I have a lot of pdf files with metadata like title, subject, author and so on.

But neither nautilus nor synapse nor gnome-do can find any files by their metadata. Is there any program or plugin to search by pdf-metadata?

I know about the nautilus columns plugin for displaying title and author, but it doesn't allow you to search on them.


I would recommend that you use the excellent program called recoll, available in the repositories, to index your documents and then use it to search.

recoll can be used from the commandline with the -t switch like this;

recoll -t author:"Christopher Negus"

where the string in quotes is the author of a pdf document of interest, see below;

enter image description here

The recoll Gui is fast and intuitive;

enter image description here

See more here; http://www.lesbonscomptes.com/recoll/

You may also use a specialized e-book management system like Calibre,again available from the repositories.

  • Exactly what i was looking for, thanks! Hope, synapse will offer a plugin for this..
    – bdr529
    Mar 25 '11 at 7:07
  • @bdr529 There is now! May 2 '13 at 15:51
  • @bdr529 There is a recoll lens for Unity as well.
    – Sabacon
    May 3 '13 at 13:59

To search through the titles of PDFs in the current directory, try this command:

find . -iname '*.pdf' -print0 | xargs -0 -I PDF bash -c 'pdfinfo "PDF" | awk "/^Title: +/{\$1=\"PDF:\";print}"'

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.