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Developer(s) iText Group NV
Stable release
5.5.12 / August 18, 2017; 49 days ago (2017-08-18)
Written in Java, C#
Operating system Cross-platform
Type Library
License AGPLv3[1]

iText is an open source library for creating and manipulating PDF files in Java.

iText was written by Bruno Lowagie, Paulo Soares and others. The source code was initially distributed under the Mozilla Public License or the LGPL open source licenses. However, as of version 5.0.0 (released Dec 7, 2009) it is distributed under the Affero General Public License version 3. A fork of the LGPL/MPL licensed version of iText is currently actively maintained as the OpenPDF library on GitHub.[2] iText is also available through a proprietary license, distributed by iText Software Corp.

iText provides support for most advanced PDF features such as PKI-based signatures, 40-bit and 128-bit encryption, color correction, Tagged PDF, PDF forms (AcroForms), PDF/X, color management via ICC profiles and barcodes, and is used by several products and services, including Eclipse BIRT, Jasper Reports, JBoss Seam, Windward Reports, and pdftk.[3][unreliable source?]


iText (formerly rugPdf) was developed by Bruno Lowagie in the winter of 1998 as in-house project at Ghent University to create a PDF documents application for the student administration.[citation needed] Preliminary versions lacked most modern functionality, initially only featuring the ability to read and write PDF files, and required developers to be knowledgeable of PDF syntax, objects, operators and operands to work with the library.[citation needed] Leonard Rosenthol, PDF Architect at Adobe, lists iText as one of the early milestones in the history of openness of PDF.[4]

In 1999, Lowagie threw away the rugPdf code and wrote a new library, iText, from scratch. Lowagie created iText as a library that Java developers could use to create PDF documents without knowing PDF syntax,[citation needed] and released it as a Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) product on February 14, 2000. In the summer of 2000, Paulo Soares joined the project and is now considered one of the main developers.

In late 2008, iText became available for proprietary license, and in early 2009 iText Software Corp. was formed to be the worldwide licensor of iText products.[5]

iText has since been ported to the .NET Framework under the name iTextSharp, written in C#. While it has a separate codebase, it is synchronized to the main iText release schedule.

ISO standards support[edit]

iText adheres to most modern day PDF standards, including:

Watch PDF and Standards,[8] a talk by Adobe's PDF architect Leonard Rosenthol at the iText Summit in 2012.


iText was originally released under the MPL/LGPL. At the end of 2009, with the release of iText 5, the license was switched to the Affero General Public License v3.[citation needed] Projects that did not want to provide their source code could either purchase a commercial license to iText 5 or continue using previous versions of iText under the Affero license.[9][10]

iText is a registered trademark by iText Group NV.[citation needed]


OpenPDF is a fork of iText with a LGPL/MPL license, based on the last available revision of iText which still had a LGPL/MPL license.[11]


In 2007, SOA World Magazine listed iText as one of the ten Open Source solutions enterprises should be using.[12] James Gosling praised the iText library, using it in a new edition of Huckster.[13] The New York Times also used iText to create PDF versions of their public domain articles.[14]

In 2011, iText was featured on Devoxx (The Java community conference).[15]

In 2013, Deloitte nominated the iText Software Group for the Technology Fast 50 Award in the Benelux. The company was ranked 10th in the Benelux and Third in Belgium.[16][17][18][19]

In 2014, iText won the BelCham Entrepreneurship Award in the category "Most Promising Company of the Year"[20] and Deloitte recognized iText Group NV as the fastest growing technology company in Belgium.[21] Subsequently, the company was ranked #28 in Deloitte's Technology Fast 500 in the EMEA region.[22] iText was also featured on the PDF Days in Cologne, Washington DC en New York, on Java One in San Francisco, on Devoxx in Antwerp, and many other events.

Further reading[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The '' file in iText source code repository". Retrieved 2015-09-18. 
  2. ^ "The OpenPDF project on". Retrieved 2017-02-27. 
  3. ^ "References - iText Software". 
  4. ^ GoogleMan. "pdf". 
  5. ^ "Feature article in Wereldwijs, a monthly magazine by Flanders Investment and Trade (in Dutch)". Retrieved 2013-10-26. 
  6. ^ PDF Association (2013-06-06). "How to create PDF/A-3 using iText" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-10-26. 
  7. ^ "iText bringing PDF/UA support to Java Implementations". 
  8. ^ PDF and Standards (by Leonard Rosenthol). YouTube. 7 October 2013. 
  9. ^ 1T3XT info (7 December 2009). "Re: [iText-questions] Silent license change?". 
  10. ^ Talk about the (A)GPL by Ywein Van den Brande, IP lawyer and technologist
  11. ^ "The OpenPDF project on". Retrieved 2017-02-27. 
  12. ^ "SOA World Magazine". Retrieved 2013-10-26. 
  13. ^ "James Gosling praises iText". 2007-09-20. Retrieved 2013-10-26. 
  14. ^ New York Times uses iText on
  15. ^ "iText - Devoxx 2011 - Devoxx". 
  16. ^ Ranking Deloitte Technology Fast 50 Benelux
  17. ^ Pieterjan Van Leemputten. "Tien Belgen in Deloitte Technology Fast50". 
  18. ^ "De 5 Belgische digitale start-ups met de snelste groei". 
  19. ^ "Deloitte's Fast 50 Newspaper article" (PDF). 
  20. ^ "BELCHAM "In the News". Press active in covering last night's Annual Gala - BelCham". 
  21. ^ "iText Group wins Deloitte Technology Fast50". Deloitte Belgium. 
  22. ^

External links[edit]