How to Index PDF Files

By Cooper Temple

PDF (Portable Document Format) files are used to distribute a variety of material electronically. This format is popular because anyone with a PDF reading program, such as free Adobe Reader, may access and view the files. Similar to many productivity applications, such as Microsoft Word, a PDF document may be searched for specific words and phrases. Many PDF-writing programs contain a feature that allows you to create an index of the information in a PDF, which makes the search process run more effectively. You can index a PDF, with the right software, by following a few steps.

Things You'll Need

  • PDF file
  • PDF-writing application

Step 1

Install a PDF-writing application. Adobe Acrobat Pro is used in the following steps, but a fee is charged for the application. There are free PDF-writing programs available for download. No matter which PDF-writing program you choose, make certain that it has the capacity to create an index.

Step 2

Launch the PDF document that you want to index. Select “Open” from the “File” drop-down menu and locate the saved PDF using the “Look in” menu. Highlight the PDF document and click once on the “Open” button.

Step 3

Click once on “Document Processing” under the “Advanced” drop-down menu. This will launch a separate list menu of document-processing options. Choose the “Manage Embedded Index” option which will launch a pop-up window.

Step 4

Click the “Embed Index” button on the “Manage Embedded Index” window. Click once on the “OK” button when the system generates a separate window explaining that the source PDF will be saved, closed and opened again. Depending on the size of the document, the indexing process could take a minute or so.

Step 5

Click once on the “OK” button after the indexing process has completed. To update or remove the indexing, simply repeat step 3 and choose “Update Index” or “Remove Index.” Remember to save the document using the “Save” or “Save As” options in the “File” drop-down menu.