Using PDFedit in Kubuntu

I’m over the moon. So far over, that I’m somewhere out near Neptune at the moment.

You see, I love books. Long ago I picked out PDFs as the best digital equivalent and I’ve collected tens of thousands of free books in my digital libraries. One of the only bits of proprietary (sort of) software on my computers is Adobe, simply because it’s the best reader.

When Open Office started improving their PDF writing ability, I started having more and more fun creating my own PDFs out of my own documents and out of various HTML sources I was interested in. I’d take free Gutenberg books and turn them into PDFs complete with pictures and everything. However I couldn’t do anything to edit PDFs that had already been created when I downloaded them. That’s why I’m now somewhere out in space: because I can now edit those PDF files using free software.

I was going through howtoforge and I came across one for installing Modifying PDF Files With PDFedit On Ubuntu Fiesty Fawn.

At the moment PDFedit has to come from the getdeb site, but when Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon comes out in October, PDFedit will be included in the repositories.

I just followed the easy howto procedure and PDFedit installed itself into Kubuntu with no trouble at all. I had to use the KDE installer instead of the Gnome package installer used in the howto, but that worked just the same way.

With PDFedit now in the Graphics section of my menu as PDF Editor, it was time to turn to page two of the howto so I could try out some editing.

Using the howto instructions, I opened “Great Fortunes From Railroads” from my historical section, because I knew it was full of typos. A few minutes later a page-full of typos were gone.

As simple as that.

There’s a bundle of other features I haven’t tried yet:

  • PDF to XML
  • line width
  • colour background
  • highlight text
  • strike-through
  • text size and font
  • add text
  • draw rectangle, lines, arrows
  • remove page
  • extract text
  • system font
  • page metrics
  • rotate
  • embedded command line
  • add/remove object

...and more.

Just about anything you could want to do to a PDF, PDFedit can do.

Open Office should take a look at adding this functionality to their PDF options, it’s the real ridgey-didge.


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