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Adobe PDF IFilter Indexing with SharePoint 2010

with 40 comments

This note explains how to enable PDF indexing using the Adobe IFilter version 9.0 in Microsoft SharePoint 2010. This note is adapted from the Adobe note explaining how to configure the 64 bit IFilter for SharePoint 2007 (see: ).

Now add PDF as a file type:

  • Run Central Administration.
  • Click Manage service applications under “Application Management”:

  • Click the Search Service Application link in the list of applications.

  • Click File Types  under “Crawling” in the left navigation area:

  • Click New File Type.
  • Enter pdf for the “File Name Extension” and click OK.

  • Using Regedit on the server, navigate to

\\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office Server\14.0\Search\Setup\Filters

  •  Right-click the Filters  folder and select New Key. Enter “.pdf” for the key value.
  • Add the following values to this key:

<REG_SZ> Default = <value not set>
<REG_SZ> Extension = pdf
<REG_DWORD> FileTypeBucket = 1
<REG_SZ> MimeTypes = application/pdf

 The key should look like:

  • Navigate to: \\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office Server\14.0\Search\Setup\ContentIndexCommon\Filters\Extension
  •  Right-click the Filters  folder and select New Key. Enter “.pdf” for the key value.
  • Set the “default” value to {E8978DA6-047F-4E3D-9C78-CDBE46041603}

 The key should look like:

You can now add an image to be used for the icon for PDF documents:

  • Add an image (typically gif or png, use Google images to find an example) for the PDF icon to the folder:

C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\14\TEMPLATE\IMAGES

  •  Open the file docicon.xml from the location:

C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web Server Extensions\14\TEMPLATE\XML

  •  Add a link to map the pdf extension to the image by adding a link like the following to the ByExtension element:

                 <Mapping Key=”pdf” Value=”pdf_icon.gif” OpenControl=””/>

  •  Finally, issue an IISReset and restart the Windows services “SharePoint Foundation Search V4” and “SharePoint Server Search 1”.

Your PDF documents should now be indexed on the next indexing crawl.

 Update 15-Feb-2011: See this blog post for a useful PowerShell script that automates this process:

Written by Nick Grattan

June 14, 2010 at 3:31 pm

40 Responses

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  1. Hi,

    Is it really \\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office Server\12.0\Search\Setup\Filters and
    \\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office Server\12.0\Search\Setup\ContentIndexCommon\Filters\Extension ?
    They only exist in a SharePoint 2007 environment. I think it should be
    \\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office Server\14.0\Search\Setup\Filters and

    \\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office Server\14.0\Search\Setup\ContentIndexCommon\Filters\Extension


    July 8, 2010 at 9:45 am

  2. Nick
    You might want to note the when using the Adobe ifilter install on 64 bit machines it does not automatically appent the path variable

    C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe PDF iFilter 9 for 64-bit platforms\bin

    Without it , it does not work on Office Server 2010 everything works perfectly thanx



    August 16, 2010 at 1:31 pm

  3. Hi Nick … nice post!

    I think you meant to reference the “Extension” folder rather than the “Filters” folder in the sentence, “Right-click the Filters folder and select New Key. Enter “.pdf” for the key value.” in the section describing how to add the appropriate keys to \\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office
    Server\14.0\Search\Setup\ContentIndexCommon\Filters\Extension …


    November 19, 2010 at 5:40 pm

  4. […] supports about 30 file types, most people will want Adobe PDF support. There is an excellent article on Nick Grattan’s blog on configuring Search Server to index PDF documents, following his instructions I indexing PDF […]

  5. Hi
    Spot on its rare to find instructions that work first time, keep up the good tops.



    December 12, 2010 at 6:50 pm

  6. Hi,

    I followed these steps and now my PDF is working. Thanks a ton for really nice post.

    I have a question, i found similar article on another blog but it tells to update diffrent registry entry. I have performaed steps from both blogs so dont know which one worked. I would really appricate your input on this one.


    Tapan Desai

    January 5, 2011 at 6:56 pm

  7. Hello Tapan,

    Adobe has dedicated a download page for his iFilter :

    Follow their official installation instructions and adapt paths (ie 12.0 -> 14.0)

    Direct link :

    There’s no better source imo

    Cheers !
    David, Alternalease


    January 11, 2011 at 4:43 pm

    • David, thanks for your comment. The link you quote is the same one as in the post. Yes, you’re right, it’s the definitive solution. The post above describes how to modify the instructions for SharePoint 2010. Nick.

