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PDF will not open !

21 May 2009 | | One Comment

How loudly have you screamed that (along with a few other things!) when you decided to leave it until the last minute to complete your IRS tax forms.

1. Can’t seem to get it from the web?

If you’re downloading from the web, turn off the display PDF in browser feature within Adobe Reader. Aside from being very slow, and often giving you the impression that something is amiss — you’ll find in Windows 7, (right now) you’ll have no luck at all.

Disable PDF in browser

2. Is it … PDF groun… PDF groundhog day?

Try clearing your browser’s cache — or even downloading the file on another computer — if you want to be sure. An errant duplicate file hiding away in your system can stop you getting the latest copy. Your PC will continue to serve up the half-baked one that was causing you problems in the first place.

Clear browser cache

3. Ooops, I guess I shouldn’t have gone with the cheap one…

Contact the person who has provided you with the file — maybe they slipped up in the PDF conversion process. Not all PDF converters are created equal — perhaps ask them to try another. You’ll find a whole lot of free creators out there – we’ve compiled a comprehensive list that we regularly update.

List of free pdf creators

4. Say there, anyone seen my PDF file?

Check the file size — if it’s close to nothing (i.e. 1-2 kb), then chances are — you never got the whole thing in the first place. It was somehow lost on along the way… see if you can’t find it somewhere else.

Empty file

5. Hmm, are you really a PDF file, or just glad to see me?

Take a look at the filename — maybe when it ran through your virus scanner or email security system, it had an extra few characters added on the end. If you want your PDF to open, it definitely has to have .PDF on the end. Try as hard as you like — you just won’t be able to open Britney’s latest .mp3 in Adobe Reader.

Dud extensions

6. I don’t think anyone is going to mind me having a quick look.

Sometimes you’ll find that PDFs have been locked down with standard password security (the type that is built into Adobe Reader). For those — you need to write nicely back to the person who gave you the file and ask for the password …

You need the password

7. This PDF will self-destruct in 10 minutes!

You’ll also find some forms of security that’d sit nicely on the set of Mission Impossible. That’s right, they literally become a useless pile of bytes after a given number of days (or hours!). Unless your name is Tom Cruise, you’d probably best giving those a miss.

Custom security

Well for now — good luck to you, if you’ve got any other problems (with answers please!) post a comment and we’ll add them to the list…

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One Comment »

  • PDF does not open ! said:

    […] by our sister site, 4XPDF for a quick top 7 reasons (and solutions) for what to do when your PDF will not open: 1. The display in browser feature is a dead […]

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