PDF OCR - Recognize text - easily, online, free (2024)


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PDF24 Creator

Recognize text via OCR and create searchable PDF files.

Free Online No limits

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How to recognize text

Select your files you want to apply OCR for or drop the files into the file box. Modify the settings and start the OCR. After a few seconds you can download your new searchable PDF files.

OCR settings

You can modify several settings to control the OCR process. You can save as PDF/A, remove artefacts and noise, deskew pages, set meta information and join to a single output file.

Easy to use

PDF24 makes it as easy as possible for you to recognize text via OCR. You don't need to install and worry about any software, you just have to choose your files you want to apply OCR for.

Supports your system

You do not need any special system to recognize text via OCR. This OCR app runs in your browser and therefore functions under all operating systems. Just drop your files and start OCR.

No installation required

You don't need to download or install any software. The text is recognized on our servers in the cloud and therefore will not consume any resources from your computer.

Security is important to us

This OCR tool does not store your files on our server longer than necessary. Your files and results will be deleted from our server after a short period of time. File transmissions are SSL secured.

Developed by Stefan Ziegler

What others are saying

This tool allows me to apply OCR to my scanned documents and invoices very easily. I get a searchable PDF/A back for archiving.
I use this tool to convert images and photos taken with my smart-phone into searchable PDFs, so that I can search and copy text.

Questions and Answers

How can I recognize text in files using OCR?

  1. Use the file selection box at the top of the page to select the files in which you want to recognize text.
  2. Change the settings to tell the app how the text recognition should work.
  3. Start the recognition by pressing the corresponding button.
  4. Press the Download button to save the PDFs with recognized text to your computer.

Is it secure to use PDF24 Tools?

PDF24 takes the protection of files and data very seriously. We want our users to be able to trust us. Security aspects are therefore a permanent part of our work.

  1. All file transfers are encrypted.
  2. All files are automatically deleted from the processing server within one hour after processing.
  3. We do not store files and do not evaluate them. Files will only be used for the intended purpose.
  4. PDF24 is operated by a German company, Geek Software GmbH. All processing servers are located in data centres within the EU.
  5. Alternatively, you can get a desktop version of the PDF24 tools with the PDF24 Creator. All files remain on your computer here, as this software works offline.

Can I use PDF24 on a Mac, Linux or Smartphone?

Yes, you can use PDF24 Tools on any system with which you have access to the Internet. Open PDF24 Tools in a web browser such as Chrome and use the tools directly in the web browser. You do not need to install any other software.

You can also install PDF24 as an app on your smartphone. To do so, open the PDF24 Tools in Chrome on your smartphone. Then click on the "Install" icon in the upper right corner of the address bar or add PDF24 to your start screen via the Chrome menu.

Can I use PDF24 offline without an Internet connection?

Yes, Windows users can also use PDF24 offline, i.e. without an Internet connection. Simply download the free PDF24 Creator and install the software. The PDF24 Creator brings all PDF24 tools to your PC as a desktop application. Users of other operating systems should continue to use PDF24 Tools.

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All tools

PDF OCR - Recognize text - easily, online, free (2024)


How do I recognize text in a scanned PDF document free? ›

How To Do OCR on PDF for Free
  1. ​​Import or drag & drop your file to our PDF OCR tool.
  2. Wait a few seconds while our OCR tech works its magic.
  3. Edit the PDF with our other tools if needed.
  4. Download or share your editable PDF file—done!

What is the best free PDF OCR online? ›

Consider using Xodo if you're looking for a reliable PDF OCR conversion tool. Xodo enables you to easily convert your scanned PDF into an editable TXT file directly in your browser.

How do I recognize text in a PDF using OCR? ›

Open Scan and OCR Tool

If you open a PDF with un-recognized text, click the main document of the PDF. From the menu, choose Recognize Text. This will open the Scan and OCR tool. You can also right click the main document and choose Recognize Text from the menu.

