Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.
Read the article that everyone's commenting on.
I use a free alternative to Adobe's PDF Reader that has added functionality, including the ability to copy text to paste elsewhere (if that hasn't been disabled by the original creator of the file). It's called PDF XChange Viewer, available for download at:
It is possible to select an area within a PDF, copy it to the clipboard and paste it into a word document. To do so, place your mouse over the area you wish to select in the PDF file until you see the cross-hair pointer, click and drag the area you want to copy, then either type Ctrl C or click EDIT on the toolbar, click COPY. The image is then copied to the clipboard. Next, you must open the word document, click Ctrl V or click EDIT on toolbar, then click PASTE to insert the image into the document.
It's a lot of steps, but it can be done.
You can't edit, but YOU CAN COPY. With the PDF document open, click on Tools, Select zoom, and snapshot tool.
then 'frame' the paragraph(s)you want to copy and paste them into your MS Word document. While it can't be edited you have AN EXACT copy.
I think that I nust be a little mad. I see problems with not being allowed to copy and paste as a challenge. Anyhow with pdf documents that wont let me copy I use Omnipage to convert the pdf to a word doc. Then there is no problem copying and pasting.
You can also (if it is not disabled) SAVE AS and pick RTF or Text format. This will miles ahead of retyping.
You CAN edit pdf's - change type, remove images and add - Adobe Illustrator. But it's an expensive option and not a software everyone has. Works wonderfully if pdf not protected against editing (which I find is rare) and pdf is NOT a single large scanned image of type (There's another software for that OCR recognitation program,I believe). Only problem is if you don't have existing font, it will substitute. And I'm able to copy & paste between Illustrator, Photoshop & InDesign.
If I could offer a direction...
Look into a feature called OCR (Optical Character Recognition). It simply scans these PDF's and interprets the images and creates the text itself. They are not perfect, but can be quite effective in at least getting a lot of text into a "copy-pastable" (is that an official word yet?) format. It's necessary to proof what has been copied, but if you have to re-type it anyway...
I don't know anything about the free versions (I personally use Adobe Acrobat which costs money) but I'd guess that at least one is out there that offers OCR capability.
Foxit can help in copy and past functions assuming it is not an image file and Foxit PDF Editor is very effective at editing PDF files.
Google Docs can copy and paste from PDF docs. At least on the ones that I just tried it can.
Jeez I just don't understand why everything has been made so difficult,B4 PDF I always took a "screenshot" of anything I wanted.Of course ya sure cant edit the text without speding a lot of time, but you have an exact copy.Someone mentioned OCR which is the best bet to be able to do much of anything with a lot of PDF files.Something I have done since I started using computers is to save something using any available format txt,rtf.doc,html,etc. and just play with it to see what I can do with the file.I don't really see why everyone thinks PDF is so cool,2me its just another app that I don't really need that much, Its just the flavor of the week app that ppl must have for some unknown reason, ppl send stuff in that format and I'm forced to deal with it.IMHO this doesn't make the file anymore secure than any other format.If I really want to take the time its possible to take a screenshot (many free software versions to choose from)and edit from there.In fact its a bunch of work with no payoff,but that's how I learned about computers and what makes em tick.
I was told a long time ago to save a file I wanna play with and use the copy to experiment so when I mess up the file I still got the original to rely on.Jeez I love this stuff....LOL.
To post a comment on "Why can't I copy/paste out of a PDF document?", please return
to that article's main page.
Question? Ask Leo!
The Tip Jar: Buy Leo a Latte!
By Date |
Business Card |
Advertisements do not imply my endorsement of any product or service.
Copyright © 2003-2013 Puget Sound Software, LLC and Leo A. Notenboom
Ask Leo! is a registered trademark ® of Puget Sound Software, LLC
Terms, Conditions & Privacy
Product Reviews, Recommendations and Affiliate Links Disclosure