Have you been sent a PDF document, or maybe you have downloaded one from the internet, and now you need to edit it, but you don’t know how to copy or extract the text from the PDF file? You came across the right article. In the next paragraphs, I will explain in detail various procedures that will allow you to extract text from PDF, copy text from PDF or convert PDF.
The procedure to be carried out varies according to the type of PDF. The latter may contain simple text or maybe a conversion of an image. If you are dealing with a “normal” PDF file, therefore with written text, you can convert the file to DOCX or copy the text using the browser or other small programs. If it is an image conversion, you will extract the text using the appropriate software.
I know, at first glance, it may seem complicated, but I assure you that all the procedures I am about to show you are simple to carry out.
How to copy text from PDF
If you want to edit a “Standard” PDF file, you have two solutions: you can copy the text of the file or convert the PDF to Word.
To copy the text on Windows, you can use Microsoft Edge. On macOS, I recommend using the “Preview” app. I’ll explain immediately how to do it.
With Microsoft Edge, you can open the PDF file and then copy the text very easily by performing the following steps:
- Open File Explorer;
- Locate the PDF file, then right-click on it;
- Select the item “Open With” and then click on the item “Microsoft Edge.”
That’s it. At this point, you just have to select the text and copy it to the new document.
On macOS, if you have never installed third-party apps that manage PDF files, just double-click on the PDF file, and it will be opened via the preview app. At this point, you just have to select the desired text and copy it by right-clicking and selecting the “Copy” item or by pressing the keys CMD + C from the keyboard.
If the previous solutions are not to your liking, you can download and install them on your PC or Mac Acrobat Reader DC, a free program developed by Adobe that allows you to manage all types of PDF files.
To download it linked to this page, after installing and starting the program, all you have to do is click on the items “File” > “Open” and select the desired PDF file.
If you want to edit a PDF file and don’t like all the solutions above, I recommend converting the PDF file to Word and then editing it. To do this, just use one of the many free services available on the Web. The best is undoubtedly IlovePDF.
How to extract text from PDF
The procedures shown above work only if the PDF file contains text, but as written at the beginning, the PDF may be created from a conversion of an image. In this case, to edit the text, you will need to extract it first. To do this, you can download a third-party program or use an online service.
Program to extract text from PDF
You can extract text from a PDF using Acrobat Reader DC. To download it, go to the official website.
Once the installation is complete, open the file using Acrobat Reader DC, click on “File,” click on “Save as,” and finally choose the “Text” option.
Another program that allows you to do the same is PDF24. You can download PDF24 from here.
Once downloaded and installed on your PC, start the program, click on the item “Recognize text,” then select the item “Add file,” and then click on “Start”.
Online services to extract PDF text
If you don’t want to download a third-party program, you can use one of the many free services available on the web, the one I recommend you try PDF Candy.
- Access the Candy PDF site;
- Click on the “Add File” button ;
- Select the PDF file, then click on “Open” ;
- Wait for the processing of the files and finally click on “Download file.”
The extracted text will be saved to a TXT file.