Borderless PDF Printing on a Mac

I’m a stickler for perfection and I oftentimes create documents in Microsoft Word or Powerpoint that need to be borderless when exported to PDF format. I’m sure you’ve seen a beautiful document magically sport an unwanted white border around the page, much like this.

Borderless Printing

On a Mac, using File -> Save As… -> Format (PDF) will not work as you’ll get the white borders.

Borderless Printing

 

A solution that was floated online was to create a custom Paper Size and setting the Non-Printable Area margins to 0. However, this will cause problems when you have a document that has multiple sections (Microsoft Word). You’ll suddenly have multiple PDF files that will have a suffix – filename.2.pdf, filename.3.pdf and this will be a huge nightmare for you.

The solution is pretty simple, really

1. Download generic Gutenprint Mac printer drivers from gimp-print.sourceforge.net/MacOSX.php

2. Doubleclick on the downloaded .dmg file. Double click on the installation file and complete the process.

3. Go to the System Preferences on your Mac and click Printers & Scanners.

4. Click on the + sign as shown below.

Borderless Printing

5. Select the IP tab and in the Address field, key in 123.

6. Select Internet Printing Protocol – IPP.

7. Under the Use section below, choose Select Software…

Borderless Printing

8. A long list of printers will appear based on the Gutenprint drivers you just installed. In the search section, key in C83.

9. Select Epson Stylus C83. This is a printer that has borderless capabilities. Click OK.

Borderless Printing

10. Give the printer an easy-to-identify name like Borderless PDF. Click Add.

Borderless Printing

11. An error will pop-up because the printer doesn’t physically exist on your computer. Just click Continue.

Borderless Printing

12. That’s it. Go to Microsoft Word and when you want to print, look for the printer you just installed and select it.

13. Then click on the PDF button below and choose Save as PDF.

14. Leave me a comment if this worked for you!

Borderless Printing

119 Comments

  1. An Internetter - August 8, 2014

    Works like a charm. Thanks a great deal.

  2. ID - August 26, 2014

    It worked! I was nervous about installing an unknown program… but this did the trick. I wasn’t interested in printing, just saving a word document into a pdf without that white border. Thank you for the write up!!

  3. binks - September 3, 2014

    Amazing, but it does WORK!
    Why OSX forces on us this silly silly white border in PDFs at first place? What’s the purpose? What good does it make? NONSENSE!!!!

    Thanks mate for the perfect solution! 😉

  4. Brian - October 5, 2014

    Absolutely a huge help. Like it was said in the article – changing margins is a ridiculous idea and has to be done for each individual document. Thank you so very much for this solution.

  5. Kiri - October 6, 2014

    works like a dream and isn’t a virus! thanks so much!!!

  6. Nicole - October 20, 2014

    Thank you! When uploading a thesis, there are very specific formatting options. I have been worried about how I was going to deal with this issue and searching for solutions. I found this blog and had a friend of mine who works with computers review the Gutenprint driver files. He said they were all clean. It totally worked. Thank you.

  7. Tony - October 22, 2014

    I’d been desperate enough to try this solution on Aperture and I have to say, it works! Thanks!

  8. Isa - October 22, 2014

    Hi! thank you but for me is not working :( just the last step when i click save as pdf, using that printer it saves with the margings that are driving me crazy :(!
    thanks anyways!
    Isabel

  9. Rach - November 9, 2014

    Well, unfortunately it didn’t work for me. I followed your instructions and set up the printer and everything, but when I pressed “print”, the little printer window would tell me that “Printing – The printer is unreachable at this time.” So actually nothing happened.
    I tried a few times, and really couldn’t find out a way to deal with it, so I gave up. That’s really too bad because I really need to print my files borderless. But thanks anyway!

    • christoph - January 27, 2015

      hey Rach!
      so at the end of the routine, in your last step, you need to hit ‘pdf’ button in the bottom left corner, not the ‘print’ button.
      hope this helps (a little late, but you might still need this at some point…?!)

  10. pete - November 15, 2014

    hi, installed OK as described but printer status shows as being paused. When I click the Resume button it says unable to locate printer ‘123’

  11. Martina - November 17, 2014

    Hi! Thanks you too, but for me it also doesn’t work :( I was specifically trying to print a pdf without borders and my printer does not let me choose the borderless paper size. So I opened the pdf with preview, saved as described through printing via the borderless but save as pdf, and when I print the new pdf it still has the borders. Not sure what’s going on, but it certainly drives me crazy that I can’t seem to get rid of the borders!

    • TheBackpackr - November 20, 2014

      That’s exactly why you need to download the drivers that allow you to print borderless.

      Don’t skip any steps and you’ll be fine.

