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Wednesday, 29 June 2016


PDF Reader in JavaScript.

PDF.js is a Portable Document Format (PDF) viewer that is built with HTML5.

PDF.js is community-driven and supported by Mozilla Labs. Our goal is to create a general-purpose, web standards-based platform for parsing and rendering PDFs.


PDF.js is an open source project and always looking for more contributors. To get involved checkout:
For further questions or guidance feel free to stop by #pdfjs on

Getting Started

Online demo

Browser Extensions

Firefox (and Seamonkey)

PDF.js is built into version 19+ of Firefox, however one extension is still available:
  • Development Version - This extension is mainly intended for developers/testers, and it is updated every time new code is merged into the PDF.js codebase. It should be quite stable, but might break from time to time.


  • The official extension for Chrome can be installed from the Chrome Web StoreThis extension is maintained by @Rob--W.
  • Build Your Own - Get the code as explained below and issue gulp chromium. Then open Chrome, go to Tools > Extension and load the (unpackaged) extension from the directory build/chromium.

Getting the Code

To get a local copy of the current code, clone it using git:
$ git clone git://
$ cd pdf.js
Next, install Node.js via the official package or via nvm. You need to install the gulp package globally (see also gulp's getting started):
$ npm install -g gulp-cli
If everything worked out, install all dependencies for PDF.js:
$ npm install
Finally you need to start a local web server as some browsers do not allow opening PDF files using a file:// URL. Run
$ gulp server
and then you can open
  • http://localhost:8888/web/viewer.html
It is also possible to view all test PDF files on the right side by opening
  • http://localhost:8888/test/pdfs/?frame

Building PDF.js

In order to bundle all src/ files into two productions scripts and build the generic viewer, issue:
$ gulp generic
This will generate pdf.js and pdf.worker.js in the build/generic/build/ directory. Both scripts are needed but only pdf.js needs to be included since pdf.worker.js will be loaded by pdf.js. If you want to support more browsers than Firefox you'll also need to include compatibility.js from build/generic/web/. The PDF.js files are large and should be minified for production.

Using PDF.js in a web application

To use PDF.js in a web application you can choose to use a pre-built version of the library or to build it from source. We supply pre-built versions for usage with NPM and Bower under the pdfjs-dist name. For more information and examples please refer to the wiki page on this subject.


You can play with the PDF.js API directly from your browser through the live demos below:
The repo contains a hello world example that you can run locally:
For an introduction to the PDF.js code, check out the presentation by our contributor Julian Viereck:
You can read more about PDF.js here:
Even more learning resources can be found at:


Check out our FAQs and get answers to common questions:
Talk to us on IRC:
  • #pdfjs on
Join our mailing list:
Subscribe either using or Google Groups:
Follow us on twitter: @pdfjs
Weekly Public Meetings