I've noticed that when viewing some PDFs in Evince some of them have a index in the left side of Evince where items are clickable.

Well i want to build something like that for one PDF is that possible in Ubuntu?

like this enter image description here

  • For this you need to generate "thumbnails", the little preview images, that are embedded in the PDF file. I'm putting this as a comment while I figure out how to actually generate them, but having the correct terminology may help find an answer.
    – roadmr
    Dec 16 '11 at 17:06
  • i've just added an image in the question Dec 16 '11 at 17:10
  • oh OK, then I hadn't understood correctly. Sorry. Scrap the thumbnails thing :)
    – roadmr
    Dec 16 '11 at 17:11
  • 1
    Can someone replace "indexing" tag with "bookmarks" as indexing is something different
    – zetah
    Dec 16 '11 at 17:36
  • 2
    I think these are called 'PDF Bookmarks'. Dec 16 '11 at 17:37

There are many ways for crating TOC in PDF. Best one is probably using pdfmarks file which exposes all possibilities described by Adobe pdfmarkReference
It's not that hard to programatically parse PDF documents and collect needed information for creating this pdfmarks files, which afterwards can be embedded in PDF file by using GhostScript i.e.

For an easy way of manually adding TOC entries, like you want I assume, PDFMod GUI utility can help. It's listed in Synaptic

  • i've tried with PDF MOD it works but indexing is shown only in xournal not in evince! Dec 16 '11 at 18:29
  • my fault... it works Dec 16 '11 at 18:38

To supplement zetah's answers, here's a quick tutorial on how to create a pdfmarks file and use ghostscript to add that to a PDF file:


The syntax is a bit arcane, so you will probably need another tool to generate those files.


Here is an updated solution for this: https://help.gnome.org/users/evince/stable/bookmarks.html.en

However, this seems to only work locally. I tried viewing the same bookmarks in my iPad via the Adobe Acrobat Reader App, it did not show up for me.

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