      • Pablo - June 16, 2015

        Hi!

        I think the problem is for people like me that wants the PDF borderless but also wants to print that PDF and keep it borderless…

        Following your steps i’ve been able to create the borderless pdf file, but when i try to print it on paper, the damn borders appear again! Do you have any solutions for this?

  12. Juan - November 25, 2014

    This worked great for me, I was having some issues but I managed to make it work by doing these simple steps:

    Go to File menu
    Then to Page Setup option
    And in the Format For option set the Borderless PDF printer

    I hope this works for you guys!

  13. laurent - December 3, 2014

    Thanks! pretty efficient!

  14. Paul - December 8, 2014

    Works like a charm…i was a little skeptical but … I’m very happy now !!!

    THANX a lot !!!!!!!

  15. Catosaurus - December 11, 2014

    Worked perfectly, and solved a big problem for me. Many thanks.

  16. Thushan - December 19, 2014

    Excellent instruction, no virus at all. Good stuff, keep-up.

  17. Scott Lawrence - December 30, 2014

    This is great thank ypu. I think you’ve saved a lot of people from wasted time and headaches!

  18. Speedy - January 2, 2015

    Dude you are a GENIUS!!! I have been lost for the last half hour trying to save a beautiful word document and couldn t get out of the damn white borders!!!

    Your instructions were just perfect!!! WELL DONE!!

  19. Maryam - January 15, 2015

    You… are a genius!! thank you so very much for sharing!! you just saved me hours of fruitless, frustrated, and futile attempts!!

  20. Maarten - January 16, 2015

    You just made my day. Thank you!

  21. Diarmid - February 10, 2015

    Nice clear instructions, thanks. Sadly, it didn’t work though :( First page of the document is fine, but all subsequent pages still have the – extremely annoying – white borders on them!! Shall continue to try and find a fix…

  22. Julia - February 13, 2015

    Not working for me in Keynote! :(

  23. Katy - February 26, 2015

    Thank you, thank you!! I tried all night to convert a custom sized CreateSpace book publishing template in Word with multiple sections to a borderless pdf so that the covers looked right and I could never get it. This worked first time and your instructions were great :-)

  24. John - March 2, 2015

    I got as far as filtering for C83 but no C83 appeared. I see stylus series, stylus color, stylus photo but no C83. Any thoughts? I need to send a 10×14 Word document to a publisher as a PDF file and would like to remove the white border. Your solution is the most promising one that I’ve found online.

    Thanks.

    John

  25. Ryan - March 5, 2015

    Thank you so much! I have spent SO LONG trying to find the answer to this! Seems mad that Apple havent thought of a solution before now,

    Thanks again!

    Ryan

  26. rtw - March 11, 2015

    Bless you. I had sections and footers and no matter what I did, it would not print. I spent 2 hours trying to locate a solution. Yours was the one that finally worked. Appreciate it.

  27. Troy - March 16, 2015

    OMG THANKS! Totally said my sanity! :)

  28. Gary Aronsen - March 29, 2015

    Presenting @ American Association of Physical Anthropologists Conference @ St. Louis. I just switched to a Mac, and got a little worked up about the borders (and my inability to remove them). Your fix worked perfectly. Thanks for this simple and effective method.

  29. Antonio - April 6, 2015

    It works like a charm !!! Thank you so much, you saved me tons of hours of work.

  30. Greg - April 22, 2015

    Clear instructions: thanks

    I had to remove section breaks to get it to save the whole document.

  31. Richard - April 28, 2015

    Worked a dream – only thing I’d say is that I needed to come out of Microsoft Word completely and then reopen the documents in order for the borderless printing to work properly.

    Genius.

  32. Kieli - April 29, 2015

    Hi, does it work for Powerpoint as well? Just installed as the steps suggested, but still coming up with border.

    Help please!

  33. Anders - May 3, 2015

    Thank you! Worked for me as well, but not until I restarted Word.

  34. Chance - May 3, 2015

    Just so you al know, I’ve found a FAR EASIER solution that doesn’t require downloads and can all be done within Word. This is the article I followed and it worked perfectly and quickly for me: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/2778891

    There’s always a myriad of work arounds, however I hope this easier one appeals to those perfectionists that like insanely simple solutions – like me!

    • Katherin - June 19, 2015

      Yay this worked as I was still getting a narrow white border doing it the way TheBackpackr suggested which was better than the really wide ugly white border I was originally getting but your easier suggestion worked perfectly. Now I just have to work out how to keep my hyperlinks.

