This tutorial describes the basic features of the Adobe Acrobat
Reader. For more information, run the Adobe Reader in standalone
mode (in Windows, select off the Start->Programs menu) and select
Files. Most pages on this web site are stored in two forms.
The first form is GIF and JPEG images, surrounded by a "wrapper"
page which gives you controls to change pages and return to the
table of contents. The second form is Adobe Portable Document Format
documents. The PDF pages are higher-resolution, contain searchable
text, and can be flexibly viewed in the Adobe Reader viewer. This
tool launches within the web browser window, and provides a rich
toolbar of icons which let you control magnification, search for
text, jump to bookmarked sections, save or print documents, and
Adobe Reader. Step one is to make sure you have the Adobe
Reader, used to view PDF documents. Odds are it is already installed
on your computer. The icon to the left takes you to the Adobe web
site where you can download the latest version of the Reader for
free. If you're not sure whether you have this viewer or not, click
this link to test for the presence of the Adobe Reader. If you
were taken to a test PDF document, congratulations. Now, read the
rest of this section to learn more about using the Adobe Reader
This tutorial contain descriptions of the most important features
of the Adobe Reader software, and presents tips especially useful
when exploring the documents on this web site:
you view a document, the Adobe Acrobat Reader launches within the
browser. It adds an extra toolbar below the menu and toolbar of
the browser itself.
The Adobe Reader may also be launched when selecting a PDF file
to view from the search results tab.
In either case, the Adobe Reader displays above the document a
variety of icons for navigating the pages of documents, changing
viewing magnification, searching for text, printing pages, and otherwise
making full use of these electronic records. The remaining sections
of this tutorial cover the most important features of the software,
and are well worth perusing before diving into the documents. The
exact look of these icons varies among different versions of the
Adobe software, so may not match exactly (these images were taken
from Adobe Acrobat Reader 4.05).
Setting Zoom Level
Adobe Reader offers some options for adjusting
the zoom level to suit your needs. Three standard magnifications
are available as toolbar icons. Just click them anytime.
Size - View page at actual size in inches (approximate).
in Window - Fit entire current page in window.
Width - View full width of page in window; scroll up and
- You may also use the magnifying glass icon to zoom in on a
particular feature. Select the magnifier and then left-click
on the page to zoom in. Right click to return to any desired
If you have trouble distinguishing the icons at first, simply hover
the mouse over one and a tooltip will appear.
NOTE: Remember to maximize your browser window to full-screen
to get the best possible view.
Navigating within a PDF document can be
down with toolbar icons, the scroll bar, and common keystrokes such
as Page Up and Page Down.
Page, Previous Page, Next Page, Last Page - Use these icons
to move forward and backward within the pages of a document.
View, Next View - Use the left arrow (Previous View) to
retrace your steps, and use the right arrow (Next View) to undo
such retracing. These are similar to the browser's Back and
You may also use common navigation tools such as the scroll bar
and Page Up and Page Down keys.
Some of the larger documents feature bookmarks
along the left-hand side of the window. Similar to a paper table
of contents, these bookmark listings identify the major sections
of the document. Unlike a paper table of contents, the entries may
be clicked on to instantly navigate to that section of the document.
Bookmark icon is used to toggle on and off the bookmark area
on the left side of the Adobe Reader window. This is usually not
necessary, as documents which feature bookmarks will launch with
the bookmark area open. The icon is only necessary if you desire
to turn the bookmarks off (to get more viewing room, for instance).
Some bookmark lists are multi-level. If a plus sign appears beside
a bookmark, click it to expand it and see nested bookmarks. The
plus sign turns to a minus sign; click that to un-expand the list.
easy to search for a word or phrase within the current PDF document.
Just click the Find toolbar icon.
Then, type in the word or phrase you're looking for, set options
as needed, and click Find.
The Find options are as follows:
Match Whole Word Only - If checked, only match whole
words will be matched. For instance, after will not match