Office 2016 Incompatible with Acrobat XI (for now)

Did you upgrade to Office 2016 only to find that your Acrobat XI toolbar disappeared? You are not alone.

It seems that each time Microsoft pushes out a new version of Office, Adobe lags behind. This was true for Office 2013 and Office 2010.

Responses posted on Acrobat User Forums are indicating that Adobe will push out a release to fix the compatibility issues between Office 2016 and Acrobat XI “soon.” According to Microsoft, the problem is with the PDFMOfficeAddin.dll file.

Assuming Adobe follows through, XI users will not be forced to buy Acrobat DC. Can users count on Adobe keeping its promise?

Based on past experience, the odds are 50/50.  In the case of Office 2010, Adobe never did release a fix.  Instead, version 9 users who wanted Acrobat functionality within Office were required to purchase Acrobat 10. Thankfully that was not the experience with Office 2013, as Adobe did release a free update to fix the compatibility issues.

Sincere thanks to a Portland-metro attorney for bringing this compatibility problem to my attention.

All Rights Reserved [2015] Beverly Michaelis


It appears Adobe is not going to release an update to Acrobat  XI. Therefore, if you have Office 2016, you will need to purchase Acrobat DC.



Washington State Administrative Office of Courts Hacked

The Associated Press is reporting that 160,000 social security numbers were exposed when the Washington State Administrative Office of Courts was hacked in late 2012 or early 2013.

“The breach happened due to vulnerability in an Adobe Systems Inc. software program, ColdFusion, that has since been patched, court officials said. The hack happened sometime after September but wasn’t caught until February…

Mike Keeling, the courts’ information technology operations and maintenance manager, said officials were alerted to the breach by a business on the East Coast that had a similar intrusion.”

Following the breach, new security measures were implemented, including encryption.

Court officials have confirmed that 94 social security numbers were obtained – those affected will be contacted directly. Names and driver’s license numbers may also have been accessed. People who were booked in a city or county jail during specified periods or those who had a DUII, traffic, or a superior court criminal case in Washington may also be affected.

If you believe your information may have been exposed, call 1-800-448-5584 or visit this site.

Read more here.

Acrobat XI: Tips and Features

Still learning the ins and outs of Acrobat XI?  Here is yet another nifty post from Rick Borstein, author of the Acrolaw blog, explaining how you can change redaction properties in bulk via the Comments panel.  (If you have ever mistakenly marked text for redaction, then noticed that the fill color was not what you wanted you will appreciate this tip.)  In the same post, Rick teaches users how to unlock the Comments list so it can float as a separate window anywhere on your screen.

My favorite new feature of Acrobat XI is the improved Word converter.  Whether you are copying and pasting part of a PDF into Word or exporting the entire PDF to a Word document, the formatting comes across intact.  A video demo is available hereAcrobat XI also supports conversion to Excel and PowerPoint.

Text editing is far more flexible too.  Want to insert text?  Just position your cursor and go.  Deleting is easy too.  In either case, the text reflows automatically.  This is a feature you probably won’t appreciate unless you have attempted to edit PDFs in the past.  With older versions of Acrobat, text editing was extremely limited.  Text did not reflow and content could only be manipulated on a word-by-word or line-by-line basis.  The results were often far from stellar.

While terrific, these new features could also result in unintended consequences.   If you don’t want the recipient of your document to edit the text or convert it from PDF to Word, change the document properties:  File > Properties… Security Tab.  In the Security Method drop-down, select Password Security.  Under Permissions, check the box “Restrict editing and printing of the document.  A password will be required in order to change these permission settings.”  Under Changes Allowed, select None.  Specify a password and choose OK.  Caution: Adobe expressly warns that third-party products may be able to defeat Acrobat security settings.

Happy PDFing!

