delete text

Posted on 2009-04-09
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
How do you delete text using adobe acrobat 9?  I want to completely remove the text.

Question by:-Dman100-
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Expert Comment

ID: 24113103
You would have to have the professional version of acrobat or another PDF document editor. The freware version of adobe is just a pdf reader, you cant use it to edit .pdf documents.

Author Comment

ID: 24113122
yes, we have the full professional version.  It is not the PDF document reader.

Expert Comment

ID: 24113319
Well, the one problem you may encounter is that the text may not be in editable forms.  If it is not, you would have to use something like Adobe Photoshop to select and delete all of the text.  You could post the .pdf, and I could remove it for you?
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LVL 31

Accepted Solution

captain earned 250 total points
ID: 24114626

Have you checked out the TouchUp text and Touchup Object tools?

You can find them in the Tools menu under Advanced editing. You need to figure whether one or the other works better. this is down to the Object level compression and how the PDF was generated as this affects how and which Text objects hang together.

The TUText tool allows you to delete selected text or simply edit it. The downside is that you need to have the font installed on your system, otherwise you get a 'cannot edit' error.

The TUObject tool allows you to delete whole text sections, but as text objects sometime included various different paragraphs  you may delete more than you want.

What you cannot do is use either as you would use a Word processor. The TU text will reflow the text beneath the delete text but only if it is part of the same text object. And that is only on the same page.

The TU object will simply cut a chunk out. With both tools you end up with holes in your PDF body. But then again Acrobat was never designed to properly restructure PDFs, but only to manipulate these.

If you need to change a PDF substantially then you either need to recreate it or edit it page by page in Illustrator.

If a document is locked for editing as part of its security settings you will have the TU options greyed out so you would not be able to legally edit it.


@MrMintanet, if the asker takes you up on your offer you need to explain step by step how you have done this. This will then allow someone to understand the solution when they do a future lookup of this Q.
LVL 44

Assisted Solution

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
Karl Heinz Kremer earned 250 total points
ID: 24115015
The only way to completely remove text is to use the Redaction tool in Acrobat. Anything else will potentially leave information in the document that can be recovered. If you are only worried about text showing up on the screen, the steps outlined so far will work, but if you really ned to remove text without any way to recover, you need to use other tools.

The "Advanced>Redaction" menu contains all the functionality you need, you first need to set the properties. If you just want to remove text without any marks left in the document, make sure that you select "no color" as the area fill color.
In the next step you select what to redact, and then finally, you apply.

Author Comment

ID: 24115557
Thanks for the help and information.  I'm toying around with the touchup tools.  One thing I noticed is if I remove text from a line, it will move up to the previous line.  For example, say I have an address:

Account Number: 211398
Accounts Payable
Black River Falls S.D.
BlackRiverFallsS.D. 301N. 4ThStreet
Black River Fall, Wisconsin 54615

If I remove one of the lines, moves up to the previous line, like so:

Account Number: 211398
Accounts Payable
BlackRiverFallsS.D. 301N. 4ThStreet
Black River Fall, Wisconsin 54615

How can I add a new line and then type in the new text?  The only way I found to do this so far is not to completely remove the line and then add my new text and align correctly and then finally deleted the remaining characters.

So, I guess my questions is how to align correctly and add new lines to a section of text?
LVL 44

Assisted Solution

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
Karl Heinz Kremer earned 250 total points
ID: 24115833
As the captain stated before, the best way to deal with that situation is to recreate your document.
If you don't mind trying another application, take a look at the FoxIt PDF Editor ( - you can download a free eval version to see if it would work for you.

In general, it's not a good idea to do more than just touchup in PDF files. The PDF format is what i call a "final" format. You do all your edits upstream, and once you are at the PDF stage.

I would not recommend to use Illustrator to edit PDF files that were not created with Illustrator. Even though the Illustrator file format is based on PDF, it is not the same, and does not support any of the more advanced features of PDF, and you might actually lose some of these advanced features.

Expert Comment

ID: 33907673
@captainreiss solution works, but I found that in my case it was better to use the TU Object tool, and select the text you want to delete, then press delete.  It's true that the PDF file is not going to function as a word processor, but with the TU Object tool you can highlight and move around other paragraphs / text / images on the page really easily.  The TU Text tool doesn't get rid of Underlines and other types of graphics, whereas the TU Object tool allows you to highlight and select sentences, paragraphs (multiple paragraphs as well) and place them where you want on the page.

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