How to convert Word, Excel and PowerPoint to PDF using Acrobat XI

Learn how to create PDF by converting Word to PDF, Excel to PDF and PowerPoint to PDF with the Word to PDF Converter.

By Steve Gottwals – September 6, 2012


In this tutorial, learn how to create PDF by converting Word to PDF, Excel to PDF and PowerPoint to PDF with the Word to PDF Converter in Acrobat XI, so you can share files that look the same no matter what device they are viewed on.

View transcript

How to convert Word, Excel and PowerPoint to PDF using Acrobat XI

Steve Gottwals – September 6, 2012

You probably spend a significant amount of time creating files in Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. If you share those files with others, you need them to look exactly like they did when you created them. Acrobat XI can help you with that. Here I have a document opened in Microsoft Word. I can click on the Acrobat ribbon and I virtually get the same effect if I do this in Excel or PowerPoint. I can create a PDF, I can create a PDF and attach it to an email. I can create one and send it for review. And with Acrobat Pro I can create a PDF and run a specific set of actions on it. So let's create a PDF, and save it. Only Acrobat XI ensures that your document remains intact. Whether your recipients are viewing the file on a computer or a mobile device, you can be confident that everyone experiences the document the same way as you intended.

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Products covered:

Acrobat XI

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Create PDF

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Lori Kassuba

2, 2015-03-02 02, 2015

Hi Divya Malhotra,

I got this to work but first I needed to go into each worksheet in Excel to make sure that the page number in the header/footer was set to Page 1 of ? for all worksheets. Then, I was able to print the entire worksheet with numbering that said Page 1 of 1, etc.


Divya Malhotra

12, 2015-02-27 27, 2015

Hi. I am trying to convert an excel workbook into acrobat using the ‘Create PDF’ option of Acrobat tab. The workbook has 4 sheets with different number of pages. When I look at the print preview, the page nos. are consecutive and total no. of pages is the sum of all pages of the workbook. However, when I convert, the converted file shows separate page nos. of each worksheet. Please resolve this and let me know how I can make it consider all worksheets while putting page nos.

Lori Kassuba

2, 2015-02-03 03, 2015

Hi Solveig Charlotte Sivertsen,

I’m not sure what exact problem your facing but trying using the very latest version of Acrobat and/or Reader to open your file.


Solveig Charlotte Sivertsen

7, 2015-02-02 02, 2015

Hvorfor er ikke det meste ikke på norsk? Hvorfor kan jeg ikke åpne en fil som alt er en adobe fil, lagret fra skatteetaten???? Har forsøkt alt!

Why is not mostly not in Norwegian? Why can not I open a file that everything is an adobe file, saved from the tax authorities ???? Have tried everything !

Lori Kassuba

9, 2015-01-21 21, 2015

Hi Martin,

If the changes aren’t too extensive (no page reflows), you can use the Replace pages command. This tutorial explains how to do this:



10, 2015-01-15 15, 2015

I made changes to my word document but I don’t know how to update my existing pdf?

Lori Kassuba

9, 2015-01-12 12, 2015

Hi koventhan,

If you’re using the PDFMaker add-on for Word, you can disable viewing the resulting PDF under the Acrobat ribbon in Word, select Preferences, and uncheck “View Acrobat PDF result”.



8, 2015-01-06 06, 2015


After converting word to pdf in word 2007 pdf file will open by default. How to disable that ?
i dont want pdf file to open after conversion.

Lori Kassuba

9, 2014-11-20 20, 2014

Hi Dima,

Are these older Word files (i.e., doc) that you are converting to PDF using a newer version of Word? Like 2007 or 2010? Does this occur if you convert a .docx file?



9, 2014-11-17 17, 2014

Hello, I convert many files doc to pdf via master operations. Forced after converting each file to click “No, do not save.” How to make the transition to convert another file without asking?

Lori Kassuba

11, 2014-10-30 30, 2014

Hi Lusy,

Yes Acrobat 11.0.01 and later support both the 32-bit and 64-bit Add-ons for Office 2013. This technical article has the exact details:



1, 2014-10-29 29, 2014

Is Adobe Acrobat XI Pro compatible with Microsoft 2013?

