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A PDF processor written in Go.
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pdfcpu: a golang pdf processor

Build Status GoDoc Coverage Status Go Report Card License: MIT


Package pdfcpu is a simple PDF processing library written in Go supporting encryption. It provides both an API and a CLI. Supported are all versions up to PDF 1.7 (ISO-32000).


Version: 0.1.14

  • Improved image extraction (Flate encoded images get written as PNG)
  • Bug fixes


Reducing the size of large PDF files for mass mailings by optimization to the bare minimum. This can be achieved by analyzing a PDF's cross reference table, removing redundant embedded resources like font files or images and by always writing back the file maxing out PDF compression. I also wanted to have my own swiss army knife for PDFs written entirely in Go that allows me to trim, split and merge PDF content.


  • Validate (validates PDF files up to version 7.0)
  • Read (builds xref table from PDF file)
  • Write (writes xref table to PDF file)
  • Optimize (gets rid of redundancies like duplicate fonts, images)
  • Split (split a multi page PDF file into single page PDF files)
  • Merge (a set of PDF files into one consolidated PDF file)
  • Extract Images (extract all embedded images of a PDF file into a given dir)
  • Extract Fonts (extract all embedded fonts of a PDF file into a given dir)
  • Extract Pages (extract specific pages into a given dir)
  • Extract Content (extract the PDF-Source into given dir)
  • Trim (generate a custom version of a PDF file)
  • Manage (add,remove,list,extract) embedded file attachments
  • Encrypt (sets password protection)
  • Decrypt (removes password protection)
  • Change user/owner password
  • Manage (add,list) user access permissions

Demo Screencast



Required build version: go1.8 and up

go get


pdfcpu validate [-verbose] [-mode strict|relaxed] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile
pdfcpu optimize [-verbose] [-stats csvFile] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile [outFile]
pdfcpu split [-verbose] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile outDir
pdfcpu merge [-verbose] outFile inFile...
pdfcpu extract [-verbose] -mode image|font|content|page [-pages pageSelection] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile outDir
pdfcpu trim [-verbose] -pages pageSelection [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile outFile

pdfcpu attach list [-verbose] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile
pdfcpu attach add [-verbose] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile file...
pdfcpu attach remove [-verbose] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile [file...]
pdfcpu attach extract [-verbose] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile outDir [file...]

pdfcpu encrypt [-verbose] [-mode rc4|aes] [-key 40|128] [-perm none|all] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile [outFile]
pdfcpu decrypt [-verbose] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile [outFile]
pdfcpu changeupw [-verbose] [-opw ownerpw] inFile upwOld upwNew
pdfcpu changeopw [-verbose] [-upw userpw] inFile opwOld opwNew

pdfcpu perm list [-verbose] [-upw userpw] [-opw ownerpw] inFile
pdfcpu perm add [-verbose] [-perm none|all] [-upw userpw] -opw ownerpw inFile

pdfcpu version

Please read the documentation


  • Please open an issue if you find a bug or want to propose a change.
  • Pull requests, bug fixes and issues are always welcome.


Usage of pdfcpu assumes you know about and respect all copyrights of any PDF content you may be processing. This applies to the PDF files as such, their content and in particular all embedded resources like font files or images. Credit goes to Renee French for creating our beloved Gopher.



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