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How to edit PDFs on a Mac without using Adobe

Mac computers have a built-in PDF editor, Preview. PDFs can be edited in different ways, such as: rearranging and deleting pages, adding signatures and notes, and more. While there are a few editing features in Preview, you won't have to use third-party apps to edit PDFs on your Mac most of the time.

Here's how to edit PDFs on your Mac using Preview's built-in app:

1- Edit PDF files by adding text to them:

  1. Open the PDF in the Preview app.
  2. If the file contains editable text fields, click inside the field and start typing the information you want to add.
  3. To make sure that the blank fields in the PDF file are editable, place the pointer over the field, if the field changes color to blue, you can write directly in the PDF file itself.
  4. After you're done, click the File button, and then click the Save option to save all the changes.
If the PDF doesn't contain editable fields, copy the text from the PDF, paste it into Pages or Google Docs, and then add the information to the custom fields. 
To do this, follow these steps:
  1. In the Preview application, click the Tools tab, and then click the Text Selection option. 
  2. Use the cursor to select the text.
  3. Copy and paste text into a new document, and then add new text to the document.
  4. Save the document as a new PDF.

2- Add shapes and notes to PDF files:

Another option for editing PDFs in Preview is to add shapes and notes next to some sentences in the text, and to do this, open the PDF in Preview and follow these steps:
  • Click the Tools tab, and then click Annotate.
  • Click on one of the options that will appear under the Annotate menu depending on what you want to do.
  • If you choose one of the shapes available in the Annotate list, it appears directly in the document, such as: Rectangle, Oval, Line, Arrow, Polygon, and Star. You can drag the shape anywhere in the document and resize it using the cursor. You can also change the color and thickness of the shape.
Add shapes and notes to PDF files:
  • From the same menu, you can also choose Highlight Text to highlight a piece of text, Underline Text to add a line under the text, or Strike Through Text to add a line in the middle of the text. After selecting specific text from the document, go to the menu and choose one of these options, as in the following image:
Add shapes and notes to PDF files:
  • If you click the Note option in the same menu, a small yellow box appears that you can move anywhere in the document using the pointer, then you can click it and start typing a note. After you've finished adding a note, click outside the box and save your changes.
Add shapes and notes to PDF files:

3-Add your signature to the PDF:

You can add your signature to a PDF document by clicking on the Signature option, located in the Annotate menu, after that, follow these steps:
»You will see a special screen for adding the signature, click the Click Here to Begin button.
»Click the iPhone tab, after which you will be asked to type your signature. A signature panel will appear in the iPhone screen, write your signature and it will be automatically transferred to the Preview application on the Mac, and after completing the signature, click the Done button to save it.

Add your signature to the PDF:

»The signature icon will appear in the bar at the top of the Preview app, and when you click on it a box will appear containing your signature, click the signature in the box to add it to the document. You can drag it to reposition it within the document, and you can also resize it using the cursor.
Add your signature to the PDF:

4. Rearrange or delete pages from a PDF:

»Open the PDF in the Preview app on your Mac, and you'll notice thumbnails of the pages appearing on the left..
»If PDF page thumbnails are not displayed, click the icon next to the file title and from the options menu choose Thumbnail.
»Thumbnails of all pages of the document will then appear on the left side of the screen.
Rearrange or delete pages from a PDF
»To rearrange pages, simply click the page thumbnail and move it up or down to move it to the desired position. Then leave it and it will automatically move to its new place.
»To delete a page, click its thumbnail in the sidebar, go to the Edit tab, and choose Delete. Then save the changes so that the page does not return to the document after closing it
Rearrange or delete pages from a PDF
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