Recovering a PBN File from a PDF File

Sometimes a PBN file is lost but a PDF version of it (such as a hand-record file) is available. Following are several ways to possibly recover the PBN from the PDF:

Method 1. Extracting an Embedded PBN File

In BridgeComposer 5.105 (released 2023-12-06) and later, the PBN is automatically embedded in the PDF as an attached file (unless this has been disabled in "Format→Board Layout", PDF tab). To extract an attached file from a PDF document, you may use one of the following apps:

Method 2. Using the PDFtoPBN.js Script

PDFtoPBN.js in the online scripting library may work (depending on the PDF).
  1. Setup (one-time only):
    1. Quit BridgeComposer if it is running.
    2. Install BCExtractText from
    3. Download and run When prompted for the scripts to install, check PDFtoPBN.js.
  2. Start BridgeComposer and select PDFtoPBN from the Script menu.
  3. When the File→Open panel appears, select the PDF file for input.

Method 3. Using "Bridge Solver"

You can convert BridgeComposer hand records from PDF to PBN using "Bridge Solver": As of 2022-09-02:

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