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[Solved] How to Repair Adobe Reader: 7 Ways to Fix

Adobe Reader is the most widely used app to access PDF files. Almost everyone who interacts with PDFs has used Adobe Reader. However, it is not uncommon to see users complaining about malfunctions in Adobe Reader.

Most users see the prompt that Adobe Reader has stopped working whenever they try to access PDFs with it. If you are also struggling with this issue, then don't worry. It is a common issue and a fixable one. In this guide, we will discuss in detail the main causes behind Adobe Reader malfunction and then present a few of the best fixes to repair Adobe Reader. So, let's get started!

Part 1. Why Your Adobe Acrobat Reader Doesn't Work Properly?

Adobe Acrobat Reader is just like any other software that can occasionally face malfunctions. Different users can have different reasons behind the issues they face with Adobe Reader. So, we have below compiled all the likely reasons that can lead to its crash/malfunction:

  • Corrupted installation
  • Outdated version
  • Corrupted PDF files
  • Insufficient system resources (disk space, RAM, etc.)
  • Interference of security software
  • Buggy software update
  • Windows update issue
  • Interference from Adobe "Protection Mode" feature

All the above reasons are proven to be likely causing Adobe Reader issues. Now, let's shift our focus to the best possible ways to repair Adobe Acrobat Reader.


This article is authored by Superace, a globally known PDF brand. Its widely used product, UPDF, is a powerful PDF reader and editor tool that offers Adobe similar functionalities. However, its intelligent design and continuous updates ensure seamless operations without any malfunctions. In case you are facing troubles with Acrobat Reader, it is recommended to use UPDF for reading, annotating, editing, and doing other activities with PDF.

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Part 2. How to Repair Adobe Acrobat Reader

Just like there are different reasons behind Adobe Reader malfunctions, there are also different software repair methods. The method choice depends on the main cause behind the malfunction.

Since you don't know the root cause, it is suggested you follow the below repairs one by one until you find the solution that works for you:

Fix 1. Check for Updates

Maybe you haven't updated the Adobe Reader version, which is why it has now started malfunctioning. So, you should check for updates and install them. Follow the below steps to repair Adobe Reader by updating the tool:

  1. Launch Adobe Reader.
  2. Click the "Help" tab from the top and then click "Check for Updates".
  1. If it finds the update, install it.

Once the update is installed, the issue should no longer be there.

Fix 2. Repair Installation

Occasionally, the installation process of Adobe Reader misses some files, or the files get corrupted. If this happens, the program may not function properly. The good thing is that Adobe Reader comes with a built-in "Repair Installation" option that can auto-correct missed or corrupted files.

Below are the steps to perform the Adobe Reader repair installation process:

  1. Launch Adobe Reader.
  2. Click the "Help" tab from the top and then click "Repair Installation".
  1. Click "Yes" to confirm your request and initiate the process.

Once the repair process is completed, start using Adobe Reader again and see if the issue is resolved.

Fix 3. Change Compatibility and Administrative Settings

If the problem has occurred after the Windows update, then the chances are that the update has disturbed the Adobe Reader compatibility. However, we can change the compatibility to fix the issue.

Follow the below steps to repair Adobe Reader by changing the compatibility and administrative settings:

  1. Go to the directory where you have installed Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  2. Right-click the "Adobe.exe" file and click "Properties".
  3. Go to the "Compatibility" tab. Select your Windows version and tick the "Run this program in compatibility mode for" checkbox.
  1. Tick the "Run this program as an administrator" checkbox.
  2. Once done, click Apply > OK.

Now launch Adobe Reader and see if the issue is resolved.

Fix 4. Run Compatibility Troubleshooter

If switching the compatibility mode in the above fix didn't resolve the issue, then Adobe also allows you to run a compatibility troubleshooter to identify and fix the compatibility issues. So, follow the below steps to repair Adobe Acrobat Reader by running compatibility troubleshooter:

  1. Open File Explorer and go to the directory: "C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Acrobat DC\Acrobat".
  2. Right-click the "Adobe.exe" file and click "Properties".
  3. Go to the "Compatibility" tab.
  4. Click "Run compatibility troubleshooter".

Once the process is completed, run Adobe Reader.

Fix 5. Add Adobe to the Antivirus Exclusion List

Sometimes, the antivirus installed in your Windows may have considered Adobe.exe a malicious file. So, you should add Adobe.exe under the antivirus exclusion list as follows:

  1. Open "Windows Security".
  2. Click "Virus & threat protection".
  3. Under "Virus & threat protection settings", click "Manage settings".
  4. Click "Add or remove exclusions" and then add Adobe.exe to the exclusion list.

If you use another antivirus, add Adobe.exe to its exclusion list.

Fix 6. Uninstall and Reinstall Adobe Reader

If none of the above fixes have resolved the issue, then you should reinstall Adobe Reader. This will help to have a fresh Adobe Reader installed, free from any internal bugs. Follow the below steps to uninstall and reinstall Adobe Reader:

  1. Click the "Windows" logo from the taskbar and then click "Settings".
  2. Click Apps > Installed apps.
  3. Select Adobe Acrobat and "uninstall" it.
  1. Go to Adobe Acrobat's official website to download Adobe Reader.
  2. Once downloaded, launch the setup and complete the installation.