Lori Kassuba

10, 2014-10-17 17, 2014

Hi Marcus Taylor,

Try signing out and then back in again in Reader. Otherwise, you can access the service using your browser at:


Marcus Taylor

4, 2014-10-15 15, 2014

I am getting an error message when I try and convert a .pdf file to a .doc microsoft word file. The error message reads, ‘An error occurred while trying to access the service.’ Has this issue happened to anyone else? If so, how can I fix it to use this functionality? Thank you

Lori Kassuba

11, 2014-09-05 05, 2014

Hi Kristine,

It’s not clear if you’re using Acrobat to convert the Excel file to PDF. If you are, in the Acrobat Ribbon in Excel, when you create the PDF, if you have multiple sheets in your workbook, there is a dialog where you can choose to convert the entire workbook.



5, 2014-09-03 03, 2014

Using a PDF tool to help convert an excel file with three sheets in the workbook.  I have it set on print entire workbook to .pdf, preview is showing me 3 pages, but it’s creating two separate documents.  Any ideas on what to do to convert the entire workbook as one document?

Lori Kassuba

2, 2014-07-28 28, 2014

Hi Sudhir,

MathType equations are graphics that use fonts. So, under the Acrobat Ribbon in Word, select the Preferences icon and make sure you’re using a setting that will embed the font - like High Quality Print.



11, 2014-07-26 26, 2014

In the DocX 2010 file, I am using certain MathType equations.

When it is SAVED as PDF, the ( ) type brackets used in the equations do not appear in the PDF file at many locations though it does appear at some locations.

However, when DocX 2010 file is PRINTED to PDF file, the ( ) brackets used in MathType equations appear in PDF file correctly.

I need to SAVE the DocX file to PDF because of the book marks that I need in PDF file, because PRINT to PDF does not show book marks.

Please advise how to solve this problem of missing ( ) brackets ?

I am using Windows 7.

Lori Kassuba

11, 2014-07-09 09, 2014

Hi Richard Grand,

Are you using the PDFMaker Add-on in Excel to create the PDF or are you printing to the Adobe PDF Printer?


Richard Grand

1, 2014-07-08 08, 2014


I am using Adobe Acrobat Pro X, and I am having an issue when I convert from Excel to a PDF.

My Excel tabs do not fit onto one page when converted directly into a PDF. I used the “Page Break Preview” button to create a 1st and 2nd page where it makes sense for my document. However, the file does not break how I arranged it when I export the file to a pdf. It appears as if the program is completely ignoring my page break and simply creating the second page once it runs out of room on the first page.

This just started happening recently. I’ve checked all the settings I can think of checking. Do you have any recommendations as to why this is happening?



10, 2014-06-25 25, 2014

It worked thanks for the hint.

Lori Kassuba

12, 2014-06-25 25, 2014

Hi Raymond,

You need to use the PDFMaker Add-on for Excel to bring these across into Acrobat. Also, make sure that “Convert Comments” is checked in the Acrobat PDFMaker preferences for Excel.



9, 2014-06-25 25, 2014

hi guys,
why excel created comments do not show when pdf document is created ?
thx for you help

Lori Kassuba

9, 2014-06-19 19, 2014

Hi richard vanek,

Unfortunately there is no automated way of doing outside of using JavaScript after the conversion has been done.


richard vanek

9, 2014-06-13 13, 2014

Hello Lori,
the conversion is done by the automatic tool. This tool ignores inserted document in original MS Word document and convert them into thumbnail picture (inserted document is lost).
My original question was: is there a better way to include documents in MS Word so they are converted as attachment in the pdf file by automatic tool.

Lori Kassuba

2, 2014-06-12 12, 2014

Hi Richard Vanek,

If you would like to automate the process of attaching files, you could use the JavaScript technique mentioned in this tutorial:


Richard Vanek

4, 2014-06-10 10, 2014

Reading last two comments I feel I have very much same issue, but I like to know different solution.
We have files embedded in the word document, which are then converted to pdf by automatic conversion of our document version system.
I wonder if there is a way in MS Word to insert a document so it will become attachment in final pdf after word to pdf conversion?
Thank you for your help.

Lori Kassuba

1, 2014-04-21 21, 2014

Hi Ken,

If you’re using the Insert > Object command in Word, then when the file is converted to PDF, the object becomes a static representation of the original. You can, however, use this tip to link to an attachment in your PDF:



3, 2014-04-16 16, 2014

Will Acrobat XI allow me to convert Word 2010 documents with embedded images/files to .pdf and still maintain those embedded images/files as active objects (i.e, you can click on them in .pdf to open them)?

