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Create PDFs with Acrobat

  1. Acrobat User Guide
  2. Introduction to Acrobat
    1. Access Acrobat from desktop, mobile, web
    2. What's new in Acrobat
    3. Keyboard shortcuts
    4. 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. Action Wizard (Acrobat Pro)
    12. PDFs converted to web pages
    13. Setting up PDFs for a presentation
    14. PDF articles
    15. Geospatial PDFs
    16. Applying actions and scripts to PDFs
    17. Change the default font for adding text
    18. 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. About certificate signatures
    5. Certificate-based signatures
    6. Validating digital signatures
    7. Adobe Approved Trust List
    8. 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
  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


There are various ways to create a PDF file using Acrobat. Generate a PDF quickly by using menu commands, dragging-and-dropping files onto the Acrobat application icon, or converting clipboard data.

Convert a file to PDF using Acrobat menu commands

  1. On the Acrobat File menu, choose Create > PDF From File.

  2. In the Open dialog box, select the file that you want to convert. You can browse all file types or select a specific type from the Files Of Type drop-down menu.

    Acrobat shows all Microsoft Word documents in the selected folder
    Acrobat shows all Microsoft Word documents in the selected folder.

  3. Optionally, click Settings to change the conversion options if you're converting an image file to PDF. The options available vary depending on the file type.

    Note: The Settings button is unavailable if you choose All Files as the file type or if no conversion settings are available for the selected file type. (For example, the Settings button is unavailable for Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel files.)

  4. Click Open to convert the file to a PDF.

    Depending on the type of file being converted, the authoring application opens automatically, or a progress dialog box appears. If the file is in an unsupported format, a message appears, telling you that the file cannot be converted to PDF.

  5. When the new PDF opens, choose File > Save or File > Save As, and then select a name and location for the PDF.

Note: When naming a PDF that’s intended for electronic distribution, limit the filename to eight characters (with no spaces) and include the .pdf extension. This action ensures that email programs or network servers don’t truncate the filename and that the PDF opens as expected.

Drag-and-drop to create PDFs

This method is best for small, simple files, such as small image files and plain text files, when the balance between file size and output quality is not important. You can use this technique with many other types of files, but you cannot adjust any conversion settings during the process.

  1. Select the icons of one or more files in the Windows Explorer or Mac OS Finder.

  2. Drag the file icons onto the Acrobat application icon. Or (Windows only) drag the files into the open Acrobat window.

    If a message appears saying that the file could not be opened in Acrobat, then that file type cannot be converted to PDF by the drag-and-drop method. Use one of the other conversion methods for that file.

    Note: You can also convert PostScript and EPS files to PDF by dragging them onto the Acrobat window or the Acrobat application icon.

  3. Save the PDF.

    Note: (Windows only) You can also right-click a file in Windows Explorer and select Convert to Adobe PDF.

Convert clipboard content to PDF

You can create PDFs from text and images that you copy from applications on Mac OS or Windows.

  1. Capture content in the Clipboard:
    • Use the copy command in the applications.
    • Press the PrintScreen key (Windows).
    • Use the Grab utility (Applications > Utilities > Grab), and choose Edit > Copy to place the content on the clipboard. (Mac OS)
    • In a PDF file, you can select objects using the Edit Object tool (Tools > Print Production > Edit Object), and then copy the selected objects.
  2. In Acrobat, choose File > Create > PDF from Clipboard. Or Choose Tools > Create PDF > Clipboard > Create.

    Note: The PDF from Clipboard command appears only when content is copied to the Clipboard. If the Clipboard is empty, the command is disabled.

Create a blank PDF

You can create a blank PDF, rather than beginning with a file, a clipboard image, or scanning.

This process can be useful for creating a one-page PDF. For longer, more complex, or heavily formatted documents, it’s better to create the source document in an application that offers more layout and formatting options, such as Adobe InDesign or Microsoft Word.

  1. In Adobe Acrobat, do one of the following:

    • Go to File > Create > Blank Page.
    Create a blank page PDF from the file menu

    • Choose Tools > Create PDF > Blank Page > Create.
    Create a blank PDF from Tools > Create PDF

    A new blank page PDF is created.

Note: To add a blank page to an existing PDF, open the PDF and then choose Tools > Organize Pages > Insert > Blank Page.

Create multiple PDFs from multiple files (Acrobat Pro)

You can create multiple PDFs from multiple native files, including files of different supported formats, in one operation. This method is useful when you must convert a large number of files to PDF.

Note: When you use this method, Acrobat applies the most recently used conversion settings without offering you access to those settings. If you want to adjust the conversion settings, do so before using this method.

  1. Choose File > Create > Create Multiple PDF Files.

  2. Choose Add Files > Add Files or Add Folders, and then select the files or folder.

    Create Multiple PDF Files dialog box
    Click Add Files in the dialog box, then choose the files that you want to convert to PDF.

  3. Click OK. The Output options dialog box appears.

  4. In the Output Options dialog box, specify your target folder and filename preferences, and then click OK.

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