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Read Form Field values in PDF in Java

eiceblue profile image E-iceblue Product Family ・3 min read

In this article, we are going to demonstrate how to read and extract the values of fillable form fields in a PDF document programmatically in Java.

The library we used:
Free Spire.PDF for Java

The example PDF document:
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Free Spire.PDF for Java enables developers to read the value of a specific form field along with read the values of all form fields in a PDF document. The below examples will show you how to use Free Spire.PDF for Java to accomplish these two functions.

Read and extract value from a specific form field

import com.spire.pdf.PdfDocument;
import com.spire.pdf.widget.PdfFormWidget;
import com.spire.pdf.widget.PdfTextBoxFieldWidget;

import java.io.FileWriter;
import java.io.IOException;


public class ReadSpeicificFormValue {
    public static void main(String[] args){
        //Load PDF document
        PdfDocument pdf = new PdfDocument();
        pdf.loadFromFile("fillFormFields.pdf");

        //Get form fields
        PdfFormWidget formWidget = (PdfFormWidget)pdf.getForm();

        //Get the textbox by index or by name
        PdfTextBoxFieldWidget textbox = ( PdfTextBoxFieldWidget)formWidget.getFieldsWidget().get(0);
        //PdfTextBoxFieldWidget textbox = ( PdfTextBoxFieldWidget)formWidget.getFieldsWidget().get("TextBox");

        //Get the text of the textbox
        String text = textbox.getText();

        try {
            //Write text into a .txt file
            FileWriter writer = new FileWriter("GetSpecificFieldValue.txt");
            writer.write(text);
            writer.flush();
        } catch (IOException e) {
            e.printStackTrace();
        }

        pdf.close();
    }
}

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Read and extract values from all form fields

import com.spire.pdf.PdfDocument;
import com.spire.pdf.fields.PdfField;
import com.spire.pdf.widget.*;

import java.io.FileWriter;
import java.io.IOException;


public class ReadAllFormValues {
    public static void main(String[] args)
        //Load PDF document
        PdfDocument pdf = new PdfDocument();
        pdf.loadFromFile("fillFormFields.pdf");

        //Get form fields
        PdfFormWidget formWidget = (PdfFormWidget)pdf.getForm();

        StringBuilder sb = new StringBuilder();
        //Loop through the form field widget collection and extract the value of each field
        for (int i = 0; i < formWidget.getFieldsWidget().getCount(); i++)
        {
            PdfField field = (PdfField)formWidget.getFieldsWidget().getList().get(i);
            if (field instanceof PdfTextBoxFieldWidget)
            {
                PdfTextBoxFieldWidget textBoxField = (PdfTextBoxFieldWidget)field ;
                //Get text of textbox
                String text = textBoxField.getText();
                sb.append("The text in textbox is: " + text + "\r\n");
            }

            if (field instanceof PdfListBoxWidgetFieldWidget)
            {
                PdfListBoxWidgetFieldWidget listBoxField = (PdfListBoxWidgetFieldWidget)field;
                sb.append("Listbox items are: \r\n");
                //Get values of listbox
                PdfListWidgetItemCollection items = listBoxField.getValues();

                for (PdfListWidgetItem item : (Iterable<PdfListWidgetItem>) items)
                {
                    sb.append(item.getValue() + "\r\n");
                }
                //Get selected value
                String selectedValue = listBoxField.getSelectedValue();
                sb.append("The selected value in the listbox is: " + selectedValue + "\r\n");
            }

            if (field instanceof PdfComboBoxWidgetFieldWidget)
            {
                PdfComboBoxWidgetFieldWidget comBoxField = (PdfComboBoxWidgetFieldWidget)field ;
                sb.append("comBoxField items are: \r\n");
                //Get values of comboBox
                PdfListWidgetItemCollection items = comBoxField.getValues();

                for (PdfListWidgetItem item : (Iterable<PdfListWidgetItem>) items)
                {
                    sb.append(item.getValue() + "\r\n");
                }
                //Get selected value
                String selectedValue = comBoxField.getSelectedValue();
                sb.append("The selected value in the comBoxField is: " + selectedValue + "\r\n");
            }

            if (field instanceof PdfRadioButtonListFieldWidget)
            {
                PdfRadioButtonListFieldWidget radioBtnField = (PdfRadioButtonListFieldWidget)field;
                //Get value of radio button
                String value = radioBtnField.getValue();

                sb.append("The text in radioButtonField is: " + value + "\r\n");
            }

            if (field instanceof PdfCheckBoxWidgetFieldWidget)
            {
                PdfCheckBoxWidgetFieldWidget checkBoxField = (PdfCheckBoxWidgetFieldWidget)field;
                //Get the checked state of the checkbox
                boolean state = checkBoxField.getChecked();
                sb.append("Is the checkBox checked? " + state + "\r\n");
            }
        }

        try {
            //Write text into a .txt file
            FileWriter writer = new FileWriter("GetAllValues.txt");
            writer.write(sb.toString());
            writer.flush();
        } catch (IOException e) {
            e.printStackTrace();
        }

        pdf.close();
    }
}

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