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March 4, 2013

Adobe Reader XI: Not just for reading anymore (Part II)

In our last post, we were talking about all the time-saving ways you could use Adobe’s online document services through Adobe Reader XI; now, we’d like to share just how to get that work done. But here’s the thing: there is no way to explain just how simple it is to use these services. Will that keep us from trying? No way. As soon as you catch on, feel free to open up Adobe Reader and try it yourself (we don’t think it will take you very long).

The key to using any of the services – with or without Adobe Reader – is your Adobe ID. It’s how you identify yourself to each service, and it’s how you sync all of your information between Reader, Reader Mobile,, and any of the other services you’re using. (Don’t have one? Don’t worry. You can create one for free at any place you would otherwise sign in; you can even do so within Adobe Reader! Read on.) There are several ways to sign in from within Adobe Reader, but one of the quickest ways is to open up your Tools pane; here’s what that looks like:

  1. Click on “Tools” in the upper right corner of the application.
  2. Once the Tools pane is open, you’ll see a little blue bar at the top of the pane with a “Sign In” link. Click on that. (If you see your name there already, you’re already signed in – good work!)
  3. A pop-up window will appear where you’ll be able to sign in. If you don’t have an Adobe ID, you can create one with that same pop-up window.

Easy, right? And now that you’re signed in, you can access any of the services in that Tools pane. All of your subscriptions are associated with your Adobe ID, so if you’ve subscribed to one or more of the services, you’ll have those paid options available to you. Otherwise, you’ll have access to the services at their free or trial level, where available (for more info on pricing, see:, SendNow, ExportPDF, CreatePDF.). Here’s how to access each of the services from Reader:

  1. Export a PDF file to Word or Excel by expanding the “Export PDF” panel. Choose the PDF file to convert (the document that’s currently open will be the default here), and choose the format you’d like to convert it to (.docx, .doc, .xls, or .rtf). Click on “Convert”, and watch the magic happen. When the conversion is finished, you’ll be prompted to save the converted file to your computer – or, if you prefer, directly to an Office 365 or SharePoint location. Want to give it a shot? Subscribe to ExportPDF.
  2. Create a new PDF file by opening up the panel marked “Create PDF”; just click to choose the file you’d like to use. As with ExportPDF, you can choose from locations on your computer or from an online location. Now click “Convert”. Give Adobe Reader a few seconds to communicate with the CreatePDF servers, and voila – you’ll get a prompt to open the newly converted PDF file in Adobe Reader. Have we even had to leave Adobe Reader yet? No. Convert your own files by subscribing to CreatePDF.
  3. When it comes to sending files with Adobe SendNow, you’ll see some options: choose the file and the recipient, and then write a message to be delivered along with the file. You can decide whether you’d like your recipient to sign in for access to the file; you can opt for delivery receipts to find out when the file has been downloaded; and you can limit the time that the file will be available for download. All without ever leaving the Adobe Reader window you’ve got open already. For the full range of features, try a SendNow subscription.
  4. Finally, open up that last panel to upload the current document to for secure storage and access from any device; the free service includes 2 GB of storage space and hooks into Adobe Reader Mobile for reading on the road. You don’t even need a subscription for this service; just use your Adobe ID to access your own cloud storage account.

When we told you that Adobe Reader wasn’t just for reading anymore, maybe you thought that we were being facetious. We were not: Adobe Reader XI grants you access to all these services and more, and all you need to get started is an Adobe ID. Time to give Adobe Reader another look, people; see what this software can do to amp up your workflow and inject some more time into your day by downloading it for free.

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  • By Stuart - 11:55 AM on March 11, 2013  

    very productive

    • By joiemikitson - 4:53 PM on March 11, 2013  

      Thanks very much, Stuart. For more tips on productivity & Reader updates, check out our twitter feed at

  • By Tony - 4:08 PM on March 12, 2013  

    I am trying to install Adobe Reader XI…I currently have Adobe Reader 10.1.4 installed on my windows vista…I am redirected from XI to the download page for 10.1.4…Can you help with downloading Adobe Reader XI ???

    • By joiemikitson - 9:16 PM on March 12, 2013  

      The last version of Adobe Reader for Windows Vista was Reader X which is why the page is redirecting you. Please see the Adobe Reader XI System Requirements here: That said, it is possible to install Adobe Reader XI on Windows Vista, but it’s not an environment we support.

  • By pw dlamini - 12:13 PM on March 14, 2013  

    im worried now this adobe reader doesn’t wanna open my online documents like study material on my unisa,whats happening?

    • By joiemikitson - 4:24 PM on March 14, 2013  

      Could you please be more specific about your issue? Is it a problem with installation or is it just not opening now?

