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Solving PDF problems

Question : My browser sometimes freezes up when I try to view a PDF file on a website.

Answer : The free Adobe Reader software used to display Portable Document Format files can be less than reliable, especially when it runs as a plugin inside the Mozilla Firefox browser.

If your browser gets stuck on a blank page when you try viewing a PDF on the Web, you can regain control by shutting down the Adobe software.

Hit the Ctrl, Shift and Esc keys to open the Task Manager, click its Processes tab, select the "AcroRD32.exe" listing and click the "End Process" button.

Your browser should spring back to life. Try reloading the offending PDF, in case the plugin got confused halfway through the download.

If that fails, save the PDF to your hard drive to view it outside your browser : Right-click the PDF link, select "Save link as ..." ( in Firefox ) or "Save Target As ... " ( in Internet Explorer ), and double-click the downloaded file.

Adobe Reader -- which in addition to its stability issues can also be a nuisance to install and update -- isn't the only PDF-viewing option.

The free Foxit Reader 2.0 ( http://foxitsoftware.com ) runs much faster and more reliably than Adobe's software. It doesn't, however, run inside Firefox, so when you click a PDF link you'll be switched to the Foxit REader program.


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