Showing posts with label Adobe. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Adobe. Show all posts

Friday, February 17, 2012

Software Vendor Audits are Increasing

Gartner has recently published the study “The Software Vendors That Are Auditing Now and What to Do About It”.

At Gartner's IT Financial, Procurement and Asset Management Summits in September 2011, they asked 228 attendees about software vendor audits. That survey revealed that 65% of respondents reported at least one software vendor audit in the previous 12 months, up from 61% the year before. Back in 2007 only 35% of respondents had been audited.

The vendors doing most audits were IBM, Adobe, Microsoft, Oracle and SAP and during recent years the audits has increased. Other vendors mentioned were McAfee, Attachmate, HP, Autodesk and VMware. Even WinZip Computing was included (if you can’t afford or want to pay for WinZip there is the 7-Zip open source).

Gartner recommends that CIOs and IT managers should proactively look at SAM and license compliance as ongoing disciplines, to manage audits and improve financial responsibility and accountability, rather than leaving them as audit-driven projects when it may be a case of too little, too late. There is also the recommendation to identify the significant financial risks facing from software license compliance issues to help justify investment in the software asset management (SAM) discipline.

One solution that can help with companies SAM is JTB World’s JTB FlexReport.

JTB FlexReport is a report tool for applications using the FlexNet / FLEXlm (flexlm license manager), IBM LUM (IBM License Use Management), SPLM (Intergraph SmartPlant License Manager), SLM/Sentinel LM/Sentinel RMS, LM-X, Solidworks SNL License Manager, T-Systems license manager product LICMAN, Primavera from Oracle or 12D software licensing.

See also our free JTB FlexReport LT that can easily be distributed within your company to anyone that needs to see current usage of FlexNet/FLEXlm based products.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Compare PDF, DWF, DWFx, DOC, DOCx files

Further on the topic of the previous post but more on to manual compare. DWF Version Compare was introduced in Autodesk Design Review 2008. You find it on the Tools menu. This can be useful when comparing two DWF files. But be aware that it has its limitations like it cannot find differences on raster objects and the DWF files must be the same sheet size and use the same units.

If you want to compare PDF files Adobe Acrobat Professional have that functionality and works great with large multipage documents. Found on the Advanced menu. It’s a real time saver when you get PDF files like specifications from a customer, client or colleague and don’t want to read through everything a second time just to find the changes. Below you can see some of the result from Acrobat compare.

Microsoft Word also have this functionality to compare two versions of a document. I have found not many are aware of it. In Word 2007 it is on the Review tab.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Automate testing and examination of PDF generation

This can also be applied to other formats like DWF (DWFx). Think about the costs if the PDF or DWF is incorrect, missing some important text for example. Say you have automated plotting and even if you make spot checks of the resulting files there is a chance you miss something. We all know that the PDF creation for example is tricky and because of bugs in the software the result might not always be what you expect.

The solution is to create a test automation. Say you produce the files from AutoCAD or Revit. What you could do it to produce two different outputs like plotting to both PDF and to TIFF and then automatically compare the result by first rasterizing the PDF file.

A software that can be automated to compare images is ImageMagick.

Another usage for this is version compare. You can automate a compare of two versions and have that available to the reviewer.

Via Adobe Reader Blog with more to read about this topic.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Adobe Updater problem solved

AdobeUpdater.exe started to show an annoying empty dialog box each time I restarted the computer. It said the installation was not ready and I could continue it later. I found no way to clearing it or accessing the settings or stopping it from showing up again and again.

I tried installing the latest Adobe Updater 5.1.1 update to no avail.

Eventually I solved it by deleting the Updater5 folder (I have Windows Vista):


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Acrobat crash on startup - solution

I got a problem with Adobe Acrobat 8.1.3 Professional on Windows Vista SP1.

I opened a document and after a few seconds looking at it, it disappeared.

I tried a repair and then it got even worse. It was not even related to that document.

