View comments

The Comments list appears in the right pane of the document window. The Comments list displays all comments in a PDF, and it provides a toolbar with common options, such as sorting, filtering, and other options to work with comments.

Comments list in Acrobat
Comments list

Open the Comments list

  1. Choose Tools > Comment.

    The Comments toolset is displayed in the secondary toolbar and the Comments list is displayed in the right pane.

  2. Using the Options menu at the upper-right corner of the Comments list, do any of the following:

    • Expand or collapse the comments. Click Expand All or Collapse All in the Comments list options menu. To expand an individual comment, click the comment or click Show More link in the comment. To collapse an individual comment, click the Show Less link in the comment.

    • Import and Export comments.

    • Create or Print Comment Summary.

    • Export to Word or AutoCAD.

    • Specify Commenting Preferences.

Expand the Comments list

You can expand the Comments pane for better readability of the long comments.

  • To resize the pane, align your cursor along the left boundary of the pane and then hold and drag towards left or right.

Sort comments

You can sort comments in the Comments list by author, page, type, date, checked state, or status by person. In a thread of replies, only the first message is sorted, and the reply messages are sorted in the same category as the first message in the thread.

  1. Choose Tools > Comment.

  2. In the Comment list, choose an option from the Sort Comments by menu .

Filter comments

You can hide or show comments based on type, reviewer (author), status, or checked state. Filtering affects the appearance of comments in both the document window and the Comments list. When you print or summarize comments, you can specify whether hidden comments are printed or summarized. When you hide a note comment that has been replied to, all other replies in the thread are hidden as well.


In an email-based review, hidden comments aren’t included when you send the comments to the initiator.

  1. From the Filter comments menu  in the Comments list, do one of the following:

    • To clear all filters, choose Show All Comments. Alternatively, use Ctrl+8 (Windows) or Command+8 (Mac OS).

    • To hide all comments, choose Hide All Comments. Alternatively, use Ctrl+Shift+8 (Windows) or Command+Shift+8 (Mac OS).

    • To filter comments, choose the categories that you want to appear. For example, if you want only sticky note comments that you haven’t accepted to appear, choose > Type > Sticky Notes so that only the sticky note comments appear, and then choose > Status > None so that only unaccepted sticky note comments appear.

    • To remove a filter, choose All for hidden categories. For example, if you filtered comments so that only those by a certain reviewer appear, choose > Reviewer > All.

    • To open all pop-up notes, right-click an annotation and choose Open All Pop-Ups. (Only available if the Comments list is closed)

    • To close all pop-up notes, right-click an annotation and choose Minimize Pop-Ups. (Only available if the Comments list is closed)

Reply to comments


In Acrobat Reader, commenting features are available only in PDFs that have commenting enabled. PDFs in a review workflow typically include commenting rights.

Replies to comments are especially useful in shared reviews, when participants can read each other’s comments. They can also be used by review initiators to let reviewers know how their suggestions are being implemented. When one or more reviewers reply to a comment, the set of replies is called a thread. The first two replies in a thread appear in the pop-up note. In the Comments list, all replies are displayed. Replies are indented below the original comment. The number of replies that a comment has received appears in a box when you place the pointer over the comment.

Reply to comments in Acrobat
Replies appear directly below the comment, in the pop-up note and in the Comments list.

A. Reply heading B. Options menu C. Reply option in Comments List 

Reply in the pop-up note

  1. Open the pop-up note for the comment.
  2. Choose Reply from the Options menu.

  3. Type your reply in the box that appears.

Reply in the Comments list

  1. Select a comment in the Comments list.
  2. Click the Reply link.  

  3. Type your reply in the box that appears.

Delete a reply

If you delete a comment that’s been replied to, only the comment is deleted. Any replies remain in the PDF, and the thread is maintained. The first reply is promoted to a comment.

