How to Split PDF File on Ubuntu 18.04

How to Split PDF File on Ubuntu 18.04

Splitting PDF file into one PDF file per page or selecting specific pages into one PDF file can be done in Ubuntu in 2 ways, first with the default PDF reader application in Ubuntu, Document Viewer (Evince), and the second by using command line based application PDFtk (PDF toolkit).

Document Viewer

Splitting PDF file using the Document Viewer

  1. Open PDF file
  2. Click Print… or CTRL+P
  3. Choose Print to File
  4. Click File for output file name
  5. Choose Pages then enter the page number you want to split. For example page 10 enter 10, pages 5 to 10 enter 5-10
  6. Click Print
Document Viewer - Print
Document Viewer – Print

The drawback of Document Viewer is that when you want to split each page into one PDF file it will take a long time because you have to do it repeatedly. For example split PDF file containing 100 pages, must do Print to File up to 100 times.

PDFtk (PDF toolkit)

Splitting PDF files using command line based PDFtk

Install PDFtk on Ubuntu 18.04

Create a pdftk symlink

Split one page (page 10) from a PDF file (fullpage.pdf)

Split pages 5 to 10 of the PDF file

If you want to split each page, create a simple bash script to run PDFtk repeatedly.

Create a bash script file

Script to split each page of a PDF file with the name file fullpage.pdf which contains 100 pages.

Give execute privileges then run the script

PDFtk can also be used to merge PDF files

One comment

  1. Cool tutorial, thanks! That script to split a PDF into individual pages, in particular, is super useful.

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