Only a few seconds after I start Acrobat it crashes with no error message whatsoever. Acrobat just quits and exits silently.

I tried to run Acrobat as Administrator and then it worked just fine.

Then I though about using the general trick to delete everything in the TEMP folder. That solved my problem and hopefully yours if you run into this.

This also solved a problem with the Adobe PDF writer that I started to have recently.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Adobe Reader 9 is released – to install, or not to install

Adobe Reader 9 is released but wait a minute before you go ahead and install it.

Although you can install Adobe Acrobat 9.x or Adobe Reader 9.x on a computer that contains an installation of previous Acrobat versions, it is not recommended.

Adobe Technical Support does not recommend or support having multiple versions of Acrobat or Adobe Reader installed on the same machine (for example Acrobat 8, with Adobe Reader 9 or Acrobat 7 with Adobe Reader 8)

This KB document on coexisting installations and version interoperability  has a great chart that is useful if you need to have multiple versions of Adobe Reader/Acrobat products installed.

News in Adobe Reader 9 and possible benefits of installing:

  • Enhanced general performance and, in particular, reduced launch times with Adobe Reader 9.
  • PDF Portfolios.
  • Native Adobe Flash support.
  • (beta).
  • Security enhancements.
  • New PDF Standards Pane, improved CAD and geospatial functionality and accessibility enhancements.

Download Adobe Reader 9 (33.5MB) or distribute Adobe Reader 9 in your enterprise or bundle it with a CD or computer. Adobe Reader System Requirements.

I have Adobe Acrobat 8 installed on my Vista machine and I have no compelling reasons to upgrade it but I will give it a try to also install Adobe Reader 9. Let’s see what kind of problems that can create.

During the installation My Adobe Reader 8 was uninstalled and then I got this Error 1311. Source file not found: C:\Users\JTB\AppData\Local\Adobe\Reader 9.0\Setup Files\READER9\ Verify that the file exists and that you can access it.

Sure enough did not exist. I tried to download again and as I had the folder in question opened I noticed that and some other files where added.


I get a dialog box asking me to close Adobe Download Manager and when I do that I noticed that the only file left in the READER9 folder is Setup.exe and therefore the installation will fail again. Stupid!

One irritating thing is that if I close Internet Explorer with the “Adobe Download Manager powered by getPlus®” box the Adobe Download Manager also is closed.

So I try one more time and this time I will try to Ignore to close the Download Manager as well as Internet Explorer. Ignoring seems to help, the setup continues and returns to the Download Manager that has reached 92% but seems to got stuck. It seems like most of the installation is ready. The desktop shortcut for Adobe Reader 9 is there. After waiting some more minutes I’m confident that it has hanged. I close the Download Manager and tries to start Reader. It works. I’m also able to start Adobe Acrobat 8 with no problems.

Wondering what should happen after the 92%. What am I missing. What problems will I have. Time will tell.

I tried to continue by clicking on the desktop shortcut for the Download Manager and this time it did run to the end. Will I be safe now?

First thing I tried was File>Create Adobe PDF Using…

Adobe Reader started Internet Explorer twice. One that is empty.

And one with two tabs started like this.

Enough for today's exercise.

Share your experience if you dare to try install version 9.

Via Adobe Reader Weblog.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0 toolbar in AutoCAD 2009 and CUI bugs

If you want the Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0 toolbar in AutoCAD 2008 or AutoCAD 2009 here is how you can do it. It requires that you have Adobe Acrobat 8.0.

With some work I achieved this result and unfortunately it was not because CUI was so stable and easy to use. But it is also AutoCAD Ribbon version 1 so hopefully this works better after some hotfixes, service packs or at least in AutoCAD 2010.


As a starter use the APPLOAD command. Click on Startup Suit Contents and add "C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 8.0\PDFMaker\AutoCAD\2007\PDFMAcad.arx".

It should then look like this on the command line:
Command: appload
PDFMAcad.arx was added to the Startup Suite.

