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Adobe Releases Acrobat Client for Linux 478

DanMan writes "Adobe has released a reader client (Adobe Acrobat Reader 7.0) for the linux operating system. No news on open sourcing the client, but they're making a start. You can download the client from their site."
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Adobe Releases Acrobat Client for Linux

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  • DUPE!!! (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Adobe Reader 7.0 Coming to Linux [] - Described how to download it.
    • Re:DUPE!!! (Score:3, Informative)

      by Cylix ( 55374 ) *
      Yeah, I grabbed it that same day too...

      It was already released then...

      Still, they didn't mention the download location then, so I suppose it counts as the second half of the article with a generous portion of laziness in between.
    • Re:DUPE!!! (Score:3, Funny)

      by mavenguy ( 126559 )
      Oh, come on, give 'em a break.

      It's been almost a whole three weeks since that earth-shattering story... I'm sure most /.'ers totally forgot it.

      Besides, as one TV network exec once said, defending reruns, something to the effect of "If you didn't see it first time, it's new to you!!"
    • Re:DUPE!!! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by metricmusic ( 766303 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:19AM (#12232259) Homepage Journal
      The difference is it is now officially announced while previously someone 'discovered' it on their site. Adobe couldve claimed it was a test, beta product and not given any support for it at all. Now Adobe must stand behind the product it has made, and linux users can now say another big official app has joined their platform of choice.

      Now if only Adobe would bring Photoshop over as well...
  • a start? (Score:3, Informative)

    by R.D.Olivaw ( 826349 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:02AM (#12232130)
    How is this making a start? Acrobat reader 6 didn't count?
    • Re:a start? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Götz ( 18854 ) <> on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:03AM (#12232140) Homepage
      There was no Acrobat reader 6 on Linux, that release was skipped. The last version before 7 was 5.0.10.
    • Re:a start? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Apreche ( 239272 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:10AM (#12232196) Homepage Journal
      AFAIK Acrobat Reader 6 was never released for Linux. Because of this Linux users had to either use the deplorable acroread (Reader 5) or other open source pdf viewers like xpdf, gpdf, etc. All of which were far from perfect. Most of which were painful to use. And none of which supported all the features of newer pdf files like editing forms and such.

      This Acrobat Reader 7 is significant because its the first quality and full featured Linux pdf viewer. It also shows that Adobe aknowledges the existence and importance of Linux and that the demands and complaints made against them about the situation did not go unanswered.
      • Re:a start? (Score:4, Informative)

        by Jonny_eh ( 765306 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:32AM (#12232354)
        Not to mention that it now supports a decent graphics library. It's not ugly anymore, now I believe it uses GTK2. Which means it looks consistent on most desktops with other apps. The previous acroread 5 used it's own graphics library which made it look very inconsistent with other programs.
        • Uses GTK2 is an overstatement, it seems to embed some "adobe-gui" in a gtk canvas.

          Also, it uses an old GTK filerequester, this could probably be fixed though.
      • Re:a start? (Score:3, Interesting)

        by strider44 ( 650833 )
        in my opinion the newest version of kpdf is just as good (if not better) than acrobat reader, however that is for my purposes - I rather an unbloated piece of software that does exactly what I want without all this other crap that tends to get in the way.

        However I haven't found a kpdf firefox plugin so I'm using acrobat reader.
      • Re:a start? (Score:3, Interesting)

        by aonaran ( 15651 )
        Great now hopefully I can get at least one PDF viewer that can print this: arsheet .zip
        with the labels for the 6 major stats intact.

