I look for a PDF viewer which also offers some sort of document management. I have a lot of PDF files which I wish to tag, classify, …

Then I look for a PDF viewer with at least the following features:

  • free
  • view PDF files (editing or highlighting tools is a plus)
  • open PDF files (as the default application)
  • allow to tag the file
  • manage files according to the tags or other properties
  • Works on Windows

I found Benubird PDF which is nice, but it doesn't open PDF files when it's selected as the default program.

  • You might wish to take a look at Retagging/Renaming software for ebooks. Though the question title implies a different "target", the recommended software (Calibre) does all that and more: tagging, descriptions, search, full ebook management, conversions, etc. It comes with a document viewer as well; as I rarely work with PDF, I cannot refer to that – but the viewer works fine with e.g. epub and mobi. As Calibre also supports PDF, I'd guess it works with that as well – but I didn't try. Worth a look definitely.
    – Izzy
    Sep 11, 2014 at 13:18

3 Answers 3


I use Mendeley to manage my pdf library. It is actually a reference manager, but it does fit your criteria:

  • It is free
  • Organizes and views pdf files
  • Ability to add and save annotations and highlights
  • You can associate the .pdf extension with it as the default application
  • Ability to add tags or generate them automatically

Additionally, you could easily sync your library across multiple devices using their cloud

  • Thank you, I tried it, it seems good, just I wish it faster on open the document and no need to synch or check .... (is it an option to make it just a local application?)
    – Ahmad
    Sep 11, 2014 at 14:07
  • 1
    @Ahmad I do not know of a feature to disable sync, but there is a workaround desribed here. It instructs to enter incorrect proxy details under Tools -> Options -> Connection to confuse the server
    – Tymric
    Sep 11, 2014 at 14:18
  • 1
    thank you again, it seems nice and I use it, however still a local faster application is welcome!
    – Ahmad
    Sep 11, 2014 at 14:22

You can use Calibre ebook manager to manage pdf files as well as other types of ebooks:

  • Free both financially and FOSS
  • view pdf files (editing or highlighting tools is a plus) - No uses your system default
  • Open pdf fils (as the default application) - No uses your system default but does add a add to calibre library to the context menu
  • allow tag the file - Various tags can be added and searched on
  • manage files according to the tags or other properties Yes

Other features:

  • Support for lots of ebook formats
  • Can convert between ebook formats - with some limitations when it comes to pdf inputs.
  • Can load items from your library to your mobile/tablet
  • Can act as a web server for your content.
  • Advanced searches
  • Cross Platform

This is an issue widely encountered at research. There JabRef is a tool widely used. The viewing and marking capabilities of PDFs is "outsourced" to a viewer of choice. FoxIt Reader is a fast tool. I personally use Acrobat Reader.

"tagging" is implemented by the Groups Feature of JabRef:

Groups Screenshot

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.