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Convert PDF to WORD/EXCEL

Posted on 2014-01-18
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I use SourceForge PDF Creator to create PDF documents and it is FREE, but is there a free software that will convert PDF into WORD or EXCEL?
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Question by:sglee
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aadih earned 62 total points
ID: 39790897
There are several online pdf to excel converts (free). I use them exclusively.

You could also try 'PDF to Excel Converter' at:

http://download.cnet.com/PDF-to-Excel-Converter/3000-18497_4-75914483.html >

The same with PDF to Word Converter.  Use online converters or download one from:

http://download.cnet.com/PDF-To-Word-Converter/3000-10743_4-10658764.html >
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by:Gary
Gary earned 62 total points
ID: 39790900
Don't think you can get better than this for free (and better than some paid ones)

http://download.cnet.com/Quick-PDF-Converter/3000-2079_4-10667669.html
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Assisted Solution

by:Joe Winograd, EE MVE
Joe Winograd, EE MVE earned 124 total points
ID: 39790921
For PDF to Excel, I've had excellent results with this free online tool:
http://www.pdftoexcel.org/

It does a good (but not perfect) job of maintaining the formatting, which is always the trick with any PDF to Excel (or Word) conversion. I don't know if it will work well on your documents, but it's worth a (free!) shot. If you do like it and would prefer a local install rather than the online tool, it is available for purchase and download (and it has a 7-day free trial):
http://www.investintech.com/prod_downloadsa2e.htm

Another product worth trying is A-PDF to Excel:
http://www.a-pdf.com/to-excel/index.htm

It's not free, but is reasonably priced at $39 USD, and it offers a free trial so you can see if it works on your doc before buying it.

For PDF to Word, I've had good (not perfect) results with this free online tool:
http://www.pdftoword.com/

If you prefer a local install, I've also had good (also not perfect) results with this free tool:
http://www.boxoft.com/pdf-to-word/

You may get better results with non-free products. I've gotten better (but still not perfect) results with Nuance's PDF Converter Professional (current version is 8):
http://www.nuance.com/products/pdf-converter-professional/index.htm

Although the list price is $100, the street price is significantly lower:
http://www.amazon.com/Nuance-Communications-Inc-M109A-G00-8-0-Professional/dp/B0084PK8CS/

The first link in this post is to the (free) Nitro cloud. Nitro is a well-known name in PDF tools and their Nitro Pro (current version is 8) has a PDF to Word feature:
http://www.nitropdf.com/pro/features/convert-export

There's a free trial, but at $120 is not cheap to buy. I've never used it, so can't vouch for its performance. However, it uses the same engine as the online tool, which I have used and is very good, so I would expect the same of Nitro Pro.

One more non-free product (but reasonably priced at $39) is CAD-KAS's PDF to Word:
http://www.cadkas.com/downengpdf9.php

I haven't used this product, but I have used their PDF Editor Objects, which is excellent. Based on the quality of PDF Editor Objects, I think that their PDF to Word is worth a try, and there's a free trial:
http://www.cadkas.com/pdf2word!.exe

I've been on previous threads here at EE where other experts have recommended these three (free) online tools:

http://www.convertpdftoword.org
http://www.pdfonline.com/pdf-to-word-converter
http://www.wondershare.net/pdf-converter/pdf-to-word-converter.html

I can't personally vouch for these, but based on the positive comments from other members, I'm passing them along for your consideration.

No matter which way you go, keep in mind that PDF-to-Word conversion is tricky business – maintaining the formatting/layout is tough stuff! I haven't found anything that is perfect, and results vary from one document to the next. So my suggestion is to put some, or all, of these products on your short list for evaluation. Define a few test docs – your docs! Compare the resulting Word files to see which, if any, of the tools produces Word files that are satisfactory. Regards, Joe
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39790924
UnWanted Program@ aadih
I tried to install 'PDF to Excel Converter' and ended up having "unwanted program" like above. Were you aware of this?
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Expert Comment

by:aadih
ID: 39790926
Of course not. CNet in general has such problems.
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by:Gary
ID: 39790932
I think you missed a few Joe ;o)
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39790939
@ aadih
I am uninstalling about 6 unwanted pesty software (that got installed). You really should warn people when you post these links in the future.
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39790941
@Cathal
"I think you missed a few Joe ;o) " ---> what do you you mean by it?
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by:Gary
ID: 39790949
<Joke>
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by:aadih
ID: 39790951
FWIW, I downloaded the setup file (not tried to install, however) just to check the problem and by carefully selecting the choices (custom and decline where necessary) I have had no problems having any unwanted stuff.

