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Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro

Searching for Words or Phrases

You can use Acrobat's Search command to look for words in a PDF file. You can use the Search command to find a complete word or part of a word. This document provides instructions on how to use the Search command.

return to topSearching for Words or Phrases: Using the Search Window

  1. Open the document you would like to work with

  2. From the Edit menu » select Search
    The Search window appears.
    Search dialog box

  3. In the Where would you like to search? section, select whether you would like Adobe Acrobat to search only the current PDF document, or to search all PDFs in a particular folder
    NOTE: A dot will fill the circle next to an option when it is selected.

  4. In the What word or phrase would you like to search for? text box, type a word or phrase that you want to find

  5. OPTIONAL: To further define your query, select the desired options

  1. Click SEARCH
    In the Results scroll box, the first instance is selected.
    The Search button changes to New Search.
    Search dialog box: Showing results

  2. To go to the location where an instance is found, in the Results scroll box, click the highlighted word

  3. To make your query broader, more specific, or to begin a new search
    1. Click NEW SEARCH
    2. Repeat steps 4-6

  4. When your search is done, close the Search window

return to topSearching for Words or Phrases: Using the Find Toolbar

NOTE: If the Find toolbar is not visible, from the View menu » select Toolbars » Find

  1. Open the document you would like to work with

  2. On the Find toolbar, in the Find text box, type a word or phrase you would like to search for
    Find toolbar

  3. OPTIONAL: To further define your query, on the Find toolbar, click the arrowArrow button next to the Find text box » select the desired options
    NOTE: A checkmark will appear next to the option(s) selected.

  4. Press [Enter]
    The first instance of the word or phrase is highlighted in the current document.

  5. To move to the next occurrence, on the Find toolbar » click FIND NEXTFind Next button
    To move to the previous occurrence, on the Find toolbar, click FIND PREVIOUSFind Previous button

  6. To make your query broader, more specific, or to begin a new search, repeat steps 2-5
    NOTE: When your search is done, a dialog box will appear, informing you that no more matches were found.

  7. Click OK

return to topSearch Options

Option Action
Whole Words Only Finds the exact word(s) you type in the text box (e.g., if you search for the word pick, the words picks and picky will not be selected).
Case-Sensitive Finds only those words with the same case as you type in the text box
(e.g. if you search for President, the word president will not be selected).
Search in Bookmarks Finds only those words found in Bookmarks.
Search in Comments Finds only those words found in Comments.
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