User Guide Cancel

Links and attachments in PDFs

  1. Acrobat User Guide
  2. Introduction to Acrobat
    1. Access Acrobat from desktop, mobile, web
    2. Introducing the new Acrobat experience
    3. What's new in Acrobat
    4. Keyboard shortcuts
    5. System Requirements
  3. Workspace
    1. Workspace basics
    2. Opening and viewing PDFs
      1. Opening PDFs
      2. Navigating PDF pages
      3. Viewing PDF preferences
      4. Adjusting PDF views
      5. Enable thumbnail preview of PDFs
      6. Display PDF in browser
    3. Working with online storage accounts
      1. Access files from Box
      2. Access files from Dropbox
      3. Access files from OneDrive
      4. Access files from SharePoint
      5. Access files from Google Drive
    4. Acrobat and macOS
    5. Acrobat notifications
    6. Grids, guides, and measurements in PDFs
    7. Asian, Cyrillic, and right-to-left text in PDFs
  4. Creating PDFs
    1. Overview of PDF creation
    2. Create PDFs with Acrobat
    3. Create PDFs with PDFMaker
    4. Using the Adobe PDF printer
    5. Converting web pages to PDF
    6. Creating PDFs with Acrobat Distiller
    7. Adobe PDF conversion settings
    8. PDF fonts
  5. Editing PDFs
    1. Edit text in PDFs
    2. Edit images or objects in a PDF
    3. Rotate, move, delete, and renumber PDF pages
    4. Edit scanned PDFs
    5. Enhance document photos captured using a mobile camera
    6. Optimizing PDFs
    7. PDF properties and metadata
    8. Links and attachments in PDFs
    9. PDF layers
    10. Page thumbnails and bookmarks in PDFs
    11. PDFs converted to web pages
    12. Setting up PDFs for a presentation
    13. PDF articles
    14. Geospatial PDFs
    15. Applying actions and scripts to PDFs
    16. Change the default font for adding text
    17. Delete pages from a PDF
  6. Scan and OCR
    1. Scan documents to PDF
    2. Enhance document photos
    3. Troubleshoot scanner issues when scanning using Acrobat
  7. Forms
    1. PDF forms basics
    2. Create a form from scratch in Acrobat
    3. Create and distribute PDF forms
    4. Fill in PDF forms
    5. PDF form field properties
    6. Fill and sign PDF forms
    7. Setting action buttons in PDF forms
    8. Publishing interactive PDF web forms
    9. PDF form field basics
    10. PDF barcode form fields
    11. Collect and manage PDF form data
    12. About forms tracker
    13. PDF forms help
    14. Send PDF forms to recipients using email or an internal server
  8. Combining files
    1. Combine or merge files into single PDF
    2. Rotate, move, delete, and renumber PDF pages
    3. Add headers, footers, and Bates numbering to PDFs
    4. Crop PDF pages
    5. Add watermarks to PDFs
    6. Add backgrounds to PDFs
    7. Working with component files in a PDF Portfolio
    8. Publish and share PDF Portfolios
    9. Overview of PDF Portfolios
    10. Create and customize PDF Portfolios
  9. Sharing, reviews, and commenting
    1. Share and track PDFs online
    2. Mark up text with edits
    3. Preparing for a PDF review
    4. Starting a PDF review
    5. Hosting shared reviews on SharePoint or Office 365 sites
    6. Participating in a PDF review
    7. Add comments to PDFs
    8. Adding a stamp to a PDF
    9. Approval workflows
    10. Managing comments | view, reply, print
    11. Importing and exporting comments
    12. Tracking and managing PDF reviews
  10. Saving and exporting PDFs
    1. Saving PDFs
    2. Convert PDF to Word
    3. Convert PDF to JPG
    4. Convert or export PDFs to other file formats
    5. File format options for PDF export
    6. Reusing PDF content
  11. Security
    1. Enhanced security setting for PDFs
    2. Securing PDFs with passwords
    3. Manage Digital IDs
    4. Securing PDFs with certificates
    5. Opening secured PDFs
    6. Removing sensitive content from PDFs
    7. Setting up security policies for PDFs
    8. Choosing a security method for PDFs
    9. Security warnings when a PDF opens
    10. Securing PDFs with Adobe Experience Manager
    11. Protected View feature for PDFs
    12. Overview of security in Acrobat and PDFs
    13. JavaScripts in PDFs as a security risk
    14. Attachments as security risks
    15. Allow or block links in PDFs
  12. Electronic signatures
    1. Sign PDF documents
    2. Capture your signature on mobile and use it everywhere
    3. Send documents for e-signatures
    4. Create a web form
    5. Request e-signatures in bulk
    6. Collect online payments
    7. Brand your account
    8. About certificate signatures
    9. Certificate-based signatures
    10. Validating digital signatures
    11. Adobe Approved Trust List
    12. Manage trusted identities
  13. Printing
    1. Basic PDF printing tasks
    2. Print Booklets and PDF Portfolios
    3. Advanced PDF print settings
    4. Print to PDF
    5. Printing color PDFs (Acrobat Pro)
    6. Printing PDFs in custom sizes
  14. Accessibility, tags, and reflow
    1. Create and verify PDF accessibility
    2. Accessibility features in PDFs
    3. Reading Order tool for PDFs
    4. Reading PDFs with reflow and accessibility features
    5. Edit document structure with the Content and Tags panels
    6. Creating accessible PDFs
    7. Cloud-based auto-tagging
  15. Searching and indexing
    1. Creating PDF indexes
    2. Searching PDFs
  16. Multimedia and 3D models
    1. Add audio, video, and interactive objects to PDFs
    2. Adding 3D models to PDFs (Acrobat Pro)
    3. Displaying 3D models in PDFs
    4. Interacting with 3D models
    5. Measuring 3D objects in PDFs
    6. Setting 3D views in PDFs
    7. Enable 3D content in PDF
    8. Adding multimedia to PDFs
    9. Commenting on 3D designs in PDFs
    10. Playing video, audio, and multimedia formats in PDFs
    11. Add comments to videos
  17. Print production tools (Acrobat Pro)
    1. Print production tools overview
    2. Printer marks and hairlines
    3. Previewing output
    4. Transparency flattening
    5. Color conversion and ink management
    6. Trapping color
  18. Preflight (Acrobat Pro)
    1. PDF/X-, PDF/A-, and PDF/E-compliant files
    2. Preflight profiles
    3. Advanced preflight inspections
    4. Preflight reports
    5. Viewing preflight results, objects, and resources
    6. Output intents in PDFs
    7. Correcting problem areas with the Preflight tool
    8. Automating document analysis with droplets or preflight actions
    9. Analyzing documents with the Preflight tool
    10. Additional checks in the Preflight tool
    11. Preflight libraries
    12. Preflight variables
  19. Color management
    1. Keeping colors consistent
    2. Color settings
    3. Color-managing documents
    4. Working with color profiles
    5. Understanding color management

