pdf iconThe fact that PDF has became a de-facto standard when it comes to digital business correspondence means that fax owners have another hurdle to pass – the fact that they have to use an analog modem signal to send a digital document.

Luckily, there is now more than one method to send a PDF document to a fax number, and it's no longer a harrowing task thanks to the clean and slick user interface that accompanies most of these methods. So, the four ways of sending PDF documents to a fax machine are:

Method 1 – Online Fax Service
Method 2 – Fax Software
Method 3 – PC Controlled Fax Machine
Method 4 – Print and Fax

Let's briefly go over these.

Method 1: Online Fax Service

We've already mentioned using online fax services for sending and receiving fax messages. Well, the fact that these services are usually used from a PC or from a smart device means that you can easily send your PDF document as a message – usually as an attachment, and the service does all the converting to a fax format for you. Options usually in front of you (this changes based on what is the exact type of online fax service you use) are sending a fax message as an e-mail with a PDF attachment, or using a web form or an app to add a PDF file to your message. Both methods are quick and easy to use as long as you have an internet connection fast and reliable enough to upload a single PDF file.

Method 2: Fax Software

As long as your fax modem is connected and all of the accompanying software has been set up to allow sending and receiving fax messages, you should be able to send a PDF document as a fax message with just a few clicks. The interface should resemble that of sending a fax as an e-mail message through an online fax service, look for an option “attach document” in the application and you're good to go.

One thing to take note of is that Mac OS X users do not have this option unlocked, that functionality has not been officially supported by the operative system since 2007 version of the OS, but any Windows user (from XP onwards) and Linux users should have this method readily available with the default software coming with their fax machines.

Of course, you should always remember that with this method, quality and the speed of the sent fax depends not on the internet connection, but on the traditional fax landline, and all of the challenges as call quality and possibility of the line being interrupted are still on the table.

Method 3: PC Controlled Fax Machine

Using Fax Software is different from using PC Controlled Fax machine – while with previous method it's the operating system doing most of the work, here you should get a fine tuned piece of software from the fax machine manufacturer that will allow you to quickly and easily send PDF documents as fax messages. Your fax machine needs to be connected to the fax line, as well as to the PC (no matter what kind of connection is used, wireless or cable one), and the software coming with the fax machine must be set up on the PC. Any modern fax machine will come with an extensive user manual to explain how to correctly connect it to the PC and how to send fax messages, including sending PDF attachments.

Method 4: Print and Fax

If all other methods fail or are just not available, there's always doing things the old fashioned way – printing out the PDF document you're trying to send and faxing it as a regular scanned document via a fax machine. Of course, you will need access to a printer and a working fax machine, and the quality of the document will be degraded depending on the prints quality, but if you're really in a jam and need to quickly get that PDF sent, this option is on the menu.

Additional resources:

Convert any document into a PDF
Save a Windows Office document as a PDF

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