How To Extract Images From PDF Files & Save Them For Other Uses [Windows]

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pdf   How To Extract Images From PDF Files & Save Them For Other Uses [Windows]The Portable Document Format (PDF) is often the preferred medium for exchanging documents across the web. But sometimes, it creates more “problems” than it solves.

For instance, I am a voracious user of Slideshare, and sometimes I like to save a neat illustration or graphic for my personal use. Then there are some professional reports which come packaged as a PDF and you might come across the need to use a graphic from there in a presentation.

We had taken an earlier look at 6 Ways To Convert A PDF To A JPG Image. But over here, I am looking for something specific – extracting images only from PDF files. The solutions offered in the previous article are full-fledged converters. Here, the focus is more pinpointed.

Let’s check out a few ways to extract images from PDF files.

The Manual Way

Extracting images from PDF files is not a problem if you have the commercial Adobe Acrobat. It allows you to extract all the images (in multiple image formats) in a PDF file with a single click. Some free PDF readers like the earlier reviewed Nitro PDF Reader also have this feature. If you have the free Adobe Reader installed, then you have to slog it out by either using the Print Screen button on an individual image or using the Take a snapshot feature from the Edit menu. In both cases, you have to paste the copied image from the clipboard into a graphic editor.

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The Photoshop Way

Okay, Adobe Photoshop isn’t a free product, but some of us do have it installed because it is the Big Daddy when it comes to image editors. Photoshop allows you to open a PDF document and start importing the text or the images in it. The Import PDF dialog appears as below:

pdf image converter01c   How To Extract Images From PDF Files & Save Them For Other Uses [Windows]


You can select the images you want to extract. Click on OK and then save (or edit) the image as you would normally do. CorelDRAW also offers a similar functionality.

The Freeware Way

Well, you don’t need to get thumbprints on the Print Screen button or plonk down serious case on Photoshop if you regularly extract images from PDF files. Let’s bring up Some PDF Image Extract for the job at hand.

The 885 KB free software runs on Windows and is very handy for extracting image files from PDF documents. Plus, it comes with a few bells and whistles that give some control over what you are going to pull out from the PDF file. Installation is a breeze; just be careful to deselect the option which asks you to install the Blekko search engine as an option (i.e. if you want).

The interface of Some PDF Image Extract looks like this and using the image extractor doesn’t need you to consult any help file (though there is one).

pdf image converter02c   How To Extract Images From PDF Files & Save Them For Other Uses [Windows]


Some PDF Image Extract allows you to extract images from PDF files by using any or all of the following features…

1. The free software can batch process PDF files and extract their images in individual folders in one go. If you have more than one PDF file to work on, this is a time saver.

2. Some PDF Image Extract comes with image format options (JPG, BMP, PNG, GIF, TIF, TGA, and PCX). In case of the JPG output option, you can also control the quality of the extracted image.

3. You can choose the page range as well as an individual page if you want to extract only specific images from the file.

pdf image converter03   How To Extract Images From PDF Files & Save Them For Other Uses [Windows]

4. Some PDF Images Extract can work with password protected PDF-files too. The conversion tool has a field where you can key in the password during conversion.

Some PDF Image Extract does its conversion bit quite rapidly and smoothly. It works with Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista, and probably Windows 7 too though I haven’t tested it out on that.

PDF image extraction has quite a few uses. What are yours? How do you extract images from PDF files? Tell us your choice of method.

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For occasional use, Adobe Reader X allows you to select and copy an image as well. You can’t save it directly to an image file but you can paste it into Irfanview and save it from there.


I extract images using Adobe to save as individual tiff files, then use ImageMagickidentify.exe in a bat file to change the the extension of jpeg images to .jpg.
since no program I could find, will save images based on the colour content
e.g tiffs for Bitonal, and jpegs for colour

:: FIND and Convert Jpeg encoded Tiff to real Jpegs
::List all Tiffs in Sub directorysDir /b /s *.tif>>List.txt::ID the Image Compression usedFOR /F %%a in (List.txt) DO (C:ExportedImageMagickidentify.exe -format “%%i,%%C” %%a  >>Who.txt)::Convert Images with JPEG CompressionFOR /F “delims=, tokens=1,2″ %%a in (‘Findstr.exe /ic:”JPEG” “Who.txt”‘) DO (ECHO Converted file: “%%~dpna.jpg”>>Converted.txtC:ExportedImageMagickconvert.exe -resample 200 %%a %%~dpna.jpgDEL %%a)

Saikat Basu

Thanks for the tip.Hope you find these solutions useful too.


good tp!

Ove Christensen

I don’t understand why you’re trying to make it so hard to get a simple image extracted using Windows. In Windows accessory you have a screen clipper which you can use for ‘extracting’ images from whatever you encounter on your screen. If you use an older version of Windows you can use Snaplr or something similar.
But maybe I’m missing the point.

Saikat Basu

Well, Ove the simplest is of course a screenshot tool. The Prnt Screen button can solve that. But you will agree these tools make batch downloads easier.


“I don’t understand why you’re trying to make it so hard to get a simple image extracted using Windows.”

for example, i have an old scanned book in PDF of about 300 pages. note that each page is an image. but whoever scanned it messed up the way pages are lined. so we have 6,5,8,7,10,9 etc.

to reorder it, the easiest (and the smallest size PDF) would be to extract the images and make a proper pdf.

Ove Christensen

Thks Saikat and anon,
You are both right. I was only commenting on the idea of extracting a image from a PDF. I can see the usefulness of the ‘how to’s in this article.

Thomas Staub

Another option for occasional use is an online PDF Extractor. For e.g. This one can additionally extract font files from PDFs.