How to scan documents

Learn how to scan to PDF or how to do a PDF scan, including how to convert paper documents to PDF and make the text searchable (OCR).

By September 20, 2012


In this infographic, learn how to scan to PDF or how to do a PDF scan, including how to convert paper documents to PDF and make the text automatically searchable (OCR) in Acrobat XI.

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Products covered:

Acrobat XI Pro

Related topics:

Scanning & OCR

Top Searches:

Create PDF, Scan to PDF, Electronic signatures, OCR PDF



10, 2013-09-21 21, 2013

Lori, My updater says I am completely up to date and still not working! I have given up just use my printer scanner…..

Lori Kassuba

12, 2013-09-17 17, 2013

Hi Greg,

In the Custom scan dialog, under the Sides dropdown try selecting only “Front Sides”.


Lori Kassuba

12, 2013-09-17 17, 2013

Hi Debbie,

The Acrobat 11.0.04 updated fixed numerous scanning issues and specifically enabled ICA support on the Mac in 10.7 or higher. Have you tried updating to this point version?



2, 2013-09-13 13, 2013

My scanner scans both sides of page.  How do I stop this from happening and scan just one side?


11, 2013-09-09 09, 2013

Hi Donna,
Adobe says that it is a known issue of Acrobat X1 still no answers if they will fix the problem. With all the technology out there you would think it would have been fixed by now the is is a almost 6 month issue for me!

donna baker

3, 2013-09-08 08, 2013

Hi Eimear -

If you are applying the OCR process to your files, then you will have searchable text. You can either capture the text as you’re scanning, or use the OCR options to capture it later.

If you have searchable text on a page, you’ll be able to select paragraphs using the Edit Text & Graphics tool.


Eimear Moran

6, 2013-09-04 04, 2013

Hi Donna,

Im digitalising a small business which enquires me to scan all documents. I’ve chosen adobe acrobat XI pro and have followed your tutorial, however, I can not make the documents searchable?

Im using windows interface and a cannon MX890 scanner.

donna baker

10, 2013-08-06 06, 2013

Hi George -

You have to check through your settings in your email client to see if there’s a step where the email is sent to an outbox for you to manually send.


George Jinbo

3, 2013-07-30 30, 2013

can create pdf and tried sending it thru email.  Typed in address and press send, and it looks as if the email has been sent, however, I never actually receive the email.  I am wondering where the email has gone??? and what is happening???  thnx

donna baker

12, 2013-03-26 26, 2013

Hi Debbie -

There are many reasons why you may not be able to scan properly, based on drivers installed, your type of printer/scanner, and your settings. Please read through these threads to see if they’ll help with your problem:

You may be missing a driver - please check with your printer/scanner’s website.



8, 2013-03-25 25, 2013

I have recently gone to a Mac and purchased Acrobat X1 Pro for Mac. My printer has been installed and I have chosen my printer in the scan part of utility. When I go to scan to pdf the box pops up and says pick you printer but my printer does not appear. How can I get the program to find or recognize my printer so that I can scan within the program? HELP!

donna baker

12, 2012-12-17 17, 2012

Hi Calvin -

It sounds like you’re working on Windows, so you can repair the installation. Choose Help > Repair Acrobat Installation. Let the program check through all its components, including the scanner. That could do the trick.


Calvin Hopper

7, 2012-12-08 08, 2012

Some years ago I purchased a license for Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro, Version 9.5.2.  I have a new wireless all-in-one printer/scanner that I want to use for scanning documents.  When I try to scan I get the following message:
“Error while interacting with the scanner: the selected scanner was not found.”
How do I get Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro to find my printer.  The printer does work with this PC that I am using with MS Word, etc.

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