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PDFView is no longer in development. Thanks to all the people who supported it, but I have no time any more. You may wanna try Skim as a replacement/improvement.



PDFView is a lightweight Mac OS X application to display PDF files.

What does it offers more than Preview?

  • By default, the main window will open up maximized, and the zoom level will be automatically the highest possible to fit the document into your screen - so that documents will become finally readable. Especially valuable if you are using a small size screen.
  • PDFView supports a powerful full screen mode, and a innovative "presentation" mode, in which nothing is displayed but your document, not even scroll bars. This mode is designed with Beamer user in mind, but not restricted to them. Apple Remote support is also planned, in the future.
  • PDFView offers powerful integration with LaTeX:
    • it recognizes when the file is updated on disk and offers to reload it;
    • if you are using the PDFSync LaTeX package, you can switch back and forth between the document and the text editor; just Command-click on a point in the PDF to be taken to the corresponding LaTeX line in your editor (customizable in the preferences);
    • again, if you are using PDFSync, you can set up your editor to jump you to the appropriate page in the PDF (please refer to this page for instructions about it).
  • PDFView has a very nice magnification tool: just drag around the document to use it.
  • PDFView supports a useful miniature display.

Among other features:

  • PDFView lets you view your PDF the way you want: you can rotate pages, choose to display one or two pages at the same time, let it choose the best zoom level or fine-tune it.
  • PDFView can be configured to reload, at startup, the document you had open when you closed it, and for each of them it remembers all the display settings you changed, and the page you were viewing.

PDFView is an Universal Binary, and requires Mac OS X 10.4 or higher.

A few features (hand tool, magnification tool, PDFSync support, some icons) were taken by the excellent TeXShop's source code; parts of the PDFSync support also are based upon TeXniscope.

PDFView currently supports fifteen languages:

  • English
  • Italian
  • Japanese (thanks to E-WA)
  • German (thanks to Christoph Schmitz)
  • French (thanks to Damien Pollet)
  • Swedish (thanks to Henrik Cederblad)
  • Brazilian portuguese (thanks to Adhemerval Zanella)
  • Traditional chinese (thanks to Lann Chang)
  • Simplified chinese (thanks to Lann Chang)
  • Korean (thanks to Gord Welch)
  • Spanish (thanks to Daniel Salmerón Amselem)
  • Danish (thanks to Ola Berger Bungum)
  • Norwegian (thanks to Helge André Gudmundsen)
  • Russian (thanks to Ilya and Tanya Sherman)
  • Dutch (thanks to Robert Klep)

If you want to help translating in another one, just contact me. Your effort will be greatly appreciated.

Support This Project

Known bugs

This is a short list of already known bugs, on which I will start working as soon as my exams will finish. Thanks to all the people who signaled them, and please avoid reporting them again.

  • PDFView keeps the file locked, even when the document is closed.
  • The resizing behaviour, when toggling the drawer, will be updated in a later release.
  • Support for LaTeX projects with more than one input files will be added.
  • Requirement for PDFSync will be scrapped, and PDFView will move to the more modern system used by TeXShop.
  • Some kind of marking will be added, when opening a specific file in a PDF from a latex source.
  • PDFView uses Tiger's default component for displaying PDF files, called "PDFKit". Unfortunately, this component doesn't allow (that I know) features such as "fit to width", "fit to height", "size window to height" and so on. So, please stop asking for those features: I really can't implement them, I am sorry.

News and version history

Version 0.14.3

Wednesday, 17th January 2007
  • Fixed a crash, that occurred randomly when the document was updated.
  • Restored search.
  • Slightly updated German translation.
  • Warning: the outline status is unpredictable, after an update: it may work, it may not work, it may crash, it may be out-of-date. I'm gonna work on it for the next release.

Version 0.14.2

Monday, 15th January 2007
  • Finally, PDFView keeps the current point in the page, when the pdf gets updated.
  • Added BBEdit, TextWrangler and Emacs to the preset for LaTeX editor.
  • Now the outline and the search work, when the document is updated.
  • Pressing Cmd+F will now always highlight the search field, even if the search tab was already displayed.
  • Norwegian translation, thanks to Helge André Gudmundsen.
  • Russian translation, thanks to Ilya and Tanya Sherman.
  • Dutch translation, thanks to Robert Klep.
  • Fixed a small bug with the highlighting of search result.
  • Linguistic update: now the string "rotate clockwise all pages" is wrote as "rotate all pages clockwise".

Version 0.14.1

Sunday, 17th December 2006
  • Print support is restored.
  • When the file is updated on disk, and PDFView reloads it, it will keep the same page displayed.
  • When the file path included a space, PDFView didn't manage to open the document, when called by an external editor. Fixed.
  • Danish translation, thanks to Ola Berger Bungum.
  • The string "continuous" was misspelled in the menu. Fixed.