pdfcpu: a Go PDF processor

pdfcpu is a simple PDF processing library written in Go supporting encryption. It provides both an API and a CLI. Supported are all versions up to PDF 1.7 (ISO-32000).


This is an effort to build a comprehensive PDF processing library from the ground up written in Go. Over time pdfcpu aims to support the standard range of PDF processing features and also any interesting use cases that may present themselves along the way.



The main focus lies on strong support for batch processing and scripting via a rich command line. At the same time pdfcpu wants to make it easy to integrate PDF processing into your Go based backend system by providing a robust command set.


  • The main entry point is pdfcpu.io.
  • For CLI examples also go to pdfcpu.io. There you will find explanations of all the commands and their parameters.
  • For API examples of all pdfcpu operations please refer to GoDoc.



Always make sure your work is based on the latest commit!

pdfcpu is still Alpha - bugfixes are committed on the fly and will be mentioned on the next release notes.

Demo Screencast

(using older version with a smaller command set)




Get the latest binary here.


There are no dependencies outside the Go standard library other than pkg/errors.

Required go version for building: go1.10 and up

go get github.com/pdfcpu/pdfcpu/cmd/...
cd $GOPATH/src/github.com/pdfcpu/pdfcpu/cmd/pdfcpu
go install
pdfcpu version

Using Go Modules (go1.11 and up)

git clone https://github.com/pdfcpu/pdfcpu
cd pdfcpu/cmd/pdfcpu
go install
pdfcpu ve


We recently transfered this repo to the pdfcpu organisation.
All links to the previous repository location are automatically redirected to the new location.
However, to avoid confusion, we strongly recommend updating any existing local clones to point to the new repository URL. You can do this by using git remote on the command line:

git remote set-url origin https://github.com/pdfcpu/pdfcpu



  • Please open an issue if you find a bug or want to propose a change.
  • Feature requests - always welcome!
  • Bug fixes - always welcome!
  • PRs - also welcome, although I can't promise a merge-in right now.
  • pdfcpu is stable but still Alpha and occasionally undergoing heavy changes.


  • If you want to report a bug please attach the very verbose (pdfcpu cmd -vv ...) output and ideally a test PDF that you can share.
  • Always make sure your contribution is based on the latest commit.
  • Please sign your commits.


Thanks goes to these wonderful people:

Horst Rutter



Erik Unger


Usage of pdfcpu assumes you know about and respect all copyrights of any PDF content you may be processing. This applies to the PDF files as such, their content and in particular all embedded resources like font files or images. Credit goes to Renee French for creating our beloved Gopher.