How to resize pages in a PDF file using Acrobat XI

Learn how to edit PDF by using the crop tool to resize PDF pages.

By Donna Baker – November 14, 2013


In this infographic, learn how to edit PDF by using the crop tool to resize PDF pages.

How to resize pages in a PDF file using Acrobat XI
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How to resize pages in a PDF file using Acrobat XI

Donna Baker – November 14, 2013

  1. Open the document with pages you want to resize by cropping, and click the Page Thumbnails tab. Resize the panel’s width and thumbnail size as needed.
  2. To check a page’s size, click the thumbnail to display the page. Move your mouse to the bottom left of the document window to see dimensions in a tooltip or on the status bar.
  3. Select a page to crop in the Page Thumbnails pane, and click Crop Pages from the Options dropdown.
  4. Choose a measurement unit, and choose CropBox from the Margin Controls section.
  5. Click the Fixed Sizes radio button, then choose an option from the Page Sizes dropdown list, such as Letter.You can increase the page size to make room for additional content but can’t shrink the page content to fit a smaller page size.
  6. Review the page layout in the Preview area, which also shows the new page size.
  7. Specify the pages to resize in the Page Range area and click OK.
  8. In the Page Thumbnails panel, review the modified pages.
  9. Move your mouse over the document window to see the modified page size shown in a tooltip or on the status bar.

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Acrobat XI

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Comments for this tutorial are now closed.

Patty Friesen

3, 2015-11-24 24, 2015

Hi JP,

Our comments moderator is on vacation this week. Can you please post your question in the Acrobat forum so our experts can help you interactively:




8, 2015-11-23 23, 2015

I have a few 11x17 pages that were scanned and sent to me.  I need them to be Arch E size to properly zoom in and see whats going on.
How can Acrobat X change the page size? I have tried to “print” to PDF and changed the size to Arch E but still when I upload the new file to my measuring program, it is still 11x17. so when I zoom in the quality is horrible.

Lori Kassuba

6, 2015-11-10 10, 2015

Hi Aram,

You can always double check your page size by turning on the Preference under Page Display “Always show document page size”. When this is on, the page size displays in the lower left corner.



9, 2015-11-02 02, 2015

Hi Lori,

You seem to be the sheriff in town. I’m trying to resize a page to 47"x81” w/ 1 ” top and 3” bottom margins to send to the printers for a banner. The pages are very high resolution (smallest single page file is 17 mb and largest is 54 mb). When I follow the instructions above, it ends up creating a tiny image in the preview pane with a lot of white space surrounding it. My gut says that can’t be right. Any thoughts?

Lori Kassuba

2, 2015-10-30 30, 2015

Hi Leah Mittelman,

If you don’t have the Pro. version, you’ll just need to manually enter the page size in the custom size area.


Leah Mittelman

10, 2015-10-15 15, 2015

Using Adobe XI Standard on Windows 7 I don’t have from no. 5 and ahead. Any help?

Lori Kassuba

4, 2015-07-29 29, 2015

Hi Naor Nemmen,

The crop tool can be use to increase the page size to make room for additional content. To scale your page content you can try re-printing the file using the Adobe PDF printer but you may lose valuable content in your file like bookmarks, links, transparency, etc.


youssouf ibrahim

8, 2015-07-27 27, 2015

I have a PDF file ,it is 606 kB I wanna make it 198 kB plz suggest an answers.

Naor Nemmen

12, 2015-07-03 03, 2015

I think you teached how to CROP a page, not how to RESIZE it. as the title of the article explicits… they are aboslutely different things…

Lori Kassuba

3, 2015-07-01 01, 2015

Hi killianea,

Can you post your question here so we can help you interactively?


[email protected]

5, 2015-06-29 29, 2015

I have a multi page pdf size 17 x 11. I have previously always added an 8.5 x 11 pdf as a new page, then cropped the page using custom page size setting to 17 x 11 and offset 8.5 to have image on right side of page. Now I do same, preview looks perfect but when I click o.k. the page size is correct but the image cannot be seen. Using Acrobat XI Pro What am I doing wrong? Thanks

Noor Shamoon

5, 2015-05-20 20, 2015

Thank you this was very helpful, and easy to understand.

