Adobe Reader Has Screwed Up PDFs in Safari

Discussion in 'macOS' started by borisiii, Nov 5, 2011.

  1. borisiii macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    #1
    I am having trouble opening PDFs in Safari. Whenever there is a PDF embedded in a page, I get an empty space with "missing plug-in" displayed.

    I have done some searching and it seems the problem is related to Adobe Reader 10 and Safari 5.1 – I have AR installed (I need it for PDF forms and documents containing greek letters that sometimes don't display properly in Preview) however I very rarely use it and I keep Preview as my default app for PDFs because the interface is much better.

    I have never used the AR Safari Plugin – I unchecked it at installation so it has never been on my computer, however some aspect of the installation has screwed up the way Safari handles PDFs.

    If I could get it to work by uninstalling AR that would be a reasonable compromise and I would be happy to get by without AR. Unfortunately there is no proper uninstall tool (it installs using a pkg file) and moving it to the trash and emptying it then restarting doesn't help.

    Basically, even after removing it, AR has crippled my computer. Short of reinstalling Lion (although I fear time machine might even bring the problem back), is there anything I can do to restore the way Safari works with PDFs? Is it possible to reinstall Preview and Safari, and might that even help? I need to access these documents for my masters research project, and to me a workaround such as using a different browser or PDF program isn't really a solution.

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    Just install the plugin. Adobe Reader didn't cause any problems. Safari needs the plugin to display PDFs.
     
  3. borisiii thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    #3
    Thanks for the suggestion, but the reason I don't just use the Adobe Reader plugin is because it sucks! It has choppy scrolling, and pinch to zoom and all the other gestures don't work. I'm looking to get it back to the standard Preview plugin.

    Do you have any ideas how I might be able to get it back to the default? Thanks.
     
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #4
    AFAIK, there isn't a Preview plugin. Preview is an app that you can use to view PDFs, but not in Safari. My preferred method is to download any PDF and view them with Safari... it's faster than trying to view them in Safari.
     
  5. borisiii thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    #5
    Maybe it isn't a Preview plugin, but I am referring to the default Safari handling of PDFs, which works just like Preview.

    The problem is I can't even do what you suggest – the PDFs I want to view are embedded in frames within web pages – they have the website logo at the top and a sidebar with links to other pages. If I load the page with the PDF I get the "missing plug-in" message, but if I right click the link to the page and choose "Download Linked File" it downloads some random HTML and not the PDF. Right now I can't even get to the PDFs, so I can't download them or open them in a different app – they even don't appear in Safari's activity window.

    Before installing Adobe Reader it all worked perfectly. The process of installing it has broken this functionality. I think I need to completely remove all traces of Adobe Reader, but there isn't an uninstall tool and dragging it to the trash doesn't work. I'm really stuck for ideas here...
     
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #6
    The most effective method for complete app removal is manual deletion:
     
  7. borisiii thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    #7
    Thanks again for your help. I found and managed to delete a few plists etc. but it still isn't working like before.

    To show you what is happening, here is a screenshot of the same page loaded in Lion and XP. Lion used to behave in essentially the way as XP before I installed Reader.

    Sorry I had to blur almost all of the text on the page, since I deal with commercially sensitive documents.
     

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    • XP.jpg
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