Sorry that my posted link caused you any problems. :-(

My apologies.
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Expert Comment

by:aadih
ID: 39790969
Also, as a test, following  Cathal's link (Cnet again) I downloaded and installed without problems.  So I am perplexed and can only say that downloading from CNet is not safe (?).

Can others shed some light about this site?  Thanks.
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39790980
@aadih
Follow your own link and install by clicking <Accept> button a few time and see how many "unwanted programs" you see.
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by:Gary
ID: 39790989
Just installed my link and no poblems at all
CNET is a safe site - they have been around years.
But some software (specifically free) do try and install other stuff as they make money on it.
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LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:aadih
ID: 39790990
You are right. I did that. And did  scan with MalwareBytes AntiMalware. It found two unwanted programs (e.g., youtube addblocker) and five other nasties.

Thanks for letting us know.

So from now on I will no longer trust CNET. Period.

Again, my apologies.
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39790995
@aadih
You were only trying to help ... no problem there.
@Cathal
I tried your link and installed it. After testing,  if I like it, I will buy it.
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by:Joe Winograd, EE MVE
ID: 39791006
> I think you missed a few Joe ;o)

As you can guess, I've responded to this same question many, many, many times. :)
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39791046
@Joe,

 Thanks for the information and links and I appreciate it.
 I will make sure I test some of thme out.
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Assisted Solution

by:Joe Winograd, EE MVE
Joe Winograd, EE MVE earned 124 total points
ID: 39791064
sglee,
You're welcome. It's an area of extreme interest to me, so let me know if I can help in any way. I have many of the tools I mentioned (even the non-free ones) and would be happy to test some of your docs with them. I can't emphasize enough how difficult it is to maintain the formatting and how much it can vary from one PDF to the next. So it is a very good idea to test numerous solutions on your "typical" docs (knowing, of course, that it's hard to define a "typical" doc). Btw, I don't recollect any of the online or offline products that I recommended containing adware, but I've had some of them installed for many years, so my memory could be bad on that issue...and the current products could have changed in that respect. Regards, Joe
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39791067
@joe,
Thanks for the word of causion and I will keep that in mind as I test them.
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LVL 53

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by:Joe Winograd, EE MVE
ID: 39791103
sglee,
Sounds good. I'm going offline for a few hours. I'll check back into this thread when I return to see how you're doing. Good luck with your testing! Regards, Joe
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by:Steven Harris
Steven Harris earned 62 total points
ID: 39792160
@Joe and slgee,

I can vouch for Wondershare PDF to Word.  I have used it exhaustively in my work capacity over the last few years and I have not ran into any issues with the conversions.  With that said, Joe could not be any more accurate when he says to test out different software solutions to see what best suits your needs and your documents.  What works great for one person may give you horrible results.


Just my $.02 on the CNET issue:

CNET is slowly taking the plunge into the "crapware" scene.  The first sign is when you try to download a large program like Firefox and instead get a 400kb CNET Installer, which you must carefully navigate in order to bypass the 'extras' they offer in order to start the actual download.  Add to the fact they even though they may claim to be "the trusted, safe, and secure resource for software, mobile applications, and game downloads", they do not actually scan any of the programs that are hosted and according to their upload.com TOS for developers, it states, "we have no obligation to monitor User Submissions".  So, if users are not diligent, they will be downloading the bloated toolbars and advertisement generated apps from the CNET installer as well as possibly infected files from the original publisher.
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Expert Comment

by:aadih
ID: 39792185
ThinkSpaceSolutions, Thank you for the CNET information.
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LVL 18

Expert Comment

by:Steven Harris
ID: 39792245
Not a problem aadih.

I used to use the old download.com site quite regularly myself up until a few years ago.  Since then, it has taken the plunge and I am not sure if they will ever really recover.  It is quite unfortunate, as they were best at what they did, they just seemed to have put safety by the wayside in pursuit of monetary gains.
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LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:aadih
ID: 39792259
The same here. I use filehorse or filehippo now. Regards.
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Author Comment

by:sglee
ID: 39792351
I agree with both of you.
I think CNet got financially greedy and neglect the safety of the users. They can sell AD space and make plenty of money like Google or yahoo, but again they had to get greedier...
It is unfortunate because I will never use their site again and it will eventually catch on.
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