jPDF Tweak: your all-in-one PDF merging, extracting, and editing toolkit

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jPDF Tweak is a free, open-source PDF editing app. It can merge PDF documents, convert them into printable booklets with multiple pages per sheet, extract, rotate, scale, or shuffle pages.

But that’s not all. Other functions include adding a background watermark image or page numbers, adding or editing bookmarks, page transitions, viewer preferences, or document metadata; and encrypting and/or signing a PDF document.

This program brings all of these functions together to one place and presents them in a tabbed interface. It can process a single PDF document or multiple documents in batch.

Here are some PROS and a Wish list:

PROS:

  • The range of functions provided: is simply impressive. While there are many free apps out there that split or merge PDFs or do both, most of these simple cannot hold a candle to the range of functions that jPDF Tweak offers.
  • jPDF Tweak Screenshot ShuffleThe shuffle function: warrants special mention because it is both unique and potentially very useful. Allows you to create printable booklets in various ways including the ability to tile multiple pages on a single sheet of paper (see screenshot to the right for an example). This function can be quite complicated to set up; luckily, however, the authors of this software have included presets that you can simply select from a dropdown and not have to build a config yourself.
  • The tabbed interface: makes performing multiple edits/interventions simultaneously a more intuitive affair.

Wish list:

  • Add an image file as watermark: while you could the first page in your document as a watermark for all subsequent pages, or use any size or color custom text as background , there is no support for using a simple image, which seems like a strange oversight.
  • Convert PDF to images or vice versa: these are simply functions that would probably be implemented without a lot of difficulty, and would reinforce the concept of this program being an all-in-one PDF toolkit.
  • The ability to select/add a whole bunch of PDFs at once: as opposed to selecting them one by one. It would be great if drag and drop was also added.

The verdict: this program bring together an excellent collection of PDF tools. If you occasionally need to tweak or manipulate a PDF you will find that jPDF Tweak delivers; however, if you work with PDF frequently then you will find that this program is simply a must-have.

The one criticism I have is that some of the functions (adding page transitions, shuffle) are somewhat less user friendly that they should be. Which doesn’t distract from the fact that this is simply an excellent tool.

Version Tested: 1.0-rc1

Compatibility: Tested on Windows 7; this is a Java app that requires Java 5 or higher.

Go to the program home page to download the latest version (approx 716K).