As an IT Consultant my job is to present options and alternatives and this week I was presented with the task of finding an alternative to Adobe Acrobat.
Acrobat software is used to create the well known ‘PDF’ file which features supreme portability regardless of where its viewed, it retains it’s fonts & formatting on any platform. My client uses Acrobat to export documents and files in PDF format for distribution however they need a few more copies and Adobe Acrobat Standard costs over $400. At this price it really starts to add up so the search is on for a reliable alternative.
Tasks the Acrobat alternative must perform:
- save as PDF
- merge PDF files
- extract pages from PDF
- be significantly lower in price to make the switch away from Adobe Acrobat worthwhile
Is there an alternative option to using Adobe Acrobat PDF Writer? Yes There Is.
It’s important to note that although these programs can create PDF files they do have differing feature sets. There are also free PDF creation software alternatives that offer limited features and may place brand watermarks or signatures to the PDF’s you create. If its just for home then the free/share ware versions might suffice (check out www.download.com for these).
Actually, there are quite a few options for software to create PDF’s, heres a short list in no particular order:
- CutePDF – CutePDF Professional (formerly CutePDF 3.2) is an easy-to-use Windows software that enables you to get advanced control over PDF document output. Easily add comments, security, stamps, headers and footers, create interactive form fields, create booklets or n-Up pages, combine files, rearrange pages, and much more! CutePDF not only simplifies your business document processing and publishing, but also saves ink, paper and time by controlling and enhancing printed output.
- PDFreDirect Professional – Save, FTP or E-Mail your PDF files. Merging, Optimizing, Preview, and Preferences. Faster, Metadata, Font Options, Locking Options. 128 bit Encryption, Extraction, Hyperlinks, Stamps.
- NitroPDF – Nitro PDF Professional, the complete Adobe® Acrobat® alternative, enables you to do more with PDF through powerful tools to create, convert, edit, combine, secure, annotate, form-fill, and save 100% industry-standard PDF files. Recipient of multiple best product awards, Nitro Pro is specifically designed for the business user and makes working with PDF faster and easier than ever before!
- PDF Sign & Seal – PDF Sign&Seal is a desktop application that makes it easy to apply PDF digital signatures, time-stamps and strong PDF encryption to business documents. It has been carefully designed for busy managers that have ease of use as a priority. Using PDF Sign&Seal anyone can easily create, sign or protect business documents.
- Foxit Creator – Foxit PDF Creator is a virtual printer that allows any application with printing capability to generate high-quality PDF documents conveniently and efficiently. Like the popular Foxit Reader, Foxit PDF Creator is designed specially based on the same Foxit core PDF technologies. With powerful search ability and high-performance PDF displaying and processing, it is small, fast and accurate for converting any popular file formats to professional quality PDF files. Once installed as a print driver, it enables you to create reliable PDF files at an incredibly fast speed while retaining the look and feel of the original documents. It supports Windows XP/Vista/7 and is compatible with PDF standard 1.7.