Before you begin

Acrobat now has an improved interface, as shown. If you see a different experience, refer to help for your current experience.

Acrobat tools are dispalyed in the left pane.

About PDF links

PDF links are pointers within a document that direct users to a specific location within the same document or to an external resource like web pages, emails, or attachments. You can create links using text, images, or other elements within the PDF.

  1. Select Edit > Link > Add or edit a link.

    The pointer becomes a cross-hair, and any existing links in the document, including invisible links, are temporarily visible.

  2. Drag a rectangle to define the link area.

  3. In the Create Link dialog, choose the options you want for the link appearance.

  4. Select one of the following link actions:

    • Go to a page viewSelect Next to set the page number, and view the magnification you want in the current document or another document (such as a file attachment). Then select Set Link.
    • Open a fileSelect the destination file. If the file is a PDF, specify how the document should open, such as whether it should open in a new or existing window. Then select OK.
      Note: If the filename is too long to fit in the text box, the middle of the name is truncated.
    • Open a web pageProvide the URL of the destination web page.
    • Custom link: Select Next to open the Link Properties dialog. In the dialog, you can set any action, such as reading an article or running a command, to be associated with the link.

Move or resize a link rectangle

  1. Select Edit Link Add or edit a link.

  2. To move a link area, move the pointer over the link rectangle and drag it. 

  3. To resize the link area, drag a corner point.


You can change the properties of several links at once by selecting the Link tool and dragging the rectangle to select them all.

Change the appearance of a link

  1. Choose Edit > Link > Add or edit a link.

  2. Right-click on the link and select Link Properties.

  3. In the Appearance tab, choose a color, line thickness, and line style for the link.

  4. Select one of the following highlight styles:

    • None: Doesn’t change the appearance of the link.
    • Invert: Changes the link’s color to its opposite.
    • Outline: Changes the link’s outline color to its opposite.
    • Inset: Creates the appearance of an embossed rectangle.
  5. To hide the PDF link, select the Link Type drop-down menu and then select Invisible Rectangle.