SendNow vs. YouSendIt – A File Sharing Service Shootout

With the launch of SendNow, Adobe becomes the newest vendor to offer cloud based file sending solutions for mega files. The most well-known competitor –YouSendIt –  has also amped up its services with a suite of corporate plans. Check out other service providers here.

So how do the newcomer and the tried and true sevice provider stack up side-by-side? Let’s take a look: 

Feature SendNow YouSendIt
Free Trial Available Yes Yes
All File Types Supported[1] No Yes
Outlook Plug-in No Yes
Send Multiple Files at Once Yes Yes
Support for Branding (Logos) No Yes
Virus Check Yes Yes
Delivery Confirmation/Tracking Yes Yes
Return Receipt[2] Yes Yes
Time Limits on File Sharing Yes Yes
Restrict Access with Password Protection/Verification[3] Yes Yes
SSL Authentication and Encryption Yes Yes
Browsers Supported – Explorer, Firefox, Safari, Chrome[4] Yes No
Operating Systems – Windows, Mac[5] Yes Yes
Customer Support[6] Yes Yes
Flexible Pricing Plans[7] Yes Yes


Questions About Security?

Review the YouSendIt security statement here. Read Adobe’s security statement on the System Requirements page 

The Devil is in the Details 

So who wins?  Well, it’s a little bit like comparing apples to oranges, with a few fruit bugs here and there.  Adobe offers two complimentary months with each paid subscription, YouSendIt does not.  Return receipt, password protection and other security-related services are on a pay-per-use basis with YouSendIt, thus ramping up the cost of the basic plan.  (Comparable services are free with SendNow.) 

The most glaring difference?  The potential deal-breaker?  SendNow’s limited support of file types – CAD, Zip, Microsoft Office, and PDF are permitted, but no native audio or video files are supported.  (See footnote 1 for other file type restrictions.)

Now What?

You can certainly try each service for free – a real plus, since there’s nothing like actually taking a product for a test drive to see how it really works.  Like any other selection process, each user will be guided by his or her own preferences. For example, Linux lovers may have an easier time with YouSendIt (see footnote 5.)  Business users may not care that SendNow only supports limited file types.  In either case, I welcome Adobe’s entrance to the field.  We should all benefit from the competition. 

Copyright 2011 Beverly Michaelis

Postcript: YouSendIt has clarified they do support Safari. You can find more information here.  Kudos to the YouSendIt team for quickly fixing this broken link 😀

Author’s note:  This review was conducted at the author’s own initiative and represents the author’s opinion only.  The author was not compensated or influenced in any way by Adobe, YouSendIt, or the other providers of file sending services.

[1] SendNow does not support native audio and video files. You cannot use Adobe SendNow to send the following file types: audio formats (MP3, AAC, OGG); video formats (MOV, WMV, FLV, XVID, DIVX, RETG); font formats (TTF, DFONT, OTF); archive formats (TGZ, RAR 7Z, SIT, JAR, WAR, CAB); system files and executable formats (EXE, DLL, JS, VB, BAT, CMD, COM, CPL, SH, CSH, TCSH, KSH, BASH, ZSH, INF, HTA, HLP, INS, ISP, VB, JSE, LNK, MS, PIF, SCR, SHS, WS); web files (CHM, CRT); database files (MDB); or raster image files (PCD, SCT).  YouSendIt “supports all file types.” [2] Return receipts are free with SendNow. Available on a pay-per-use basis with YouSendIt’s free and Pro plans. (Included with Pro Plus and Corporate Suite.)  [3]  Available on a pay-per-use basis with YouSendIt’s free and Pro plans. (Included with Pro Plus and Corporate Suite.)  [4] YouSendIt does not support Safari and may become unresponsive with Google Chrome. SendNowworks with all browsers listed.  [5] Linux support is limited with SendNow and is untested (but should work) with YouSendIt[6]Premium plans available from both providers. [7] Compare Adobe’s three pricing plans here.  (Basic and Plus plan include two months free.)  Compare YouSendIt’s four plans here.