How to print to PDF in Windows 10

How to print to PDF in Windows 10

Last updated: August 29, 2019 

Chalk this one up as another handy new tool included with Windows 10. In lieu of a non-native PDF-writing application, Windows users were previously confined to using the XPS (XML Paper Specification) Document Writer to protect the contents of an electronic document. Documents created with the XPS writer have an .xps extension, and therefore required an XPS Viewer to read the document.  To create an XPS document, users would select Microsoft XPS Document Writer from the list of available printers.

Microsoft XPS Document Writer

It appears that Microsoft’s effort to provide a PDF alternative may have come to an end.

Microsoft Print to PDF

Enter Microsoft Print to PDF. The ubiquitous PDF (Personal Document File) is a file format developed by Adobe Systems. Windows 10 includes the ability to create a PDF file without needing to download, install or purchase a separate PDF-writing application. It really couldn’t be easier to use. Virtually any program that has a Print function will allow you to create a PDF using the native Windows 10 PDF writer. Launch a program, click the File menu, and choose Print. In the Print dialog, choose Microsoft Print to PDF from under the Printer list, then click the Print button.

Microsoft Print to PDF

Name the file you are creating, then click the Save button to save the document as a PDF.

Although the option to select Microsoft XPS Document Writer is still present in the Select Printer list, its usefulness comes into question. If turned off, you will not see Microsoft Print to PDF listed under Select Printer. To turn it on, launch Control Panel. Navigate to Programs > Programs & Features. In the left navigation click the Turn Windows features on or off link. If prompted for User Account Control, input your admin password to proceed. Finally, scroll down to Microsoft Print to PDF and select its check box.

Turn on Microsoft Print to PDF

Thank you for visiting Tech Help Knowledgebase to learn how to print to PDF in Windows 10.