Computers & Electronics

Convert scanned PDF to searchable text?

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  • Sep 14th, 2017 12:31 pm
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Nov 12, 2011
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Convert scanned PDF to searchable text?

Hi all,

I have a bunch of scanned PDFs I want to be able to convert to searchable documents/editable text. Is there a free/easy way to do this? I know the Pro version of Adobe Acrobat allows you to do this, but that is quite expensive.

Thank you
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You could try the Google Drive method. If you upload the PDFs to Drive and then convert them to Docs compatible, they become searchable.

I don't remember the exact method but it was something along those lines
[OP]
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Dave98 wrote:
Sep 9th, 2017 2:17 pm
You could try the Google Drive method. If you upload the PDFs to Drive and then convert them to Docs compatible, they become searchable.

I don't remember the exact method but it was something along those lines
That worked. Thanks. I'll keep trying this and see how it works.
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Did you do the scanning?
Often scanner software includes OCR, you'd just need to select that when scanning the documents.

I believe you can also import into OneNote and it will do OCR on it. OneNote should be included in the latest version of windows 10.
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aqnd wrote:
Sep 9th, 2017 3:11 pm
Did you do the scanning?
Often scanner software includes OCR, you'd just need to select that when scanning the documents.

I believe you can also import into OneNote and it will do OCR on it. OneNote should be included in the latest version of windows 10.
Nope, didn't do the scanning, unfortunately.
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Dave98 wrote:
Sep 9th, 2017 2:17 pm
You could try the Google Drive method. If you upload the PDFs to Drive and then convert them to Docs compatible, they become searchable.

I don't remember the exact method but it was something along those lines
This the most convenient way for students in schools where homework are all on Drive. My daughters do that all the times. it works with images too.
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I drag and drop PDF's every day into EVERNOTE (Premium paid version). It then indexes every word and I can search these later. I have several hundred PDF's with a total of about 3000 notes and searching is near instantaneous.

I can access these on my laptop, desktop, tablet, and phone.

Another feature of EVERNOTE Premium is to clip articles from online magazines and newspapers. These also become fully searchable.

.
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Typhoonz wrote:
Sep 9th, 2017 2:08 pm
Hi all,

I have a bunch of scanned PDFs I want to be able to convert to searchable documents/editable text. Is there a free/easy way to do this? I know the Pro version of Adobe Acrobat allows you to do this, but that is quite expensive.

Thank you
I assume the PDF are all properly scanned ( lines perfectly horizontal).
Use Ubuntu or Linuxmint (built in) viewer to open the PDF. Select the text on the PDF and copy/paste to OpenOffice (free Word substitute from Oracle). Job done.
If you are not sure what I am talking about, just get a disk of Ubuntu or Linuxmint, boot it up afresh, and run (not install) the operating system on the disk. That is it.
Daniel

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mystery wrote:
Sep 11th, 2017 1:12 am
Word 2016 can import PDFs to editable documents.
Really? these are scanned PDFs (read the thread's title), i.e. images!!! Are you claiming that Word-2016 can import images for text editing?
"A Eruchîn, ú-dano i faelas a hyn an uben tanatha le faelas!" -- Aragorn
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danieltoronto wrote:
Sep 11th, 2017 4:23 am
I assume the PDF are all properly scanned ( lines perfectly horizontal).
Use Ubuntu or Linuxmint (built in) viewer to open the PDF. Select the text on the PDF and copy/paste to OpenOffice (free Word substitute from Oracle). Job done.
Nope, those are scanned PDFs. They are images... I tried your steps with a scanned PDF (from my Canon MFP), no go! The PDF was neat, clean and straight. Evince can't select anything. Adobe-Reader selects and pastes as image. Job not done.
"A Eruchîn, ú-dano i faelas a hyn an uben tanatha le faelas!" -- Aragorn
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bogolisk wrote:
Sep 12th, 2017 3:37 pm
Nope, those are scanned PDFs. They are images... I tried your steps with a scanned PDF (from my Canon MFP), no go! The PDF was neat, clean and straight. Evince can't select anything. Adobe-Reader selects and pastes as image. Job not done.
I did that again this minute. I am using the viewer 3.24 . Select the text. Right click to copy and paste. Job done. I am using Ubuntu. Haven't tried Linuxmint yet.
The pdf has no image. Just straight text on pdf
Daniel

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bogolisk wrote:
Sep 12th, 2017 3:37 pm
Nope, those are scanned PDFs. They are images... I tried your steps with a scanned PDF (from my Canon MFP), no go! The PDF was neat, clean and straight. Evince can't select anything. Adobe-Reader selects and pastes as image. Job not done.
BTW there is no need for you to test a scanned page. Those images could be an issue. Say you save this particular web page in pdf file by issuing "print". Then you select, copy and paste. Try it.
The problem might have been caused by the fact that the scanning was not done in a perfectly straight horizontal line.
Daniel

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