How to Enable the Print Function of a PDF


You can control whether readers of Portable Document Format (PDF) files you create can print them from their own computers and networks. You may choose to restrict printing a reader's ability to print, modify or copy the file through the PDF authoring security settings. Once you apply the security settings and passwords to the file, nobody can perform those functions without knowing the passwords or logging in to an account you own. Readers may not legally remove your file protection with third-party cracking or protection bypass software, and it is up to you whether or not you provide them with the authorization to enable the PDF print function. PDF authoring applications will locate the file protection setting functions in varying locations, but the process is generally the same across all software developers.

  • Open the file in the PDF authoring application and select the security settings item from the tool bar.

  • Locate the security option for print enabling and restriction and set the option to enable the print function for file readers. Some programs may permit you to specify groups of readers who may print the file, but most force an all or none selection.

  • Set a print password if you intend to keep casual readers from printing the file and save your changes as you close the security settings dialog. If you want to allow readers to print the file, remove all the print function passwords.

  • Save the file to disk and close the PDF authoring application. Readers who receive the changed file can print it without restriction.

Tips & Warnings

  • Be careful to select passwords you can remember. If you forget the passwords you set on your PDF files, you will no longer be able to change, modify or print your own file.

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