Exploring the Top Open Source PDF Readers

April 7, 2023473 views

PDFs have become an omnipresent file format that can be found all across the internet, but not all PDF readers are created equal. While some are feature-rich, others are lightweight and easy to use. In this article, we will explore some of the best open source PDF readers that you can use to view and edit PDFs on your computer.

1. Sumatra PDF

Sumatra PDF is a lightweight and easy-to-use PDF reader that is perfect for users who want a simple and streamlined experience. This open source PDF reader has a minimalist interface that makes it easy to use and navigate. Sumatra PDF is also highly customizable, allowing users to tweak the settings to suit their preferences. One of the biggest advantages of Sumatra PDF is its speed. The program is lightning-fast, allowing users to quickly open and navigate through PDF files without any lag or delays. Sumatra PDF is also available as a portable app, which means you can run it directly from a USB stick without needing to install it on your computer.

2. Foxit Reader

Foxit Reader is a lightweight PDF reader that is fast and reliable. It is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It has a user-friendly interface and offers a range of features, including the ability to annotate and highlight text, fill out PDF forms, and add comments.


Jan 24, 2023

"Very easy to use and at a fraction of the cost of Adobe!!"

What do you like best about Foxit PDF Editor?

The user interface is very intuitive. I appreciate the fact that the e-sign function is included in my subscription.

3. Nitro Reader

Nitro Reader is a feature-packed PDF reader that is available for Windows. It offers a wide range of tools, including the ability to fill out forms, add comments, and create digital signatures. Nitro Reader also includes a range of security features, such as password protection and digital ID integration.


April 19, 2022.

“Manage and create your pdf files as you want”

What do you like best about Nitro PDF Productivity?

The whole set of options that help you create or edit your pdf files to customize them as you need.

4. WPS Office

WPS Office is a free comprehensive office suite that includes a PDF reader. It is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux as well as for various mobile devices including iPhone. The PDF reader in WPS Office offers a range of features, including the ability to fill out forms, add comments, and create digital signatures. It also includes a range of tools for editing and converting PDF files.

FAQs on Open Source PDF Reader

Is there an open source PDF reader?

Yes, there are several open source PDF readers available. Here are some examples:

  • Sumatra PDF - A lightweight and fast PDF reader for Windows that supports multiple formats, including PDF, EPUB, MOBI, and XPS.

  • Okular - An open source PDF reader for Linux that supports a wide range of document formats, including PDF, PostScript, and DjVu.

  • Evince - A PDF reader for Linux that is part of the GNOME desktop environment. It supports PDF, PostScript, DjVu, TIFF, and DVI formats.

  • Foxit Reader - A free PDF reader for Windows that also has a Linux version. It includes features like annotation, highlighting, and text extraction.

  • MuPDF - A lightweight PDF and XPS viewer that can be used on multiple platforms, including Windows, Linux, and macOS.

Is WPS open source?

No, WPS Office is not open source. While WPS Office offers a free version, the source code is not available to the public, and it is not licensed under an open source license. To learn more about WPS Office and its features, visit their website.

Choosing the Best Open Source PDF Reader

Users have a plethora of open source PDF readers to choose from depending on their specific needs. Sumatra PDF offers a lightweight and user-friendly option, while Okular provides advanced annotation tools. For an all-around PDF reader that is fast and highly customizable, Evince is a great choice. Regardless of which open source PDF reader you opt for, rest assured that viewing and editing PDF documents will be a breeze. For those who prefer WPS PDF, you can download the software now and start enjoying its robust features.

15 years of office industry experience, tech lover and copywriter. Follow me for product reviews, comparisons, and recommendations for new apps and software.