We recently looked at how to use the rulers in Adobe Acrobat. Today, we are going to look at how to use the grid in Adobe Acrobat.
The grid is a system of lines that helps you align objects such as text boxes, buttons, form fields, and images in your PDF. You can use the rulers and the grid at the same time.
First, we will turn on the grid. Then, we will turn on the Snap to Grid option. Finally, we will change the grid’s preferences, such as the unit of measurement, spacing, number of subdivisions, and line color.
Table of Contents
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The images below are from Adobe Acrobat Pro DC. These steps also apply to Adobe Acrobat 2020. In addition, the steps are similar for PC and Mac. These steps don’t apply to Adobe’s free PDF display software, Acrobat Reader.
How to Turn On the Grid
- Select the View menu.
- Select Show/Hide from the drop-down menu.
- Select Rulers & Grids from the submenu.
- Select Grid from the secondary submenu.
The grid should appear over your page.
To turn off the grid, repeat steps 1 through 3, and then deselect Grid in the secondary submenu, as shown in figure 4.
Pro Tip: Grid Keyboard Shortcuts
Turn on or turn off the grid by using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + U (PC) or Command + U (Mac).
How to Turn On Snap to Grid
The Snap to Grid option makes the grid lines “sticky” so objects will automatically line up with them as you move the objects. While convenient, Snap to Grid can make resizing certain objects difficult, so you may need to turn it on and off as you arrange your PDF.
- Select the View menu (see figure 1).
- Select Show/Hide from the drop-down menu (see figure 2).
- Select Rulers & Grids from the submenu (see figure 3).
- Select Snap to Grid from the secondary submenu.
How to Change the Grid Preferences
You can change the default preferences for Adobe Acrobat’s grid. These changes will remain in effect for future PDFs.
- Select the Edit menu (PC) or the Acrobat menu (Mac).
- Select Preferences from the drop-down menu. (PC users see figure 7. Mac users see figure 8.)
- Select the Units & Guides category in the Preferences dialog box.
- Use the Page & Ruler Units menu to select a new default unit of measurement:
Important Note: The unit of measurement applies to the grid and the rulers. However, you can use different units of measurement for the grid and the rulers by right-clicking (PC) or Control-clicking (Mac) one of the rulers and then choosing a new unit from the shortcut menu, as shown in “How to Use the Rulers in Adobe Acrobat.”
- Enter new choices into the menus in the Layout Grid section:
- Width between lines
- Height between lines
- Grid offset from left edge
- Grid offset from top edge
- Subdivisions (Subdivisions are lighter color lines that divide the main grid lines.)
- Grid line color
- Select the OK button.
Your new grid preferences should take effect immediately.