How to make a PDF OCR searchable? ›

How to make a PDF searchable with OCR
  1. Go to Xodo's PDF OCR tool.
  2. Upload your scanned PDF.
  3. Select . pdf as your conversion output.
  4. Download your newly searchable PDF to your device.
Jan 9, 2024

Is Adobe scan PDF scanner OCR free? ›

Download the free mobile scanner to convert important photos and documents into PDF and JPEG files to help you stay organized. Adobe Scan is the PDF converter trusted by millions worldwide.

How do I unmask text in a PDF? ›

You can undo text that you blacked out in Acrobat by following these steps:
  1. Click the Edit tab at the top of the screen.
  2. Select Redact Text & Images.
  3. Remove redactions.

Is there a free OCR? ›

You can improve and customize it - it is open source The (a9t9) Free OCR Software converts scans or (smartphone) images of text documents into editable files by using Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technologies. It uses state-of-the-art modern OCR software.

Is Easy OCR free? ›

EasyOCR is a free developer-friendly OCR "Optical Character Recognition" that supports 80+ languages including Latin, Chinese, Arabic, and Cyrillic.

Why is OCR not working on PDF? ›

There are several common reasons why OCR might fail to recognize text in a PDF. Addressing these common pitfalls can significantly improve OCR performance and ensure more accurate text recognition: Image quality. Low-resolution scans, poor image clarity, or text distortion can hamper OCR accuracy.

How to detect text using OCR? ›

Applying OCR:

Loop through each contour and take the x and y coordinates and the width and height using the function cv2. boundingRect(). Then draw a rectangle in the image using the function cv2. rectangle() with the help of obtained x and y coordinates and the width and height.

How do you correct recognized text in PDF? ›

Correcting OCR Text in Acrobat
  1. Click in the Search field and type “Correct”
  2. Click Correct Recognized Text.
  3. The Correct Text function appears. Enable Review Recognized text. Select a suspect on the page. It will be highlighted in red. Enter the correct text for the error. Click the Accept button.
Mar 8, 2016

How do I convert a PDF to editable text OCR? ›

How to convert scanned PDF to Text? Use Xodo's online PDF to Text converter with OCR to convert your scanned PDFs into Text files you can search and edit. Simply upload your scanned or image PDF, click on Convert to initiate the conversion, and download your editable TXT file upon completion.

How to OCR a PDF for free? ›

To start, drop your file (more than 100 formats are supported) or upload it from your device or your cloud storage service. Select your OCR languages between English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese. Click on the Start OCR button.

How to scan a PDF so it is searchable? ›

To make a PDF searchable using Adobe Acrobat, you can follow these steps:
  1. Open Adobe Acrobat on your computer.
  2. Click Open.
  3. Find and select the document you want to make searchable, then click Open.
  4. Head to Tools and select Recognize Text.
  5. Press PDF Output Style Searchable Image.
  6. Select OK.

What is the difference between OCR and searchable PDF? ›

The basic function of a searchable-PDF is to make image-based PDFs text-searchable. To do this, OCR (Optimal Character Recognition) is applied to the document. This recognition tool is able to read handwritten text in a variety of fonts and digitise it for use on a computer. OCR technology dates back to the 1970s.

How to find words in scanned PDF? ›

Make the PDF text searchable using Adobe Scan.

The Scan app will open the screenshot and give you the option to Save PDF. Select Save PDF in the upper-right corner of your phone. Once it's been saved, you can open the new PDF and tap the hourglass on the top-right corner. You can now search words on your PDF.

How to select text in scanned PDF? ›

Open the scanned PDF file in Acrobat. From the All tools menu, select Edit a PDF. Acrobat automatically applies OCR to your document and converts it to a fully editable PDF copy. Select the text element that you want to edit and start typing.

How do I identify text in a PDF without Acrobat? ›

Click New > File upload to import the PDF file into Google Drive. The uploaded PDF file will appear in the right panel, right click to open with Google Docs. A OCR is performed automatically on the PDF, you will find the PDF file can be edited and searched in Google Docs.

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