After installing, test out the functionality of Adobe Reader and see if it runs smoothly now.

Fix 7. Uninstall Windows Update

Even if reinstalling didn't repair Adobe Reader, it means there is something wrong with Windows. So, if you have recently updated Windows, you should roll back the update to fix the issue. Here's how to do it:

  1. Click the "Windows" logo from the taskbar and then click "Settings".
  2. Click Windows Update > Update history.
  1. Click "Uninstall updates".

Once the update is uninstalled, launch Adobe Reader and see how it works now.

That's it! So, all the above 7 fixes are likely going to repair Adobe Acrobat Reader. However, if you get overwhelmed looking at all the steps, then try out UPDF, which is a better alternative to Adobe Reader. UPDF incorporates all the features you get with Adobe Reader and even more advanced ones in a most user-friendly interface.

So, if you want to get rid of Adobe Reader malfunctions, download UPDF and use a more powerful tool to access PDFs. To learn more about UPDF, check the next part.

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Part 3. The Reliable and Better Alternative to Adobe Reader – UPDF

Adobe Reader is a handy app to access PDFs if it keeps working properly. However, if you have to deal with performance malfunctions continuously without knowing the root cause, then it can hinder the experience. For such situations, opting for a better alternative to Adobe Reader is a smart choice. This is where UPDF comes into action.

UPDF is an AI-driven PDF reader and editor tool that offers all PDF-related features under one roof. With UPDF, you can read, edit, annotate, convert, and do a lot more. It is compatible with all four major platforms, including Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. However, what makes UPDF a better alternative to Adobe Reader is its more interactive interface, advanced features, and cost-friendly rates.

Below is a quick glimpse of all the key features you can access with UPDF:

  • View/Read PDFs: It offers the best PDF viewing/reading experience with features like multiple page layouts, different scrolling options, light/dark mode, slideshow, etc.
  • Annotate PDFs: It provides a wide range of annotation tools to highlight, draw, underline, mark, add stamps/stickers/textboxes/comments, etc.
  • Edit PDFs: It can add and edit text, images, links, backgrounds, and almost all elements of a PDF.
  • Compress PDFs: It can shrink the size of large PDFs without compromising the layout.
  • Convert PDFs: It can convert PDFs to Word, PowerPoint, Excel, images, text, RTF, CSV, HTML, etc.
  • AI Assistant: Its UPDF AI is an AI chatbot that helps you chat with PDFs and get summaries, translations, explanations, and other Q&As.
  • Protect PDFs: It can password-protect PDFs and also support the redaction of sensitive information.
  • Organize PDFs: It can add, delete, crop, extract, split, and rotate PDF pages.
  • OCR PDFs: Its OCR technology lets you extract text from image-based documents.
  • Fill and Sign: It offers a click-based interface to create fillable forms or fill and sign forms.
  • Batch PDFs: It can batch insert, convert, combine, print, and encrypt PDFs.
  • Cost-Friendly: It costs just $35.99/year compared to Abode's expensive $155.88/year.

Overall, you get all the top-notch PDF-related features under one roof with UPDF. So, why wait more? UPDF is currently offering the biggest sale of the year. So, head to the UPDF website, explore its features, and download and purchase UPDF right away.

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Part 4. FAQs About Adobe Acrobat Reader

Q1. Is there no longer a free Adobe Reader?

No, a few Adobe Reader features are still accessible to you for free. You can use Adobe Reader for free if you want to read, fill, sign, and send PDFs.

Q2. How do I clear errors in Adobe Reader?

Follow the below methods to clear errors in Adobe Reader:

  • Update your Adobe Reader to the latest version.
  • Use the built-in "Repair Installation" feature to fix installation-related errors.
  • Change compatibility and administrative settings.
  • Run Adobe's compatibility troubleshooter.
  • Add Adobe to the antivirus exclusion list
  • Uninstall Windows updates

Implement the above fixes one by one until the issue is resolved.

Q3. Why my Adobe Reader is not working?

Your Adobe Reader may not be working due to one of the possible reasons:

  • Corrupted installation
  • Outdated version
  • Corrupted PDF files
  • Insufficient system resources (disk space, RAM, etc.)
  • Interference of security software
  • Buggy software update
  • Windows update issue
  • Interference from Adobe "Protection Mode" feature

So, try to find the root cause of the malfunction and then implement mitigation measures accordingly.


Every year, users complain that their Adobe Reader is malfunctioning. This can happen due to any issue within the Adobe Reader tool or the Windows OS. Therefore, follow the above fixes one by one and repair Adobe Reader. However, if the problem still remains or you want a quick solution, then opt for UPDF – the better and more powerful alternative to Adobe Acrobat. Its click-based interactive interface, rich set of features, and cost-friendliness let it fulfill all your needs without any malfunctions. To wrap up, download UPDF and end your struggles with malfunctioning Adobe Reader.

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