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How To Edit A PDF In Paint

How To Edit A PDF In Paint

Microsoft Paint, also referred to as MS Paint or simply Paint is a Microsoft computer program. It enables users to create and alter picture files by, for example, adding text to images. You can also use the program to edit PDF files, although the process is not as straightforward as opening your document in Paint.

To alter a PDF in Paint, you need to first convert it to an image file type that’s supported by the program. Once you've converted your file, you can open it and make changes. Paint does not support PDF since it’s not compatible with the program. The only file types supported by the program are image files and Windows bitmap formats. Paint chiefly accepts the image formats JPEG, Windows Bitmap, TIFF, GIF and PNG.

This may sound like a bit of effort, but in truth, it’s just a few extra steps. Once you’ve read up and mastered how to edit your PDF using Paint, you’ll be able to make all the alternations you need. This article will outline a step-by-step process that you can follow to easily make changes to your documents.

How To Edit A PDF With Paint Step-By-Step

Paint does not support PDF, so you will need to convert your file to an image format before editing it. Paint should already be installed on your Windows PC, so you can complete your task without downloading any software or paying a fee.

You can follow our step-by-step guide below to start making changes:

  1. Open your PDF and then activate the screenshot function by pressing "Windows" + "Shift" + "S". Now drag your cursor over the outline of your document to take a screenshot.
  2. A dialog box will appear in the sidebar of your screen to notify you that the screenshot is saved to the clipboard.
  3. Launch Paint, and press "Ctrl" + "V" on your keyboard to paste the saved screenshot into the program.
  4. Using the toolbar at the top of the program, add shapes, lines, arrows, annotations or drawings to your document.
  5. Once you are satisfied with your alterations, click “Save” or “Save As” to save your file.

How To Edit A PDF In Paint 2

Alternatively, you can convert your entire document to an image format, such as PNG or JPG. You will need to download a conversion tool to complete this task. After the conversion, you can launch Paint and click on "File" > "Open", and then alter the freshly converted image.

What You Need To Know About Editing A PDF With Paint

Before you get started with transforming your file, you may want to consider these points. These are some important things to remember before altering your document in Paint:

  • As you will be working with an image file, you will be unable to alter the text of a PDF in Paint. However, you can still add annotations, drawings, shapes and colors.
  • When taking a screenshot of your document, the page might not fit on your screen, so you may need to zoom out or tweak it slightly to capture the entire page in one screenshot.
  • With Paint, there’s no option to convert the text into an editable format. All your alterations must be performed using an image format.
  • And finally, if your document includes more than one page, you will have to take a screenshot of each page individually to edit it in Paint.

Alternatives To Paint To Edit A PDF

You may be completely happy with the editing functions provided by Paint. However, if you’d rather not have to convert your file into an image format prior to editing, read on for alternative programs that you can use to make your alterations.

Options To Edit A PDF On Your PC

Whether you're using a Windows, Mac or Linux device, you'll be pleased to hear that there are lots of other ways to alter your documents besides Paint. Read on to see some of these options.


If you’re looking for an alternative to Paint, then you may find Microsoft Edge an ideal solution. Microsoft Edge includes a built-in PDF viewer and editor, whereby you can perform basic editing functions to your file such as adding notes, lines, shapes and annotations.


The MacOS default PDF editing program Preview provides a simple, free and fast way to alter your file. Using Preview, you can add notes, arrows or shapes to your document, or make changes to an image. Preview comes pre-installed on your device, so you don’t need to download any additional software to use it.


Linux users may find the PDF editor program GIMP a useful way to alter their files. Once you’ve opened your file with GIMP, you can use the toolbar to perform basic editing functions. The only downside is you will only be able to alter one page at a time. If that doesn’t deter you, then GIMP is a highly effective solution for Linux users.

Options To Edit A PDF On Your Smartphone

Fortunately, you can also modify PDFs on the go, whether with an Android smartphone or an iPhone. Here are some of the options available to you.


iPhone users may find the PDFelement - Free PDF Editor app an ideal way to alter their documents. You can use the app to change the text, annotate, and adjust the layout by altering the page size or combining separate documents.


Android users can use the Adobe Acrobat Reader: Edit PDF app to make a number of alterations. Once you’ve downloaded the app from the Google Play Store, open your document in the app to make your changes. By tapping the blue pencil at the bottom of the screen, you can view editing tools which include filling in forms, adding comments, or inserting a signature.

Becky is a freelance tech writer with over 8 years' experience writing for print and online. She is often found heavily caffeinated and accompanied by a laptop occupying local coffee shops, bars, co-working spaces and, frankly, anywhere she can get a strong cup of coffee. She enjoys collaborating on different projects ranging from tech to travel and everything in between!
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