5 Ways to Remove Password from PDF Document For Free

Aug 6, 2019 17:41. Posted by to Tutorials

Removing a password from a PDF document is easy when you have the right tools. As a matter of fact, you don't even have to know the original password in order to retrieve or reset it. This article shows you five different ways of removing the two different kinds of password protections in PDF. The first is the Open or User Password, which is used to access the document. The second is the Restrict Editing or Owner Password, which prevents editing, copying and printing of the document's contents. The article covers both scenarios - when you know the password and when you've forgotten it.

Method 1: Remove PDF Password from Adobe Acrobat Pro (Know Password)

Adobe Acrobat is the most popular tools for viewing and editing PDF files. As you might not be aware of, it can also help you remove password from PDF documents. However, you should know the password before proceeding to the steps. Unfortunately, you can only do this on a paid version of Adobe's PDF products. With Acrobat Reader, the free version, you'll only be able to see what type of protection has been applied, not remove a password. The following guide is based on the Standard Adobe Acrobate DC and Pro DC versions. If you don't have a valid copy of Acrobate, please check the other methods in this post. There is much cheaper PDF password unlocker tool out there..


Step 1: Since you know the password, first open the file in Adobe Standard DC or Pro DC. You can do this from the File > Open menu or simply double-click the file if Adobe is your default application for opening PDF.


Step 2: Click on File again, but this time go to the Properties option, which should open up the Properties dialog box. You'll see several tabs; click on Security.


Step 3: Change the Security Method option to No Security. This input is required to disable your current password. Since you're already signed into the document, no further authentication is required. Just hit the OK button to confirm the action. Your file is now accessible to everyone.


Remove PDF Password Adobe Acrobat


Of course, you can only follow this process if you know the password. Also, purchasing a monthly license for the Adobe PDF software is only justified if you're going to be using it regularly. If you're looking for a more affordable option, read on.


Cons of Adobe Acrobat:

Method 2: Remove Password from PDF via pdfelement Editor

One of the most affordable and reliable PDF editors on the market is pdfelement. Available as Standard and Pro versions, pdfelement is an ideal cross-platform utility with versions for Mac and Windows. It offers all the features of the Acrobat suite, but it costs a lot less. Moreover, there's a free trial version you can use to check out the main features. One of the strongest features of this tool is how so much functionality has been packed into a relatively clean User Interface, or UI. Fortunately, you only need the trial version to remove a known password from a PDF document. Here's the process to be followed:


Step 1: Once you download and install pdfelement trial version, launch the program and click on Open File…


Step 2: The password box will pop up, since the file is protected. Enter the Open Password (User Password) and hit Enter.


Step 3: This might sound counterintuitive, but if there's a Restrict Editing password applied to the document, this needs to be removed first. You can click on Enable Editing and enter the password, then hit OK to confirm.


Step 4: After restrictions have been removed, go to the Protect tab by clicking on it. In the toolbar, find and click on the padlock icon, which is the option for password security settings.


Step 5 : On this page, uncheck the boxes for both security types to remove them, then click on OK to confirm password removal.


Remmove PDF Password PDFElement


Your Open and Restrict Editing passwords have now been removed, so you can freely share or edit the file, as required.


Until now, we've discussed methods to remove passwords from PDF when the password is known. What if you forgot the Open password or don't know the Restrict Editing password? How do you remove password protection in such a situation? That's what we're going to talk about next.


Cons of pdfelement:

Method 3: iSeePassword Dr.PDF Password Recovery

PDF Editor is a great tool to remove password from PDF. However, there are much cheaper ways to only remove a password from PDF. So the third-option we are talking in here is iSeePassword Dr.Excel, a purpose-built utility to: retrieve open password and remove Restrict Editing from a PDF document.


It's a super-convenient tool to have when you don't know what your open password is but you don't want to change it or blank it because there are other editors for that PDF document. It uses powerful password decryption methods to quickly recover your original password and get back to you. It now comes with hardware acceleration as a standard feature, which means you can deploy your GPU and your CPU cores to do the job of password recovery much faster than ever before.



win version


Windows Version
win version


Mac Version

Step 1:Install Excel Password Recovery Software and Add File

Download an original copy of Dr. PDF and install it on a PC or Mac. Launch the program and click on the type of password protection to be recovered/removed. For the Open password, it's the first option. Import the file into the program using Add File option.


PDF Password Recovery

Step 2:Choose Recovery Type

Once the PDF was loaded into the program, you need to select a password recovery type. Currently, there are 3 attack type, described as follows:


Brute Force: Takes longer than other methods but is ideal for more complex passwords.

Brute Force with Mask: Essentially the same as the above, but any attribute or character that you specify here will be removed from the combination possibilities.

Dictionary: Use custom or built-in dictionaries for commonly used passwords.


PDF Password Recovery Import


Step 3:Password Recovery Settings

You have to make a few settings if Dictionary or Mask Attack was choosen. For Dictionary Attack, you need to browse the local dictionary file and import to the program. For Mask Attack, the setting options are list in below.:


PDF Password Recovery Config


Step 4:Recover PDF Password

When selecting the attack type, you can also choose whether to use your processors to accelerate password recovery. Hit Start to begin the retrieval process. When the password is found, it will be displayed on your screen. Copy it and use it to open your document.


Excel Password Recovery Success


Note:For PDF Permissions Password

To remove the Restrict Editing password, select the second option in the Dr. PDF main screen. Add as many files as you like to the program. When done, just click on Start to instantly blank all the restrictions passwords and allow the document to be edited, copied, or printed.


PDF Password Recovery for Restriction


If you don't know the password to open or modify the file, this is the best tool you'll find. The recovery is clean, and restrictions removal is instant.


win version


Windows Version
win version


Mac Version


Method 4: Remove PDF Password with Google Chrome

There's also a way to do this in Google Chrome, but what it does is to save an unprotected copy of the document rather than remove or recover the password. It's a quick workaround in case you know the password but don't have access to a PDF editor in order to remove it. Here's how to remove PDF password using Google Chrome:


Step 1: Drag the PDF file and drop it into a new Chrome tab or window. Chrome has a built-in reader and editor for PDF that we will be leveraging for this purpose.


Step 2: Enter the Open password when prompted by Chrome. In the open file, go to File > Print, which will cause another window to open.


Step 3: In the new window, look for Destination Printer. There will be an option allowing you to “Save as PDF”, which you need to select. Confirm saving.


Save as PDF in Chrome


The new PDF file that you saved will not require a password to open. You can use any PDF editor for this, or open it again in a different Chrome tab or window.

Cons of Chrome:


Method 5: Online PDF Password Remover

In a pinch, you can also try using an online service like unlock-pdf.com. Such services are widely available from a number of providers, and all of them use the highest standards of protection on their website so your uploaded document is secure. Most of the good ones will even remove your files from their servers after a specific period of time. Unlock-pdf.com is simple to use, as shown below:


Step 1: Open the URL in a browser window and click on the Choose File button to upload your locked PDF.


Step 2: Once uploaded, click on the blue Unlock File! Button. In a moment, you will be able to download an unlocked version of the document.


Unlock PDF Online


Unfortunately, this free method only works with removing the Owner password for restricted editing. You can't remove or recover an Open password using this method.


Cons of Online PDF Unlocker:

In general, online services are safe as long as their site is well-protected, but uploading your private documents over an unsecured Internet connection, like a public WiFi hotspot, is never a good idea. The best way is to use a PDF editor like Acrobat or pdfelement when you know the password, or quickly recover it with iSeePassword Dr. PDF if the password is lost or forgoten.

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