  1. In the pop-up note, right-click the reply and choose Delete.

Set a status or check mark


In Acrobat Reader, commenting features are available only in PDFs that have commenting enabled. PDFs in a review workflow typically include commenting rights.

Statuses and check marks are useful for keeping track of comments that you’ve read or that require further action. In Windows, you can use a status or a check mark to indicate which comments you want to export to a Word document. By setting the review status, you can show or hide a group of comments and let review participants know how you are going to handle the comment. Once the review status is set, you cannot remove the review status display from the comment in the Comments list, even if you change the review status to None. Check marks are for your personal use and do not appear when others view the PDF unless you change the status of comments.

Set a status

  1. Select the comment in the Comments list and right-click to show the options menu. Then choose an option from the Set Status menu.

    The review status appears in the comment along with the name of who set the review status. If another reviewer sets the review status for that comment, both reviewers’ names and review statuses appear in the Comments list.

  2. To view a comment’s history of changes, right-click the note icon, markup, or title bar of a pop-up note, and then choose Properties. Click the Review History tab.

Flag comments with a check mark

  1. Select a comment in the Comments list and then click the check box next to the comment so that the check mark icon  appears.

Summarizing comments is a convenient way to get a synopsis of all the comments associated with a PDF. When you summarize comments, you can either create a PDF with comments that you can print, or you can print the summary directly. The summary is neither associated with nor linked to the PDF that the comments are derived from.

Page layout options for comment summaries
Page layout options for comment summaries

A. Document and comments with connector lines on single page B. Document and comments with connector lines on separate pages C. Comments only D. Document and comments with sequence numbers 

By default, Acrobat prints PDFs with any stamps that were applied. For the greatest control over how comments are printed, choose  > Print With Comments Summary from the Comments list.

  1. Filter the comments to show only those you want in the summary. (In the Comments list, click Filter Comments and choose the categories of comments you want to show.)

  2. For the greatest control over how comments are printed, choose  > Print With Comments Summary. Alternatively, to create a separate PDF of the comments, choose  > Create Comment Summary.

  3. In the Create Comment Summary dialog box, do the following:

    • Choose a layout for the document and comments. The layout determines available options.

    • Choose how to sort the comments.

    • Specify a page range and choose whether to include pages without comments.

    • Select whether you want all comments to appear in the summary or only the comments that currently appear.

  4. Click Create Comment Summary.

Find a comment

Locate a comment in the Comments list by searching for a particular word or phrase.

  1. Choose Tools > Comment to display the Comments list.

  2. In the Search field, specify the word or phrase you want to search for.

The Comments list displays the comments that match the search criteria; the number of comments is displayed on the panel header.

Delete comments

You cannot delete other reviewers’ comments in a shared review, nor can you delete locked comments.


To delete all of the comments in a PDF, choose Tools > Redact > Remove Hidden Information. Then select the Comments and markups option from the Results pane. This feature is not available in Reader.

Delete a comment

  1. Do one of the following:
    • Select the comment and press Delete.

    • In the Comments list, right-click on the comment you want to delete, choose Delete from the context menu.

      note: Before pressing the Delete key, make sure that the comment is selected.

Unlock a comment

  1. Right-click the comment and choose Properties.

  2. Deselect Locked.

Spell-check all text in comments

You can spell-check the text you add in note comments and form fields. However, you cannot spell-check the text in the underlying PDF.

  1. Choose Edit > Check Spelling > In Comments and Fields. If the PDF is open in a browser, make sure that the Edit toolbar is open, and click the Spell Check button .

  2. Click Start.

  3. To change a word, do one of the following:
    • Edit the selected word. To undo your change, click Undo Edit. To accept your change, click Change.

    • Double-click a suggested correction.

    • Select a suggested correction and then click Change. Click Change All to replace every instance of the unrecognized word with the suggested correction.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License  Twitter™ and Facebook posts are not covered under the terms of Creative Commons.

Legal Notices   |   Online Privacy Policy