Posts tagged "preview"

Page Thumbnails Pane – A single window toolkit

What is a Page Thumbnails Pane

Page thumbnails pane is a powerful tool in Adobe Acrobat which give access to you to a range of features in a single window enabling you to edit your PDF document seamlessly. It shows thumbnails of the pages of the active PDF document and you can do page level operations while looking at the previews.

How to access it in Acrobat

Page Thumbnails pane is available in the left hand navigation pane. In Acrobat X the icon of the pane looks like two pages with one on top of the other. The below snapshot shows the icon with the corresponding tool tip.

If the pane is not enabled in your Acrobat then you can enable the Page Thumbnails pane in the navigation pane through two ways. First is through the View menu.

And the other is through the right click menu of the navigation pane.

What all you can do in Page Thumbnails Pane

You can navigate through the PDF document in this pane by selecting the page thumbnails. The page in view corresponds to the thumbnail selected in the pane. There are various other features which one can access in this pane apart from simple navigation. In fact this pane is a dream come true for a knowledge worker who needs to manipulate pages in a PDF document.

Through this pane you can work on the PDF document while viewing the entire file in a single window. You can resize the pane to cover the whole Acrobat chrome and complete your work. You can come back to the page view by clicking on the collapse button on the top right of the pane.

You can access the features available in the Page Thumbnail pane in two ways. Either through the drop down on top left or by right click context menu of a thumbnail in the pane.

One advantage of working in this pane is that you can preview the contents  and do page manipulation in the same window. Another advantage is that different features automatically take the range of pages selected in the pane as an input, you don’t need to renter the page range. The features you can access in page thumbnail pane are:

  1. Insert Pages: to insert new pages from a supported file, clipboard or even a blank page. The shortcut for Insert Pages from a file is Shift+Ctrl+I and the shortcut for Insert Blank page is Shift+Ctrl+Q.
  2. Extract Pages
  3. Replace Pages
  4. Delete Pages
  5. Crop Pages
  6. Rotate Pages
  7. Page Transitions
  8. Number Pages
  9. Print Pages
  10. Embed or Remove the Page Thumbnails in the PDF
  11. View Page Properties
Apart from these features which are available through a menu there are many other good features in the pane which can increase your productivity.
You can enlarge the thumbnail size to view the contents effectively. You can access the feature of increasing/decreasing thumbnail size from the top right drop down of the pane and also from the Page Thumbnail pane context menu. You can also increase the thumbnail size using keyboard and mouse by pressing ‘Ctrl’ on the keyboard and scrolling the mouse wheel.


You can also zoom in the page contents through this pane. For this first select a page in the pane and then zoom in the page contents by resizing the black bounding box surrounding the selected page in the pane or by pressing the ‘Ctrl’ key followed by ‘+’ or ‘-‘ key on the keyboard.

Resizing the pane reflows the thumbnails correctly and also keeps the selected page in the view.

You can reorder pages of the active PDF document by dragging and dropping pages in the pane. You can drag and drop a single page or a page range (both continuous and non-continuous). In the snapshot below I am dragging pages 8, 9 and 14 and dropping them after page 16.

You can also select a group of pages by creating a rectangular marquee selection in the pane using the mouse.

Let me end this post by telling you about one more feature supported in the Page Thumbnails pane. You can actually drag and drop an Acrobat supported file from your system onto the pane and Acrobat will add the file for you in the active PDF document at the exact location where you had dropped it. If you drop a non PDF file, Acrobat will first convert the file to Adobe PDF and then insert it at the selected location. In the snapshot below I am dropping a MS Word file onto the pages pane after page 2 and Acrobat first converts it to PDF and then insert it into the PDF.

I hope this post will help you in understanding Page Thumbnails pane better and you will find this feature useful. Stay tuned for more such posts on your favorite software Adobe Acrobat.

~Pulkit Jain