Graphic Design Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for Graphic Design professionals, students, and enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Is it possible to set a PDF document using Adobe Acrobat 9 or 10 so that:

  • Using the mouse's scroll wheel will zoom
  • Holding left-click will pan

It's an intuitive interface, kind of like Google Maps, that I would use with some PDFs...

share|improve this question
This question appears to be off-topic because it is not about graphic design. – Ryan Jun 25 '14 at 16:49
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Acrobat has similar behavior built in. If you scroll mousewheel while holding Ctrl (on Windows, not sure the Mac key), you will zoom in and out. If you hold Space while click-dragging, you will pan around the document.

(This is how it behaves in Acrobat X. I believe the behavior is the same in older versions though I don't have any present to test.)

share|improve this answer

If I'm understanding the question correctly, you want to know if it's possible to set this as a document behavior. Zoom and pan behaviors are controlled by the reader (whether Adobe Reader or Acrobat or some 3rd party solution), so in a regular PDF that would not be possible.

You could embed a SWF that had this capability, though. You would have to create it with Flash Professional and include it in the PDF either via InDesign or directly in Acrobat. If you have access to a good javascript coder, that might be another approach. It's not something you can do natively in the Acrobat UI.

Always be aware, though, that very few PDF readers implement all of the PDF specification, so your results are likely to be unpredictable at best and most likely would work only in Adobe Reader.

share|improve this answer

If you right click on the document, an option pops up for HAND TOOL. The hand tool works like Google Maps, etc. It zooms with the scroll wheel and pans with a click-and-hold.

I keep forgetting where it is hidden, and just checked here. . . probably be back to find my own answer soon!

share|improve this answer

Find the toolbar that has a continuous zoom button (not sure which toolbar). Click that, and you can zoom with the wheel pan pan by holding the wheel down.

share|improve this answer

Edit > preferences > general, check the make hand tool use mouse-wheel zooming check box.

share|improve this answer
Mike, excellent answer. Do you know if this answer changes for Mac users? – randomblink Dec 8 '14 at 19:09

View/Preferences/General - then tick "Make Select tool use mouse-wheel zooming".

I know its old, but when I was looking for it - this was top of Google search, without an answer ! I found the solution and came back.

Happy acrobating !

share|improve this answer
Isn't the the same solution in Mike's answer? – JohnB Nov 22 '15 at 16:14

My blogpost regarding the same problem...

share|improve this answer

We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Don't just give a one-line answer; explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Answers that don't include explanations may be removed.

Hi Aritra, could you please explain a bit more what we'll find behind the link you provide and why it answers the question? That way, your answer is still of value in case the link breaks at a later time. Link rot is the main reason we really dislike link-only answers here. Thanks for your effort and keep contributing! – Vincent Jan 20 '15 at 13:17

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.