  6. To prevent users from changing the link settings, select the Locked checkbox.

  7. To test the link, select the Hand tool and then select the link. You should be able to jump to the specific location for the link.


    The link properties in the Create Link dialog box apply to all new links you create until you change them.

    To apply the appearance settings of a link to all the links, right-click on the link and select Use Current Appearance As New Default.

Edit a link action

You can modify a link action to perform a different action when a user activates the link.

  1. Select Edit > Link > Add or edit a link.

  2. Right-click on the link and then select Link Properties.

  3. In the Actions tab, associate a new action with the link and select OK.

Delete a link

  1. Select Edit > Link > Add or edit a link.

  2. Select the rectangle containing the link that you want to delete.

  3. Press the Delete key on your keypad.

Create link to a destination

  1. In the target document (destination), go to  > View > Show/Hide >Side panels > Destinations.
    If the document includes the destination you want to link to, you can jump to step 5.

  2. Navigate to the location where you want to create a destination, and set the desired view.
  3. In the Destinations panel, select New Destination from the Options menu, and name the destination.

  4. Save the target document.
  5. In the source document, select Edit > Link > Add or edit a link, and drag a rectangle to specify a location for the link.

  6. In the Create Link dialog box, set the link appearance, select Go to a page view, and then select Next.

  7. In the target document, in the Destinations panel, open the destination.

  8. Save the source document.

Manage link destinations

A destination is the end point of a link indicated by text in the Destinations panel. Destinations allow you to set navigation paths across a collection of PDFs. Adobe recommends that you use destinations when linking multiple documents. Unlike direct links to pages, adding or deleting pages within the target document doesn't affect destination links.

  1. Go to  > View > Show/Hide > Side panels > Destinations.
    It automatically scans all the destinations.

  2. To sort destination names alphabetically, select the Name label. 

  3. To sort destinations by page number, select the Page label.

  4. To navigate to the target location, select Go to Destination from the context menu. 

  5. To delete the destination, select Delete

  6. To reset the target of the destination to the page displayed, select Set Destination

  7. To assign a new name to the destination, select Rename.

Add attachments to PDFs

Attachments in a PDF are external files incorporated into the document, encompassing various formats like images, PDFs, Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and multimedia files such as audio or video. Embedded file attachments enrich the primary document by providing supplementary information or resources, ensuring users can access all necessary files conveniently in one location.

When you relocate the PDF, the attached files move along with it. Attachments may contain links to or from the parent document or other attachments.


Differentiate between attached comments and file attachments. Attached comments display a File Attachment or Sound Attachment icon on the page and appear in the Comments List alongside other comments.

  1. Select Edit > More > Attach file.

  2. In the Add Files dialog, select the file you want to attach.


    Beware of attaching potentially harmful file types like EXE, VBS, or ZIP. Attaching these files may trigger a warning that the files won't open in Acrobat. 

  3. To add a description to the attachment, select the file, and then from the Options menu, select Edit Description and edit the description text.

  4. Save the file.

Open attachments

You can open a PDF attachment and modify it if you have the necessary permissions.

For attachments with other file types, you can open or save the files. Opening the file launches the application that handles the file format. However, you'll need the application installed on your computer to open the attachment.

  1. Go to  > View > Show/Hide > Side panels > Attachments.

  2. Select the attachment that you want to open.


    To search for an attachment, select Search Attachments, and then in the Search window, type the word or phrase that you want to search for, and then select Search Attachments.

    On Windows®, you can search Microsoft® Office documents (such as .doc, .xls, and .ppt), AutoCAD drawing file formats (.dwg and .dwf), HTML files, and Rich Text Format (.rtf) files.

    On MacOS, you can search Microsoft® Word (.doc), HTML, and .rtf files. 

  3. From the Options menu, select the appropriate option to open the attachment in its native application, save the attachment, or delete it.


To enable Microsoft® and AutoCAD file searches, the IFilters appropriate to the file types must be installed. IFilters are typically installed with their applications, but can also be downloaded from product websites.


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The Creativity Conference

Oct 14–16 Miami Beach and online

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The Creativity Conference

Oct 14–16 Miami Beach and online