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Top 8 Open Source PDF Editor

open source pdf editorPDF format makes reading books easier, especially for those who can’t afford to buy a physical copy of it, because there are lots of PDF tools that you can use for reading and editing PDF files. Take, for instance, using an open source PDF editor allows you to add or modify your PDF file. Also, with open source PDF software, you can save your cost by using it for free. It can be helpful when you need to enhance your PDF, split or merge its pages, set a password, and more. Moreover, you can put highlights and comment on each sentence whenever you want to point out the essential parts of its content. On the other hand, below are the list of the top 8 open source PDF editors.

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AceThinker PDF Writer

In case you are looking for an all-in-one open source PDF editor, we offer you the AceThiner PDF Writer. This tool allows you to do almost anything on your PDF file. You can split and merge pages, add annotations, put highlights and comments, and convert PDF to a different file format, set images, and lots more for free. Besides, this tool is easy to navigate because it requires only a few clicks to do whatever you want on your PDF. It already shows the editing tools needed to customize your PDF file on the tool's main interface. Moreover, you can put security on your self-made PDF and put permission whenever you want someone to open your file. It is useful, mainly when the record contains confidential information. To know how to use this tool, below are the easy steps on how to use it.

Step 1 Get the PDF Writer installer

Go to the official website of AceThinker PDF Writer to download the app. Also, you can use the "Download" buttons to get the app quickly. Then, install the tool by following its provided steps for the installation.

Try It for Free

Step 2 Launch the app and open a PDF

Next, after installing the tool, launch it, open the PDF file by going to the "File" menu, and choose "Open" and choose the PDF file that you want to edit. To start editing your PDF file, select the "Edit" section, and then go to the "Content Editing" on the rightmost part of the tool to edit the text of your PDF files. From there, you can change the format, font size, and colors, also the alignment of the text.

upload pdf file and edit

Step 3 Finish editing PDF

Once you are done, you can end editing your PDF file by saving it. Go to the "File" menu and choose "Save" or "Save as," then select the file location for your PDF.

pw save file

LibreOffice Draw

Libre Office is a well-known open-source PDF editor because of its versatility to any Microsoft Office formats like DOCX, PPT, PPTX documents, and more. This tool is a graphical editor that can draw shapes, straight and curved objects, and polygons because of its editing tools. Libre Office can not only edit your PDF file, but also allows you to create informative flowcharts, photos albums, and brochures.

editting tool


  • It supports Microsoft Office formats
  • You can add annotations on your PDF file

  • There is no cloud storage


Inkscape is a graphical vector editor that can also use for editing PDF files. This open-source software is a powerful text tool that you can use for enhancing PDF documents. Especially when you want to split pages, put annotations, add comments, and more. You can also insert images if you wish your PDF file to look more informative and precise.

inkscape edit


  • It is free to use PDF editor
  • Lots of editing features that you can use to enhance PDF file

  • The tool's design looks old


PDFedit is an open-source PDF editor and library that you can strongly use for enhancing your PDF documents. It can also be used as a PDF reader. Also, while you are editing your PDF, this tool knows precisely the sections, phrases, or words that you want to change. Furthermore, you can put images, add texts, and also delete information from your PDF file.

edit PDF


  • You can convert PDF file in this tool
  • It allows you to put password on your PDF

  • Several feature of this tool are not working

Apache OpenOffice

Apache OpenOffice is another open-source PDF reader and editor that most companies, businesses are using nowadays. Also, editing your PDF file in this tool becomes more manageable. It has a built-in spell checker that can detect typographical errors. Furthermore, you can add annotations and comments on your file, especially when you are explaining something, and you want to be precise. Besides, you can save your edited PDF file into different available file formats.

edit PDF file


  • You can easily create information charts
  • It has lots of options to do on editing your PDF file

  • It takes a lot of time before it opens a PDF file


PDFSam is an open-source PDF editing tool specializing in splitting and merging files, that's also what "Sam" means from the tool's name. This tool also supports converting PDF to Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Image, HTML, and more. Furthermore, this tool lets you put a password, watermark, create a certificate, and other means to secure your PDF file. Moreover, just like the other PDF editor, you can put images on your text file to add a visual explanation of the PDF. However, you need to pay and activate the tool to access its other unique features fully.

edit PDFsam


  • You can easily split and merge PDF pages
  • It supports lots of editing tools to use for customizing PDF

  • It lacks customer support


PDFArchitect is an open-source PDF editor, which also has a premium version. The tool can primarily edit text and images from a PDF document and has an added converter feature. PDFArchitect doesn't require any registration if you want to use its basic editing features like adding notes, trimming, copying, and pasting the text. However, there is a free-trial duration if you want to use other premium features of the tool. Once it ends, then you will have to subscribe to the premium version. The tool is available on Windows 7, 8, and 10 at the moment, and it is not compatible with another operating system like macOS.

pdf architect


  • Lightweight PDF editing tool
  • Considerable long trial duration

  • Needs Microsoft Word for PDF to Word conversion feature to work


Lastly, we have Scribus. This is an absolutely free open source desktop publishing tool that was released in 2001. The tool is compatible with operating systems like Windows, Mac, Linux, Haiku, and more. The tool is more of a publisher but works fine as a PDF editor too. It is capable of producing clear-quality PDF pages by utilizing its different editing features. The tool offers lots of features not only for PDF but as other documents as well. This is why the tool is one of the leading free publisher tools that you can use.

scribus interface


  • Able to create various PDF pages

  • Cannot be used to edit existing PDF documents.


All of the said open-source PDF editors above are tools that you can use for your PDF file. They can be used as a PDF reader and PDF editor, and you can also use them for editing PDF documents. However, you might have a problem using those because some of them have an outdated interface. The featured are quite limited, and some are not advisable for beginners because of their sophisticated functions. Contrarily, AceThinker PDF Writer lets you customize any PDF you want and is quite easy to operate. If you are unsatisfied with those free open source PDF editing tools, just try AceThinker PDF Writer.

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Posted by Trafalgar Law to PDF Writer

Last updated on May 24, 2021

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