Adobe Acrobat Troubleshooting Guide

The Adobe Acrobat files on this web site have been downloaded hundreds of times by every sort of computer possible. The files are have been checked and re-checked for errors. After investigating a dozen or so complaints from folks who have had trouble downloading the files, I have been able to identify several possible errors you may encounter while downloading -- all of the errors have been on the part of the end-user, not our web server.

First: Make sure you are using Adobe Acrobat Reader 6.0 or above to read these files, version 4 and below will not work.

Second: If you are downloading the files from a web browser make sure you save it as a "Source" document, not as a "Text" document. If you saved it as a "Text" document the Reader will ask you for a "Password" before it tries to open it (it still will not open the file, even with a password).

Third: Some web browsers allow you to see the first page of an Acrobat document before it finishes downloading the rest of the file. Make sure you allow the entire file to download before you attempt to save it or go on to another page.

Fourth: If the files take an extremely long time to download, your Internet Service Provider might be experiencing excessive traffic (I can’t do anything about that!). These files usually download at about 3k per second with a 28.8 modem. This means a 120k file will take about 40 seconds to download. If your download times are taking too long just come back at a time when your ISP has less traffic (the best time is after midnight).

Fifth: A suggestion from Wayne Goff: "Using AOL, I was getting blank screens and a frozen computer when I tried to use Adobe Acrobat Reader. I contacted Adobe and found a solution: 'PDF Pages Appear Blank Inside Web Browser Window.’ The solution is this: Rather than clicking on the site, you click on the right mouse button which gives you the option to download the file to disk. After downloading the file, you can then call it up under the Acrobat Reader and everything works fine."

(Used with the permission of the author, David Padfield, of Zion, Illinois)