        Can someone who has already downloaded it try this for me?
        In every linux PDF viewer I've used it displays on the screen, but when you print it the STR, DEX, CON, INT, WIS, and CHA labels are blacked out.
    • key mapping! (Score:3, Informative)

      by xixax ( 44677 )
      I hope they actually bother paying attention to my mouse preferences. Version 5 ignores my scroll wheel and it uses clunky Motif widgets (bleagh). More likely they'll only use the opportunity include some of the more unpleasant misfeatures like spying. Xix.
      • Re:key mapping! (Score:3, Informative)

        by afd8856 ( 700296 )
        > ... like spying

        Checked. They've added EcmaScript to the pdf, now it's possible to call websites with that. I think I read right here on ./ about a company that offers pdf tracking.
        • If EcmaScript (a.k.a. JavaScript) bothers you in acroread v7.0, choose edit->preferences->JavaScript and uncheck "Enable Acrobat JavaScript". (NB, this is for the Linux version, I don't know about the others).
      • Re:key mapping! (Score:3, Interesting)

        by ccharles ( 799761 )
        I've been using v7 for about a month (unofficial "beta" version). It works fine with my scroll wheel and is done mostly in GTK+2.

        This is actually a very useable PDF viewer. I've never been fully comfortable in Acroread 5, XPDF or GSview, and I don't like the pile of dependencies on GPDF and KPDF.

        For me, Acroread 7 is the way to go. It'd be nice if it was open, but sometimes we just don't have that luxury...
  • Great (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:03AM (#12232137)
    I've tried it - it's slower than a retarded kid hopped up on goofballs tired to a tree.
    • You just need to go in the installation directory, then in the Plugins subdirectory and remove EVERYTHING BUT these 3 files (just move them somewhere else so you can put them back if you have a problem)


      after I did that and disabled the splash screen Acrobat reader 7 loads up nearly instantaneously on XP. I'm not taking credit for this, I found this tip somewhere I can't quite remember right now and it surely works!

      • You don't have the latest version, I'm thinking. The latest version of reader 7 comes up lightning fast. Reader 6, on the other hand, is slow as molasses.
        • You have a slow PC, if you too are talking about windows. Acrobat 6 comes up quite quickly when you remove all unnecessary plugins. Acrobat 7 uses a tray icon, so it never really quits, or at least it keeps the DLLs warm for you. That's cheating.
      • You just need to go in the installation directory, then in the Plugins subdirectory and remove EVERYTHING BUT these 3 files

        On my Gentoo box, that's in "/opt/Acrobat7/Reader/intellinux/plug_ins", and it's only two files:


        Great tip, starts much faster now.. I'm guessing AcroForm.api is needed for forms, but haven't checked. Seems to work fine for the few pdf's I tried it on though.
    • Re:Great (Score:2, Interesting)

      by SQLz ( 564901 )
      On my system, Athlon XP 2500, is much faster a way more stable than 5. 5 crashes on me whenever I do a search and at other random times.
  • 37Mb??!?!?! (Score:5, Informative)

    by phunkymunky ( 725609 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:04AM (#12232144) Homepage
    37Mb RPM?! I think i'll just stick with gpdf...
    • Re:37Mb??!?!?! (Score:4, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:36AM (#12232380)
      Gpdf is deprecated, use Evince instead.
      It is much much faster, has thumbnails and can search the pdf.

      The only things its missing to catch up with kpdf 3.4 is remembering the site you were, bookmarks, and continous/doublepage -mode.
  • Last Adobe reader was version 5.0. I've needed an update for a while now.

    I honestly don't care if it's open source or not. The reader is free, and that's good enough.

    OT - I clicked "download" on Adobe's site, and RealPlayer tried to play the RPM! Strange....(Fedora Core 3, Firefox 1.02, RealPlayer 10.02.608)

    More OT - FP?
    • OT - I clicked "download" on Adobe's site, and RealPlayer tried to play the RPM! Strange....(Fedora Core 3, Firefox 1.02, RealPlayer 10.02.608)

      It'll do that. I've never had RP installed and *not* had it do that by default.

