[4 Ways]How to Annotate a PDF on Windows PC

Summary :

In this post, you’ll discover four easy ways to annotate a PDF on a Windows PC, including using a PDF editor, a online tool, Microsoft Edge, and Adobe Acrobat Reader

Table of Contents

Annotate PDF on Windows

Annotate PDF on Windows

PDFs are the most widely used document formats for sharing content across devices. However, there are times when you may want to mark up a PDF, highlight some text, or annotate something on the file.

This is where you’ll need tools for annotating your PDF files easily. Let’s explore a few methods that will help you learn how to annotate PDFs on Windows.

Best FREE PDF Annotator for Windows: PDFgear

PDFgear works as a PDF annotator, offering various markup tools. It allows you to highlight important information, add comments, make notes, and draw on documents.

How to Annotate PDF on Windows for Free with PDFgear

PDFgear is an easy-to-use and simple PDF tool for efficient PDF management. The PDF annotation feature available on the tool should be the easiest annotation option that helps you provide shareable comments. This feature lets you add e-signatures, text, and shapes to a PDF.

It would also be one of the unique features that helps you in highlighting, striking through, and underlining the text in a PDF file. It also lets you add stamps and comments to the PDF file.

PDFgear – Free PDF Annotator for Windows PC

PDFgear offers a free annotate PDF feature for adding notes and annotations to your PDF documents, simplifying the process.

Here are simple steps on how to mark up a PDF on Windows using the free PDF editor PDFgear:

Step 1. Add Files to PDFgear

Launch the PDFgear on your desktop and click on Open file to add the file to PDFgear. You will need to browse through your files and add them to the PDFgear interface.

Open a PDF File

Open a PDF File

Step 2. Select the Annotata Option

Click on the Annotate tab on the main menu. You should now get multiple annotation options available.

Annotation Toolbar

Annotation Toolbar

Step 3. Add PDF Annotations to Your File

You can choose to add as many annotation options as you would need. You can find a few representative ideas in the following example.

Annotation Options

Annotation Options

How to Annotate PDF on Windows with Online Editor

If you do not want to install third-party or standalone software to help you annotate the PDF file, you can make use of an online tool for annotating the PDF file.

PDFgear is one such powerful choice that lets you annotate the PDF file online. It offers you a complete annotation solution, which includes adding comments, shapes, and stamps, to name a few.

Here is how to use an online tool to annotate a PDF on Windows:

Step 1. Upload PDF to PDFgear Online

Visit any browser and access PDFgear online. Click on Choose Files to browse for and add the files as per your preferences.

Upload PDF to the Online Editor

Upload PDF to the Online Editor

Step 2. Open the Annotation Toolbar

Once the file has been added to the tool, look for the option for adding annotations. You should find it at the top right corner of the screen. Clicking on it will bring the annotation toolbar.

Open the Annotate Tools

Open the Annotate Tools

Step 3. Add Annotations to the PDF

You can add text, stamp, highlight, and handwritten notes based on what you want to do with the file.

Annotate a PDF on Windows Online

Annotate a PDF on Windows Online

How to Annotate PDFs on Windows with Microsoft Edge

The PDF Reader functionality in Microsoft Edge lets you annotate the PDF file as per your preferences. The feature lets you annotate both online and offline PDF files with ease.

Microsoft Edge can open PDFs, annotate them, and even search through the PDF files. You do not need to download any additional PDF tool if you have Microsoft Edge installed on your device. It does provide you with basic annotation features that an average user would need.

Annotate PDFs in Microsoft Edge

Annotate PDFs in Microsoft Edge

Step 1: Go to your File Explorer on Windows, then right-click on the PDF file and choose Open With > Microsoft Edge. It should open in Microsoft Edge.

Step 2: Once the PDF file opens in Edge, you can use the Text or Draw tools to add text or freehand notes to the PDF file. You may even erase part of the text.

The browser also includes a highlighter or mark-up tools to mark particular sections or text.

How to Annotate PDFs on Windows with Adobe Acrobat Reader

Adobe Acrobat is a well-known PDF reader. Coming straight from the horse’s mouth, Adobe Acrobat Reader is your best choice for viewing and annotating PDF files with ease on Windows. The annotation feature available on Adobe Reader lets you comment on the file with easy steps.

Here are the steps for using the Adobe PDF annotator:

Step 1: If you haven’t installed Adobe Acrobat, download and install it from the official Adobe site.

Step 2: Click on Menu > Open to browse for and add your PDF file to the tool.

Open a PDF in Acrobat

Open a PDF in Acrobat

Step 3: From the sidebar, choose the text, sign, highlight, and other annotation options as per your preferences. You can add up stamps and other options as per your individual needs.

Annotate a PDF in Acrobat Reader

Annotate a PDF in Acrobat Reader


Adding an annotation to your PDF files is the best way to make the best of two-way communication in reports and other feedback. An ability to add markups and highlights can help achieve the much-needed ease of reading.

The methods outlined above should help you in your task. However, the PDFgear with special tools for both online and offline annotation should make it the best free tool with full-fledged PDF management.

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