Apache Java Tool for Editing PDF
Written by Kay Ewbank   
Tuesday, 05 April 2016

PDFBox, an open-source Java tool for working with PDF documents, has been released by Apache.

Apache PDFBox is a Java library that can be used to create and edit PDF documents, and to extract their content for external use. You can also use it to digitally sign, print and validate files against the PDF/A-1b standard. The utility includes a number of command line utilities that can be called for encrypting and decrypting, overlaying, merging, debugging, converting text to PDF and PDF to an image.


PDFBox was originally created in 2002 by Ben Litchfield. It was taken up as an Apache Incubator project in 2008, and became an Apache top level project in 2009. This latest release is an updated version with improved rendering and text extraction. It offers unicode support for PDF creation, and has better support for interactive forms.

The support for signing and encrypting PDFs has also been improved, along with the parser. This now has a 'self-healing mechanism' that will attempt to recover malformed or corrupted PDFs.

Other improvements include lower use of memory and other resources, an enhanced preflight module for PDF/A-1b conformance checking, and a rearranged package structure to allow smaller runtime environments.

There are some breaking changes in the library. A number of API calls have been removed, and other API changes include the removal of getCOSDictionary() - getCOSObject now returns the matching COSBase subtype. PDXObjectForm has been renamed to PDFormXObject to be more in line with the PDF specification, and similarly PDXObjectImage has been renamed to PDImageXObject.

The final breaking change is the simplification of:

PDPage.getContents().createInputStream()to PDPage.getContents().

pdfboxMore Information

PDFBox Download 

PDFBox Page

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Last Updated ( Tuesday, 05 April 2016 )