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How to Make PDFs Non-Editable/Read-Only Without/with Passwords

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When you don't want others change the PDF document you share, how can you make PDF non-editable or ready-only? Actually, it is as easy as making PDF editable as long as you learn about today's post, including 6 approaches. They all can change your PDF into non-editable, and you can retain the original layout and content of your PDF without effort. No one can modify the document even if they are careless.

how to make pdf non editable

 

Part 1. How to Make PDF Non-Editable Without Password-Protected

You can protect your PDF files from editing without using a password. Changing the file permissions of your PDF files can restrict the edit permissions on a computer.

1.1 How Can I Make a PDF Non-Editable on Windows?

One way to make a PDF non-editable on a Windows PC is to use the file's "Properties" feature, which is built-in on the Windows system. It allows you to make the file not editable. But if others download the file and modify the permissions, he or she can edit the PDF again.

Here are the steps to make a PDF non-editable on a Windows computer:

1. Locate the PDF file and right-click on it. Choose the last option, "Properties".

2. Check the "Read-only" box. Then click on "OK" to save the settings.

set pdf read only on windows

3. The PDF file is non-editable now, and you can open it with any PDF reader to verify the restrictions.

the document could not be saved

1.2 How Do I Make a PDF Non-Editable on Mac?

If you use a MacBook, you can modify the file permissions on your Mac computer as well. Here are the steps:

1. Choose the PDF file that you intend to make read-only and right-click on it.

2. Select "Get Info" from the drop-down menu. Go to "Sharing & Permissions", and change the privilege from "Read & Write" to "Read only".

set pdf read only on mac

Part 2. How to Make a PDF Non-Editable with Password-Protected

You can make your PDF files non-editable by encrypting the files with user or owner passwords. Various tools can help you make PDFs non-editable with password-protected. Take a look at the 4 tools in this part.

2.1 How to Make PDF Non-Editable in Coolmuster PDF Locker [Recommended]

Coolmuster PDF Locker can help you lock your PDF files with ease. With this tool, you can set a user password (open password) to make PDFs non-editable. Encrypting PDF is straightforward, and you can lock multiple files at one go, saving you time. Then no one can change the PDF file without the password.

Key Features

  • Help you add a user password to PDF to stop others from opening or accessing your PDF files.
  • Establish an owner password to adjust permission settings, safeguarding your PDF against unauthorized use.
  • The interface is intuitive.
  • Select from encryption strengths like 40-bit RC4, 128-bit RC4, or 128-bit AES to ensure the protection of your confidential information.

Here are the steps to make PDF non-editable in Coolmuster PDF Locker:

01Download and install Coolmuster PDF Locker on your computer, and launch it.

02Click on the "Add Files" or "Add Folder" button to import the PDF files that you want to make non-editable. You can also drag & drop the PDF files to the main interface.

make pdf non editable with coolmuster

03Set password and permissions:

  1. "Set Password": Choose the password type that you want to use and enter the password that you want to use.
  2. "Encryption Level": Choose the encryption level that you want to use, such as 40-bit RC4, 128-bit RC4, or 128-bit AES.
  3. "Set Permissions": You can choose the actions that you want to allow or disallow.

set password

04Click on "Encrypt" to start encrypting the PDFs. The new PDF files will be non-editable, and you can open them with any PDF reader to verify the encryption and the restrictions.

encrypt pdfs

2.2 How to Make PDF Non-Editable in Adobe Reader

Adobe Reader can make PDFs non-editable with password. You can create a password to encrypt your documents with a few clicks, but this feature is only available on the Pro version but not the free one. Here are the steps to make PDF non-editable in Adobe Reader:

1. Open the PDF file that you want to make non-editable with Adobe Reader and click on the right panel to select the "Protect" tool. Next, click on the "Protect Using Password" option.

adobe acrobat make pdf non editable

2. Choose the "Editing" option, and enter the password you want to use. Select the "Advanced Options" and choose "Encrypt with Password" (If a window pops up showing "Are you sure you want to change the security on this document?", click "Yes").

adobe reader make pdf non editable

3. Check the box below "Permissions" saying "Restrict editing and printing of the document...". For the "Printing Allowed" and "Changes Allowed" options, you can customize them according to your needs.

restrict editing and printing of the document

4. Enter the "Change Permissions Password" and click "OK" to save the encryption settings. Then tap "Save" to create a new PDF file with the restrictions applied. The new PDF file will be non-editable, and you can open it with any PDF reader to verify the encryption and the restrictions.

2.3 How to Make PDF Non-Editable in PDF Editor

PDF Editor is a powerful and all-in-one PDF tool in which you're allowed to make PDFs non-editable with password-protected. It enables you to encrypt your PDF files with a user password or an owner password and set the file permissions to restrict editing, printing, copying, or other actions. It also supports batch processing, so you can make multiple PDFs non-editable at once.

Key Features

  • PDF Security: Secure PDFs with passwords and incorporate watermarks.
  • Batch Processing: Handle multiple PDF files simultaneously.
  • PDF Editing: Alter text, imagery, and pages within PDF files.
  • PDF Annotation: Insert comments, highlights, and various annotations into PDF documents.
  • Electronic Signatures: Electronically sign PDFs using digital signatures.
  • PDF Merging: Consolidate several PDFs into a single file.
  • PDF Conversion: Transform PDFs into different formats, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and others.
  • Form Filling: Complete and create PDF forms.
  • PDF Compression: Decrease the file size of PDF documents.

Here are the steps to make PDF non-editable in PDF Editor:

01Download and install PDF Editor on your computer, and launch it.

how do i make a pdf non editable in pdf editor

02On the main screen, choose "Batch PDFs" and the "Security" tool.

batch pdfs

03Import the PDF files that you want to make non-editable. Hit "+" under "Template" to create a new security template. Next, check the box next to "Permissions Password", enter the password, and choose the actions that you want to allow or disallow.

create security template

04Name the template and click "Save" to save the encryption settings. You can choose a different location for the new PDF file if you want. At last, click "Apply".

2.4 How to Make PDF Non-Editable in WPS Office

WPS Office is a comprehensive office suite, which also allows you to make PDFs non-editable with password-protected. It enables you to encrypt your PDF files with a user password or an owner password and set the file permissions to restrict editing, printing, copying, or other actions. It also supports batch processing, so you can make multiple PDFs non-editable at once. Here are the steps to make PDF non-editable in WPS Office:

1. Download and install WPS Office on your computer, and launch it. Open the PDF file in this tool.

2. Click "Protect" tab and select "Encrypt".

make pdf non editable in wps

3. In the "Enryption" window, check the box next to "Set password of editing and extracting". Enter your password.

set password

4. Under "Encrypt the following functions", you can choose the actions that you want to disallow.

5. Click on "Confirm" to save the security settings. The PDF file will then be non-editable.

Conclusion

With this guide, you can easily make a PDF non-editable. Furthermore, these methods are easy to use and reliable. No matter which way you choose, you can achieve your goal without trouble. If you want to add a password to multiple PDF files, you can utilize Coolmuster PDF Locker. This software allows you to create your own password to protect your files. Only the people who knows the key can edit the PDF.

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