Unbreak Copied Text From PDF Documents

Martin Brinkmann
Sep 11, 2008
Updated • Aug 20, 2013

Users who want to copy and paste text out of pdf documents may have noticed that the text in the destination document will have line breaks just like the original pdf document had. This is usually something that is not wanted and while it is not a big problem to remove the line breaks manually when short paragraphs have been pasted it becomes a bigger problem for longer texts.

Auto Unbreak is a small 22 Kilobyte tool that has only one purpose. It takes text from pdf documents and removes the line breaks of those texts before it provides the user with an option to copy the newly formatted text to the clipboard again.

Auto Unbreak is a portable application that can be executed from any location of a computer system. It ships with two files that define merge and exception rules which might come in handy for users who deal with specifically formatted text.

The rule files can be edited in every text editor. The homepage of the developers have been suspended, please download the tool from this link. It is temporarily hosted here at Ghacks until the developers announce their new website.

Update: It appears that the developer website will not come back up anymore. The program, while still hosted on our servers, will eventually become incompatible with newer versions of the operating system.

An alternative is the Remove Line Breaks Online tool which you can use to remove line breaks, or line breaks and paragraph breaks from pasted text.

All you need to do is copy the text from the pdf document, paste the contents from the clipboard to the form on the Text Fixer website, and click on Remove Line Breaks to parse the pasted text and get a version without line breaks on the same page.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Greg said on October 5, 2012 at 6:17 pm

    Unfortunately, AutoUnbreak changes to formatting of copied text. Also, the “processing done” dialog is superfluous and annoying. Any coders out there that could write a tool which removes the line breaks and copies the result into clipboard automatically without changing the formatting?

  2. Ruth said on March 25, 2011 at 10:55 pm

    I have used AutoUnbreak for many years but now suddenly the Clear button has disappeared. This is a real pain, I have to close down the program to clear text. And copied text can only be pasted into word if the program is still open.
    Another issue is how it doesn’t remove the last line break from a slab of text. I could live with that if only I could get the Clear button back again. Do you have a solution?

  3. Medved said on August 22, 2010 at 5:01 pm

    I use http://texthandler.com to remove line breaks online. Copy text from PDF, select options “Every paragraph began by capital ” and click the “execute” button.

  4. Jim said on September 12, 2008 at 4:50 pm

    Symantec flags it as as “Construction.Kit” virus. I’ll have to try AVG and Trend to see if it’s a false alert.

  5. David Bradley said on September 12, 2008 at 10:43 am

    I use clipboard extender ClipCache Pro, which allows for a multitude of reformating options for any copied text whatever its source as well as handling html and graphics. Very useful little tool, although it’s not free.

  6. Josh said on September 12, 2008 at 4:01 am

    Thanks Martin, great find this is major pain for me =)

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