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Before I started using Ubuntu I used Nitro PDF reader to automatically extract images from PDF files. Is there a PDF reader for Linux that does this?

I would like to be able to extract images faster/easier than when taking a snapshot.

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7 Answers 7

up vote 70 down vote accepted

You need to install poppler-utils.

Use pdfimages a PDF image extractor tool that saves images from a PDF file to PPM, PBM or JPEG file(s) format.

Usage: pdfimages [options] <PDF-file> <image-root>

Example: Save images in JPEG format

pdfimages -j in.pdf /tmp/out

Will save images from PDF file in.pdf in files /tmp/out-000.jpg (or /tmp/out-000.pbm; see below), /tmp/out-001.jpg, etc.

Extracted from pdfimages man page.

-j: Normally, all images are written as PBM (for monochrome images) or PPM for non-monochrome images) files. With this option, images in DCT format are saved as JPEG files. All non-DCT images are saved in PBM/PPM format as usual.

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Thanks. It works, but I get pictures in ppm format. How do I get jpeg in stead? –  1kb Jun 13 '12 at 11:24
@1kb - Check my updated answer. –  pl1nk Jun 13 '12 at 16:54
Would be nice to have a solution that extracts images in its native format. Re-encoding JPEGs is not really ideal. –  Christian Jan 14 '14 at 22:26
@Christian from man page -all Write JPEG, JPEG2000, JBIG2, and CCITT images in their native format. CMYK files are written as TIFF files. All other images are written as PNG files. This is equivalent to specifying the options -png -tiff -j -jp2 -jbig2 -ccitt. –  wil93 Sep 4 '14 at 16:01
Please note that the -all switch is only supported in recent poppler-utils revisions. For instance, if you are still on 12.04 you won't be able to access this option –  Glutanimate Sep 11 '14 at 13:22

I often use Inkscape for this. Load the page, and delete all the other stuff. The advantage is that you can get vector images in SVG and modify them as you choose.

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I use pdfimages which is a command line tool and it works great for me. It is very easy to use and you can use --help option to learn more about its usage. I use Ubuntu and it comes pre-installed. If your pdf files is encrypted or password protected there are options for that, so this tool works great. You can read more about pdfimages here

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Please read other answers before posting yours. Notice there's other which covers this. –  edwin Jul 24 '13 at 2:02
Ok , sorry :) I thought to post mine because it has some info about password protected pdf files and i explain that this tool has this options , plus i posted a link which is a tutorial about this tool. –  jetbird13 Jul 24 '13 at 2:37
If you gain enough reputation, you can comment on other's answers or upvoted them. –  edwin Jul 24 '13 at 4:28

You may also try pdfmod. It is a GUI (graphical interface) which can extract images and do other basic pdf manipulation.

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If what you need is a cropped image in pdf/eps format, then extract a page with the image using pdfmod (as suggested by To Do).

Then using pdfcrop you may crop it properly setting margins by trial and error:

pdfcrop --margins "-15 -50 0 -140" extracted_page.pdf
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With pdfimages the extracted image may be in two or more parts. A simple way to put them together again with no worries about extracted formats is to import the parts into LibreOffice Draw, crop with the image crop dialogue, position the parts, adjust the page size and export in whatever format you prefer.

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If you want to crop a image from a pdf with a pdfviewer, you can try okular. It can crop anything (texts or images) in png or jpeg format. If you want to extract images in png format from a pdf, you can do it with minimal command with pdftohtml. It converts pdf to html plus images. Here you can find an example - . If you want to extract many images from a pdf, I suggest you to try this.

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