Lori Kassuba

12, 2013-12-04 04, 2013

Hi Sukumar,

This type of automated workflow is not supported using a desktop copy of Acrobat. You’ll want to look for some other type of third party tool that can do this in batch.



4, 2013-12-02 02, 2013

Hi Lori Kassuba,

Will I be able to flatten the pdf with out openining the document. It would be greate if you can give me the steps to follow with your shared .xml file.

My existing application takes the uploaded pdf file and process it. Now, what i want is, it should flatten the file after it uploads.

Lori Kassuba

1, 2013-12-02 02, 2013

Hi Sukumar Namgari,

If you have the Pro. version of Acrobat, you can use this re-built Action to flatten a PDF:


Sukumar Namgari

3, 2013-11-27 27, 2013

Thanks Lori Kassuba,

I have a Javascript that add a Tool button in the pdf to flatten the pdf file. But i want to flatten the pdf file by an external program with out manually hitting the button. Do you got any solution for it. I have been searching this for two weeeks.Let me know if i can do it by Adobe Acrobat XI Pro version?

Lori Kassuba

11, 2013-11-27 27, 2013

Hi Sukumar Namgari,

Actions are only available in the Pro. version of Acrobat.


Sukumar Namgari

4, 2013-11-26 26, 2013

I didnt find the Action Wizard Tool in Adobe Acrobat XI Standard eddition. I have to use it to flatten the pdf file. Can you tell me if there is a way to add it?

Lori Kassuba

10, 2013-11-08 08, 2013

Hi Mark Vande Pol,

I’ll respond to the question you posted (not on the tutorial comments)  so I can help you interactively.


Mark Vande Pol

1, 2013-11-07 07, 2013

I have been using Acrobat from CS-2 to produce e-books for about six years. I just installed Acrobat XI Pro on a new Win 7 machine.

Although the documents look fine in Word, PowerPoint, TurboCAD, or FireFox, when I run either the print function or the Maker, everything looks terrible as pdf, regardless of the program source. The text is skinny and borderline unreadable. I’ve tried embedding fonts to no avail. I’ve set it up to cancel on failure to embed and it doesn’t. I’ve gone through my preferences. I don’t know what else to do.

I have years of work tied up in this. These are 500+ page e-books that are heavily illustrated. This is a huge problem for me.

This is not a display problem; my older files look fine.

I’ve gone to the help sections to no avail. I’ve posted at and don’t get answers. All I want at this point is for my output to look like my file. Is that asking too much?

Lori Kassuba

10, 2013-11-05 05, 2013

Hi Linda Jashari,

Are you able to see the header in the Word print preview dialog?


Linda Jashari

3, 2013-10-31 31, 2013

Why will my headers in Word not convert to Adobe PDF? Help!

Lori Kassuba

1, 2013-10-23 23, 2013

Hi Darl works,

It’s been a long time since I’ve worked with Acrobat version 5 but there are different methods that you can use to create PDF files from Excel in Acrobat XI. I’d like to help you with your problem, so can you post your question here so we can assist you interactively? Also, in the post can you explain how you’re creating the PDF (i.e., from inside Excel using the PDFMaker add-on or another way).


Lori Kassuba

1, 2013-10-23 23, 2013

Hi irene,

You’ll need to update the TOC in a program like Word because Acrobat doesn’t have the capability to reflow text from page to page. Another option is to create a new TOC in Word, convert it to PDF, and then use the Replace pages feature (Page Tumbnail navigation pane) to replace the existing TOC page in your file.


Darl works

1, 2013-10-22 22, 2013

I use excel for my office sped sheets and I have multiple tabs in each work sheet. I put multiple work sheets into a PDF.  When I use XI I pick the pages I don’t need remove them and when I use V, I pick the pages that I do need and I don’t need to remove anything.
V is in a drop down window and XI is in a thumbnail page.
If I knew the degree of difficulty was going to be this great, I would not have purchased XI Pro.


2, 2013-09-25 25, 2013

I have converted a word document into a PDF document and combined it with a ppt document converted also into a pdf. This second document is the annexes to the word document.
The problem I’m having is that once I have combined both documents I don’t know how to update the previously existing word table of contents. TGhere is no way I can’t get away without updating it since I have to print the document.

Shahram Khorsand

12, 2012-11-09 09, 2012

IMO, a direct integration into the office product is the best solution. However, I like the outlook integration as an archiving as well as distribution of content rich emails.

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