Multiple separate windows needed


I need SumatraPDF to open two separate pdf files in two separate windows on the same screen so that I can compare information in two price lists with each other. Is there a setting like “open in new tab” or something?
I currently can only have one pdf file open at a time.

PDFs layering over each other
One file in two windows

I guess you mean something like this

Ignore the version number this works for all versions

its very easy to drop 2 files onto a shortcut e.g a pair of image files to compare or 2 versions of a pdf

In the following picture my Sumatra folder is called Twin Viewers because I use 2 different Portable versions however this should work with any combination (why not have one window as the pre-release with mark-up feature)

  1. create a text file as shown, the filename is not important but it must be .bat or .cmd YOU DONT NEED BOTH I am just testing it in different configurations
  2. make a sub directory called Viewer2 (note if you change the name you need to change parts of the CoMmanD or BATch file to match
  3. COPY SumatraPDF.exe into that folder NOTE you DONT NEED to copy the cache folder or settings file but it usually helps.(ON FIRST RUN it will create them for you)

best way to set it up is drop any 2 files onto the command, you may think it has not worked since both copies will likely be one over the other,

  1. move one view to left and second to right now when you close them they each remember their positions

  1. If you want a shortcut on your desktop right click the bat or cmd file and select send to … desktop as shortcut

now you can open any folder of documents pdf chm epub png and drag any 2 to drop on the shortcut like this


et voilà!

for cut’n pasters here it is but don’t blame me (however likes are accepted :grin: )

start “Left” “%~dp0SumatraPDF.exe” "%~1"
start “Right” “%~dp0Viewer2\SumatraPDF.exe” “%~2”


This has been a planned feature ever since the tabs UI was implemented, but don’t expect it anytime soon. Relevant issue (with lots of duplicates):


This would be all the more relevant today with Windows 10 allowing Virtual Desktops.
When I open a pdf file in one desktop, it redirects me to the instance of Sumatra opened on the second virtual desktop.


I found an easy way of creating multiple windows.

Go to the folder where the Sumatra exe file is located, then make a copy of that file in that folder and rename it, maybe something like Sumatra2.exe. Then make whatever shortcuts on your desktop and/or in your start menu that you want, and name them dfferently to your original Sumatra shortcuts. To open a new instance of Sumatra just open these new Sumatra2 shortcuts as you would normally use any shortcut. It seems to work just fine.


That’s basically what @GitHubRulesOK suggested above, i.e. using two portable version copies (or one installed and one portable), and the advantage of doing it that way is that the two copies can each have their own different settings.


Just beware that two apps in the same folder even if renamed will normally fight over who is in control of the settings file or cache, which is why its not normally recommended
As you point out SumatraPDF will usually tolerate this dual use and as one changes the settings or history the other will often follow. The major downside is that on start-up the two will read the same start-up position hence my suggestions above to keep a separate copy, however the downside is the file open histories are different.

IF you are careful you can setup multiple session folders as per

using separate versions of SumatraPDF.exe in the one folder with -appdata pointing to separate locations thus say one version 3.0 for printing or pre-release for highlights etc