      Btw, how'd it sound? ;)

  • Direct link (Score:3, Informative)

    by xtracto ( 837672 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:07AM (#12232169) Journal
  • How does Adobe Reader qualify as a client program of any sort? That would require a server component and some sort of protocol between the two, wouldn't it?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:09AM (#12232181)
    The front page five minutes ago should have read: "The next Slashdot story was ready two weeks ago, and subscribers can kick themselves for giving us their money!"
  • "The rate of adoption of Linux among enterprises worldwide is increasing, especially among government and financial services organisations," said Eugene Lee, vice president of product marketing at Adobe.

    It appears by this announcement that Linux is being viewed by the world at large as a viable, everyday, grey-suited respectable OS. Who would have thunk it? I remember the days when it was the pap of those of us living in our parent's basements!! :-P

  • by deacon ( 40533 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:09AM (#12232193) Journal
    Any release of commercial software for Linux is good, and Adobe should be thanked for doing this.

    I have used Xpdf exclusively for a long time. In what way is Adobe reader superior to Xpdf?

    • In what way is Adobe reader superior to Xpdf?

      it's release was duped on /.


      nyak nyak nyak
    • In what way is Adobe reader superior to Xpdf?

      How about visual quality? xpdf renders even the nicest looking pictures like they are ultra-low-res web images. I use gv instead of xpdf because of that.

      How about navigation? How about better handling of links? How about better text selection? etc. I'm still going to stick with gv, but Acrobat Reader certainly has things going for it.
    • I have used Xpdf exclusively for a long time. In what way is Adobe reader superior to Xpdf?

      If all you're doing is viewing simple PDF documents, xpdf and its relatives are fine. But there are a few things the Adobe reader does that xpdf doesn't which I use all the time:

      1. Document markup (this is the most important)
      2. Non-sucky zoom in and out
      3. Non-sucky text selection and copying
      4. The grab hand for dragging the view around
      5. Facing page viewing (this is a big deal when you are preparing documents for press)
      6. Docum
  • is this news? (Score:2, Redundant)

    by gustgr ( 695173 )
    adobe acrobat reader has been out there for a while (at least for 5 or 6 years).
  • by dAzED1 ( 33635 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:11AM (#12232207) Journal
    No news on open sourcing the client, but they're making a start

    What the hell? So is every commercial company out there just supposed to release everything as open source? Good grief Charlie Brown...why would they do that?

    There are plenty of Open Source options for reading pdf's. There's no reason to expect/demand that a commercial software company should open source their products. I mean, come on people...enough is enough.
    • by CarpetShark ( 865376 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @09:45AM (#12233003)

      Well, actually, in this case, yes. Acrobat Reader is just that: a READER. It's doesn't hurt them to release it. In fact, it would bolster sales of their actual product: Acrobat. But more importantly, it's supposed to be a cross-platform format, and if they want to support that, they need to make an open, cross-platform reader.

      Linux is more than just Linux/x86 on one or two distros, and open source is the easiest way to provide products for all of Linux. So they still have a long way to go before they've even done what this article suggests: releasing a Linux version of Reader.

  • acrobat 7 for Linux is definitely an improvement, but after *not* having it and using xpdf, I'm not sure which one I like better.
  • Speedy (Score:5, Funny)

    by Frogbert ( 589961 ) <{frogbert} {at} {}> on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:12AM (#12232216)
    I downloaded, installed and ran it a couple of hours ago. I expect it to be done loading real soon now.
  • by Raul654 ( 453029 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:13AM (#12232217) Homepage
    Pdfs are Unfit for human consumption []
  • both good and bad (Score:2, Insightful)

    by zerkon ( 838861 )
    xpdf has always functioned MUCH faster and with MUCH greater stability than any version of acrobat I've ever seen.

    That said, Any large commercial vendor releasing their software on Linux is a very good thing. Maybe next some more video game vendors will jump on the bandwagon.

