening and saving
OpenOffice DrawGNU LGPLWindows, Mac OS, LinuxPDF import via OpenOffice.org software, or extensions[1]
InkscapeGNU GPLWindows, Mac OS, LinuxOpen, edit and export documents, but only one page at a time (pages can be later combined using PDF printer)
PDFeditGNU GPLWindows, Linux, BSDSoftware to view or edit the internal structures of PDF documents, and merge them
PdftkGNU GPLWindows, Mac OS, Linux, FreeBSD, SolarisCommand-line tools to edit and convert documents; supports filling of PDF forms with FDF/XFDF data. GUI front-end exists
PDFSaMGNU GPLv2Windows, Mac OS, Linux, FreeBSD, SolarisGUI and command-line tools to split and merge PDF documents, rotate and rearrange pages; supports encrypting/decrypting of PDF documents, setting permissions, adding front or back cover, extracting attachments, filling the metadata
Nitro PDFProprietaryWindowsRich UI, allows combining PDFs, converting to other formats, editing (add images, shapes, text, etc.)
PDF StudioProprietaryWindows, Mac OS, LinuxFull feature PDF editor
KarbonLGPL and GPLWindows, Mac OS X, Linux, BSD, Solaris/IllumosImport PDF with multiple pages as layouts, export as a one page PDF. All standard vector graphics editor features.

Development libraries[edit]

These are used by software developers to add and create PDF features.

NameLicenseDescription
Adobe PDF LibraryProprietary LicenseC++, .NET, Java API with support for PDF editing, viewing, printing and text extractions
Formatting Objects ProcessorApache LicenseOpen-source print formatter driven by XSL Formatting Objects and an output independent formatter; main output target is PDF
GNU PDFGNU GPLOpen-source C library in development; when done, will provide functions to implement all features of PDF 1.7 specification. (Due to the availability of Poppler, as of 6 October 2011, GNU PDF is no longer considered a "high priority project" by FSF.[3])
iTextAGPL[4]Open-source library to create and manipulate PDF, RTF, HTML files in Java, C#, and other .NET languages
JasperReportsGNU LGPLOpen-source Java reporting tool that can write to screen, printer, or into PDF, HTML, Microsoft Excel, RTF, ODT, comma-separated values and XML files
JPedalProprietary, GNU LGPLJava developer library for view, extract, print PDF files
libHaruZLIB/LIBPNG[5]Open-source, cross-platform C library to generate PDF files
PDFTron SystemsProprietary LicenseC, C++, C# .NET, JAVA, Objective-C, Python, Ruby and PHP library for creating, editing, annotating, optimizing and viewing PDF files.
podofoGNU LGPLOpen-source C++ library to read and write the PDF files
PopplerGNU GPL[6]Open-source multi-backend C++ library derived from Xpdf; no bundled viewer; incl. pdftohtml converter
TCPDFGNU LGPLOpen-source PHP library to create PDF files
XEPProprietaryXSL-FO layout engine written in Java; output formats: PDF

Creators[edit]

These create files in their native formats, but then allow users to export them to PDF formats.

NameLicensePlatformsDescription
Adobe AcrobatProprietary ?Desktop PDF authoring suite
Adobe IllustratorProprietary ?Illustrator can save as PDF, and can recognize and edit text and graphics
FineReaderProprietary ?OCR tool; can save as PDF, and recognize text from PDF
GhostscriptGNU GPL ?Viewer, creator, converter; supports also PDF/X-3; used by PdfCreator, WinPdf, BullzipPdf, CutePDF freeware version and others
OpenOffice.orgGNU GPLLinux, Windows, MacAll OpenOffice.org applications allow PDF export; supports also PDF/A-1a; since many import formats are supported (e.g., doc, docx, rtf, xls, ppt) conversion is also possible
LibreOfficeGNU GPLLinux, Windows, MacAll LibreOffice applications allow PDF export; supports also PDF/A-1a; since many import formats are supported (e.g., doc, docx, rtf, xls, ppt) conversion is also possible
PageStreamProprietary ?Cross-platform desktop publishing application to open, edit, export
PrinceCommercialLinux, Mac, Windows, Solaris,Converts HTML, XML, SVG, and MathML to PDF by way of CSS
ScribusGNU GPLLinux/UNIX, Mac OS X, OS/2 Warp 4/eComStation and Windows desktopsCross-platform desktop publishing (DTP) application; supports also PDF/X-3
XEPProprietaryBSD, Linux, Mac, Windows (Java based)Converts XML and XSL-FO to PDF
LaTeX, TeXLaTeX Project Public License, Permissive ?Mark-up language and tools to write technical reports, books, magazines, almost any publication type
LuaTeXGNU GPL ?TeX typesetting system that creates PDF documents
pdfTeXGNU GPL ?TeX typesetting system that creates PDF documents
XeTeXMIT ?TeX typesetting system that creates PDF documents

Viewers[edit]

These allow users to view (not edit or modify) any existing PDF file.

