Last week, my brother gave me his school project papers and asked me to help convert them to a PDF file so that he could upload it to his school website. I used my new Canon multi-function printer and with just the press of a button it scanned each document and saved it as a PDF file. This was the easy part. In the end, I had 65 PDF files and I was puzzled thinking about how to merge them all into a single PDF file. After some research, I found PDFsam – an open source program that can easily split or merge pdf files. PDFsam helped me merge all those PDF files into a single PDF file and my pouting brother started to smile again.
PDFsam is an open source Windows application that can help you split a large multi-page file into smaller PDF files or merge small PDF files into a large PDF file. The application gets its name by joining word PDF with sam which is short for split and merge. The program is designed using the Oracle Java programming language and so you need JRE (Java Runtime Environment) installed on your PC before you can start using PDFsam.
Using PDFsam is very easy owing to its very basic and straightforward interface. In the left side of PDFsam window, you would find a list of plugins that can be used for their namesake tasks. There are plugins named Alternate Mix, Merge/Extract, Rotate, Split, Visual document and Visual reorder.
The Alternate Mix plugin can be used to mix alternate pages taken from two pdf documents in straight or reverse order into a single document. The Merge/Extract plugin can be used to merge several PDF files (or their sections) into a single PDF file. The same plugin can also be used to extract pages from a single multi-page PDF file. The Rotate plugin can be used to rotate pages of the selected pdf documents to 90, 180 or 270 degrees. The Split plugin can be used to split a PDF file into chapters, single pages etc.
The Visual reorder and Visual documents plugins are for advanced manipulation of PDF files. They can be used to visually reorder pages of a selected pdf document and visually compose a document dragging pages from selected pdf documents, respectively. These visual plugins provide an easy way to actually see which page are added, in which order they are added and also allow you to rotate them.
All the plugins work in a similar fashion. First of all you have to select a source PDF file (or files). Then you have to select options which are different for different plugins. You have to select the destination folder or resulting PDF file. And finally click on the Run button at the bottom to run the plugin.
The PDFsam program can be run on all operating systems supported by Oracle Java like Linux, Windows, Mac and more. It supports creating PDF files of version 1.5, 1.6 and 1.7 which can be opened by any latest PDF viewer. If you have to regularly work on PDF files and you do not want to spend lots of money on commercial software, then you should have PDFsam (PDF Split and Merge) on your computer.
You can download PDF Split and Merge (PDFsam) from http://www.pdfsam.org/.