General Info

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The PDF-XChange Editor SDK is our latest and most ambitious product offering to date - allowing 3rd party MS Windows software developers to incorporate Portable Document Format (PDF) creation and manipulation within their own software applications for provision to client End-Users. Providing a wide range of features and functions such as PDF creation and editing, searching, rendering and printing, importing and exporting PDF documents, decoding, viewing and saving images - the possibilities are almost endless and limited only by the developers imagination and creativity. Using your favourite programming environment with the SDK you can create your own application that would be able to work with PDF files and images – easily viewing and editing existing documents, create new ones, etc.

With over 17 years of experience offering solutions to both End Users and Software Developers - specifically for Imaging and PDF file manipulation - few companies have a better pedigree and our PDF-XChange range of products has been satisfying client needs for since 2001, winning the plaudits of developers and client end users alike from the very first product releases.

This document is intended to act as resource for experienced developers and some basic knowledge of the PDF format will be required to fully benefit from the extensive features and functions available. We strongly recommend all developer to use this document in tandem we the PDF reference available freely from Adobe (see Online PDF-Reference) or the latest PDF specification from the ISO standards (for a fee). Please also note this product contains 1000's of functions, methods and properties - all listed here, but documented on varying degree's of detail due to the sheer volume of options and it is not possible to create an online help going into minutia of detail - so we have instead concentrated on those area's likely to be of interest to the majority and will expand as time and demand justifies us doing so. Where this document does not go into detail the Adobe reference document will in many cases act as a viable alternative and thus we have not duplicated - allowing us to concentrate most where we believe help is most needed.

The full PDF-XChange Editor SDK License provides functionality in two specific libraries:

  • PDF-XChange Core API SDK (soon to be available as a separate SDK at a lesser license fee and replacing our PDF-Tools SDK).
  • PDF-XChange Editor SDK itself which always includes the license and use of the PDF-XChange Core SDK, as well as the extended functionality of the Editor SDK itself. This is not a replacement for our existing PDF-XChange Viewer SDK (which we will continue to offer - but not extend the functionality of) but is the next generation of our Developer SDK line up.

The PDF-XChange Core API SDK – this library provides all available features to work with files in the PDF format and some additional extensions. Unlike the PDF-XChange Editor SDK this library has no UI layer and just one DLL and requires only one DLL to be redistributed to your client end users, being provided in both 32 and 64 bit versions. The PDFXCoreAPI.x86.dll for 32-bit Windows systems and the PDFXCoreAPI.x64.dll for 64-bit Windows Installations.

The PDF-XChange Editor SDK – itself also includes the entirety of the PDF-XChange Core API SDK functionality and additional layers that provide functionality similar to that of own end-user application (created with this SDK) - the PDF-XChange Editor developers are encouraged to review this application themselves to familiarize themselves with the provided functionality and output. As this SDK has the ability to optionally load any available PDF-XChange Editor plugins (with some possible limitations, dependent on the plugin itself and the plugin authors licensing) the set of features provided by the SDK may be dramatically extended by the use of plugins. Developers can also create their own plug-ins for use by their clients or offer to other 3rd party developers or indeed to our own PDF-XChange Editor End-User clients of which their are many millions, please contact us directly for further information should you wish to create a Plug-In for use by licensed end users of the PDF-XChange Editor.

This library consists of a single DLL module (again offered in both 32 and 64 bit versions: PDFXEditCore.x86.dll for 32-bit and PDFXEditCore.x64.dll for 64-bit use) and a mandatory resource file named Resources.dat that should always reside in the same folder as the afore mentioned library DLL being distributed.

Please see the diagram below showing the relationship between the PDF-XChange Editor SDK and PDF-XChange Core API SDK and illustrating the internal arrangement and use of the API-layers:

This is a graph with borders and nodes. Maybe there is an Imagemap used so the nodes may be linking to some Pages.

Both of these libraries are developed and offered as COM-servers and provide a set of ActiveX-objects and COM-interfaces which may be accessed via standard COM technology as well as using other methods:

  • using registration of the COM-server on destination system;
  • using COM-server via Click-Once technology: the standard registration of the COM-server is not required, however two specific manifest files must be added during installation on a client machine;
  • using a special function exported by the libraries DLL's, this creates and returns the main object of the libraries; Neither standard registration of the COM-server nor provision of the above manifest files is required when using this method for your application;

For detailed redistribution information please see Redistribution to Clients.

For detailed information regarding licensing please see Licensing.


The latest release of the SDK is always available from here. The SDK installer will install all required SDK files, and will register the COM-server (either 32 or 64-bit as appropriate for your development system hardware/OS).

Once installed successfully you may immediately begin using of the SDK to create your application in your chosen development tool. In addition, sample projects are provided for various programming languages to assist in familiarizing developers with the use of the SDK and available functionality.

All samples are also available on a github-repository.

The simple guide on how to add the PDF-XChange Editor ActiveX Control to the Windows Form Application can be found here


PDF-XChange Editor SDK provides you access to ActiveX Objects, and consists of several infrastructure API-layers:

Full index of PDF-XChange Editor SDK types : IndexTypeLibrary