This created some menu files and images in this folder on my PC:

In AutoCAD 2009 it will look this this with the Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0 toolbar loaded.

Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0

Now I want to move the toolbar to the Ribbon.

Run the CUI command. Select pdfmacad.cui.

Right-click on the toolbar Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0.


Right-click on Ribbons Tabs and add a new tab named "PDF".


Drag and drop the ribbon panel that was created into the PDF tab.


Click on Apply.

Select All Customization Files and click on the current workspace and you find that you see the right pane change.


Select pdfmacad.cui again. Here you should be able to click on Customize Workspace on the right pane but I got an error. Instead expand Ribbons Tab on the left side so you see "PDF". Drag and drop that one to the right side on the Ribbons Tab there.



Looking in CUI two panels are listed. One is unnamed that obviously just creates an empty panel and cannot be deleted. Another bug.


The workaround was to click on it and set the Show property to No.


Now I want to make the icons side by side and add some text below.


I try to drag the command on Row 2 to Row 1 but nothing happens. Another bug as I can drag the command from Row 1 down to Row 2.

After deleting Row 1 and showing the text it look like this.


But I don't want a separate Tab. I would like to move it to the Output tab.

I tried different methods like transferring the panels between the cui files but even though it looked right in CUI the result was just an empty panel on the Ribbon tab. Buggy again.

I even tried another approach.but was not able to get it to work because of several bugs in CUI.

Right click on the toolbar and select Customize.


In Customize User Interface (CUI) expand "Customizations in All CUI Files" and the right part of CUI by clicking on the black arrow at the bottom.

Click on the command "Convert to Adobe PDF" so you see the Button Image.


Click on Edit and in the next dialog box click on Save As and place the image where you can find it later. Do the same with the command "Convert to Adobe PDF and Send for Review". Notice that if you in the button image editor click on Save As the first time you end up in you Documents folder. If you cancel it and click again you end up in the Icons folder. Bug again.

One location could be something like this if you have Windows Vista:
C:\Users\<UserName>\AppData\Roaming\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2009\R17.2\enu\Support\Icons

Click OK to make sure things are saved and that the next step will work. If not you will get the menu file corrupted in the following steps due to some bug.

Start CUI again by right clicking on the toolbar like before and expand the panes.

Now right click on "Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0" as seen below and select "Copy To Ribbon Panels".

CUI Copy To Ribbon Panels

Now the Ribbon Panel "Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0" is available.

Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0

Right click on it and select Copy.

Navigate now to the Ribbon Tabs and locate Output -2D and select it. Right click and select Paste.

Output - 2D

Bummer. It didn't work either. To achieve the best result you should create the Ribbon Panel manually.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Lines Merge for PDF created from AutoCAD using Acrobat

Line merging is possible to achieve using Adobe Acrobat 8 and AutoCAD 2008. I just confirmed it and here is the result with lines merge and lines overwrite.

lines merge                       lines overwrite

The built in DWG to PDF.pc3 that comes with AutoCAD cannot do this and if you just use the Plot command and the Adobe PDF.pc3 it will not work.

In short here is how.

  • In the Page Setup select Adobe PDF.pc3 or some other pc3 file that supports lines merge. Click on Properties>Devices and Document Settings>Graphics>Merge Control and there you select Lines Merge.
  • Acrobat PDF Maker must then be used. Either via the toolbar or with the PDF command.

In step 14 in the post below you don't have to retain the layers. Flatten all layers works as well.

Via Acrobat “Lines Merge” adjustments for PDF created from AutoCAD » I did not know Acrobat could do that

Friday, December 21, 2007

Adobe's Acrobat 3D compared to Autodesk's DWF Viewer

Know the market.

"I often get asked how Acrobat 3D compares to the various view and markup tools on the market like Autodesk’s DWF Viewer, Solidworks’ eDrawings, Siemen’s JT2Go and VisView."

Autodesk’s DWF Viewer isn't even on the market. Nowadays it's Autodesk Design Review.