Lori Kassuba

4, 2015-05-12 12, 2015

Hi agravated,

You can add white space around a PDF to increase the file size but scaling a PDF to fit a smaller size PDF is done with imposition software. You can try using the print dialog to print to another PDF file but you may lose important information in the file like hyperlinks, comments, transparency, etc.



12, 2015-05-11 11, 2015

why is it so difficult to change the page size??????????????????

Sherrie Duncan

8, 2015-01-22 22, 2015

Thank you, Lori.

Lori Kassuba

2, 2015-01-21 21, 2015

Hi Sherrie Duncan,

You can set this under Edit > Preferences > Page Display “Zoom”. Although sometimes document creators set the page display for individual files. To check to see if this may be the case, look under File > Properties > Initial View tab for a specific file.


Sherrie Duncan

3, 2015-01-16 16, 2015

When I open a pdf file in Adobe Acrobat XI, the document always opens to a default size of 197%.  I can change the size of the document once I’ve opened it, but haven’t been able to find a way to change the default setting (where this is I haven’t been able to find) to open at 100%.  Any help would be appreciated.

Lori Kassuba

2, 2014-12-09 09, 2014

Hi Mohamad,

If you’re using the Microsoft converter to create your PDF, you’ll need to post your question on one of the Microsoft forums since this isn’t an Adobe product.


Mohamad Salhani

11, 2014-12-03 03, 2014

Previously, when I were converting a doc file (or ppt) to pdf version, the size of doc file was reduced multiple once (using Win XP+pdf factory pro). It seemed for me that it is normal as the pdf reduces the details for the original file.
But, now when I do that its size increases (using Win8 + universal document converter). Does the new converter or Win8 add details for the new pdf file or what?
Thanks in advance,

Lori Kassuba

2, 2014-10-17 17, 2014

Hi Ann,

You’ll need Acrobat and not just the free Reader to use the crop tool.



3, 2014-10-15 15, 2014

I do not have the option to chose cropbox - there isn’t a apply to drop down box in my Adobe X1.

Lori Kassuba

1, 2014-07-13 13, 2014

Hi Saskia Young,

Do you see a security lock in the left-hand navigation pane on this particular file? Perhaps security has been set to disallow changes.


Saskia Young

5, 2014-07-10 10, 2014

I’m attempting to crop the pages of a pdf from 8.5x11 to 5.5x8.5 but keep getting a ‘cannot change page size’ error. Help.

Lori Kassuba

9, 2013-12-26 26, 2013

Hi Kim Lowry,

Here is how you would go about doing this in Acrobat Std:


Kim Lowry

7, 2013-12-24 24, 2013

Step 4 with the “Apply To” option box & instruction to choose “Crop Box” is NOT an option on Adobe XI standard program. I need to resize the pages in my PDF. Any other instructions possible to assist me in my goal?

Lori Kassuba

8, 2013-12-19 19, 2013

Hi Seppo Alanen,

Acrobat Std. does not ship with the oversized pages you’re looking for (only Pro. does) but you can create them as discussed in this thread:


Seppo Alanen

8, 2013-12-18 18, 2013

My problem is “Default Page Size” Ratio (X/Y) who is different between US versus European “paper sizes”.
In Acrobat XI-Pro have not any way for Default Ratio setting, it gets 11” x 8.5” what ever I do. 99% I’m creating PDFs from DXF-files.

In “..\ProgramData\Adobe\Adobe PDF\Settings\” have xxx.jobopitions files which are under “SYSTEM USER”, so I can’t change the Page Size, Acrobat gets Default Page Size from there, I think?

I have changed all Registry Bath off from there to my bath where are changed Page Sizes, but that is not help. 

Also, Acrobat is “printer” oriented. To day we don’t print documents, we are using computers only.

Can they add “Set Default Page Size property” to Acrobat?

Comments for this tutorial are now closed.