Working with Metadata


PDF documents can contain information describing the document itself or certain objects within the document such as the author of the document or it’s creation date. Basic information can be set and retrieved using the PDDocumentInformation object.

In addition to that more metadata can be retrieved using the XML metadata as decribed below. Getting basic Metadata

To set or retrieve basic information about the document the PDDocumentInformation object provides a high level API to that information:

PDDocumentInformation info = document.getDocumentInformation();
System.out.println( "Page Count=" + document.getNumberOfPages() );
System.out.println( "Title=" + info.getTitle() );
System.out.println( "Author=" + info.getAuthor() );
System.out.println( "Subject=" + info.getSubject() );
System.out.println( "Keywords=" + info.getKeywords() );
System.out.println( "Creator=" + info.getCreator() );
System.out.println( "Producer=" + info.getProducer() );
System.out.println( "Creation Date=" + info.getCreationDate() );
System.out.println( "Modification Date=" + info.getModificationDate());
System.out.println( "Trapped=" + info.getTrapped() );      

Accessing PDF Metadata

See class: org.apache.pdfbox.pdmodel.common.PDMetadata
See example: AddMetadataFromDocInfo
See Adobe Documentation: XMP Specification

PDF documents can have XML metadata associated with certain objects within a PDF document. For example, the following PD Model objects have the ability to contain metadata:


The metadata that is stored in PDF objects conforms to the XMP specification, it is recommended that you review that specification. Currently there is no high level API for managing the XML metadata, PDFBox uses standard java InputStream/OutputStream to retrieve or set the XML metadata.

PDDocument doc = PDDocument.load( ... );
PDDocumentCatalog catalog = doc.getDocumentCatalog();
PDMetadata metadata = catalog.getMetadata();

// To read the XML metadata
InputStream xmlInputStream = metadata.createInputStream();

// Or to write new XML metadata
InputStream newXMPData = ...;
PDMetadata newMetadata = new PDMetadata(doc, newXMLData, false );
catalog.setMetadata( newMetadata );