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A simple script for pdf bookmarks creation
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This script creates bookmarks of a pdf from a simple text file. The tool pdftk can already do this infact internally I am using that tool itself. But pdftk requires a format which is too tedious to write. So I have written this script to enter bookmarks data in a simple format.


  • bash
  • python3
  • pdftk
  • dirname
  • basename
  • GNU sed (OSX users take note, you may have BSD sed. Install gsed instead)

Bookmark format

  • Every level starts with a { on a separate line.

  • Bookmarks have title with page number separated by comma.

  • Both title and page number should be on the same line.

  • All these are equivalent(i.e. the script is whitespace agnostic).

    title1, 1
    title1,             1
          title1     ,         1


      Title1, 1
      Title2, 2
        Subtitle1, 3
        Subtitle2, 4
          SubSubtitle1, 5

How To Use it?

  • First clone this repository and change your directory. Execute this in a terminal

    git clone
    cd booky
  • Now copy your pdf file to this directory

  • Create a new text file and write your bookmarks in the given format

  • Now your directory should contain 4 files:,, your_pdf_file.pdf, your_text_file.txt

  • Write the following commands in the terminal

    ./ your_pdf_file.pdf your_text_file.txt

This creats a new pdf file your_pdf_file_new.pdf with your bookmarks.

This is going to work in *nix systems if instead you are on a Windows machine. Then first install python3 and pdftk just use the file in the repo to convert bkmrks.txt to pdftk compatible format

python3 < bkmrks.txt > output.txt

use the export command to generate a dumped data file.

pdftk C:\Users\Sid\Desktop\doc.pdf dump_data output C:\Users\Sid\Desktop\doc_data.txt

Remove the previous bookmarks from that file and insert content of output.txt instead using a simple copy paste. And then import that data back.

pdftk C:\Users\Sid\Desktop\doc.pdf update_info C:\Users\Sid\Desktop\doc_data.txt output C:\Users\Sid\Desktop\updated.pdf

If this does not update your bookmarks check that your pdftk version is greater than 1.45

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