  • By wilson - 11:43 PM on March 14, 2013  


  • By Dana - 8:36 AM on March 15, 2013  

    Adobe reader XI maám nainstalovaný, Ale nejdou vůbec otevřít a číst dokumenty.Proč?

  • By Brian Bowers - 6:16 PM on March 17, 2013  

    I am still using Window XP (and loving it). I use Adobe Reader 8.3.1. Is that the correct version for me? How can I convert pdf documents to Word documents?

    • By joiemikitson - 5:56 PM on March 18, 2013  

      Hi Brian, the latest version of Adobe Reader available for Windows XP is Reader XI. You can download Reader XI by visiting

  • By victor munsaka - 2:10 PM on March 18, 2013  

    I’m trying to down load adobe reader on my windows phone
    7 but I can’t manage please help

  • By Hector - 9:09 PM on March 19, 2013  

    I download adobe reader to my iPhone 4
    When I go to start keeps telling me I got
    A invalid email address and pswd

    • By joiemikitson - 6:17 PM on March 20, 2013  

      Hi Hector. Try launching Adobe Reader and clicking ‘’ at the bottom of the screen. Try signing out and signing back in with your Adobe ID. If you’re not using, you can just stay signed out.

  • By Kathy - 5:52 PM on March 23, 2013  

    Cannot open any PDF since installing 11.0.2 on my Windows XP. Tried all the suggestions on Adobe. com/support, (changing/reparing) even deleting and readding 3 times. No luck. Don’t know what else to try.
    One error message appeared asking to open with protected mode disabled. Dissappeared and can’t get it back. Truly exasperated. Help needed for this non-geek.

  • By Colon J. Hamilton - 3:01 AM on March 24, 2013  

    Why cant I find an adobe flash ap for zzz Galaxy s lll .
    Adobe reader and others but not many news videos say you nee d flash

  • By Nisha - 7:05 AM on March 30, 2013  

    I encounter this error everytime I try to download adobe XI on my windows XP – Adobe Bootstrapper for Single Installation has encountered a problem and needs to close. We are sorry for the inconvenience. Can you please help

    • By joiemikitson - 12:55 PM on March 31, 2013  

      This is certainly an unusual error and the cause could be any of a number of things. There are some suggested solutions within this thread: Give them a try and let us know if we can be of further assistance.

  • By bobby - 4:48 PM on April 10, 2013  

    problem with chinese text, very annoying. adobe xi can not copy-and-paste chinese text properly, not even if i try to paste it in the very pdf document “search tool”: it comes up with something that looks like “text code”. in other documents, reader xi is considering text as image (previous versions rendered it as text).
    os: windows7, just upgraded to adobe reader xi, downloaded east asian font pack, too.
    hope you can fix it or i’ll switch back to older version. very annoying.

  • By bobby - 2:51 PM on April 13, 2013  

    Thank you for your reply, now it seems all is working. can’t say why, but after a reboot all went ok, and the problem disappeared. So no need to ask for solution, thank you anyway.

  • By Cherie - 2:41 AM on April 23, 2013  

    I use the comment & markup tools in Adobe Reader 9 to mark up page proofs that are sent to me as pdf files. I couldn’t find a way to keep the tool I was using selected in Reader X–it required me to click on a tool icon each and every time I used it, which was a pain–so I jettisoned it. Does Reader XI have a way to keep tools selected (or, if the flaw is with me, not the program, can you tell me how to do it )?

    • By joiemikitson - 3:38 PM on April 23, 2013  

      Hi Cherie, Whether in Reader X or Reader XI, you can add multiple comments without reselecting the tool. 1. Select the tool you want to use (but don’t use it yet). 2. Right-click (Windows) or Control-click (Mac OS) and choose Keep Tool Selected. Hope that helps.

      • By Cherie - 4:22 PM on April 23, 2013  

        Thanks. That does help.

  • By Judith - 7:06 PM on April 23, 2013  

    With Reader XI… how can we prevent user from “save as” option… Protect from Print already on the document.
    Thank you

    • By joiemikitson - 10:23 PM on April 23, 2013  

      Preventing saving is not possible. If the PDF is being viewed on the system, it is already saved locally and may simply be copied to where ever the user desires. There are other products that can restrict some of the uses of a PDF at a higher security, but these additional features are not available with Acrobat or Reader.

  • By Heather - 7:20 PM on April 23, 2013  

    I installed the Adobe Reader 10.5.2 (build 73784) app on my Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet and the highlight feature will not work on the scanned pdfs we need it to work on. It does nothing when we choose highlight and drag the S- Pen over the text. These are scanned forms we need to annotate.