      Thank you

    • Mario G - June 27, 2015

      Good to know there is another option. But the solution here worked for me. It even works when you click save as to PDF from Word. Office 20111 OSX 10.10

  35. Erik - June 17, 2015

    Works well for a regular A4. How can I make it work for A3, since it does not seem to exist in the printer setup?

  36. Patrick - June 18, 2015

    It’s unbelievable, no software engineer has found an other solution for this problem. Everywhere you read on the internet, it says: change the margins. Yeah wel, it’s not that easy, not in the last place because the whole document will change. AARGHH

    You were very helpful! Thnx!

  37. Mark - August 20, 2015

    This worked very nicely with new install of Word for Mac version 15 (Office 365 subscription).
    Thank you.

  38. M. McGloghlon - August 21, 2015

    You ROCK!!!

  39. José - September 1, 2015

    GENIOUS.
    Thanks!!!

  40. Julian - September 3, 2015

    It works. I had to make 123 or Borderless my default printer and had to fuss with my page set up a but but It works. Unfortunately I wanted to do a doc a bit bigger than 8.5 X 11 and it will not let me as the printer does not support sizes bigger than that. Thanks!

  41. Fred - September 16, 2015

    Thank you for this simple and elegant solution.

    I often use Preview to save selected pages from a large pdf file to a much smaller pdf file that is more suitable for emailing. But those unwanted borders would sometimes ruin the pdf’s. I just used your solution to send my latest email attachments and it worked perfectly.

  42. cassi - November 24, 2015

    THANK YOU!!

    I wish I discovered this earlier!

  43. Alec - November 26, 2015

    Great Solution! worked for me perfectly. Do not try the other solutions on the web.

  44. Claire - November 26, 2015

    Fabulous! The clearest instructions EVER – and the result worked first time. Thanks so much :)

  45. Wendy - December 17, 2015

    It works, thank you so much for the solution! The instructions were really clear and easy to follow.

  46. mike - January 3, 2016

    Hi tried to print a PDF without white borders. Did as you said with the Epson stylus C 83 but with a workforce 7610 but it would not allow borderless printing at all. So changed to workforce 7610 software from gutenprint. Although I can print borderless on Photo paper I E Matt or gloss, it will still not allow me to choose a ‘normal’ paper. (printing on the normal paper is much faster for big jobs and the quality is fine) so I have given up. This is exactly the same problem as the software supplied by Epson. Maybe I’m doing something wrong ???

    Epson really need to sort this out as it is so easy to allow borderless printing on any kind of paper. If you can print borderless on photo paper why on earth can’t you print borderless on ordinary paper ?? So frustrating. My old Brother printer does this easily I wish I had upgraded to a new Brother.

  47. roddy - January 21, 2016

    It works perfectly! Thank you so much!

  48. Tim - January 21, 2016

    Hi thank you the instructions were super clear but it made no difference on Keynote – does it only Work on Word in OS X?
    Cheers.
    Tim

  49. Winnie - January 24, 2016

    Holy cow — TERRIFIC! I think I have tried literally every other solution out there suggested but getting the centerfold (image split in half across 2 pages) on our multi-section zine to print to PDF never worked until this solution. So well-written directions, also!

  50. Shaz - March 9, 2016

    Hi there,

    Thanks for the help. You truly are a life saver!
    It worked just fine!! :)

    Again, thank you so much!

  51. Cheri Hodgdon - March 17, 2016

    This worked perfectly! I spent hours trying to figure this out. Your solution took minutes. THANK YOU!!!!

  52. Erick - March 25, 2016

    Awesome! Works Great. Thank you for the program. I have been looking for 2 days on removing margins on my word. Now I can!!! Thank you thank you

  53. Mike - March 26, 2016

    An old post with long term value. Worked great, appreciate the tip.

  54. Katie - April 1, 2016

    I was skeptical, but this definitely worked! So relieved! Thanks for this tip!

  55. Daniel Lee - April 3, 2016

    THANK. YOU.

  56. lotta - April 4, 2016

    Its perfect, thank you SO much! As has been said so many times in the comments, I tried to figure our for hours and your solution helped me just in a few minutes. Great!! :-)

  57. Emma J - April 7, 2016

    Hi, I’ve used this solution before several times (it’s brilliant), but have come to do it on a new Mac and the C83 is no longer on the list of available printers. Any suggestion for another printer that will allow borderless?

    Thanks

  58. Carl - April 9, 2016

    Worked perfectly first time. Your easy to follow instructions made installation a simple process.

    Thank you!!

  59. Lucian - April 20, 2016

    Thank you so much!

  60. Samuel - May 10, 2016

    It worked perfectly, I spent hours trying to figure this out hehe. Thank YOU!!!!!

  61. Greg - May 31, 2016

    Thank you – works great! Super easy and reliable.

