This could be useful...


Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor

There was a post where someone posted about not being able to open a PDF document.

I think it was Mitchell pointed out he was trying to open it in Microsoft Word and you can't do that. I assume he wanted to edit it.

I was reading a PDF file today and I noticed that you can select the type in it.
When I right clicked on it, I got the copy option.

So I did that, opened Word, and clicked Paste.

It pasted the message from the PDF file into Word in a completely editable format.

There were a few errors but nothing the spell checker didn't catch so if you really need to use copy from a PDF file there is a way to do it.

On the Left a Word document with the copy pasted in, on the right the original commercial PDF file downloaded from the internet.

PDF to Word....JPG

I tried this with some PDF files that I created myself in Adobe Indesign and they worked too.

I never knew that was possible, I always figured that once it was in PDF format it was more or less an image, even though I knew the fonts are embedded in it.

I guess there's alway something new to learn.


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Well-Known Member
Mike, that brings back memories of when I started using XP. Copying pdfs to word and/or notepad was a "way of life" for me. That was the poor man's way of improvising when he couldn't afford to buy the software for the task. :tickled_pink:
As a matter of fact, I didn't even have word. I used wordpad since it was a free program that came with every OS.

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Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor

It's funny, I've worked with PDF files for decades and I never figured out that you could copy and paste the type from one.
I knew you couldn't edit them normally.

I never bothered to buy Acrobat because it was expensive and I always had other Adobe software like Indesign that would open and create PDF files.

In fact I only noticed that you could select the type today.
I never tried before.

I suppose that most people knew this all along. LOL

But I've seen a lot of posts over the years from people wanting to know how to edit a PDF file, and I always said you need Acrobat.

Until recently Adobe wasn't allowing other people to make alternatives, but they seems to have loosened up a bit now that they have established PDF as the industry standard.

I don't even have to send print jobs to the printer as a massive folder of files, images, type fonts, and page layouts anymore.
Just send them the correct format of PDF and you know what it's going to look like.



Essential Member
I pointed out to the user you can't open PDF's in Office. Whether or not you can copy ones contents to another source depends on if the file has copyright protections enabled. Some PDF's you can not copy/paste from.

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