    And of course competition is always good. This forces both xpdf and adobe to make themselves better.
  • by iamacat ( 583406 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:14AM (#12232223)
    PDF format is open and there are a number of open source viewers for Linux. I don't think it's that important that Adobe open source their reader or even port it at all. This is just one extra option, no big news for us.
  • Spyware, Encumbered? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Speare ( 84249 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:15AM (#12232230) Homepage Journal
    There's been recent talk about new document "tracking" features that require a call home to read, and other stupid "smart data" junk which require a blackbox client. If Adobe expects me to run their spyware on my Linux machine, they have another think coming.
  • I have used kpdf, gpdf, and xpdf as well - they work OK, but in my experience Acrobat Reader is still the goto client if you have a pdf the others can't read or for advanced features. The others are steadily improving, and I think will get there in time, but basically until kpdf/gpdf/xpdf start opening pdf documents as well as or better than Acrobat for all available features, I fear Acrobat Reader will still be around.

    Incidently, 7.0 seems to be a huge leap from version 5. Works much better with modern
  • by DrXym ( 126579 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:19AM (#12232257)
    If you want open source, use Ghostscript. I assume (and they probably do too) that to open source part of one of their most lucrative product lines would commercial suicide. It's not like the file format is closed because it isn't [].
  • by Spoing ( 152917 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:19AM (#12232258) Homepage
    For me, v.7 is slick and hasn't crashed. Good job Adobe!

    v.5 did crash quite a bit, esp. the browser plugin. Very frustrating. It was comparitively ugly too.

  • For Debian users... (Score:5, Informative)

    by kbmccarty ( 575443 ) <kmccarty AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:21AM (#12232265) Journal

    Christian Marillat has made available unofficial Debian packages of Acrobat 7 since a few weeks now. On sarge or sid, add the following to /etc/apt/sources.list:

    deb testing main
    deb-src unstable main

    Then it's as easy as apt-get update; apt-get install acroread mozilla-acroread. This gives you the core functionality and Web browser plugin. (Incidentally, there are a bunch of other useful unofficial debs there, including mplayer and lame.)

    You can also install the Javascript plugin and a whole bunch of other Acrobat plugins with apt-get install acroread-plugins. However, be aware that some plugins may report back to the mother ship: LWN article []. Also, they will eat another 43 MB of disk space.

  • by Idaho ( 12907 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:21AM (#12232266)
    Be sure to read this article [] before you install the reader.

    The software contains functionality that could cause serious privacy concerns - it is possible to include a tracking mechanism in PDF's, readers that this great 'feature' will then contact some website and keep track of how many people read that document.
  • by MosesJones ( 55544 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:23AM (#12232287) Homepage
    I know this is Slashdot and all. But if people expect that everytime a company releases a product for Linux that they MUST OpenSource it or they have "only made a start" then there will never be a market for Linux.

    So if Adobe released Photoshop for Linux should they OpenSource it? Are Oracle "only making a start" by supporting Linux because they don't Open Source their database ?

    Wake up people. This is good news that people consider Linux a platform worth supporting. This isn't the "start" this is the game.
  • by ( 653730 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:26AM (#12232314)

    READ this before installing it: []

    Remote Approach's reporting did not work when we viewed the document with Kpdf, Xpdf and Adobe Reader 5.0.10. It also failed using Apple's "Preview" application on Mac OS X. The document was still viewable with no apparent glitch in other PDF readers, but the reporting function did not work. However, when we opened the file using Adobe Acrobat Reader 7, Remote Approach started logging views from our IP address. After doing a little research, we found that Adobe's Reader was connecting to ng.asp each time we opened the document

    (Easy fix: Assign a IP which doesn't work ie: to in your /etc/hosts)

    • (Easy fix: Assign a IP which doesn't work ie: to in your /etc/hosts)

      Better fix: delete the files in $ACROBAT/Adobe/Acrobat7.0/Reader/intellinux/plug_i ns/ [1] (except for ewh.api; the Web browser plugin needs that one). There is no guarantee that the next PDF you get with embedded tracking Javascript will report back to instead of somewhere else.

      [1] Space added by Slashcode, not by me.