  62. u4fifa twitch - June 6, 2016

    No one can do it better than you.

  63. Gemma - June 9, 2016

    Thank you so so much for this!! I’ve wasted so much time trying to figure it out!! I now have my life back! :)

  64. Michael - June 12, 2016

    I did this verbatim twice and nothing changed. Still have margins around my PDF.

  65. kirit bhatt - June 24, 2016

    amazing …. works perfectly. thanks alot 😀

  66. liddy - June 28, 2016

    Hi – I can’t find Epson Stylus C83, it isn’t there as an option. Are there any others that work?

  67. Jessie - June 29, 2016

    OMG! It’s worked! Thanks so much! Been battling ages with this as I’ve never known how to do it!

  68. Anna Dahl - July 6, 2016

    Works like a charm. I used the latest version, 5.2.11, and your screenshots were a big help. You helped me fix my thesis.
    Thank you.

  69. Rom Linhares - July 13, 2016

    Just wanted to say “THANK YOU”… word was driving me nuts… this is just what the doctor ordered.
    Thanks!

  70. TK - July 25, 2016

    Perfect!!! Thank you!!!!

  71. Charles - July 27, 2016

    You have just made my day! Tried changing the margin settings to 0 in the Page Setup but never worked on my Mac. This is worked like a charm. God bless you

  72. Yohan - July 30, 2016

    It worked for me, the most important and last step is to close and open again de document you are working on

  73. Erik - August 16, 2016

    haven’t managed to create a PDF without any margins/borders with this…

  74. Rachel - October 9, 2016

    AMAZING so pleased! thank you

  75. Can Uzer - October 25, 2016

    You saved me hours of frustration, thanks a ton!

  76. Mike - November 9, 2016

    Thank you! it worked.

  77. Nels - November 17, 2016

    Hi. Thank you for these clear instructions. I followed them step by step and everything seemed to work fine until I clicked on “save pdf” and realised the white margins were still there. I’m using Pages 09 on Mavericks. I’m trying to print a conference programme and have two pages per sheet, but no matter what I try, the margins won’t go away. Any tips? Thanks.

  78. Can Uzer - November 25, 2016

    It used to work but now suddenly it doesn’t work anymore…

  79. Kerim Orhon - December 19, 2016

    it works, thank you

  80. CC - January 16, 2017

    It works! Fabulous! Thanks v much!

  81. Alan - January 19, 2017

    Doesn’t work for me. Another fix?

  82. aabb - January 24, 2017

    nice! works! thanks a lot.

  83. Mauricio - January 29, 2017

    200 thousand comments, but the poster DESERVES more, more thanks to you! Searched the web 3 hrs for an app or setting to do this, FINALLY found this!

    THANK YOU SO MUCH! YOU ROCKED BY PDF BOAT!!!!

  84. Kit - February 6, 2017

    Worked like a charm, thank you!!!!!

  85. Andy - February 7, 2017

    The custom paper size trick worked for me for a long time, but recently stopped working. This worked like a gem. Thank you for taking the time to put this together!

    a

  86. Fiona Santoianni - February 8, 2017

    You are a GODSEND! Thank you so much, I was so frustrated.

  87. Dan - February 9, 2017

    Bloody brilliant, works a treat and i’ve been looking for something like this for ages!
    Thanks

  88. LChP - February 20, 2017

    Thank you for putting this out. I followed all the steps but I can’t Save as PDF’… It says ‘the Save as PDF option on the print dialog box is not supported’.
    Any idea? Thanks!

  89. Leia - March 11, 2017

    BRILLIANT!!! I have been trying for months to get rid of this mystery unprofessional looking border on my PDF documents!! You are a God-Send..literally an answer to prayer! Thank you!!

  90. Shane - March 20, 2017

    It worked! You are also, man!

  91. inconnu - April 20, 2017

    works brilliantly! Thanks a bunch!! I have bookmarked your HowTo!

  92. Ren - May 31, 2017

    This is not working for me. Do you think they must have fixed it since it was a good bug to have. Also would it work if I was printing wirelessly from a Mac to a Canon?

    Thanks.

  93. Dp - June 20, 2017

    thanks a ton! worked absolutely well, have been looking all over the internet for a solution

  94. az - August 23, 2017

    Thank you very, very much!! This works perfectly!!

  95. Peccath - October 19, 2017

    I’m still using Mac Os X 10.6.8 for various reasons and I just downloaded Gutenprint 5.2.10 as instructed. I must admit that downloading and installing it got me a bit nervous… sourceforge isn’t the most reliable website out there after all. However, I’m glad I took the chance, as it really does the trick as promised! Goodbye white, stupid borders 😀

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