How to insert a link (tel, email, web) into a txt-file for a pdf - output?

Suppose I have to print a txt - file with PDFcreator.
This txt - file should contain clickable links for the pdf - file.
How is the link format in the txt - file?

html - links like this don’t help :
<a href="tel:030-1234567890">030-1234567890</a>
In pdf - file, doesn’t appear the link but the text of the link above.
Thanks in advance!

Hi Georg,

This is a really interesting question.

I have just printed an ordinary text file using PDFCreator containing as well as my e-mail address (not using anything else). Surprisingly, most PDF viewers automatically offered to open the link to our website OR asked if I wanted to start my email client when I selected the URL / click on my email address. Just the phone number did not work.

Kind regards

Hi Sascha,

I understand you printed a .txt file like this?

This is a text with links
web: www.abcde.xy
email: me@abcde.xy
phone: 0001-123456789
End of the text

I get a pdf of 2 sheets (with the PDFcreator) :
1st sheet: blank
2nd sheet: directory and file name and the same text as above. No clickable Link.

I have two pdf - view possibilities only:

  • inside a browser (add on?)
  • Ubuntu - Linux pdf Viewer

By the way: If I print a normal html - file with links by PDFcreator, all links are also not clickable.


Hi George,

I have created a text file and inserted your text. After printing/converting it with PDFCreator I receive one PDF with one page.

Using PDF Architect I am able to open the URL (server not found :wink:) also clicking on me@abcde.xy opens my email client just fine. I have also tried to open the PDF with different and sometimes it works (sometimes not at all).

Kind regards


technically the PDFCreator only recieves the data from the print job, so in general all non-visible data like link information will not be included. PDFCreator therefore can’t maintain any non-visible link information, regardless of the output format. Only some viewers will be able to automatically detect patterns like and generate a clickable link, but this is completely out of our hands.

Best regards,


Thank you, Robin !

O.K. I understand it depends on the pdf - viewer not the generator.
A site could be recognized on www or the dots or .xy
And an email address could be recognized on @

But I miss criteria for detection of a phone number?!

Bye Georg

I guess that depends on the phone you're using (and maybe the region).
You could just try to print the different forms and open the pdf on a smartphone.

You could also use a pdf editing software like PDF Architect to make the phone numbers clickable.

Best regards!

Hi Robin and Sascha,

I can’t believe it 100%. Because I did the following test (I could send the files … but how?)

I use Libre-Office and I type a line like Fon: +49(0) 30 - 123456
Then I mark up this line and create a Hyperlink (Internet, Web, Target) : tel: +49(0) 30 - 123456
Then I do a pdf - export by Open-Office (rsp. Libre - Office).
And this pdf file has a clickable phone number (that opens the phone app on PC, Android and other mobile phones).

The question is: How can I create such a Hyperlink in a simple txt file … that PDFcreator could do the same as Libre Office does?


Hi George,

LibreOffice uses a direct export to PDF and doesn’t act as virtual printer, therefore it is able to export the non-visual hyperlink information. Txt files don’t allow hyperlinks anyway, you can only have visible links in txt files.

Best regards,