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How to Copy Text from PDF? (4 Easy Ways)

For various reasons, the content in the PDF requires a copy for further processing. Although most PDF readers support copying text from a PDF, you may find it does not work in many scenarios. This article showcases how to copy text from PDF in 4 easy ways which include all your cases.

The tool that will be used here is UPDF which is a cost-effective PDF editor with paralleled features to Adobe Acrobat. It not only can help copy text from PDF, but also allows you to edit PDF, convert PDF, annotate PDF, protect PDF, and more. Let's check how it can help you copy text from PDF in all cases now.

Part 1. How to Copy Text from PDF Via Copying Button or Shortcut

Here, you will learn how to copy text from PDF with the copying command and the shortcut in UPDF.

Step 1. Open PDF in UPDF

Download the app from the button below and install it by following the instruction wizard. Then, launch the tool. Immediately, upload the PDF file by hitting the "Open File" button.

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how to copy text from pdf open file

Step 2. Copy and Paste Text from a PDF

Option 1: Copy Text from PDF in the Reader and Comment Mode

Once you open the PDF file, you will be in reader mode. Left hold on your mouse, then, drag to select the text you need to copy. You will see a floating quick toolbar and select the "Copy Text" icon to copy the content quickly!

how to copy text from pdf

Option 2: Copy Text from PDF in the Edit Mode

You can also go to the "Edit PDF" mode. Select the text you want to copy and then right-click on the mouse to select "Copy" in the drop-down menu or you can hold on "ctrl + c" on the keyboard to copy the text. Then, paste it on any file followed by CTRL+V.

Copy and Paste from a PDF on UPDF

The copying button and shortcut are very easy to copy text from PDF, isn't it? However, it may take a long time if you need to copy many parts or the whole file to Word, Excel, PPT, Txt, or any other format. In that case, you need to use the convert features.

Part 2. How to Copy Text from PDF to Word/Excel/PPT/TXT via Converting?

This way is to convert PDF to Word, Excel, or other formats, and then copy the text from the converted file. The proficiency of the tool protects the quality of the document and does not damage its formatting. Moreover, it has one batch convert feature which can help you copy text from PDF to other formats in bulk if you have a lot of PDF files. To execute the process of converting the PDF into a Word or Text document, you can download UPDF and then follow the steps explained below:

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Step 1: Specify File Format

Open the PDF document on UPDF and click on the "Export PDF" button on the right section of the window. This will open a menu with the file formats that UPDF can convert the PDF into.

Export PDF to copy text from PDF in UPDF

Select "Word (.docx)" or "Text (.txt)," or other formats, depending on the type of file format you want to convert the PDF into. This opens a new window on the screen where you have to specify the conversion parameters.

convert pdf to word to copy text from PDF

Step 2: Copy Text after Converting

Specify the page range in the provided options and click on "Export" to lead to selecting the location for saving the converted document. Once saved, open the document and copy the text that you want to use.

For those who want to convert PDF to any other formats in bulk, you can choose "Batch" in the home interface, then, select "Convert" and upload file to convert them all at once.

Part 3. How to Copy Text from Scanned PDF/PDF Images?

If you have a scanned PDF document or PDF image with no editable text, you cannot copy it for your needs. For that, you must first convert the scanned or image PDF to an editable and searchable document with the OCR function provided by UPDF. This proficient tool makes this a straightforward process. To understand how you can use the OCR feature to convert the scanned document to editable text, you must follow the steps defined below:

Step 1: Access the OCR Icon

First of all, download UPDF by clicking the button below. As you open the document on UPDF, proceed to the "Recognize Text using OCR" button on the right panel.

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copy text from scanned pdf

Step 2: Select Layout, Language and Specify the Image Resolution for OCR

Starting with the "Layout," you can select "Text and pictures only" or other options from the drop-down menu. Click on the "Gear" icon to open the advanced layout settings. And you can update some settings.

Following this, specify the "Document Language" that the OCR tool will detect. UPDF provides a list of over 38 languages to select from.

You should define the "Image Resolution" settings. Select the appropriate dpi value from the list of options in the drop-down menu. If you are unclear about the resolution, select the "Detect Optimal Resolution" button.

Perform OCR to copy text from PDF using UPDF

Step 3: Copy Text from a PDF Image or Scanned Document

Specify the page range where you want to apply the OCR function. Once done, you must click the "Perform OCR" button to execute the process. You will first be prompted to select the location of the converted PDF and select "Save" to start the process.

Once the document is converted and opened on UPDF, you can click on the "Edit PDF" tab to select the text that you wish to copy. You may find that UPDF is very powerful, the even better news is that it is now offering an exclusive discount for a limited time. Upgrade now!

Part 4. How to Copy Text from a Secured PDF?

When you receive a locked PDF and try to copy text from the locked PDF, you may find it very difficult to do it. It is not a problem for you after following the below guide.

Step 1. Open the Locked PDF

First of all, open the locked PDF file by clicking "Open File" to select the PDF to open it. Once it is opened, you can find many options in the right-side menu.

Step 2. Remove Password to Copy Text from Locked PDF

Select "Protect Using Password", click "Remove Security", and it will ask you if you are sure to remove security from PDF, click "Remove" and enter the password to remove the security.

Remove Password to Copy Text from Locked PDF using UPDF

Once it is removed, you can click "Edit PDF", and then, select the text and copy them.

Part 5. FAQS About Copying Text from a PDF

1. Why can't I copy text from PDF?

There are two reasons why you cannot copy text from PDF. One is that it is an image PDF or scanned PDF, and the other is that it is password protected. If you want to copy text from these PDF files, you can use UPDF and follow the guide we introduced above.

2. How to copy text from PDF in Adobe?

Open PDF in Adobe, then, right-click on the document, choose "Selection Tool", drag to select the text you want to copy, and hold on "Ctrl + C" to copy text from PDF in Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat.

3. How to copy text from PDF Using Bluebeam?

Go to open Bluebeam, open the PDF file, then, go to "Edit" > "Content" > "Edit Text", drag to select the text, right-click to select copy.

4. How to copy text from Foxit PDF?

Go to open PDF on Foxit, click "Select" > "Select Text and Image", drag to select the text, right-click and select "Copy with Formatting".

5. How to copy text from Nitro PDF?

Once you open a PDF file on Nitro, click "Select", drag to select the text, and hold on "CTRL + C" to copy text from Nitro PDF.


Thus, you have a complete guide on how to copy texts from PDFs. Select the one that best suits your needs. We are sure you will not regret using UPDF introduced in this article. It is highly recommended and even a newbie user works on it comfortably. And its features like editing PDF, annotating PDF, protecting PDF, OCR PDF, and other advanced features will not let you down. Download it now to enjoy all the features.

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