How to Manage PDF Files for Better Use
PDFs are used in our daily lives, and a lot of time, they pile up in our computers due to frequent use. We should learn how to manage PDFs so that we can find them easily and save space.
Part 1. Why Should We Manage PDFs?
PDFs are one of the most convenient file formats that we use in our daily lives. We use PDF files all day to make charts, reports, assignments, or to store documents, books, etc. And with work from home gaining more popularity day by day, the use of PDFs has increased rapidly. We share countless PDFs with our teachers, colleagues, and clients every day.
With so much use of PDFs, the number of files increases, and a time comes when you cannot figure out the contents of a specific file. Thus, you may have a hard time finding the PDF that you need. That is why it is important to manage PDFs in a proper manner so that you can find them easily.
There is also the issue of storage. Some PDFs may be too large to send via mail or WhatsApp. Plus, you may have a hard time storing large PDFs in your hard disk or cloud. So, you should also learn how you can shrink your PDF files and optimize them so that they don’t consume too much space.
Part 2. How to Manage Your PDFs Properly?
Method 1. Integrate the Fragmented PDF Documents
Your computer may have lots of assignments of similar subjects or reports of similar type. You downloaded an ebook from the internet, but you had to download each chapter separately. In such cases, your file explorer can look messy, and you may have a hard time finding out the file that you need. The best way to tackle this problem is to merge your PDFs. If you merge PDFs of similar content into a single file, the clutter in your file explorer will reduce, and you can navigate through all of them easily.
Wondershare Wondershare PDFelement - PDF Editor is a powerful and easy-to-use tool that can help you merge multiple PDF files into a single one. Here are three ways on how you can do so:
If You Have the Files in Different Locations
Step 1: Install Wondershare PDFElement and open it. Click on the Combine PDF option on the home screen.
Step 2: A pop-up window will open up. You can either drag and drop the required files or select them from the directory.
Step 3: At the bottom of the pop-up window, you can select the save directory of the newly combined PDF. After you have chosen the desired location, click on Next. A file named Combined will open up containing the merged PDF.
If You Have the Files in a Single Location
If you have all the files that you want to combine in a single location, then the process becomes even easier.
Step 1: Select the files that you want to merge from the File Explorer.
Step 2: Right-click on them and select Combine to PDF. PDFElement will open up, and you can click on Next to merge the two files into one.
If You Want to Merge Specific Pages
You can use this process to merge PDFs if you want to combine only some specific pages of a PDF with another one.
Step 1: Open the file that you want to keep as a whole.
Step 2: Go to the Page tab located at the menu bar. Click on Insert>From PDF. Select the PDF that you want to merge from the pop-up window.
Step 3: Another pop-up window will open up, where you can set some parameters, like range, page number, whether to place them before or after the first PDF, and so on. Once you are done, click on OK.
Step 4: You can do some fine-tuning, like relocating pages. Once you are done, save the file.
Method 2. Extract the Content You Need
Extracting the content present in any PDF is a great way to manage them, as you can edit those contents whenever you want. Also, you can copy any text or image present in one file and paste it into another one. Here is how you can extract the contents of a PDF file.
Step 1: Open PDFElement and select the PDF from where you want to extract the text.
Step 2: Click on the Edit tab located in the menu bar. Just below the bar, you will see an Edit icon towards the right side of the window.
Now you can edit the text that is present in the PDF. If you want, you can even copy the text and paste it into another PDF. Once done, save the PDF in your preferred location.
Extract Content from Images
There are some PDFs where all the content is image-based, especially when you scan a document and convert it to PDF. In such cases, ordinary PDF editors won’t work. Wondershare PDFElement has a feature called OCR, using which you can extract the text present in the images in the PDF as well. Isn’t that cool?
To use OCR, you need to download some files within the PDFElement. Once you upload a PDF and click on OCR for the first time, you will be prompted to download the necessary files. All you need is an active internet connection. You only need to download the files once.
Here are the steps by which you can extract the contents of an image using OCR.
Step 1: Open the PDF that contains the image.
Step 2: The program detects if the document you opened is a scanned document and will show you a message. Click on Perform OCR, select the language and click on OK. If the message is not showing, or you haven’t uploaded a scanned document, proceed to step 3.
Step 3: Go to the Tool tab located on the menu bar. Click on Perform OCR. A pop-up window will open up, where you need to select the language. It will be set in English by default, but you can change it.
Step 4: You get an extra option to select the pages where you want to perform OCR. Once done, click OK. It may take some time to perform OCR on the PDF, especially if it is a big one.
Step 5: You can now edit the contents present in the text-based PDF. If you want to get access to the better tools of a text editor, like MS Word, you can convert the document into .docx format and then edit it anywhere you want.
Method 3. Shrink PDF Files
Having a large PDF file can be a problem, especially if you are uploading it in the cloud or sending it to someone via platforms like WhatsApp. In such cases, you need to shrink PDFs so that size does not remain an issue. You can do three things to shrink PDFs – remove redundant areas, optimize the images, and compress the document. Let us take a look at how we can do each of them.
Cut Out Redundant Area
If you can cut out the white parts of a page or crop the unwanted contents of a PDF, you can reduce the size of the PDF by a lot. You can use the Crop feature of Wondershare PDFElement to cut out all the unwanted areas of each page. Here is how you can do so.
Step 1: Open the PDF file that you want to crop.
Step 2: Click on the Edit tab located on the menu bar. Click on the Crop icon located just below that.
Step 3: On the pop-up window that appears, you can select how much part of the page you want to crop. Enter the page number in the Range text box. Use the selector box or enter the values to crop out the unwanted parts of each page.
Step 4: Press OK to cut out the redundant area. Once done, remember to save the file.
Optimize Reconstituted Images
The images present in PDFs are responsible for increasing their size by a lot. Also, in some cases, some images get copied multiple times. If we can optimize these images or delete the unwanted ones, we can shrink PDFs by a lot.
The process of optimizing reconstituted images is really easy. Open the PDF in Wondershare PDFElement. Go to the Edit tab and click on the Edit icon located below the menu bar. Now you can resize the images or delete the unwanted ones.
You can also use the OCR mode to optimize images present in image-based documents or scanned PDF files.
Compress Document Content
If you have cropped out the unnecessary parts and optimized the images, but still the file is too large, you can compress the entire document. Luckily, PDFElement has three different levels of compression, and you can choose any of them. Here is how you can do so.
Step 1: Open the PDF that you want to compress.
Step 2: Go to the Tool tab located on the menu bar. Click on Optimize.
Step 3: On the next window, select how much you want to compress. There are three options – low, medium, and high. The final size of the document will also be shown in that window. Choose the one that is appropriate for you and press Optimize.
Step 4: Select the location where you want to save the compressed file.
And that’s it. Now you know how to manage PDFs easily using Wondershare PDFElement. This will save you from a lot of trouble as now you can find your documents easily and store files without worrying about size limits. There are some other alternatives that can perform these services, but PDFElement has all these tools under one program, and most of them are easy to use and free of charge. So, do check it out and manage all your PDFs like a pro.
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