PDF For Java (All-in-One Solution)

Updated November 13, 2023


Today's digital workplace heavily utilizes the Adobe Acrobat PDF document format because it is widely used and retains a document's formatting. The Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format (PDF) documents are essential for maintaining the integrity of visually stunning and text-rich documents when it comes to PDF document sharing. Even though there are many tools available for making PDFs or PDF forms, there are situations where programmatic PDF file generation may be necessary in a commercial project. This may be necessary if the creative process needs to be integrated into an existing software system or if a large number of PDFs need to be generated automatically. Programming language manipulation abilities and a thorough understanding of the PDF format are required to create PDFs programmatically.

There are multiple PDF Java libraries available in the market such as iText library, and Apache PDFBox but IronPDF is one of the powerful Java libraries which allow you to perform various types of PDF operations including digital signatures, extract text from forms, insert text and so on.

IronPDF For Java - PDF library

With the IronPDF for Java PDF library, developers may create PDF, edit new document, extract content and alter PDF documents within their Java applications using API. This library is a wonderful choice for Java developers who need to create PDF files from the data in their apps because it offers a lot of functionality such as support for CJK fonts. IronPDF for Java helps us to merge multiple PDF files into a single PDF file.

IronPDF helps us to create a PDF, add new HTML content, add headers and footers, create password-protected PDF files, digitally sign PDF files, add backgrounds and foregrounds, create outlines and bookmarks, create complete PDF files from XML documents, and add and edit annotations. Join me as we take a deeper look at generating PDFs.

Creating PDF documents Using HTML

IronPDF makes it simple for developers to incorporate fresh HTML information into their entire PDF document. Developers who wish to dynamically create PDF-form documents with rich HTML information will find this to be a very useful tool with easy integration. The library supports a wide range of HTML components, such as tables, links, and images. It is straightforward to create PDFs with a professional appearance by using CSS to style HTML text data or images.

    import com.ironsoftware.ironpdf.*;  
    import java.nio.file.Paths;  
    // Apply your commercial license key
    // Set a log file path
    // Render the HTML as a PDF. Store in myPdf as type PdfDocument;
    PdfDocument myPdf = PdfDocument.renderHtmlAsPdf("<h1>Hello World</h1>");
    // Save the PdfDocument to a file

Below is the sample document generated from the above source code.

PDF For Java (All-in-One Solution): Figure 1 - Output

HTML Headers and Footers

Adding HTML headers and footers to your documents is easy with IronPDF. In many PDF documents, the headers and footers are essential sections. With IronPDF, developers may customize the headers and footers of their PDF documents with text, PNG images, and page numbers. Businesses that need to put trademark or copyright information in their publications will find this capability to be highly beneficial.

    import com.ironsoftware.ironpdf.PdfDocument;
    import com.ironsoftware.ironpdf.headerfooter.HtmlHeaderFooter;
    import java.nio.file.Paths;
    PdfDocument pdf = PdfDocument.renderUrlAsPdf("");
    // Build a footer using HTML
    // Merge Fields are: {page} {total-pages} {url} {date} {time} {html-title} & {pdf-title}
    HtmlHeaderFooter footer = new HtmlHeaderFooter();
    footer.setMaxHeight(15); // millimeters
    footer.setHtmlFragment("<center><i>{page} of {total-pages}</i></center>");
    List<PdfDocument> pdfs = new ArrayList<>();
    // Build a header using an image asset
    // Note the use of BaseUrl to set a relative path to the assets
    HtmlHeaderFooter header = new HtmlHeaderFooter();
    header.setMaxHeight(20); // millimeters
    header.setHtmlFragment("<img src=\"logo.png\" />");
    try {
    } catch (IOException e) {
        throw new RuntimeException(e);

Stamp & Watermark

Developers are able to add watermarks and stamps to their PDF documents with IronPDF. A custom message or image is added to a new document using stamps; watermarks are translucent images or text that are displayed in the backdrop of the document.

For companies who need to add a personalized message or safeguard their documents from unwanted use, these options are fantastic.

    package IronPDF.ironpdf_java;
    import java.nio.charset.StandardCharsets;
    import java.nio.file.Paths;
    import com.ironsoftware.ironpdf.*;
    import com.ironsoftware.ironpdf.stamp.HorizontalAlignment;
    import com.ironsoftware.ironpdf.stamp.VerticalAlignment;
    public class test {
        public static void main (String [] args) throws IOException {
            // Create a new PDF or load an existing one from the filesystem
            PdfDocument pdf = PdfDocument.fromFile(Paths.get("C:\\byteToPdf.pdf"));
            pdf.applyWatermark("<h2 style='color:red'>SAMPLE</h2>", 30, VerticalAlignment.TOP, HorizontalAlignment.CENTER);

Backgrounds & Foregrounds

With IronPDF, developers may additionally customize the foreground and backdrop of their PDF documents. Custom text or images can be added to a document's foreground or background, while custom colours or images can be added to the background. Business owners will find this option especially helpful if they wish to add personalised branding or graphics to their papers or PDF forms.

    import com.ironsoftware.ironpdf.*;  
    import java.nio.file.Paths;
    // Load background and foreground PDFs from the filesystem (or create them programmatically)  
    PdfDocument backgroundPdf = PdfDocument.fromFile(Paths.get("assets/MyBackground.pdf"));  
    PdfDocument foregroundPdf = PdfDocument.fromFile(Paths.get("assets/MyForeground.pdf"));  
    // Render content (HTML, URL, etc) as a PDF Document  
    PdfDocument pdf = PdfDocument.renderUrlAsPdf("");  
    // Add the background and foreground PDFs to the newly-rendered document.  

To learn more about the IronPDF Java PDF library refer to the link here.


The ability to add annotations, bookmarks, HTML content, background and foreground colours, headers, and footers to PDF documents are just a few of the capabilities that are covered in this article. Developers can easily produce professional-looking PDF documents that match their individual demands by following the article's step-by-step instructions for integrating these capabilities using IronPDF.

The licence is $749 in price. In order to help developers try the library and assess its capabilities before deciding to buy it, IronPDF also provides a free trial. All of the library's features, including support and upgrades, are available to users during the trial period. Users can opt to buy a licence to keep accessing the library after the trial term has ended.

How to Create a PDF Reader in Java
How to View PDF Files in Java

Install with Maven

Version: 2024.6.2


Was This Page Useful?

Ready to get started? Version: 2024.6 just released

Free Maven Download View Licenses >