  • I prefer xpdf (Score:3, Insightful)

    by OrangeTide ( 124937 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:30AM (#12232336) Homepage Journal
    I don't know what's so exciting about acroread or whatever. xpdf seems to have a pretty reasonable, if spartan, interface. Cut and paste doesn't work unless you hack it up a bit to side-step PDF's "protections". I tend to run non-x86 Linux systems, so binary only applications aren't as attractive to me anyways.
    • xpdf seems to have a pretty reasonable, if spartan, interface.

      There are a couple things that bother me about xpdf.

      It's rending of PDFs isn't exactly high quality. Even the best looking PDF pictures look low-res when rendered with xpdf. For this reason, I use gv for PDFs, as well as postscript files. Also, xpdf's dependency on motif is quite annoying. I continue to use older versions of xpdf, just so I don't have to bother with lesstif for that one program.
  • by cerberusss ( 660701 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:33AM (#12232362) Homepage Journal
    It's a real nice application using GTK, except you don't get to choose from the list of printers; the only thing there is a textfield in which you'll have to add -Pprintername if you want to print to another-than-your-default printer.

    Also, (minor), the background color of the button bar doesn't adhere to the theme your desktop is set to. It's a darkish grey, not the lightgrey that's default on RedHat or Debian.

  • by matt me ( 850665 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:42AM (#12232419)
    the same happened when nero released a version for linux. rather than being appreciated for at last acknowledging the existence of linux, they were shunted for not being 'open' enough, and their product denounced inferior to the free alternative (k3b v nero).

    don't moan that companies aren't trying to provide for linux users, if when they do release a product, you write bad reviews of it and criticise their attempts to get closer to a userbase they know little about, and can even fear.
  • by bob ( 73 )
    Somewhat remarkably, the new Adobe reader actually supports mutt as an email client for the File...Email function. Other choices are Evolution, Kmail, Mozilla, Netscape and the old standby, "mail". Not a big deal, but it sure is nice not having to configure a second MUA just for this. See Edit...Preferences/SendMail.
  • Security (Score:4, Interesting)

    by CypherXero ( 798440 ) on Thursday April 14, 2005 @08:47AM (#12232444) Homepage
    Many people are missing the big picture with Adobe Acrobat. (I freelance graphics) When I send a client a preview of the artwork, I use a combination of XMP, hand-built watermark by myself, and the security of Adobe PDF files. I can choose if someone is allowed to print or not, and I can restrict all modifications to it. So with all three security elements in place, I'm able to manage and control my work, without having to worry about them taking it and not paying.
  • Two reasons.... acrobat reader 7.0 for linux is insanely huge, has serious security issues (tracking and reporting) that I disagree with and only works on the popular commodity platform for linux.

    I use Gentoo on high end SUN hardware now (and some low end ultrasparcs) to deliver higher performance and security, if it was open source i would be able to compile it for my platforms.

    I guess it's a blessing, I'm not tempted by the latest shiny thing by running on an alternative hardware platform.
  • While I applaud major software manufacturers porting their apps to Linux as much as anyone, this is probably the least needed port in existence. There are dozens of pdf readers available for Linux with the same usability as Adobe Acrobat Reader. If Adobe realeased a Linux port of Acrobat Pro, or any of their graphics or video editing apps, I'd be much more excited.

    But three cheers for Adobe, hopefully they'll take that next step.

  • For those like me who just cannot stand that brightly colored distraction at the top of the app:

    Drag any toolbar button on the line with the flashy advertisement down about half its height. This will make a new bar with only that button on it.

    Next, drag the rest of the buttons down to the new bar.

    Once the last button is moved to the new bar, the old one (and the flashy ad with it!) will disappear and your new ad-less toolbar will move up to replace it.

    Locking the toolbars here will prevent it from returning the next time you start the app.

"This is lemma 1.1. We start a new chapter so the numbers all go back to one." -- Prof. Seager, C&O 351