How to Disable Printing of PDF Documents – Three Simple Methods

Written By Kumar Raj
Anuraag Singh
Approved By Anuraag Singh  
Published On September 27th, 2023
Reading Time 5 Minutes Reading

PDF files are the go-to standard documents for sharing data. They are easy to view and do not distort the formatting in different operating systems. But what if the user wants to disable printing of PDF file? It may be a confidential report, an e-book, or carry sensitive document. Regardless of the reasons, if the user wants to prevent someone from printing a PDF file, then simply read this article.

Here, users can explore various methods to prevent PDF printing without any hassle.

Table of Contents:

What is the Need to Prevent Printing a PDF File?

There are several reasons to lock the printing ability in a PDF document. The most important ones are given below:

  1. Confidential PDF – PDF files often carry sensitive information that a user needs to share but prevent its printing. Doing so ensures that the information is only for reading purposes.
  2. Distribution Control – Sometimes, users want to distribute a PDF document digitally while maintaining control over its distribution. Disabling PDF printing helps achieve this by limiting how the document can be used.
  3. Copyright – An author or content creator wants to share his work in PDF format. To protect his copyright property, he can disable the printing option in his documents.

Quick & Easy Methods to Disable Printing of PDF File

There are several methods to disable the printing of a PDF file. Users can choose them based on their needs. Here are three effective ways:

Method 1 – Prevent Printing a PDF Document in Adobe

The official file reader and editor for the PDF format is Adobe. After all, it is the creator of the format. Users can find various security features and functions in Adobe Acrobat. One of them is the ability to disable printing of a PDF file. The process is simple and easy to follow as long as the user has the paid version of Adobe Acrobat DC.

Do note that Adobe Reader is a free application meant for reading PDF files only. It does not provide any means to protect PDF documents with a password.

Here is the process to disable printing in Adobe Acrobat DC:

  • Firstly, open Adobe Acrobat DC.

    open adobe acrobat dc

  • Then, go to the File menu and click on the Open option.

    click on open

  • Now, navigate to the PDF file that users want to disable the printing feature on and open it.

    navigate nad open pdf to disable the printing feature

  • After that, right-click on the file and select Document Properties.

    go to pdf properties

  • Go to the Security tab in the Document Properties window.

    go to security

  • Here, select Password security in the Security method dropdown list.

    select password security

  • Now, set restrictions for printing under the Permissions section.

    set print restrictions

  • Choose None in Printing Allowed option to disable printing of PDF document.

    choose none in print allow

  • The other setting is to prevent editing of a PDF file, so use it as per choice.

  • Then, enter a password and click OK.

    enter a password

  • Click OK on the Adobe Acrobat prompt, if it appears.

    click ok on prompt

  • Now, re-enter the password to confirm the changes.

    reenter the password

  • Keep clicking OK on further windows and prompts and finally Save the PDF file.

    save the pdf file

  • To verify the changes, simply view the Document Properties. Here, the printing restrictions section will show that PDF Printing is disabled.

    verify printing is disabled in pdf

Method 2 – Disable Printing of PDF File with SysTools

The best method to prevent printing of PDF file is with the help of SysTools PDF Password Locker Tool. It is a user-friendly software that allows users to disable printing of PDF files within few clicks. The best part of this tool is that it allows the user to set the printing restriction on the PDF file without changing the other settings. It works similarly to Adobe Acrobat but focuses solely on the security of PDF files.

Free Download  Purchase Now

This software is available for one-time purchase and is easy on the pocket. Plus, users can apply restrictions on PDF files in bulk. That’s why, many PDF users prefer this tool over Adobe Acrobat to disable print option in PDF documents.

Here is the process to prevent PDF printing without Adobe:

  • Download and install the tool on your Windows PC.

    download and install the product

  • Launch the software and click Add File to select PDF files.

    click on add files button

  • Import multiple PDF files that users want to protect from printing.import multiple pdf files

  • Go to the next window and choose Not Allowed in the Printing option.

    disable print option in pdf

  • Set other restrictions as per the requirements.

    set other restrictions

  • Enter a password for added security.

    enter password

  • Click the Lock button to disable print option in all PDF files.

    click lock button

  • Finally, open the new PDF file to check that it is print-protected.

    check if print is retricted in pdf

Advanced – How to Prevent Printing of PDF Certain Number of Pages

For more advanced control, users can use Digital Rights Management (DRM) solutions like Locklizard. It limits the number of pages that can be printed in a PDF. This approach allows a user to specify how many pages can be printed, making it suitable for distributing limited-use documents.

drm solution to prevent printing in pdf


In a world where information flows freely, it’s crucial to have tools and methods to control how PDF documents are used. Disabling printing in PDF is necessary to safeguard confidential data, protect content, or simply have more control over its distribution. With the methods outlined above, users can easily prevent someone from printing a PDF file. Users can choose a method that works best for them.


By Kumar Raj

Kumar Raj has more than 14 plus years of expertise in migration technology. He likes to create, edit, and optimize web material on topics conversion of email data, and migration of email data. For the majority of the past ten years, he has been a devoted fan of the technology scene.