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Saturday, July 10, 2010

Adobe Acrobat Reader Blank Question Mark Error

There is a strange adobe acrobat reader error popping up around the place that just pops up with a blank error box with a question mark and no clue to what the error is.

It looks something like this

The error usually occurs when you try and open a pdf file from within your web browser, try different browsers to see if its only happening with a particular browser (most common for internet explorer and mozilla firefox)

Steps to correct this issue

1. Update Adobe Acrobat Reader

open up adobe acrobat reader click Help -> Check for Updates you may need to restart your computer

2. Reinstall Adobe Acrobat reader

uninstall and reinstall adobe acrobat reader, the issue is sometimes caused by a bad pdf plugin in your web browser. try switching web browsers and reinstalling the pdf plugin.

3. Uncheck open PDF within web browser

this will usually fix the issue instead of choosing to open the pdf within the web browser itself, the pdf file will just open up acrobat reader before trying to open the file, pretty much the same thing anyway

Edit - > Preferences -> Internet Tab


  1. Step 3 is NOT a valid solution for anyone that uses fillable forms that auto-fill from a website. A PATCH is justified Adobe..

  2. 28/07/2011
    I have a web browser in a app and got this error, so i did as shown above but then it just opened the pdf as you would normally open a pdf so i put the tick back and it is ok at the moment

  3. We have found that "dumbing down" the Theme (right-click desktop -> Personalize)to Windows 7 Basic is a workaround to this. Would like to find a better solution.

    1. THIS WORKED...I can't believe it. thanks

  4. yes changing theme works thanks a lot

  5. As weird as it sounds, changing the Theme worked... Thanks..

  6. Thank you very much, it worked for me as well!

  7. Don't understand the correlation between the Theme and this issue, but switching to Basic worked for me as well! Thanks!!!