      Nick Grattan

      January 11, 2011 at 9:17 pm

  8. […] la que aplican. Aparte de los iFilter de Office que vienen por defecto en la plataforma, tenemos otros iFilters gratuitos como puede ser el de Adobe para documentos PDF, y otros de pago que nos permiten ir todavía más allá. En este sentido, os […]

  9. hi nick, above article is super,
    its useful for me…

    but i have search the text in a searchble PDF file..

    how can i do it.. i can’t fine the correct post how to configure the setting to find the text in searchble PDF..

    please suggest to me..

    Advance Thanks.


    February 14, 2011 at 6:40 am

    • Navaz – Once you’ve followed the instructions in this post you can just search in the usual way. PDF documents will be included in the search results alongside other types such as Microsoft Word. Regards, Nick.

      Nick Grattan

      February 14, 2011 at 7:53 am

  10. Hi Nick, I’m assuming that this installation only needs to happen on the Web Front End and NOT on the SQL Server machine? I need to do this on a SharePoint 2010 installation later this week that has a WFE and SQL Server on different machines. I’ve done this before with WSS 2007, but it was a single server installation. Can you please advise?


    Dave Stuart

    February 14, 2011 at 7:22 pm

  11. Hi,
    I want to do same in SharePoint Foundation 2010. But neither I can add .pdf file extension in the central administration nor I found appropriate registry key. Please advise.


    February 15, 2011 at 4:07 am

    • You right, you don’t need to apply these changes to the SQL Server. Regards, Nick.

      Nick Grattan

      February 15, 2011 at 7:41 am

      • My question is similar…but I have an application server and a web front end running Server 2010. Do I need to install and configure on both? Thanks.

        Heidi Hagman

        April 25, 2011 at 6:47 pm

      • Thanks for sharing the blog.. I was looking for this since a while.

        Mark H.

        July 31, 2014 at 6:58 am

  12. […] simple, yet annoying and often forgotten SharePoint configuration step. There are nice articles (link, link) to help you configure it but when you do it manually chances are you will miss […]

  13. […] Adobe PDF IFilter Indexing with SharePoint 2010 « Nick Grattan’s SharePoint Blog. […]

  14. The quotes are not correct in the article:

    This won’t make your icon appear.

    It should be like this:


    April 7, 2011 at 8:52 am

  15. Hi,

    Thanks for this helpful tips.

    But it seems I got problem finding the “Search Service Application link in the list of applications”.

    I’m using Sharepoint 2010 Foundation server. Anybody can advise me on how to find or enable this link.



    April 11, 2011 at 4:29 am

    • Hi gho57!
      You need to install microsoft search server 2010 express to make this work


      April 18, 2011 at 2:22 pm

  16. Simply not working….went through the documentation twice, after crawling .pdf remains un indexed! rebooted several times, installed on application servers, does it need to be on the WFE as well?


    May 13, 2011 at 5:40 am

    • Should need to be only on the server for each the indexing service is enabled. Did you look in the crawling logs to see if there are any errors?

      Nick Grattan

      May 13, 2011 at 6:30 am

  17. […] simple, yet annoying and often forgotten SharePoint configuration step. There are nice articles (link, link) to help you configure it but when you do it manually chances are you […]

  18. […] can follow this tutorial to change SharePoint configuration files and registry. Just ignore the iFilter as you don’t need […]

  19. Our production environment contains an SharePoint Standard server, search server and Database server. Which one of these do I need to install the iFitler on and configure?



    August 16, 2011 at 7:30 pm

  20. Your post is excellent. I also found another post with detail information for those who are new to SharePoint


    August 31, 2011 at 12:48 am

  21. I completed the installation and I am able to search for text on the title of the document set but I am not getting any results back when i search for text within the document itself. Any ideas?

    Thank you


    December 8, 2011 at 4:49 pm

  22. […] this when installing the Adobe PDF IFilter (props to Nick Grattan and his great walkthrough here), in addition to the modifications for the IFilter we need to register an OpenControl for PDF […]

  23. […] more help on this, turn to Nick Grattan’s blog.  He has a good writeup on the steps involved in the process. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike […]

  24. […] PDF files not show in the search result? This is easy answer. You need to install PDF iFilter to index PDF files. You could followMicrosoft instruction to install […]

  25. […] the Windows services “SharePoint Foundation Search V4” and “SharePoint Server Search 1”. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

  26. […] Rate this: EmailLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. Categories: SharePoint 2010, SP2010 Tags: Configuration Comments (0) Trackbacks (0) Leave a comment Trackback […]

  27. THANK YOU!!! this works.. Any other post talks about one reg key… 😦


    April 5, 2013 at 2:20 pm

  28. […] Adobe PDF IFilter Indexing with SharePoint 2010 […]

  29. […] can follow this tutorial to change SharePoint configuration files and registry. Just ignore the iFilter as you don’t need […]

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