Distributing PDF document to iPads


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 13, 2009
I have 5 iPads. Using them to control a home automation system. What is the easiest way to distribute a help doc (PDF) to each of the iPads. I started to check into using iCloud but my MacBook Pro is running 1.6.8. SInce I am not an Apple savant, I thought I would ask the community....

I have a 20MB PDF that I want to distribute to 5 or more iPads over our wireless network.


macrumors 601
May 10, 2010
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Are they all running under the same Apple ID ? You could send once a PDF to one iPad and store it in iBooks. After that it could be shared via iCloud.

- or you sync them once via iTunes

- not tried, but maybe HomeSharing will also work for PDF content ?

- or you share a link on a web server where you store the PDF file

Does this file need often to be redistributed ?


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 13, 2009
iPad PDF puzzle

I tried iBooks. I emailed the PDF to the account that they all can share since they are all using the same ID. I opened the PDF then tried to open with iBooks but it will not open. Something wrong with iBooks? I really don't want to plug each iPad in everytime I add something to the manual. But I looke at iTunes and there doesn't seem to be a book section in the library for me to try using?


macrumors member
May 11, 2010
Adelaide South Australia
The method I use requires a Time Capsule and the FileBrowser app, but would probably work with other NAS devices and other apps.
Just copy the pdf to the TC and then use FileBrowser to navigate to it.
FileBrowser can display the PDF or you could use the "Open In" feature to open it in iBooks.


macrumors 65816
Mar 13, 2012
Buy GoodReader from iTunes and download the PDFs to one of the iPads. Turn on iCloud and enable it in GoodReader's options. Then install it on the other iPads and turn on iCloud using the same account. Any PDF stored in the iCloud folder in GoodReader will sync to all the other iOS devices you own with it installed.

I use this for my iPad, iPod Touch and iPhone.

Also as a bonus, if you have OS X 10.8, you can browse to the iCloud folder on it (in home/Library/Mobile Documents/) and put PDFs in the GoodReader folder from your laptop to sync them to the iPads.


macrumors 65816
Oct 7, 2010
Wirelessly posted

Dropbox? it does that with all my word docs, it may do it with pdf's