Projects / Xpdf


Xpdf is a viewer for Portable Document Format (PDF) files. (These are also sometimes also called 'Acrobat' files, from the name of Adobe's PDF software.) The Xpdf project also includes a PDF text extractor, PDF-to-PostScript converter, and various other utilities. It runs under the X Window System on UNIX, VMS, and OS/2. The non-X components (pdftops, pdftotext, etc.) also run on Win32 systems, and should run on pretty much any system with a decent C++ compiler. Xpdf is designed to be small and efficient. It can use Type 1 and TrueType fonts.

Operating Systems

Recent releases

  •  28 May 2014 21:48

    Release Notes: A new text extractor, new pdftohtml and pdftopng tools, and new trapezoid-based rasterizer core (for performance).

    •  16 Aug 2011 22:16

      Release Notes: The "fixed pitch" text extraction mode was added. "pdftops -paper match" was modified to handle PDF files with different-sized pages, so it will now select the matching paper size on a page-by-page basis. The ability for pdftoppm to write to stdout was added. The pdfdetach tool was added. 256-bit AES decryption was implemented. The t1lib section was commented out in the configure script, since t1lib has some potential security holes, and hasn't been updated in years. The font configuration xpdfrc commands were redesigned. The license was changed from GPLv2 to dual v2/v3 licensing.

      •  19 Oct 2009 15:17

        Release Notes: Several security vulnerabilities, reported as CVE-2009-3603, CVE-2009-3604, CVE-2009-3605, CVE-2009-3606, CVE-2009-3608, and CVE-2009-3609, were fixed.

        •  17 Apr 2009 09:47

          Release Notes: This release fixes several security problems related to parsing broken JBIG2 files.

          •  07 Nov 2007 22:14

            Release Notes: This release fixes security holes with the following CVE identifiers: CVE-2007-4352, CVE-2007-5392, and CVE-2007-5393.

            Recent comments

            25 Jan 2008 06:20 HebbianRule

            Widgetless option?
            Xpdf is a great viewer. It is fast and easily configurable. I only wonder if there is a way to suppress the widgets (scrollbars and toolbars) so that the pdf document covers the whole window (i.e., something similar to what the --widgetless option in gv does, but without the pagebar).

            31 Jul 2005 10:50 derekn

            Re: xpdf not working for pdf file

            > xpdf is not working for pdf document at


            What sort of problem are you seeing?

            If you're getting scrambled text, the problem is that Xpdf 3.00 doesn't work correctly with FreeType 2.1.8 and newer -- they changed the way CID font encodings are handled. The upcoming Xpdf 3.01 release will fix that problem.

            29 Jul 2005 23:51 rjrd000

            xpdf not working for pdf file

            xpdf is not working for pdf document at


            xpdf runs well and this is unusual.

            Running in Debian, this version:

            russell@athlonbox:~$ apt-show-versions xpdf

            xpdf/stable uptodate 3.00-13

            this box:

            Linux athlonbox 2.6.6 #1 Sun Jun 12 18:47:44 EST 2005 i686 GNU/Linux

            25 Oct 2004 22:05 derekn

            Re: Motif

            > It apparently needs Motif and Motif
            > isn't free. (and there are no packages
            > for my system).

            OpenMotif ( is available (in source form) for any open source OS.

            Alternatively, LessTif ( is available under the LGPL.

            25 Oct 2004 19:59 learfox

            It apparently needs Motif and Motif isn't free. (and there are no packages for my system).


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