There's no better time to venture into the path of freedom than now. A new year is the best time to try out new things. I'm talking about the world of Linux. Though you may have heard of some of the awesome features of Linux distributions , there is one simple thing that is difficult to find. A Document Viewer program that suits all your needs. The sad truth is, there isn't one. But still these are the best Linux has to offer.


It has almost everything that I need. It has some of the features that most PDF software on Linux lack: the ability to highlight text, make annotations, comments and other reviewing features. Okular also boasts support for a number of other file types, including Postscript, DjVu, CHM, XPS, ePub, TIFF, DVI, FictionBook, ComicBook, and others. It has the tabs feature as well and memory tweaking options so it can run comfortably on old systems as well. Another really cool feature of Okular is the ability to have it read your documents aloud. To add this feature, you must install the joviepackage. To install jovie, open up a Terminal (Ctrl + Alt + T), and type in the following command:

sudoapt-get install jovie
Advanced features like animations, extended form filling, JavaScript, sub pixel rendering, and embedded 3D models aren’t supported, but this is the best document viewer for Linux by a long way.

Download Okular from here .


Evince is the default PDF viewer which comes with the Gnome desktop environment. Similar to Okular, the goal of Evince is to replace the multiple document viewers with a single simple application. Evince supports PDF, Postscript, DjVu, TIFF, DVI and XPS. It excels in being extremely lightweight and quick to load. It is also very easy to navigate around in. Besides very small features like bookmarks, it only has view control functions such as zoom and fit to window. But, it does what it does flawlessly. It is still under active development and more features can be seen soon. If all you want is a simple and fast PDF reader without the too many fancy features, you search ends here.

Download Evince from here .


Xournalis a note taking application written for Linux and other GTK+ platforms. It is designed to be used with either a stylus or a mouse. It is also capable of adding annotations to PDF documents. It allows for complex and customizable annotations by freehand drawing, a shape recognition tool, multiple colors and text fonts. There are tools for drawing straight lines, highlighting and underlining. Annotations are stored separately from the unmodified PDF file, in Xournal's own format. But the annotated document can be exported to PDF. The problem here is that once converted, the PDF cannot be edited but new annotations can be made. For those who need an all in one document suite, Xournal would be a sensible choice.

Download Xournal from here .

Other Honorable Mentions:

In some cases, the use of Adobe Reader is inevitable. Even though Adobe has pulled the Linux version of Adobe Reader, you can still download it from here . Of course, you have the option of seamlessly running your favorite Windows PDF software using WINE . Newer versions of Adobe Reader, FoxitReader and Sumatra PDF have been tested and run smoothly using WINE. Though they may look a tad different, their functionality remain the same.

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