How to convert PDF to text in Linux.

A man converts PDFs to plain text using a Linux device.

Want to edit a PDF from your Linux device? Learn how to convert PDFs to text using commands or an online PDF editor.

How to convert PDFs to text with the command line.

As long as you’re familiar with using the command line, it can be a very efficient way to manipulate (in this case, convert) your files. Linux users can use a command line utility called pdftotext, which comes standard on many Linux systems, to convert PDFs to plain text format. Simply follow these steps:

  1. Run a command to convert chosen files to plain text:
  1. Replace the input.pdf with the file you want to convert and the output.txt with the name you want to be attached to the newly created text file.
  2. If you don’t choose a save location, your new file will automatically be saved in the same folder as the original PDF.

If you don’t need to edit and only want to copy or search text in a PDF, you can install an optical character recognition (OCR) tool instead. Linux OCR PDF tools read PDFs and add a searchable text file over the original PDF. That way, you can use functions like Ctrl+F and Ctrl+C to search and copy text in the PDF.

Converting PDFs to text with an online editor.

The PDF is one of the most shareable file formats available, so you’re likely to have PDFs sent to you at least every now and then. If you’ve received a PDF and want to convert it to a text file, you have a few options. For example, if you’re not comfortable with command utilities, you can spare yourself weeks of learning and use online PDF editors like Adobe Acrobat online services. They make it easy to convert PDFs into text formats like Microsoft Word.

You can easily convert a PDF to text on Linux without commands or downloads in three simple steps:

  1. Use any browser to navigate to the Acrobat online services convert PDFs into text tool.
  2. Upload the PDF file you want to convert.
  3. Download the newly created Microsoft Word DOCX file.
  4. Save as a .txt file by selecting Save as > filename.txt.

Once you download the DOCX file, you can open it using Microsoft Word and start editing right away.

Converting text to PDF in Linux.

One of the easiest ways to convert your text file back to PDF is to use the Linux PDF printer. Converting your text files to PDFs can increase their readability and shareability across devices by preserving formatting.

To convert a text file to PDF, open the file and follow these steps:

  1. Press Ctrl+P to open the print dialog box.
  2. Click the General tab, and under Printer, choose Print to File.
  3. Choose your filename and save location.
  4. Select the file format you want to convert to — PDF is the default file type.
  5. Select any page preferences.
  6. Click Print to save the PDF.

Instead of sending the document to a physical printer, the Linux PDF printer will “print” your file as a PDF and save it to the location of your choice. Just be sure to select a location and a filename that you’ll remember. Now, you’ll be able to enjoy all of the conveniences of having your text file back in PDF format.

Do more with PDFs.

As the creator of the PDF, Adobe has also created efficient tools and endless possibilities for your PDFs. PDFs are well known for being shareable, printable, and easy to secure. Using Adobe’s services, you can easily turn a PDF into a secure form and even collect a digital signature. Acrobat online services allow you to edit PDFs in real time with remote colleagues and work together more efficiently. These services from Adobe are coupled with excellent tech support and digital forums to help you explore every possible functionality of your PDFs.

Discover more about how Adobe Acrobat and Acrobat online services make it easy to convert PDFs to text online from your Linux device.