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How to Sign a PDF & Make a Signature on a PDF? Best Free PDF Software Download

Learn how to sign PDF electronically with 4 proven methods and simply secure your PDF document with a digital signature from today on.

Although most people are used to the traditional way of signing paper documents with a pen, you just have to admit that electronic signatures are becoming much more common these days. Signing on a hard copy is all well and good, but it's not always the most convenient in an increasingly digital and paperless world.

How to Sign a PDF

PDF files can perfectly preserve document formatting, making them especially suitable for formal documents and data archiving. Thus, how to sign a PDF has become a "non-negligible" problem. So here in this article, we'll list some of the best ways to sign a PDF electronically. Let's dive in.

Since PDF, the versatile file format, was created by Adobe, it's natural for people to consider using an Adobe product to sign a PDF electronically. However, the monthly Adobe subscriptions are always endless and frustrating. In the following part, we'll introduce how to sign a PDF with or without Adobe.


Imagine this, you received an email attached with a PDF document, and you need to sign it and send it back. The most old-school way to add a signature to a PDF is to print out the file, sign the paper document with a pen, scan the signed hard copy into a digital file, and email it back.

PDF to Printer

As you can see, this method is the most straightforward yet the most troublesome. It's especially inconvenient for people who don't have a printer or a scanner. Also, scanned PDF documents can be too large to use as attachments, and you'll have to compress the PDF files to send via email.

You must be familiar with Paint if you are a Windows user. Microsoft Paint, or Paint 3D for Windows 10, is a free, built-in, and probably the oldest program with all versions of Windows OS. So how to sign a PDF Windows? The basic process is to create a signature in Paint or Paint 3D, save it as an image in JPEG or PNG, and then insert the signature image into the PDF you need to sign.

How to Sign a PDF with Microsoft Paint

But please note that you'll still need a PDF editor to add your signature to the PDF document. Below are the detailed steps on how to sign a PDF on Windows with Microsoft Paint 3D.

Step 1. Go to the Windows Start menu and search for Paint. Then open up the program.

Step 2. Click New on the welcome screen.

Step 3. Select the marker you would like to use on the right side of the screen.

Step 4. Adjust the Thickness and Opacity of how your signature will be written.

Step 5. Write your signature.

Step 6. Use the Crop tool in the upper left corner to remove the blank spaces around the signature.

Step 7. Go to Menu > Save as > Image to save your e-signature as a PNG file.

Step 8. You can now add your e-signature to the PDF you need to sign.

People consider Adobe the trusted standard for viewing, editing, and annotating various PDF files. Adobe developed a family of software for PDF (Portable Document Format) files. Acrobat Reader allows users to view, print, share, and comment on PDF docs for free, while Acrobat Pro is paid software for PDF editing, converting, merging, and adding e-signature.

That is to say, you'll need a paid license to sign a PDF document electronically with Adobe Acrobat Pro, one of the most feature-packed and powerful PDF editors. However, such a complete set of functions also leads to a large software volume and complexity. And users reported the low quality of the fill and choppy vector lines using Adobe.

Follow the steps below to sign a PDF with Adobe Acrobat.

Step 1. Open the PDF file you want to sign by clicking File > Open in the menu bar.

Step 2. Click the Pen icon for Sign in the toolbar.

How to Sign a PDF in Adobe Reader - Step 2

Step 3. Select Fill and sign.

How to Sign a PDF in Adobe Reader - Step 3

Step 4. Click Sign > Add Signature to bring up the signature window. You can type, draw, or insert a signature image into the PDF document.

How to Sign a PDF in Adobe Reader - Step 4

Step 5. Click Apply to adjust the signature by dragging, moving and resizing.

How to Sign a PDF in Adobe Reader - Step 5

Step 6. Go to File > Save As to save the signed PDF to your device.

iTop PDF is a lightweight and easy-to-use PDF editor. This program is designed to provide a one-stop PDF solution even for novices. The intuitive UI makes it easy for anyone to manipulate the software without any learning curve.

There are three ways to sign a PDF on computer in iTop PDF. The first is to type your signature in the field, and you can change the color and the font to different styles. The second way is to draw your signature on the screen as you usually write. And you can also insert your e-signature image if you already have one.

These are the steps for how to sign PDF on PC. Follow them and e-sign PDF files quickly and easily with iTop PDF.

Step 1. Download and install iTop PDF to your Windows PC.

Step 2. Launch iTop PDF and open your PDF file in the program by clicking the "Open PDF" button on the welcome screen.

How to Sign a PDF with iTop PDF - Step 2

Step 3. Go to the Tools tab from the top menu bar, then click "Signature > Create New Signature."

How to Sign a PDF with iTop PDF - Step 3

Step 4. To electronically sign a PDF on Windows, iTop PDF offers three ways. You can either type a signature, draw a signature, or add a signature image.

How to Sign a PDF with iTop PDF - Step 4

Step 5. When you finish signing, click the "Create" button to place your signature in the right place in the PDF file.

How to Sign a PDF with iTop PDF - Step 5

Step 6. Save and output the signed PDF by clicking "Menu > Save As" in the upper left corner to save the signed PDF.

How to Sign a PDF with iTop PDF - Step 6

So this is all about how to sign a PDF from us. With so many tools and programs available, adding a signature to the PDF is not as difficult as you might think. But overall, iTop PDF can be a no-brainer. It has no complicated settings, lightweight but comes with a series of functions that you may use to process PDF files. Besides signing a PDF electronically, iTop PDF can also help edit, merge, compress, and add watermarks to PDF files. Even better, you can get all this for free. Say goodbye to monthly subscriptions for PDF editing. Download and try iTop PDF for free today!

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