How to Open a Locked PDF File


• Filed to: PDF Security

People lock PDF files for security reasons, privacy, or to block unauthorized access. While this may work out well, you or someone else may still need to access the document. Unless you know how to open a locked PDF document, you might be plunged into a nightmare experience. How to open a locked PDF may sound like a complex task, but the truth is that this process is as easy as pie. The secret is using the right tool to open your PDF file. In this article, we take you through a step-by-step guide on how to open a locked PDF.

How to Open Locked PDF using PDFelement

PDFelement Pro is arguably the best PDF software for all types, and the nature of PDF works. Why? Because this tool is equipped with an array of amazing features that seamlessly transform the way you deal with PDF files. Whether you are handling financial, academic, or administrative documents, PDFelement takes you from a zero to a hero. With PDFelement, you can print, convert, create, annotate, edit, protect, unlock, sign, organize, compress, share, and perform OCR on your PDF document like never before. Download PDFelement and enjoy the collection of features, amazing speed, compatibility, and affordability.

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Open Locked PDF

Step 1. Launch PDFelement

First, run PDFelement on your computer to open the main window. Once displayed, locate and click the “Open files” icon. The file explorer window should subsequently open. Select the locked PDF file from the respective folder and click “Open” to import it to the PDFelement interface. Alternatively, you can drag the file and drop it on the PDFelement interface.

open locked pdf

Step 2. Enter open PDF password

When the PDF file is uploaded, the program will prompt you to enter the document password. Enter the correct password and click “OK” or press enter to confirm. The PDF file should now open on the PDFelement window.

open locked pdf

Step 3. Edit PDF file (optional)

With the locked PDF now open, you can edit texts, images, or objects as per your need. Simply navigate to the “Edit” button, and you will see an assortment of editing options. Choose desired options and enhance your document to fit your needs. However, this process is not mandatory.

how to open locked pdf

Step 4. Save PDF

Now that you are done with PDF editing, you need to save the changes you have made to your PDF file. It is a seamless process. Just head to the “File” menu and choose the “Save” button. Alternatively, you can hit the “Save” icon at the top of the window.

how to open locked pdf

How to Open Locked PDF with Preset Password

In the first method, we unlocked PDF using the open document password. In this method, we want to unlock PDF using preset passwords. Instead of just setting a single password, we set more than one password to give us more password options to unlock PDF. The following steps illustrate how to open a locked PDF using the preset password option.

Step 1. Open file

Launch PDFelement on your PC. When the PDFelement interface successfully loads, click the “Open files” button (the first icon on the primary window). This should lead you to the file directory window. Here, browse the PDF file that you want to unlock. Select this file and click “Open” to upload it to the PDFelement interface.

how to open a locked pdf file

Step 2. Use preset password

Now, the program will ask you to enter the document password to access it. You should see two options, namely “Open document by” and “Using preset passwords.” In this method, we will ignore the “Open document by” option and choose the “Using Preset Passwords” option. Just select the respective radio button and click the “Preset Password” link.

how to open a locked pdf file

Step 3. Save preset password

The “Preferences” password window will pop up to allow you to define the password presets. Enter desired preset passwords in the Password 1, Password 2, and Password 3 fields. When you provide suitable preset passwords, click “Apply” to confirm your preset passwords. If you want the document to be always accessible via the preset passwords, you can tick the “Always use passwords above to unlock documents” before clicking the “Apply automatically” button. You have now unlocked your PDF document.

open locked pdf file


Ivan Cook

chief Editor

> PDF Security > How to Open a Locked PDF File