How to Combine PDF Files

From housing contracts to business deals, PDFs seep into just about every area of the internet as the official document you need to get things done. However, sometimes we need to convert, combine, or edit them. But these portable document formats can often pose quite a challenge when working with different operating systems. 

We’ve walked out the steps for both Windows and Mac OS users to combine your PDF files, while web tools are another also popular method. Either way, here is how to do it with whatever computer you have.

More PDF guides

  • How to edit a PDF
  • How to print to PDF
  • How to convert a PDF to a JPG
  • How to convert a PDF to EPUB

The Windows method

The following method uses Adobe Acrobat Pro DC, the best PDF editor you can download. Acrobat Pro DC is premium software, meaning you need to pay for the privilege of using it. Fortunately, there’s a free trial you can use. Which is helpful whether you only need to merge a couple of PDF files this one time or plan to do all your merging in the near future.

Step 1: Download and install the Adobe Acrobat Pro DC free trial.

Step 2: Once installed, open the software and click the Tools tab in the top left-hand corner.

Step 3: Click the Combine Files button.

Step 4: Click the blue Add Files button and select the PDF documents you want to combine. It should be noted that this method works for all sorts of files, not just PDFs.

Step 5: With your PDFs selected, click Combine Files.

Step 6: Your PDFs have now been merged into one. All you need to do is save it to a new location, which you can do by clicking File followed by Save As and then selecting a name and location for your new file.

If you don’t like the idea of using Adobe’s software (or your free trial has already run its course), then there are plenty of third-party options to consider that are designed especially for Windows. A cheap and effective option is Perfect PDF Combine, which may be very useful if you end up combining a lot of PDFs and want an app dedicated to helping out.

Alternatively, have a look at some of the online options further down this guide. All of them are free and equally effective at combining PDF files together.

The MacOS method

The latest versions of MacOS Mojave and Catalina make combining PDFs extremely easy thanks to MacOS Finder. The new Finder shows previews of your files and adds a contextual menu on the side, allowing Mac users to perform a number of quick actions. One of those actions is the ability to create PDFs from the selection.

You can find the quick action menu on the right-hand side underneath the individual properties of the files you have selected. If the Create PDF function isn’t obviously available, clicking the More icon should bring it up.

Step 1: Open Finder and select all the PDF files that you wish to combine.

Step 2: Once you’ve selected the files you wish to combine, the Finder window will show a preview of the files with a Create PDF button underneath. Hit that and a new PDF is created for you.

Step 3: You can then open the newly created file with Preview. Page order can be changed by simply dragging and dropping the page thumbnails on the left-hand side. You can also annotate or rotate pages as necessary.

Step 4: Once finished, make sure to rename the newly merged file so that you know what it is. Select File > Rename to do this.

The web method

There are scores of free, web-based tools that will allow you to merge PDF files — and that’s good news for you. If you need to merge files quickly, this may be the best option since these programs don’t really care where your PDF files come from or where they’re going. Furthermore, they don’t require installing any additional programs. They do tend to have strict size limits, though.

Below are several of the most popular tools for merging PDF files, but keep in mind that they all basically do the same thing. If you run into formatting issues with one tool, then try another.

  • PDF Merge: Open up PDF Merge, and you’ll see a simple window with bars for dragging and dropping several PDF files. The software provides a simple Merge Files option to combine them. However, note that the service is only free if you’re dealing with 5MB or under, which is comparably low. After that, it’ll ask you to pay — so large booklets are probably out of the question.
  • PDFジョイナー PDFジョイナーは、あらゆる種類のファイル形式の変更や変更に最適です。もちろん、PDFをこのツールと組み合わせることができます。ただし、完成したドキュメントをテキストファイルまたはJPGファイルに変換することもできます(その逆も可能)。多くの異なるフォーマットを1つにまとめようとしている場合、このツールは髪を引っ張る優れた代替手段として機能します。唯一の制限は、このソフトウェアでは一度に20ファイルしか操作できないということです。ニーズ(およびファイルマージの頻度)によっては、これでは不十分な場合があります。 
  • Smallpdf Smallpdfの名声は、DropboxやGoogleドライブから直接ファイルをダウンロードするのが簡単だということです。アップロード機能を使用すると、ファイルをロードするときの時間と追加の手順を節約できます。この機能は、共同プロジェクトで作業しているときに特に役立ちます。また、Smallpdfマージツールがプロフェッショナルレベルのパフォーマンスを提供するために一生懸命機能することも気に入っています。たとえば、ソフトウェアはそのセキュリティを明確に説明し、作成時に新しいPDFドキュメントをプレビューできます。機能だけでなく見た目も重要な場合、Smallpdfはファイルを結合するための優れたオプションです。 Chromeの拡張機能やデスクトップアプリと同様に、変換および分割機能も利用できます。
  • FoxyUtils Merge PDF FoxyUtilsは、環境に配慮した人々に魅力的なインセンティブを提供します。PDFファイルをマージすると、植林プロジェクトに貢献することになります。この機能により、FoxyUtils Merge PDFは、環境にやさしい企業にとって(マーケティングのためなら、他に何もなければ)優れた選択肢になります。唯一の不満は、最大ファイルサイズが50MBに制限されていることです。
  • PDFファイルを結合するための非常に多くのオプションを使用して、もう苦労する必要はありません。実行しているOS(またはマージする必要があるファイルの数)に関係なく、それを簡単にするツールがあります。