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SoftwareMedia Blog | July 23, 2014

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Editing A PDF Without The Source File

Editing A PDF Without The Source File

Have you ever encountered a PDF document that you needed to make changes too, but didn’t have access to the source file? You know, the original file that was created and then converted into PDF before being distributed in your direction. In order to make those changes you don’t need that file  you’ll just need to edit the PDF directly, and with the right tools you will be able to make any changes you see fit. Here’s some features you should know that will help get your hands dirty when editing your document.

Find and replace text

First and foremost, this is probably one of the best features about editing a PDF document. The option to search through the entire file to find the old text you’re looking for and replace it with new text. This is especially important when updating documents with the new year. It also helps with the relevancy of old words, like outdated words or phrases which might not be as easily found and updated without this option. Parsing through everything manually can be a cumbersome task, so just use the find and replace tool.

Update with signatures

Security is a necessary thing when it comes to online documents. This is especially relevant on it comes to PDF documents, and due to the security threats persisting the marketplace today it’s important to retrofit old documents with the latest security measures. On PDF documents you can combine digital signatures onto existing interactive forms making them secure.

Echosign is an electronic signature enterprise that focuses on the of security documents. Electronic signatures, also known as e-signatures, allow a registered user the chance to verify the document sent electronically by attaching a personal stamp to it verifying its validity. Old forms should be retrofitted with these new electronic signatures to increase security, and this can be done by simply adding the e-signature option.

Password protect documents

While we are talking about security, it is a good idea to go back and prevent unwanted parties from editing the document without proper authorization. The process to make that happen is simple, you’ll just open up the PDF file and under the tools area you’ll see a whole section dedicated to protection. To protect the file and restrict editing, to ensure that only those with passwords and permission can make changes to the file, enable the password option.

Exporting file information

Sometimes the editing that needs to take place will best suit another file format. Turning a PDF document into another format, but still keeping the same look and feel can be done, like an HTML page, PowerPoint presentation, Excel spreadsheet, or word document. It is as simple as re-saving the file in that new format. For example, if you need your PDF document turned into a PowerPoint, and still want the PowerPoint presentation to have the same look and feel as the original file, then in your pdf editor save the file as “save as other” and choose powerpoint presentation. The same process can be done for webpages or any other file format necessary. This option can be a huge timesaver when converting to other file formats, so don’t go to the old route and copy / paste everything.

Edit text and images

Making changes to the text and images are what most people want to do when editing a PDF. Editing images may require a flip, resize, rotate, and even replacement. When it comes to the text department the font, color, alignment, bulletpoint, and more can be altered by changing the PDF without the source file. The editing tools that you mimic the appearance of your most familiar word processor. If the document has been scanned then removal of text is best done with the redact tool. This removes text as well as any metadata attached to the text. When it is all said and done the whole process is quite easy.

Jared Jaureguy is a technology enthusiast and independent technology consultant. Follow him on Twitter @JaredJaureguy

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