PDF files are a popular document format, because the content is “locked” so that all readers see the same thing. This is great for sharing documents, but can make selecting and copying content from a PDF difficult. Adobe’s free Reader program is one of the best ways to select content from a PDF file. How can i copy text from a pdf the PDF was created by scanning a document, or it has been secured to prevent copying, you’ll need to use a program that can recognize the words and convert them to editable text.
Download and install the latest version of Adobe Reader. This is the free PDF reader developed by Adobe. There are many PDF reader programs available, including your web browser, but most have very limited selection options. You’ll get the best results using the free Adobe Reader.
Open the PDF in Adobe Reader. When you install Adobe Reader, it makes itself the default application for PDFs, so it should open when you double-click a PDF file. Right-click on the open PDF and choose “Select tool. This will allow you to select content in the PDF.
Try to select the content you want to copy. If the PDF was created by scanning a document, you will not be able to select any text.
This is because the PDF file is encoded as an image instead of a text document. You can click and drag to create a selection box, but this will copy as an image instead of as text. See the next section for tips on converting the file so that you can select the text.
If the PDF was created directly from a word processor, such as saved as a PDF in Word, you should be able to highlight text. Selecting large portions of text can be finicky, so try to make your copies in small chunks of text. If you want to copy an image, you’ll need to drag a selection box around the entire image. If you aren’t able to copy your selection, the PDF is likely secured.
See the next section for details. Right-click the selection and choose “Copy.