Chapter 1. Introduction

PDFLeo is a command line utility to transform existing PDF files - such as linearization, encryption, decryption, compression, size reduction, and metadata modification. It can also be used to display information of PDF documents, such as metadata, security attributes and required fonts.

A typical use of PDFLeo is to post-process PDF files created by a word processor or a PDF generator, such as Word 2007 or FOP. You can use this program to optimize (linearization or size reduction), encrypt, add metadata etc. In addition to modifying existing files, you can use the program to collect meta data of PDF documents, such as title, author and creation date.

Both 32-bit and 64-bit executables are included in the package.

1.1. Editions

PDFLeo comes with three editions - Standard, Professional and Server. The first two editions can't run on Windows server operating systems, such as Windows 2003 Server or 2008 Server.

License does not restrict the number of CPUs that the program runs.

  • The Standard Edition includes all the features except reading and writing public key encrypted PDF files. Standard edition can't run on Windows servers.

  • The Professional Edition has all the features enabled, including reading and writing public key encrypted PDF files. However, it can't run on Window servers.

  • The Server Edition has all the features enabled, including public key encryption/decryption support. It can run on both server and workstation Windows systems.

In addition to the three full editions, a trial version is available to download from our web site. The trial version contains all the features, and run on both server and workstation Windows, except that it can only process PDF files up to 50 pages. The trial version is supplied for evaluation purpose and must not be used for production purposes.

As of the writing, PDFLeo requires Windows 2000 or above. For availability on other platforms, send your inquiry to .

1.2. Installing the Software

The software is packed in a ZIP file. Unzip it to your Windows folder or a new folder created. Optionally you may add the directory to your PATH variable so that you can call from other directories.

All editions of PDFLeo, including the trial version, share the same binary. After your purchased the software, you will receive a license key that activates the edition you bought. To convert the trial version into the edition you bought, fill in pdfleo.lic file with the license key received. The contents of the file look like below:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
       <licensee>ABC Corporation</licensee>

In most cases, both licensee and serial number fields must match the ones in the e-mail or on the package cover. PDFLeo will read and validate the license code at startup. If validation failed, PDFLeo runs under trial mode, which processes PDF files up to 50 pages.


The pdfleo.lic file must be a valid XML file in UTF-8 encoding. If licensee name contains non-ASCII characters, use a UTF-8 capable text editor to modify the contents.

After installing the software, run the command pdfleo --help to verify that the software is installed correctly. If license name and serial number were correctly entered, the program will print the edition at the first line.

C:\pdfleo --help
Morovia (R) pdfleo Professional1 64-bit2 Version 1.0 (build 4104)3
Usage:  pdfleo [-p|--password=<pwd>]... [--digital-id=file:pwd]...


Professional Edition


64-bit executable


Software version 1.0 build number 4104

If you need to test large PDF files, write to to request time based trial keys. Keys will be granted case by case.

Do you know?

This manual is specific to PDFLeo 1.0.
The current version is 1.0.0.

This Manual is also available in the following format: PDF.