Excellent Utilities: PDF Mix Tool – perform common editing operations on PDF files

Last Updated on May 22, 2022

This is a series highlighting best-of-breed utilities. We cover a wide range of utilities including tools that boost your productivity, help you manage your workflow, and lots more besides.

Portable Document Format (PDF) is a file format created by Adobe Systems in 1993 for document exchange. The format includes a subset of the PostScript page description programming language, a font-embedding system, and a structural storage system.

PDF Mix Tool is a small utility that allows you to perform common editing operations on PDF files. It’s a Qt-based tool that’s written in C++.


We’re installing PDF Mix Tool on a completely fresh installation of Ubuntu 21.10.

We first need to install the software’s dependencies and tools. There’s quite a few we’re missing with a new installation of Ubuntu, although some of them you may already have installed on your system, particularly if you compile software.

$ sudo apt install git cmake build-essential libqpdf-dev imagemagick libmagick++-dev qtbase5-dev qtchooser qt5-qmake qtbase5-dev-tools libqt5svg5-dev qttools5-dev

The build-essential package includes g++ which is needed to compile this software.

Next issue the following commands at a terminal:

$ git clone https://gitlab.com/scarpetta/pdfmixtool
$ cd pdfmixtool
$ mkdir build
$ cd build
$ make -j 6

We’re using the make -j option as this enables the compiler to use more CPU cores, which speeds up compilation enormously.

If you don’t want to manually compile the software, you can install the software using flatpak or snap.

Using flatpak

If you’re never used Flatpaks before, you’ll first need to install the flatpak package. At a shell type:

$ sudo apt install flatpak

$ flatpak install flathub eu.scarpetta.PDFMixTool

Run the program with the command:

$ flatpak run eu.scarpetta.PDFMixTool

Using Snap

$ sudo snap install pdfmixtool

$ sudo snap connect pdfmixtool:removable-media

There may also be a convenient package available for your distribution.

Next page: Page 2 – In Operation

Pages in this article:
Page 1 – Introduction / Installation
Page 2 – In Operation
Page 3 – Summary

Complete list of articles in this series:

Excellent Utilities
AES CryptEncrypt files using the Advanced Encryption Standard
AnanicyShell daemon created to manage processes’ IO and CPU priorities
brootNext gen tree explorer and customizable launcher
CerebroFast application launcher
cheat.shCommunity driven unified cheat sheet
CopyQAdvanced clipboard manager
crocSecurely transfer files and folders from the command-line
DeskreenLive streaming your desktop to a web browser
dufDisk usage utility with more polished presentation than the classic df
ezaA turbo-charged alternative to the venerable ls command
Extension ManagerBrowse, install and manage GNOME Shell Extensions
fdWonderful alternative to the venerable find
fkillKill processes quick and easy
fontpreviewQuickly search and preview fonts
horcruxFile splitter with encryption and redundancy
KoohaSimple screen recorder
KOReaderDocument viewer for a wide variety of file formats
ImagineA simple yet effective image optimization tool
LanguageToolStyle and grammar checker for 30+ languages
Liquid PromptAdaptive prompt for Bash & Zsh
lnavAdvanced log file viewer for the small-scale; great for troubleshooting
lsdLike exa, lsd is a turbo-charged alternative to ls
Mark TextSimple and elegant Markdown editor
McFlyNavigate through your bash shell history
mdlessFormatted and highlighted view of Markdown files
notiMonitors a command or process and triggers a notification
NushellFlexible cross-platform shell with a modern feel
nvitopGPU process management for NVIDIA graphics cards
OCRmyPDFAdd OCR text layer to scanned PDFs
Oh My ZshFramework to manage your Zsh configuration
PaperworkDesigned to simplify the management of your paperwork
pastelGenerate, analyze, convert and manipulate colors
PDF Mix ToolPerform common editing operations on PDF files
pecoSimple interactive filtering tool that's remarkably useful
ripgrepRecursively search directories for a regex pattern
RnoteSketch and take handwritten notes
scrcpyDisplay and control Android devices
StickySimulates the traditional “sticky note” style stationery on your desktop
tldrSimplified and community-driven man pages
tmuxA terminal multiplexer that offers a massive boost to your workflow
TuskAn unofficial Evernote client with bags of potential
UlauncherSublime application launcher
WatsonTrack the time spent on projects
Whoogle SearchSelf-hosted and privacy-focused metasearch engine
ZellijTerminal workspace with batteries included
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