Portable Document Format (PDF) is a file format created by Adobe Systems in 1993 for document exchange. PDF is used for representing two-dimensional documents in a manner independent of the application software, hardware, and operating system, (http://www.wikipedia.org). There are a several freeware programs to view PDFs, such as Adobe Acrobat Reader http://www.adobe.com, and Foxit Reader at http://www.foxitsoftware.com, to name a couple. Although most of our genealogy programs allow you to “print” to a PDF file, for most Windows programs you need an external program to create one of those files that can cost hundreds of dollars. There are a few programs available for free to print PDFs. Although you will find most are embed with an ad or watermark, or a popup Web ad, these programs will not be included in this article.
For a free way of making PDFs, I recommend CutePDF Writer (Freeware). Create professional quality PDF files from almost any printable document. FREE for personal, commercial, gov or edu use! No watermarks! No popup Web ads! Now supports 64-bit Windows. Requires PS2PDF converter such as Ghostscript (recommended). You can get the free GPL Ghostscript 8.15 here: http://www.cutepdf.com/download/converter.exe, and download CutePDF Writer here: http://www.cutepdf.com/download/CuteWriter.exe
Another program you may need is “Gios PDF Splitter And Merger “. Like CutePDF Writer the program is freeware. As its name implies, Gios PDF Splitter and Merger is a great tool that will help you merge and split PDF documents easily. Gios PDF Splitter and Merger is a PDF free tool developed for quicker and more efficient access to information needed from your PDF files, reorganizing them in a way that makes them easier to manage and handle. Like CutePDF Writer additional software is required for operation, in this case you need Microsoft .NET Framework version 1.1. Links to “Gios PDF Splitter And Merger”, and “Microsoft .NET Framework” are available on following site: http://www.paologios.com/products/psm.aspx