Skip site navigation (1)Skip section navigation (2)
Date:      Wed, 22 Apr 2020 15:50:03 -0700
From:      Jordan <>
Cc:        Polytropon <>
Subject:   Re: PDF Documents Manipulation Software options
Message-ID:  <>
In-Reply-To: <>
References:  <> <>

Next in thread | Previous in thread | Raw E-Mail | Index | Archive | Help
Hi Polytropon,

Thank you for the response.  

I agree, manually manipulating PDFs with a GUI is not very efficient, however, the work I do cannot be automated (atleast I haven't found a way).  

On a PDF I may have to extract out pages 3, 5 and 14 into a new 3 page PDF because I only need the data from pages 3, 5 and 14.  The very next PDF file I work on I may need to extract out 20 pages, all in a row, from pages 20 to 40.  The next PDF file I may need the first and last page.  There is absolutely no common denominator from these three PDF's and the only thing common is that I need to extract pages.  

In other words, I cannot write a script or use CLI to know ahead of time what needs to be done, because it takes my eyes to visually see the pages and to know what pages I need extracted.  I cannot use grep or any text searching function on these PDFs because on one PDF I may need certain pages that contain words that have absolutely nothing to do with the pages I need on the next PDF I work on.  So, very unfortunately, this is a very manual job and requires human beings (again, from my knowledge of CLI, scripting, etc).

Using CLI would require me to visually look with my eyes a PDF file in a GUI situation and then turn around, open a console, type in a command to extract out a list of specific pages I need to then have to turn around and move that newly created PDF file to a difference location that may be nested 30 folders deep (and won't be consistent location as the next PDF I work within).  It is easier to visually click, hold CTRL to continue highlighting pages and then right click, extract (which creates a new PDF) and then drag and drop the new PDF pages into a GUI file manager (such as Thunar) to create the new PDF.

I don't see how CLI tools will work with the above example workflows although I am all ears to hearing others opinions.  I know "professional" PDF software such as Adobe Acrobat Pro works but it is only compatible with Windows (and maybe GNU/Linux). I found another proprietary PDF Professional software but it is only available for Windows, Mac and GNU/Linux.  I am on a quest to find something for FreeBSD as I believe it to be superior OS than the aforementioned.


On Wed, Apr 22, 2020, at 3:25 PM, Polytropon wrote:
> On Wed, 22 Apr 2020 15:14:59 -0700, Jordan wrote:
> > I need PDF software that can add pages, remove pages, extract pages
> > and redact. 
> With "redact", you're refering to PDF annotations?
> > All of the PDF ports I have found are simply viewers and don't allow
> > manipulations of the PDF in a single packaged GUI application. I work
> > with hundreds of PDFs each day so I cannot work within a CLI to
> > manipulate the pages.
> I'd say the exact opposite is the case: If you're going to deal with
> a lot of files, using CLI tools to automate those tasks usually is
> the more convenient way - instead of doing everything manually in
> linear time. :-) But this of course depends on many parameters, such
> as if the kind of manipulation always is "one of a kind" or can be
> somehow standardized...
> > I do a lot of extracting of pages into a new PDF by dragging and
> > dropping pages from PDF software to a GUI file manager such as
> > Thunar.
> This can easily be done with the GUI file manager of your choice
> plus pdftk. Page preview support is present already in tools like
> Thunar.
> > Any suggestions that you use or have heard that works with FreeBSD?
> Tools like LibreOffice (and surely also OpenOffice) can directly
> open and manipulate PDF files. Gimp also has support for this
> format. For CLI operations, pdftk and ImageMagick are versatile
> tools that can be combined with GUI tools as well as used for
> batch operations.
> Is this a starting point for you?
> -- 
> Polytropon
> Magdeburg, Germany
> Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
> Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

Want to link to this message? Use this URL: <>