Adobe Acrobat Reader DC fails to open in Windows 10? This can happen for a number of reasons. For example, the program may not have sufficient permissions to run correctly. Or, there might be some in-game compatibility issues.
A corrupt installation of Adobe Acrobat Reader DC may also prevent the program from launching on your desktop. Fortunately, there are several fixes that can help you get Acrobat Reader DC back up and running. Let’s find out and check them out.
Execute as administrator
Try to run Acrobat Reader DC with elevated rights. To do this, right-click the Acrobat Reader DC shortcut on your desktop and click Run as administrator. In the User Account Control dialog box that appears, click Yes.
If Acrobat Reader DC starts correctly, you can still configure the shortcut to run the program with administrative rights. Start by right-clicking on the Acrobat Reader DC shortcut. Then select Properties.
In the Properties dialog box that appears, switch to the Shortcut tab, select Advanced, check the box next to Run as administrator, and click OK.
Run in compatibility mode
To eliminate compatibility issues with Windows 10, run Acrobat Reader DC in compatibility mode.
Start by right-clicking the Acrobat Reader DC icon on the desktop. Then select Properties. In the Properties dialog box, switch to the Compatibility tab, check the box under Compatibility Mode and select Windows 8. Click Apply and OK.
If you are still having the same problem, try setting Compatibility Mode to Windows 7. You can also use the Program Compatibility Troubleshooter (click Run the Compatibility Troubleshooter) to detect and troubleshoot compatibility issues in Acrobat Reader DC.
End background processes
Acrobat Reader DC still fails to open? Ending all background processes related to the program can help.
To do this, right-click on the Start menu and select Task Manager. Then click More Details to expand the default view of Task Manager.
Switch to the Processes tab, select each background process related to Acrobat Reader DC (as shown in the screenshot above), and click End Task.
Once you’ve done that, try to open Acrobat Reader DC again.
Disable Protected Mode
Acrobat Reader DC uses a feature called Protected Mode to protect your computer from malicious PDF documents. In rare cases, Protected Mode can also prevent the program from loading. Therefore, try to disable it.
Since you obviously cannot open Acrobat Reader DC to turn off Protected Mode, you have to use the Registry Editor for that.
Step 1: Press Windows + R, type regedit, then click OK to open the system registry.
2nd step: Copy the following path to the address bar of the Registry Editor window and press Enter:
Step 3: Double-click on the registry entry titled bProtectedMode.
Step 4: Set the value to “0” and click OK.
Step 5: Exit the registry editor.
Try to run Acrobat Reader DC. If it starts up successfully, you can continue to use the program with Protected Mode turned off. However, this makes Acrobat Reader DC less secure. Consider continuing with the rest of the fixes to completely resolve the issue.
If you want to check if re-enabling Protected Mode is causing the problem to recur, go to Edit> Preferences> Security (Enhanced), and select the Enable Protected Mode on startup check box.
Update Windows 10
Have you recently updated Windows 10? Running outdated Windows versions often causes problems with applications such as Adobe Acrobat Reader DC.
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To install the latest Windows 10 updates, open the Start menu, type Windows Update, then press Enter. Click Check for Updates and install any pending updates. Then restart your computer and try to launch Acrobat Reader DC.
Remove and reinstall
If you are still having problems, you need to reinstall Adobe Acrobat Reader DC. Before doing this, it is better to use Adobe Reader DC and Acrobat DC Cleaner Tool to completely remove the program from your computer.
Step 1: Restart your computer.
2nd step: Download Adobe Reader DC and Acrobat DC Cleaner Tool.
Step 3: Run Adobe Reader DC and Acrobat DC Cleaner Tool.
Step 5: Click Clean Now to start the removal process.
Step 6: Restart your computer after Adobe Reader DC and Acrobat DC Cleaner Tool have finished removing Acrobat Reader DC.
Step 7: Download Adobe Acrobat Reader DC.
Step 8: Right click on the configuration file and select Properties. Under the Compatibility tab, check the box next to “ Run this program in compatibility mode for ” and select Windows 8 or Windows 7.
Step 9: Install Adobe Acrobat Reader DC.
Step 10: Restart your computer after the installation procedure.
Try to run Acrobat Reader DC. It should probably open without problems.
Back to work
If you have successfully restarted Acrobat Reader DC, be sure to update it regularly. To do this, open the Help menu and select Check for Updates. Having the latest updates to Acrobat Reader DC should minimize your chances of experiencing similar issues in the future. Remember to update Windows 10 often too.
Did you know that you can open PDF files in separate Adobe Acrobat Reader DC windows? Here is how to do that.
Last updated on Oct 12, 2020
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