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Windows Phone has been great when it comes to using Office documents. However when it comes to PDF’s there is another story. Most of the times when you open an attached PDF on your phone it is saved within the two PDF app readers(Adobe reader and PDF Reader) available and you can’t really do anything with it besides reading. The only way to share these PDF’s is by forwarding the original email it was attached to, but you didn’t want to forward the whole email.

Microsoft just released their own app “Files” to manage files on your Windows Phone internal and SD storage. You have to see it as the File explorer in Windows. Microsoft. Whit the app “Files” you can now share any file within the app as an attachment in your email. The easiest way to drop the files in these folders is by connecting your Windows Phone to your PC and and use “Copy and Paste” on your PC since you can see your Windows Phone as a drive.

But when you are on the road and you are getting a PDF as an attachment in an email you will find out that for now you can’t “Tap and Hold” the pdf file in your email and select “save” because it is grayed out.

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Opening the PDF file only allows you to read it in the PDF reader apps and is stored in their internal storage which you can’t see in your “Files” app. Your only option at this point is to forward the whole email (since you can’t edit the body of the forwarded email) with the attachment to someone else. But if you really want to save this file in your accessible storage and then attach it as a file (not a link) I have found just the way for you.

Steps how to download PDF email attachments on your Windows Phone 8.1 and attach these PDF’s in new emails

Before you start make sure you download the following two apps in the Windows Phone Store:
Files (developed by Microsoft)
PDF Reader (developed by Microsoft) If you use Adobe Reader it can cost you some money to upload and share files.

Step 1: Open pdf file from email in “PDF reader

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Step 2: In “PDF reader” tap the screen and then the 3 dots and select “Share”

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Step 3: Sign in to your Onedrive account to create a link and share it your own email.

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Step 4: Open your email and click the link and select “Save”. This will download it your “downloads” folder on your phone or sd card.

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Step 5: Open “Files” and find your document in the “Downloads” folder

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Step 6: Tap and hold the file and select “Rename”. You just have to remove some numbers in front of the file to get the original file name back.

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Step 7: Tap and Hold the file again and select “Move to” to move the file to your specific folder you want.

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Step 8: To send this file as an attachment to some else you need to open the “Files” app and find the file first. Tap and Hold the file name and select “Share”. Select the email account you want and the PDF is an attachment in that email.

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For now this will be the a cumbersome way to get your Pdf files from emails stored independently on your Windows Phone 8.1 and allow you to send them as file attachments in new emails.


You do not neet to create a link. Just share the file to Onedrive. Than open Onedrive-app and save the file directly to the phone (you can choose the folder).

u need to do all this process since u cant share a pdf file wich came as an attachment even to onedrive. ;(

Thank you for the tip…
It is a too long process. Microsoft has to find a better way for us to save PDF on SD Cards.

Thank you for the information. It works for me and solved a problem. Top job!

Great job Microsoft. It’s 2015 and we can’t save e-mail attachments directly. I could save e-mail attachments in 1994 using AOL 2.5 in Windows 3.1. Well I guess that’s modern software development for you all the effort goes in to making it look pretty with “live tiles” and animations but you can’t get it to do the most basic functions without jumping through a dozen hoops.

You know, as much as I like Windows Phone, I gotta say…what a convoluted hassle just to save pdf documents. Yeah, it works and all, but I never had to jump through so many hoops just to save a file when I had my Android. At least it’s not as restricted as iOS, I guess. Hopefully this is made better in Windows 10 Mobile.

Too many process. I hope Microsoft can do an easier and friendly way to download any file format and save it in the phone folder or SD Cards. I bought Microsoft phone because I thought It is a business phone and has the easier way to use such as downloading and sending files. You cannot also download other important app. Now, I want to return it to the store and bought Android phone instead. 🙁

What a dismal system, to send a PDF by email you have to upload it to one drive first. You cant even attach a Microsoft word document to an email in the usual way. You can only do that from the document itself. You cannot add two word documents from your phone to an email. Windows Phones are a useless work phone. You don’t want to be in h a hurry with this phone

Major flaw, I need to send a legal doc in PDF and cannot. Due to this PDF flaw in Windows phone, an important case will be delayed.

Windows 8.1 plain sucks!

I think the most practical way (till the issues are sorted out) is to log into yahoo mail through our brouser in the usual way (without using the app) and download the attachment in the usual way. The attachment will be downloaded to your default download folder

And we cannot even save it in a folder in documents. It has to join the 00s already there

Why does PDF reader take years to upload the file to OneDrive? I’m using a reliable Wi-Fi connection, and still this problem. But there’s one thing that I can suggest to everyone- instead of using the email app, you can open your email from the internet explorer, and download pdf files directly from there

abhay doshi , India

Hey guys , chill .
As far as attaching documents are concerned to a usual email I believe you can do that is only in blackberry phones ,not even in in android or iOS.
Yes , you can attach as many documents you want to attach is only from documents itself.
Now I have an idea which has worked with me for several times . If I have to attach a document to a reply mail , then I do it by opening the email form the browser . You log on to your browser , open your mail and attach the documents and photos as much as you want from anywhere in your phone .

But I believe this problem is solved in windows 10,version .I am not sure though i have not tried it till date .

Pdf saving is a.problem . Microsoft has got to think over it seriously .

Thank you so much for your help this help is very very necessary to this phone and wish all the best.

I just ran into this wall and saw the OneDrive feature. I guess it’s good for the Microsoft/NSA agreement: whereas a PDF would be inaccessible via a non-MS email account, forcing users to copy it to OneDrive is the next best way to get a copy of the PDF. Or am I being paranoid? LOL