This tutorial shows you how to work with the Review and Comment features in Acrobat X. See what the all-new Acrobat DC can do for you.

Download a free trial of the new Acrobat.

How to add comments in Adobe Reader X

Learn how to use the sticky notes and highlight text tools for commenting on PDF files with the free Reader.

By Kurt Foss – December 3, 2010


This video tutorial explains how to use the sticky notes and highlight text tools for commenting on PDF files with the free Reader. A PDF file can also be saved in Acrobat X to enable additional collaboration features for Reader users, but the two tools are always available.

View transcript

How to add comments in Adobe Reader X

Kurt Foss – December 3, 2010

Adobe Systems has given Acrobat X a simplified user interface, along with many new and improved features.

The free Adobe Reader X sports a similar new look.

It has its own set of enhanced capabilities.

We'll take a quick look at the new Reader UI and check out a couple new commenting tools - namely Sticky Note and Highlight Text.In the past, Reader users have been able to access the full set of commenting tools only if the author of a PDF file enabled so-called "Extended Rights," which could be added using Acrobat Professional.

When Reader 8 or 9 is used to open an extended-rights PDF, the Comment & Markup toolbar provides access to the same set of annotation tools available in the full version of Acrobat.

This allows Reader users to participate in comment-and-review workflows.The same option remains available in Acrobat X and Reader X.

As before, these special rights can only be applied on a document-by-document basis.

Reader 10 now provides users with two commonly-used, always-available commenting tools - no special rights are required.

Let's take a look.I've launched Reader X on a Macintosh and I'm opening a non-rights-enabled PDF file.As in Acrobat X, the new Reader UI includes several Task Panes on the right side where commonly used features can be accessed.

In Reader X, the names of the two panes, Comment and Share, appear at the top right of the toolbar.

If you open a rights-enabled PDF, you'll also see a Tools pane.Click on the Comment heading to open its task pane, where you can access the new annotation tools.

Below them is the Comments List, where any annotations will appear.With a PDF file open and the Comment pane displayed, select the Sticky Note tool.

It also has an icon in the Reader X toolbar, part of the Quicktools area.

If you have used Sticky Notes in Acrobat, it works the same in Reader X.

With the Sticky Note tool activated, click it's icon where you want to add a text message in a pop-up note.The comment box opens, showing your log-in name and the time your note is being added.

You can adjust other appearance settings, such as color and opacity, by opening the tool's Properties or Text Properties windows.Type your message into the text area; you can also copy and paste text into the note.

A note icon will appear on the file.

A user can click on the icon to open the note and read the message, and to reply to it if desired.You can set the Sticky Note's Properties so that the tool remains active.

To delete a note, right-click its icon, then choose Delete.Now let's try the new Highlight Text tool, which is the electronic equivalent of using a yellow marker on paper.

In the task pane or the Quicktools area of the toolbar, activate the highlighting tool.

Place its icon where you want to begin, and drag to include the exact text you want to emphasize.There's a checkbox in its Properties window that allows you to keep the tool active so you can continue to read and highlight.Any notes or blocks of highlighted text added to a PDF file will be visible in the Comments List.

You can sort and filter comments by various categories, or hide those you don't want to see.Reader X also provides the ability to search for specific terms and view only comments that match.The new commenting tools in Reader X are included primarily for personal use, such as providing a student an easy way to highlight important text in a reading assignment.

The always-available commenting tools aren't meant for collaborating with groups of users in complex, Shared-Review workflows.

You'll need Acrobat X for that.

Products covered:

Acrobat X

Related topics:

Review and Comment

Top Searches:

1 comment

Comments for this tutorial are now closed.

Helen Dimaki

9, 2012-06-26 26, 2012

This video was very helpful for me to learn how to insert comments. Thank you so much!!! I will also try to harmonize my notebook adding Acrobat X so to understand the complete advantages of acrobat x.
Please note two points:
1) the video quality was low on hearing the narrator (it had many voice stops)
2)a question has rised during my watching video lesson. What if one reads a pdf file from the internet and this link has no contact details of the author and you need to add a comment for him/her to review and consider on revising part of the document he publised. Is there a way to add a comment (with rights or not) so the Internet author to consider or other readers to consider too? How one can do this? Can this process be added to the existing video?

Helen - thanks for letting us know about the audio, I’ll see if it’s possible to clean it up.
In regards to your other comment, the only way to incorporate notification when working on a PDF on the internet, is to include some sort of email link within the PDF. If you’re working outside of an Acrobat Shared Review, then it’s not possible to arbitrarily comment on a PDF on the internet and notify the author. The comments you make are only on the local (or temporary) copy of your PDF.

Lori K.

Comments for this tutorial are now closed.