NameLicenseDescription
Adobe ReaderProprietary, freewareAdobe's PDF reader
DigiSignerProprietary, freewarePDF viewer with added function to digitally sign PDF documents
EvinceGNU GPLUniversal viewer for GNOME.
Mozilla FirefoxFree SoftwareJavaScript-based build-in viewer, based on PDF.js.
Foxit ReaderProprietary, freewarePDF Viewer / Reader for Desktop computer and Mobile Devices. Allows users to add many elements to PDFs (e.g. arrowed comment boxes, text boxes, links, bookmarks, and images).
Google ChromeProprietary, freewareView, search PDF files. Smooth over-sampled display of low resolution images.
GhostscriptAladdin Free Public LicenseA legacy graphical interface for Ghostscript
MuPDFGNU GPLAims to be small and fast with high quality anti-aliased graphics. Does not support interactive features.
OkularGNU GPLUniversal viewer for KDE; replaces KPDF, available on versions of KDE from 4.1
PDF.jsApache License 2.0A JavaScript library to convert PDF files into HTML5, usable as a web-based viewer that can be included in web browsers.
QiqqaProprietary, freewareView PDFs in a variety of zoom layouts, annotate, tag, search, cross-reference.
Utopia DocumentsProprietary, freewareSemantic scientific PDF reader (optimised for life sciences and medicine), allows public comments on PDFs, generates on-the-fly link-outs to scientific databases and resources when used while online
XpdfFree and proprietary versionsLegacy, a multi-platform viewer; based on Xpdf codebase

AmigaOS[edit]

Converters[edit]

Viewers[edit]

Unix and Linux[edit]

Annotation functionality[edit]

Converters[edit]

The CUPS printing system can render any document to a PDF file, thus any UNIX/Linux program with print capability can produce PDF files.

Creators[edit]

Development libraries[edit]

Editors[edit]

Viewers[edit]

Mac OS X[edit]

Converters[edit]

Editors[edit]

Creators[edit]

Viewers[edit]

Microsoft Windows[edit]

Converters[edit]

Creators[edit]

NameType and licenseDescription
Bullzip PDF PrinterFreewareVirtual printer, requires Ghostscript and PDFPowerTool.
CC PDF ConverterGNU GPLCreates a PDF with embedded Creative Commons license from any software. (virtual printer)
CutePDFFreeware and professional versionsVirtual printer, also with proprietary PDF editor. Attempts to install the Ask Toolbar as well as Hotspot shield. Can be avoided by using the /no3d command-line switch.
deskPDFStandaloneAvailable for both client and terminal servers.
doPDFFreeware standaloneVirtual printer. It doesn't use Ghostscript.
eCopy PaperWorksProprietary
Foxit PhantomPDFCommercial
gDoc CreatorSharewareEnterprise-level creator to create, review, edit, share or archive PDF and XPS documents. After 30 days shareware version places a watermark on documents.
HelpNDocFreeware and professional versionsManual and documentation authoring tool with native PDF export. Free for personal use.
Nitro PDF ReaderFreeware reader; commercial full version availableAs with Adobe Acrobat, Nitro PDF Pro's reader is free; but unlike Adobe's free reader, Nitro's free reader allows PDF creation (via a virtual printer driver, or by specifying a filename in the reader's interface, or by drag-'n-drop of a file to Nitro PDF Reader's Windows desktop icon); Ghostscript not needed.
NovaPDFCommercialVirtual printer.
PagePlusProprietaryDesktop publishing suite with PDF viewing, editing and creation features
PaperPortProprietaryDesktop publishing suite with PDF viewing, editing and creation features
PDFCreatorGNU GPL, FairPlayVirtual printer, for Windows licenced under GNU GPL. Uses Ghostscript and includes adware.
PDF-XChangeFree lite versionPDF Tools allows creation of PDFs from many types of source input (images, scans, etc.). The PDF-XChange print driver allows printing directly to a PDF. A "lite" version of the print driver is free for non-commercial (home and academic) use.
PrimoPDFFreeware standaloneVirtual printer, for Microsoft .NET Framework and uses Ghostscript and RedMon. Connects with www.primopdf.com. Includes Open Candy adware.
SaveasPDFandXPSFreewareAdd-in for Microsoft Office 2007
Solid PDF CreatorProprietary
Xara Photo & Graphic DesignerProprietaryGraphic design software with PDF creation plus import, viewing and limited editing

Development libraries[edit]

Editors[edit]

Viewers[edit]

Mobile[edit]

Web-based[edit]

Converters[edit]

Editors[edit]

Viewers[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Oracle PDF Import Extension, OpenOffice.org repository for Extensions
  2. ^ installing instructions, online QPDF manual
  3. ^ "GNU PDF project leaves FSF High Priority Projects list". Free Software Foundation. Retrieved 25 October 2012. 
  4. ^ iText: licenses, iText Software Corp.
  5. ^ "Licensing". Libharu.org. 31 August 2008. Retrieved 2012-07-29. 
  6. ^ Kristian Høgsberg (27 February 2005). "The poppler pdf rendering library". cgit.freedesktop.org. Retrieved 2012-07-29. 
  7. ^ "Bug 151614 - store annotations with documents". 
  8. ^ "Annotations and Bookmarks". 
  9. ^ "Learn Acrobat X – Converting PDF Files to Other File Formats". Adobe TV. Adobe Systems. 17 October 2010. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 

External links[edit]