One of the most frequent conversations we see online about Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader are about updates. When their software is running smoothly, many users wonder why there are updates at all. To help keep everyone in the loop on why we update when we do, here are a few thoughts on what makes these updates crucial to the health of your software.
Why should you update?
The most important reason for updating your Adobe Acrobat and Adobe Reader software is security. These updates safeguard your system against malicious attacks that may be executed through universally-used PDF files. Updates also improve basic functionality and features associated within Acrobat and Reader, including addressing any lingering bugs.
Why are there so many updates?
Actually, since Acrobat and Adobe Reader version 10.1 we have only released updates on a quarterly basis, following Microsoft’s model of a “Patch Tuesday” (see http://helpx.adobe.com/acrobat/release-note/release-notes-acrobat-reader.html) Only once have we had to release an “out-of-cycle” patch that fell between these quarterly releases (in February of 2013). Also, these quarterly updates are cumulative so you don’t have to install multiple updates to get to the current version and keep your system and files safe. If you do receive multiple update messages, just make sure the last update did fully install.
Taking control of updates
Although we don’t recommend it (unless you’re an IT wizard managing controlled desktops within an organization), some of you probably prefer to update your Acrobat or Reader software yourselves instead of having Adobe run the updates for you. In that case, you’ll need to disable the automatic updates. Just, you know… remember to run the updates – maybe if you’re going out to lunch, take a few minutes to get the installation going. When you get back, Acrobat and Reader will be ready to go with the most up-to-date version installed.
Now that you get the logic of updating your Acrobat and Reader software, we hope you’ll install the updates as we publish them. Unfortunately, we do occasionally hear from people who are trying their best to update, but run into some trouble when they try to install the new software. If you find yourself scratching your head over an Acrobat or Reader update, below are some troubleshooting steps and remedies for you to try:
For Mac users:
- Reinstall Reader or Acrobat.
- See this link for instructions on how to do this.
- Follow these steps if installation “hangs” (stalls).
For Windows users:
If reinstalling Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader is the route you have to go to make sure you have the latest version, the Adobe Cleaner tool is a great thing to know about. The Adobe Reader and Acrobat Cleaner Tool is designed to fix corrupt installations, files, and changing permission registry entries – scary-sounding stuff, we know; all you really need to know is that the Cleaner Tool can take care of the messy behind-the-scenes to make sure that your reinstallation goes smoothly.