MuPDF: pdf viewer with vim-like keybinds

pdfThough Adobe has no 64-bit version of it’s PDF viewer for Linux, there are many alternatives. Even modern browsers come with in-built PDF viewers. However, most of them lack in features. Native viewers like evince do not render PDFs with the same quality as Adobe’s viewer and are slow.

We came across MuPDF, a very lightweight PDF viewer that has vim-like keybinds. It opens and navigates within PDFs in lightning speed.

And guess what? The latest version was released this week!


  • High-quality anti-aliased graphics. Renders text with metrics and spacing accurate to within fractions of a pixel for the highest fidelity in reproducing the look of a printed page on screen.
  • Small, extremely fast and feature-complete.
  • Vim like key bindings.
  • Complete colour inversion (using the <i> key).
  • Supports PDF 1.7 with transparency, encryption, hyperlinks, annotations, searching and more.
  • Modular design making it easy to write plugins.
  • Reads PDF, EPUB, XPS and OpenXPS document.
  • Supports Linux, Windows, Mac, Android, iOS.


You have 3 ways to install MuPDF on Ubuntu.

1. You can install older version of MuPDF from the default Ubuntu repos. Run:

$ sudo apt-get install mupdf

2. Install latest version from ne3’s untrusted PPA. Run:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ne3/ppa

At the time of writing, the PPA has packages for Precise. But they install and run on Trusty without any issues. Edit the following file and change the string trusty to precise in all places:


I have requested the PPA maintainer to add packages for Trusty and above. Run the following after modifying:

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install mupdf

3. Install the latest version from ubuntuhandbook’s PPA. Run:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntuhandbook1/apps
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install mupdf


You can associate PDFs to open in MuPDF on double click. The general cmdline syntax is

$ mupdf myfile.pdf

To open password protected files, run:

$ mupdf -p password myfile.pdf


L, R     Rotate page left (counter-clockwise) or right (clockwise).
h, j, k, l
         Pan page left, down, up, or right.
+, -     Zoom in or out.
W, H     Zoom page to exactly fit width or height of window.
w        Shrinkwrap window to fit the page.
r        Reload file.
. pgdn right space
         Go to the next page
, pgup left b backspace
         Go to the previous page
<, >     Skip back/forth 10 pages at a time.
m        Mark current page for snap back. Up to 256 pages can be marked.
t        Pop back to the latest mark.
[0-9]m   Save the current page number in the numbered register.
[0-9]t   Go to the page saved in the numbered register.
123g     Go to page 123.
g, G     Go to the first or last page.
/, ?     Search for text forwards or backwards.
n, N     Find the next/previous search result.
f        Toggles fullscreen mode.
p        Toggle presentation mode.
P        Displays the current page number temporarily.
c        Toggle between color and grayscale rendering.
C        Toggle full-page color tinting.
i        Toggle between normal and inverted color rendering.
q        Quit.

Webpage: MuPDF

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