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How to Compress Large PDF Files Without Adobe

If you’re in business, you’ve probably got some eBooks, whitepapers, or other PDF files that are large in file size. Sometimes the file can get up to 25+ MB, and if the document needs to be sent via email you might be out of luck since Google only allows 25 MB for attachments. Sure, Google offers a feature to upload to their cloud via Google Drive to send large documents but sometimes that may not be the solution if the other person may not be that tech savvy or if they use an old email application. You could also zip the file to compress it right on your computer, but typically zipping a file might not compress it enough for you. What happens when the problem arises of needing to send a large PDF file with no Adobe programs and all these other methods of using Google Drive or your computer’s basic compression software doesn’t work? There’s a solution, and it’s online PDF compression.

Understanding Compression

First, it’s good to know how your important document is being modified by compression.  Basically in compression, it is completed by an algorithm that sorts redundancies in your file by getting rid of them. According to howstuffworks.com, “…compression programs use a variation of the LZ adaptive dictionary-based algorithm to shrink files. ‘LZ’ refers to Lempel and Ziv, the algorithm’s creators, and ‘dictionary’ refers to the method of cataloging pieces of data.” Because of this algorithm, your file can be reduced in size.

The Two Types of Compression

When compression completes, there are two types of compression (lossless or lossy) that can compress the file. Lossless compression is the typical compression type, as described above with the “LZ” algorithm by breaking the file down into reduced forms, so that it can be put back together again in the original form it was before compression. The other type of compression is lossy compression. When this compression is used, you cannot get the same or original file back after compression. This means that the compression gets rid of unneeded pieces of information to make the file smaller. Typically this type of compression is good for reducing picture sizes, since it works better than lossless by getting rid of pieces of information to compress. For more on image compression and how that works, view it here.

Using Online PDF Compression

Your solution to all of your compression problems when nothing else will work is in online PDF compression. There are many free programs to download, but if your company has a firewall against downloading software, that might not be an option. The most reliable site that I as a graphic designer use to compress an 18 MB PDF file down to 4.5 MB is SmallPDF.com. This online website is easy to use and deletes your important documents from their server after an hour with no other user access. It’s 100% secure and all compression takes place over their online server, which lets their technology compress the file without using your computer to complete the task. All it takes is simply dragging your file into the “Drop PDF here” box and automatically SmallPDF.com will upload, compress and give you a button to download your compressed file. For all other compression needs, SmallPDF also offers the ability to convert JPGs to PDFs, PDFs to JPGs, merging PDFs together (whether several files or single files), splitting PDFs into new documents from selected pages, converting Microsoft Word, Excel, or Powerpoint documents to PDF or simply unlocking password-protected PDF files. If you’re looking for other options for online PDF conversion, Technokarak.com presents 5 free compression websites you could also use.

No matter what skill level you may be at with technology, there’s a solution to compressing your large documents in seconds without having to download any software or spend any unnecessary money. Using these online conversion utilities are perfect for fast compression without using your computer to do the work. Easily upload your PDF, download the compressed file and get ahead of your work day with no speed bumps. It has worked for me countless times, and it took much research to find a solution that worked best for the large files I create in the Adobe Creative Cloud software.