We’ve always been fans of the free Foxit PDF reader here, but when I came across an open-source PDF viewer that was even more lightweight and simple, I immediately switched.

The Sumatra PDF viewer comes as one single .exe file, and is about as minimal as you can get… it launches in less than a second for me, and the clean interface is great. 


But that’s not the best part… it’s got shortcut keys that are very similar to Gmail and Google Reader. (Except j and k are swapped for some unknown reason)

Here’s the list of shortcut keys: 

  • space – scroll by screen
  • backspace – scroll back by screen
  • k – scroll by one line
  • j – scroll back by one line
  • Down – scroll by one line
  • Up – scroll back by one line
  • n – goto next page
  • p – goto previous page
  • Page Down – go to next page
  • Page Up – go to previous page
  • g – goto page
  • q – quit
  • + – zoom in
  • – – zoom out
  • r – reload PDF document
  • <Shift> <Ctrl> + – rotate clockwise
  • <Shift> <Ctrl> – – rotate counter-clockwise
  • Home – go to first page
  • End – go to last page

Just being able to navigate a PDF with the same keys I use all the time was enough for me.

Download Sumatra PDF Viewer for Windows