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Thread: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

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  1. #1
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    Question Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    Dear all

    I have been using Ubuntu for a while now (4 years), but I am still a begginner-google-dependant user.
    I dont know much about Linux, or programming, but something intrigues me.

    How come after all these years developing PDF readers for linux there is still no native PDF highlighting??? Is it so difficult to achieve?

    Im getting tired of using windows softwares under Wine.

    Okular and Xournal are not options, you cannot save the annotations to the PDF files and if you do, other PDF readers do not recognize it.

    Could somone explain me why there is still no native PDF reader with Highlight in Linux???

  2. #2
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    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    I haven't found any native Linux tools for annotating pdfs, but PDF XChange Pro works very well under Wine, and allows import and export of annotations in standard Adobe Acrobat fdf format. It's not free, but it packs a lot of power for $38 for the Pro version.

  3. #3
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    Ubuntu Mate 17.04 Zesty Zapus

    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    With xournal, you can export to pdf, and then read the new pdf file with any pdf read such as acrobat reader or evince.

    Example:

    You have file.pdf

    Open file.pdf with xournal, and then save it as fileComments.xoj. Now add comments and save; do not close xournal yet. Select File > Export to PDF
    in order to create fileComments.pdf. Now you have a pdf file with comments. As an alternative to using Export to PDF, you could Print to PDF.

  4. #4
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    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    Quote Originally Posted by zerubbabel View Post
    I haven't found any native Linux tools for annotating pdfs, but PDF XChange Pro works very well under Wine, and allows import and export of annotations in standard Adobe Acrobat fdf format. It's not free, but it packs a lot of power for $38 for the Pro version.
    No need for the Pro version of PDF-Xchange to annotate files. I've been using the free version (v2 build 54) for a few years just fine to add notes to corporate bank statements so our accountants know what things are. I haven't bothered to load this in WINE either, but I'll trust what others say about it working well.

    We would all prefer a native solution that actually writes the annotations in the PDF standard way, but every time I looked, it was not to be.

  5. #5
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    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    Quote Originally Posted by demetriodn View Post
    Dear all

    I have been using Ubuntu for a while now (4 years), but I am still a begginner-google-dependant user.
    I dont know much about Linux, or programming, but something intrigues me.

    How come after all these years developing PDF readers for linux there is still no native PDF highlighting??? Is it so difficult to achieve?

    Im getting tired of using windows softwares under Wine.

    Okular and Xournal are not options, you cannot save the annotations to the PDF files and if you do, other PDF readers do not recognize it.

    Could somone explain me why there is still no native PDF reader with Highlight in Linux???
    I have been quite happy with PDF Studio Pro, which does just about everything that Adobe Acrobat does. And it costs much less than Adobe Acrobat.

    PDF Studio Pro is available in a native Linux version from
    http://www.qoppa.com/pdfstudio/index.html

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    zerubbabel: that is the software I have been using ever since I started with Ubuntu, but it lacks integration with other linux apps.

    entropy: did you notice the number of steps one should follow to accomplish something that SHOULD be very simple? And it is very simple in a lot of Windows software. Remember also that you cant view page thumbnails with Xournal.

    rewyllys: thanks for the advice, I think I'll give it a try

    So again, why is it so difficult to do it in Linux?

  7. #7
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    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

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  8. #8
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    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    For highlighting and annotating, Mendeley is great. It is free but proprietary. It is not a pdf editor, but highlighting and annotating work great. I think they are adding more colors to highlight in also.

  9. #9
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    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    Yes, I'm using Mendeley as a Zotero complement, because of the ease of acessing the PDFs. The PDF interface is excellent, the only problem is that Mendeley does not save the annotations to the PDF, so you can't share your articles with your colleagues (only if they use Mendeley too) or open them in another software. I would really be a good alternative if it could save to the PDF, better yet if they release a standalone version of the reader.

  10. #10
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    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Native PDF highlighting in Linux

    Quote Originally Posted by rewyllys View Post
    I have been quite happy with PDF Studio Pro, which does just about everything that Adobe Acrobat does. And it costs much less than Adobe Acrobat.

    PDF Studio Pro is available in a native Linux version from
    http://www.qoppa.com/pdfstudio/index.html
    +1 for PDF Studio from Qoppa Software. A really nice PDF editor

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