    • By joiemikitson - 10:25 PM on April 23, 2013  

      Hi Heather. Scanned PDF files don’t contain renderable text unless they’ve had optical character recognition applied to them first. Essentially the text can’t be highlighted now because it’s still an image. Check out this video for steps on how you can use Acrobat to OCR your document:

      • By Tony - 7:56 PM on June 24, 2013  

        Someone I work with says she used to be able to highlight text from scannedPDF files without having to do anything special, but since a recent upgrade to XI, she can no longer highlight. Was this a change from X to XI?

  • By macbookpro818 - 3:10 PM on April 25, 2013  

    Hi, I have a macbook pro and trying to open a couple of PDF file off a website. I can open all of them PDF files except two of them and they prompt me with this message everytime I click on it:

    Please wait…
    If this message is not eventually replaced by the proper contents of the document, your PDF viewer may not be able to display this type of document.
    You can upgrade to the latest version of Adobe Reader for Windows®, Mac, or Linux® by visiting
    For more assistance with Adobe Reader visit acrreader.html.

    The page wasn’t replaced by “proper documents” so I clicked on the link and successfully downloaded adobe reader. I tried to go back to the link to open PDF and still got the same prompt. I tried it on my other computer and it does the same thing.

    Am I missing something?

    I hope to hear from you!

    • By joiemikitson - 3:12 PM on April 26, 2013  

      We’d be happy to help. Which browser are you using and where are you accessing these PDFs from?

  • By Mary - 2:33 PM on April 29, 2013  

    I suddenly cannot read my bank statements this month…adobe not reading. My bank tells me it is internet exployer not connecting with adobe XI which is have…
    What to do…blank screen appears on my bank web site with a blue circle in uppper left hand corrner with a blue line through the circle.

    • By joiemikitson - 8:48 PM on April 29, 2013  

      Have you tried other browsers like Chrome or Safari? We recommend that you first update Reader or Acrobat. Then look for problems with the PDF, check the browser settings, and then look at repairing or re-installing Reader. For more information take a look at this help page

  • By shai - 5:39 PM on May 15, 2013  

    I need help…I am stoked about HTML5 (in a way)…I am deathly afraid of this stuff, and I can not take it; rather my family…I have had some scares. I know I have all this, but that is about it. What first?

    • By joiemikitson - 8:20 PM on May 15, 2013  

      Is there a software related issue we can help you with?

  • By Antony - 10:16 PM on May 18, 2013  

    And how we take off the sign in panel?? I don’t want to use that services.

    • By joiemikitson - 2:16 AM on May 20, 2013  

      Hi Antony, Are you referring to using e-signatures or signing in with your Adobe ID?

  • By mina - 11:25 PM on May 20, 2013  

    how can i save the last page i read on version xi
    i followed that way but it didn’t work : Edit → Preferences… (Ctrl+K)

    In Documents category check the first option:

    Restore last view settings when reopening documents

    Click OK

    • By joiemikitson - 4:20 PM on May 21, 2013  

      Hi Mina, the steps you were taking are the correct ones. It’s odd that it’s not working for you. Have you updated Reader to the latest version? Could you also try repairing Adobe Reader via Help > Repair Adobe Reader Installation?

  • By Carol B - 8:48 PM on May 27, 2013  

    I am trying to open any PDF document using Reader XI version 11.0.03 on a Windows 7 PC and every time it tells me Adobe has encountered a problem and closes. I have re-installed it 3 times and tried repairing the install, no luck. I have never had an issue with Adobe before this.

    • By joiemikitson - 6:48 PM on May 28, 2013  

      Hi Carol, we’re sorry to hear you’re having trouble. What happens if you launch Reader on it’s own, without opening a file?

  • By plastove okna - 6:08 AM on May 29, 2013  

    Very great post. I simply stumbled upon your weblog and wished to say that I’ve really enjoyed surfing around your weblog posts. In any case I will be subscribing in your rss feed and I’m hoping you write again very soon!

  • By Ashley - 3:15 AM on June 11, 2013  

    I also have the same issues as carol b. I cannot open any files, or lauch adobe from my desktop. I’ve downloaded it several times, tried repairing it with no luck. I have a windows 7 pc.

    • By joiemikitson - 7:59 PM on June 11, 2013  

      Hi Ashley, what happens if you launch Adobe Reader first, then choose File > Open?

  • Great info. Lucky me I found your website by accident (stumbleupon).

    I have book-marked it for later!

  • By L Driscoll - 6:59 PM on July 10, 2013  

    In Version 8 we were able to use our digital certificates to sign documents but in Version 11 It is grayed out in sign for place signature. Is there a different way the user must save the document for approvers to sign it? I tried all the help topics that are provided and none are working. I even tried creating a personal certificate or signature to choose but that also did not work. Any help you can give would be greatly helpful.

    • By joiemikitson - 6:08 PM on July 11, 2013  

      Hi there. Have you tried visiting our forums to help answer the question? This link may help you and let us know if you have any more questions: