Computer Tips and Tricks
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Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Viewing PDF's in Browser when more than one version of Adobe Reader is installed

Error: "The Adobe Acrobat/Reader that is running cannot be used to view PDF files in a web browser..."

The above error can occur when you have more than one version of Adobe Reader/Acrobat installed. For instance this may be because you have the Professional Version and the Free Reader on the same PC.

There is a simple fix by editing the registry setting that tells the web browser where to find Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader.

First make sure you have the lastest version of the Reader installed as some of the older ones can't read some of the newer PDF Files. You can download it here...

• Go to Start > Run
• Type regedit and click OK
• Browse to the following key: HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Software\Adobe\Acrobat\Exe
• Make sure that the correct Default Data Value is set for the path where Adobe Reader or Acrobat are installed

The default installation values are "C:\Program Files\Adobe\Reader 9.0\Reader\AcroRd32.exe" or "C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 9.0\Acrobat\Acrobat.exe", depending on whether Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat is installed. DO NOT FORGET THE QUOTES.

If you have a 64Bit OS the path will be C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Reader 9.0\...

The \Exe Key may not exist under HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Software\Adobe\Acrobat\ and will have to be created manually by right clicking the "Acrobat" folder and selecting New > Key. Name it "Exe."

Now to add the String Value. Right Click in the new key and select New > String Value. Name this "(Default)" with the brackets and add the value (the program path.)

Close Regedit and Reboot the computer. Once your PC is back up and running you should be able to view PDF Files in your Web Browser.

NOTE: Editing the registry incorrectly can cause harmful affects to your computer. Always backup the Registry Keys you are editing before you begin.

For further information you can checkout Adobe's Knowledgebase.


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