Create a Word file from a PDF

Create a Word file from a PDF

You might need to convert a PDF back to text to get a word count, to create the next addition when source files have been lost, or

1. In the free Adobe Reader XI:

PDF save as text

    • File menu
    • Save As Other
    • Text

2. Open Word.

3. Open the txt file from within Word and revise (like with a PDF cleanup macro first).

One click, whole document placed into a text file. It works more cleanly than it used to.

Note that this uses the free Reader XI version. The paid versions (like Standard and Pro) can do this too.

Things to watch for

Like any OCR, the PDF to text has trouble with line breaks (that should not be there or that should be paragraph breaks) and with combinations of characters such as fl, fi, ae, rn—you get the idea. It has varying success with text in columns, and handles headers, footers, and marginalia inconsistently too. You will not end up with a clean file.

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