May 22, 2024

Frustratedby

Health Lasts Longer

Free and Best Alternative to Read, Create, and Edit PDF

4 min read

Serious vulnerability has found in Adobe’s PDF file system. Mikko Hypponen, chief research officer of F-Secure, reported that nearly half of hacker attacks this year exploited holes in Acrobat Reader, while six vulnerabilities have been discovered that target the program. He has warned people to stop using Adobe’s Acrobat Reader and switch to using an alternative reader.

It is big news for all of PDF users. Adobe is the founder of PDF format and the first choice with PDF solution. Maybe some people have started to consider switching to tools other than adobe products. But they do not know how to do. The following will give some choices when stopping using adobes.

Read PDF

Even before the security problem, I have quit to use Adobe Reader and found alternative for PDF viewer. Because it takes considerable long time before Adobe Reader loads up completely. Plus, it uses plenty of system resources, and then the computer slows down when using Adobe reader. There are a lot of alternative, free and lightweight PDF readers and I want to recommend best of three:

1 Foxit Reader

Foxit is the most popular alternative to Adobe Reader. This one is about 2.9 MB and loads up immediately. It also allows you to edit bookmarks in a PDF file and fill out PDF forms. The software is totally free for non-commercial use.

2 Sumatra PDF

Sumatra is a slim, free, open-source PDF viewer for Windows. It is minimalistic, with only 1.1MB to download. It’s designed for portable use: it’s just one file with no external dependencies so you can easily run it from external USB drive. It can read PDF files efficiently.

3 PDF-Xchange Viewer

The PDF-Xchange viewer is smaller, faster and feature richer than adobe. You can add comments and annotations or custom stamps to any PDF file for free. Another advantage is that large PDF files open quickly and pages refresh smoothly as they are scrolled.

Create PDF

Besides viewing PDF, we want to create our own PDF. Especially you are an eBook writer or just want to create a form in PDF and email to your colleagues. Then you will need a PDF creator. Yes, you can use Adobe Acrobat Pro. The problem is the software is too expensive. What if we can get some at a lesser price tag or even better for FREE? I have found some of these and summarized as follows:

1 Microsoft Word 2007 Add-in

Microsoft offers a free plug-in for Office programs to convert to PDF format. Maybe you did not know it. So as long as you have a legal copy of latest version of Microsoft word, then go to Microsoft Download page and download the SaveAsPDF Office Add – in. and directly get your word into PDF.

Now in the new release of Office 2007 Service Pack 2 (SP2), the Microsoft Save As PDF add-in has been built into it. Users no longer have to download and install the add-in separately.

2 PDFCreator

PDFCreator is another excellent tool to create PDF’s freely. It is an open source program from SourceForge. It creates PDF files from any Windows program. Use it like a printer in Word or any other Windows application.

3 PDFonline

Convert documents to PDF, and PDF to word. If you don’t want to download software it is a good choice for you to create PDF online for free.

Edit PDF

What if you want to edit PDF or extract some images and tables from PDF to reuse? Adobe Acrobat? No, it is $299.00 %2B Tax (standard edition) or $449.00 %2BTax (Pro edition). Personally, I do not like to use PDF editor, for there are too many buttons and features to familiar. And PDF editors are usually not cheap. Therefore, I find a better way. Convert PDF to the format I prefer, like word, excel, edit in new file, then convert back to PDF. So I will give you some tools can convert PDF to other formats.

1 Free PDF to Word Converter

It is totally FREE. The program can extract text images and shapes from PDF file to Word Doc file and preserve the layout. However, after a period of time, you need to answer complicated math question to get a just-for-once registration code before your conversion. It is annoying.

2 PDF to Word Converter

For PDF file with restrictions, you can try PDF to Word Converter. It charges, but it is easy to use and the conversion quality is good. For all the elements, like text content, images, forms even hyperlinks will be preserved in word. They can be edited, even the images. You can also convert PDF files with restrictions, which was set by author to prevent others from copying or editing or even printing. With this converter, you can easily get what you want, without to type word by word, copy and paste.

3 Zamzar

This site allows you to upload file and wait for the immediate transfers to the e-mail address of your choice. It is very easy and has a user-friendly interface. Using free service, you can convert files up to 100MB in size and to different types, such as doc, tiff, dwg, etc.

You may have some other requirements such as combine some PDF files into one, add watermarks to your PDF files or remove password of a PDF file. And you can easily find other adobe alternatives, too.

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