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For a given PDF which uses a number of fonts (e.g., in Acrobat Reader, the fonts used can be seen when selecting Files > Properties > Fonts) how can I find out where a certain font is used in the document (using Adobe Acrobat 7, Reader, or a free PDF tool)

Just to be clear: I don't want to find which font is used on a certain piece of text (I know how to do that using Acrobat 9 Professional, see this Super User question). Instead I want to find where a specific font is used.

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Could you please respond to @Arjan's above comment? –  Mehper C. Palavuzlar Feb 18 '11 at 21:54
@Arjan & Mehper: Done –  Rabarberski Feb 22 '11 at 9:03

4 Answers 4

It's a bit old now this question, but I came here via Google, and someone else might also. My solution was to create a Preflight profile (Acrobat 9 Pro) which errored on font information. Clicking on the font name in the results then jumps to the page and highlights the text. Downside is that you get a list of all fonts on all pages organised by page rather than by font name, but it provided a solution for me.

1) Create a new Custom preflight profile Advanced|Preflight|Options|Create New Preflight Profile

2) Give the profile a name (Fontfinder, say)

3) In the left window of the dialog click "Custom checks"

4) In the right window of the dialog below the blank box click the plus symbol to create a new check and include in current profile

5) Click "text" in the Group, the bottom property is "Text size". Select this and click "Add"

6) The pane below now has more options. Click on the drop down options probably labelled "equal to" and select "less than"

7) Enter a large value in the Number field. I entered 500

8) Top left of the dialog when check fires report as... and enter something like Text size 500 pt or less and click OK. There should be a new custom check in the pane with a red cross beside it. If the cross is not red, click on the check label, and select "error" below the pane

Repeat the steps above for another error check, but changing the option for 500 to "greater than or equal to", and Check fires report as Text 500 pt or greater

9) Click OK in the Edit Profile Dialog

10) Run the profile on your PDF

I set the font to error on a large point size so that all of the errors would report in a group. The second check is simply to catch any font larger than that. I suppose you could check for pt size 50000 and have the same result.

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This answer helped a lot. However, at step 5, instead of selecting the Text group, select the Font group, and then Base Font Name and type in the name of the font, which works a lot nicer. –  Jesse Good Nov 1 '12 at 8:08

Somewhere in the internet I found this other method that works, if you have Adobe Acrobat (I think this works after 7).

Find Tools>Edit Document Text (I am reading from my Acrobat 10X, it may be different in your version, but you should be able to find what I'm talking about)

Once a box of text is selected, right-click and look at the properties. There, it will say the font used.

edited: found the link to my reference: http://www.deepbluesky.com/blog/-/extracting-font-information-from-pdf-files_35/

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As specifically stated in my question, the problem you are solving is not my question. –  Rabarberski Mar 3 '11 at 8:21

Here is a way how to find out for each individual page which set of fonts is used on it. (Sorry, I don't know a way to make the location-awareness for font usage more specific than page-wise without resorting to expansive commercial software such as callassoftware.com's pdfToolbox4 or Enfocus' PitStop.)

This method use XPDF's pdffonts.exe utility, a GPL-licensed Free Software:

  1. Go to: http://www.foolabs.com/xpdf/download.html and download: ftp://ftp.foolabs.com/pub/xpdf/xpdf-3.02pl4-win32.zip .
  2. Extract the *.zip file to some directory and locate the various *.exe utilities contained therein.
  3. Now, to show all fonts used on page 22 of a document, run:

    pdffonts.exe -f 22 -l 22 c:\path\to\some\pdf.pdf
  4. To see all fonts used in the complete document, just run:

    pdffonts.exe c:\path\to\some\pdf.pdf
  5. To obtain a list of fonts used on each page of a 22-page PDF, just use:

    for /l %i in (1,1,22) do ^
          (echo.PAGE %i & pdffonts -f %i -l %i c:\path\to\some\pdf.pdf)
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This method also works on Linux/Mac, except of course the binary is called pdffonts rather than pdffonts.exe and the path would use forward slashes. –  ShreevatsaR Mar 12 '14 at 2:51

I have used Enfocus' Pitstop Pro plugin for this, but it's not cheap.

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