How to delete pages from a PDF without Adobe Acrobat

How can you delete pages from a PDF file if you don’t have Adobe Acrobat?

Download PDFCreator from SourceForge. It installs as a printer. It lets you create PDFs from any application by selecting PDFCreator as your “printer.” To delete pages from an existing PDF, open the PDF in Adobe Reader and print to PDFCreator the pages you don’t want to delete.

I don’t have a lot of experience with PDFCreator; I just downloaded it today. But it looks good and it worked well for what I was trying to do.

Update: I tried pdftk, recommended in the comments, and it works well. It’s a command line program with more features than PDFCreator.

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38 comments on “How to delete pages from a PDF without Adobe Acrobat
  1. gappy says:

    John,
    should you need to go beyond the task you mentioned, may I recommend pdftk (http://www.accesspdf.com/pdftk). It merges, splits, rotates, repairs etc. I used it. Recommended.

  2. John says:

    Thanks, Gappy, that’s good to know. Pdftk is the kind of thing I was looking for but I ran across PDFCreator first.

  3. Khairul says:

    You might also want to have a look at PDFill PDF Tools. Works well for me.

  4. Barry Leiba says:

    And just for completeness, Mac OSX comes built in with “Save as PDF” on the print dialogue, and with the ability to delete pages and re-save a PDF in the Preview app.

  5. Neil says:

    I’ve used PDFCreator for some time now (it’s basically a wrapper around GhostScript and RedMon, which you used to have to install manually.) It works great.

    I recently came across the PDFTK, for a similar task. I can recommend it, as well.

    Linux has the print to PDF/PS (PDF being a cut-down postscript) options, as well; plus OpenOffice prints to PDF natively.

  6. Rick says:

    Thank you for this tip. I knew there had to be a way aside from buying Acrobat Pro!

  7. Jeff says:

    THANK YOU for this article and the link to pdftk. Without this article I would have spent hours trying to figure it out..

  8. Glenn says:

    THANK YOU all for your comments and advise, you have saved me a lot of time and trials.

  9. Matt says:

    Excellent solution! I used this idea in CutePDF as well, and it worked a treat.

  10. Megan says:

    Was trying to figure out how to delete pages, and found the best answer right here, THANKS!!

  11. Hally says:

    i DON’T KNOW that even pdf creator is able to delate pdf pages! Awesome tip!

  12. gwern says:

    pdftk specifics; to delete the first page:

    pdftk original.pdf cat 2-end out new.pdf

    (Still a little boggled at syntax like “cat 2-end out”.)

  13. cancerofstomach says:

    I noticed the loss of word search functionality when using pdfcreator (didn’t try pdftk though)

  14. louis vuitton says:

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  15. John says:

    Thanks. I’m not aware of any compatibility difficulties.

  16. Russ says:

    Although, not as conveient to use, you can also you the printing capabilities from the OS (I know this works under Linux and OS X). Just print the pages you want to PDF from the initial PDF file.

  17. Chris Beeley says:

    I’m super late to this party, but I just got to this page from Google and I thought I would chime in with the “print to pdf” functionality of NitroPdf (can even print to pdf from inside NitroPdf).

    I use it as default because of the excellent integration with Evernote but this is another reason to use it.

  18. win hageman says:

    Sure helped me get some vip mail out. thanks!!!!

  19. anna says:

    Smart! Fast solution and worked great. Thanks…

  20. Great idea! Thank you!
    There’s also an nice and free online service for PDF-splitting: http://www.sciweavers.org/free-online-pdf-split

  21. Richard says:

    “To delete pages from an existing PDF, open the PDF in Adobe Reader and print to PDFCreator the pages you don’t want to delete.”
    GREAT ADVICE! WHY DIDN’T I THINK OF IT MYSELF?

  22. John says:

    Richard: The part you quoted isn’t as trivial as it sounds. You’re not really printing, but using a facility that is labeled “print” by analogy. “Printing” to PDFCreator makes a single PDF file with only the selected pages.

  23. dushko says:

    aside from many comments from people who don’t get the point and think printing to pdf-embedded pictures are the same as editing i will explain:
    guys,he asked for an editor, not a PRINTER, cause pdf creator is indeed a soft printer.
    and I love the spam of Nitro PDF staff (a commercial soft) promoting their crappy soft.

    as for the pdf printers- u take a 140kB pdf created in Ooo or MsW, print it to images with pdf creator or cute pdf leaving out the unwanted pages and you get bitmap scans of pages weighing 6megabytes, with no searchability, no editable form fields, dog slow load times etc. etc.

    indeed pdftk looks good and up to the task just a bit hard to learn.
    but it’s a knowledge worth practicing

    or you can edit the code in notepad, if you know the syntax…I don’t :-) – this was actually the search that took me to your site :-)

    and I like the purity of your site, as im on an Oled phone and have user css to spare some battery and your site is now nice black with ‘burlywood’ text.
    some designers just put all the background stuff to the foreground or use non css background elements which are hard to override without tears.

  24. cameron says:

    You are a scholar and a gentleman. I thank thee.

  25. kristen says:

    none of these suggestions are for non-computer programmers. i downloaded both suggested programs/printers/hack codes/whatever and can’t even understand how to begin how to work these. i hate adobe for not having a mac trial… all i want to do is delete some pdf pages!!

  26. Karen Joslin says:

    Barry Leiba, your tip about Preview in Mac saved me lots of time and hassle. All I needed to do was delete one page from my PDF, which otherwise would have involved me driving all the way across town, turning on my ancient PC with an ancient version of Acrobat, saving my PDF on a memory stick, etc….. You rock!

  27. Edward says:

    This tip seriously hangs my computer, hard reboot required sometimes. Wish it DID work. Still need utility for deleting pdf pages.

  28. Diego says:

    You can remove pages from PDF documents quickly with an online tool: Delete PDF pages

  29. HH says:

    Thank you very much, that was really helpful!

  30. Gautam says:

    This was very helpful. i always thought deleting pages from pdf was not possible..Thanks a lot Mate

  31. Sam Rod says:

    Thanks, very good way of doing it.

  32. wizkid95 says:

    You can goto:

    http://www.modifypdf.com

    its free – and has heaps of power tools for PDF’s

  33. Anonymous says:

    I just installed PDFCreator from SourceForge and it shut down my internet browser and tried to install malicious adware. Thankfully my Anti-Virus program detected it right away and blocked it. I promptly uninstalled and program.

  34. Anon says:

    pdftk works really well. i recommend it to everyone else here. quick and easy, no memory-wasting gui required.

  35. Anonymous says:

    You can also use Google Chrome’s built-in PDF viewer:

    - Drag and drop the PDF file to Chrome.
    - Click print and then choose “Save as PDF”.
    - In the Pages section on the left side, type the page numbers you want to keep.
    - Click Save and you’re done.

  36. Anon says:

    Lifesaver!

  37. Chuck says:

    Great idea!!! I use PDF CREATOR all the time.

    Big fan of Open Source software..

  38. Anky says:

    Thank you very much…………