Top 10 JavaScript PDF Libraries

Updated Jun 02, 2024#javascript#react#libs#lists

PDF libraries are tools that enable you to work with PDF documents programmatically in JavaScript. By using them, you can automate repetitive tasks related to PDF generation, manipulation, and processing. This helps to streamline workflows, save time, and improve efficiency when dealing with PDF documents.

  1. PDF.js (46.7k ⭐) - A JavaScript library that allows web developers to render PDF files directly in a web browser without relying on external plugins or software, developed by Mozilla, useful tool for web developers who want to enhance their websites with the ability to display PDF documents directly in the browser.

  2. jsPDF (28.5k ⭐) - A popular JavaScript library that enables client-side generation of PDF documents in web applications, developed by Parallax. It’s particularly useful when generating PDFs on the fly, such as generating reports, invoices, or printable documents directly within a web browser.

  3. diegomura/react-pdf (14.3k ⭐) - React renderer for creating PDF files on the browser and server. React-pdf exports a set of React primitives that enable you to render things into your document very easily. It also has an API for styling them, using CSS properties and Flexbox layout.

  4. pdfmake (11.4k ⭐) - A JavaScript library that allows you to generate PDF documents on the client-side using a simple, JSON-based definition language. It offers flexibility and control over the content and formatting of the PDFs and provides comprehensive documentation and resources for you to utilize its features effectively.

  5. PDFKit (9.6k ⭐) - A powerful JavaScript library for creating and manipulating PDF documents in Node.js and browser environments. With PDFKit, you can dynamically create PDF files, add text, images, vector graphics, and custom shapes, apply formatting and styling, create multi-page documents, and generate complex layouts.

  6. wojtekmaj/react-pdf (8.7k ⭐) - A different library called “react-pdf” developed by Wojciech Maj, specifically designed for rendering PDF documents in React applications. It provides a set of React components that allow you to display PDF files, navigate through pages, zoom in and out, and interact with the document.

  7. PDF-LIB (6.4k ⭐) - Create and modify PDF documents in any JavaScript environment. Designed to work in any modern JavaScript runtime. Tested in Node, Browser, Deno, and React Native environments.

  8. Percollate (4.2k ⭐) - A command-line tool that turns web pages into beautifully formatted PDF, EPUB, HTML or Markdown files. Developed by Dan Burzo, Percollate aims to provide a convenient solution for capturing web articles, blog posts, or other online content and transforming them into PDF files with customizable styling and layout.

  9. Print.js (4.2k ⭐) - A tiny javascript library to help printing from the web, primarily written to help us print PDF files directly within our apps, without leaving the interface, and no use of embeds. For unique situations where there is no need for users to open or download the PDF files, and instead, they just need to print them.

  10. pdfme (2.2k ⭐) - A PDF generator library fully written in TypeScript coming with a React based UI template editor. Templates have a JSON document representation, which makes theme easy to understand and easy to work with.

Common features

JavaScript PDF libraries often share common features, although the specific implementation and available options may vary between different libraries. Here are some common features found in above libraries:

  • PDF Generation: The ability to programmatically generate PDF documents using JavaScript code. This includes creating pages, adding text, images, tables, and other elements to the document.
  • Document Formatting: Options for setting the page size, orientation, margins, headers, footers, and other formatting attributes of the PDF document.
  • Styling and Customization: Support for applying custom styles, fonts, colors, and other visual properties to the PDF content, allowing developers to control the appearance of the generated PDFs.
  • Page Manipulation: Capabilities to add, delete, rearrange, and manipulate pages within the PDF document. This feature enables developers to dynamically modify the structure and content of the PDF.
  • Text Formatting and Layout: Support for applying various text formatting options like font styles, sizes, colors, alignment, indentation, and line spacing. Some libraries may also offer advanced features like text flow and column layout.
  • Image Handling: Ability to insert and manipulate images within the PDF document, including resizing, scaling, positioning, and applying effects or transformations.
  • Annotation Support: Features for adding annotations to the PDF, such as comments, highlights, underlines, and other markup options. These annotations can enhance the interactivity and collaboration within the PDF document.
  • Form Support: Ability to create and handle interactive form elements within the PDF, including text fields, checkboxes, radio buttons, dropdowns, and submit buttons.
  • Encryption and Security: Options to encrypt and secure the generated PDF documents with password protection, digital signatures, or other security measures to control access and ensure document integrity.
  • External Content Integration: Some libraries may support integration with external data sources, APIs, or other file formats to populate or extract data from the PDF document.

It’s important to note that while these features are commonly found in JavaScript PDF libraries, the specific implementation and capabilities can vary. It’s recommended to refer to the documentation and resources provided by each library to understand the full range of features and options available.