Other than that if you want to combine most any file into a PDF document Acrobat might be the best choice. The extensive API is also a big plus.

"While the main area of overlap between Acrobat 3D and view and markup tools lies in their ability to distribute 3D geometry and 2D drawings while leveraging a low/no cost viewer, it is Acrobat 3D’s ability to convert 3D content as well as combine it with other project information to create a single compound PDF document, complete with security options like encryption, digital certificates and digital signatures that sets Acrobat 3D in a class by itself."

Via And the Difference is: "As Well As" that I could not add a comment on or contact so I made it here.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Save filled forms in Adobe Reader as PDF file

If you have Adobe Reader and fills out a form you might see the message below. This is what Adobe Reader 8.0 shows.

Then if you try to Save a Copy you  will get this message.

Save a Blank Copy of this Form

Data typed into this form will not be saved. Adobe Reader can only save a blank copy of this form. Please print your completed form if you would like a copy for your records.

If you really want a PDF that has the forms filled out and you don't have for example Adobe Acrobat 8.0 what do you do? Here comes the solution to the problem.

You can print it and scan it to a PDF file or even better get a free PDF printer like CutePDF Writer, pdf995, PrimoPDF or PDFCreator. With  any of these freeware's installed you can select to print to that PDF writer and you will have a PDF with the filled forms.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Optimize scanned PDF using Acrobat

A useful feature in Acrobat is to optimize scanned PDF's.

Recently I got a bunch of JPG files that I combined to a PDF and because they where so skewed the deskew option was really useful.

Available from Document>Optimize Scanned PDF.

Optimize Scanned PDF 

Here is the result with the deskewed image to the right. Much better.

skewed page deskewed page

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Copy or move pages between PDF files using Acrobat

In my opinion the easiest way to copy or move pages between two PDF documents.

  • Open two documents in Acrobat and place the windows beside each other.
  • Open the Pages navigation panel in both windows. (View>Navigation Panels>Pages)
  • Select the pages you want to copy and drag and drop them to the new location.
  • If you want to move the pages hold down the CTRL key while dropping the pages.

Adobe Acrobat Professional 8.1.1 was used in this example.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Adobe Acrobat 8.1.1 update

You probably will get notified about this when running Acrobat 8 or Adobe Reader 8 or you can choose Help > Check for Updates.

The 8.1.1 update requires that Acrobat 8.1.0 is installed. To determine which version of Acrobat you have currently installed, choose Help > About Acrobat. If you have version 8.0 you should apply the 8.1 update first.

Here are some issues fixed:

  • Closes a security vulnerability.
  • Corrupt updater preferences will cause Reader 8.1 or Acrobat 8.1 to crash when attempting to check for updates.
  • Custom button(s) do not appear in the toolbar when a PDF opens via the browser plug-in.
  • The FedEx Kinko's menu item is removed.
  • Type 3 fonts with missing operators.

Products Affected: Acrobat 3D, Acrobat Professional, Acrobat Standard and Adobe Reader.

For more information about issues addressed in the 8.1.1 update, see this technical document in the Support Knowledgebase.

Adobe Acrobat 8.1.1 update

Adobe Reader 8.1.1 update

Monday, October 22, 2007

Adobe Labs - Adobe Share reviewed

Do you want to share, publish and organize your documents online?

Here is another free web-based service, now from Adobe. Take a look at Adobe Labs - Share. The UI uses Adobe Flash Player.


  • Your free Share account has 1 GB of storage space.
  • You can share it with one, many or publicly to everyone.
  • Adobe Share only allows documents right now.
  • There is an API.

Here are a couple of tests having a DWF (could be shared but not embedded) and a PDF shared and embedded. It's very easy to embed the document because you get all HTML code needed.

Link to the DWF file.

Below is a PDF embedded using Flash.

PS. Windows Live SkyDrive that I earlier blogged about has recently raised the limit to 1 GB of online storage. Take a look at SkyDrive here. Sure looks like competition. One thing I like with SkyDrive is that documents can be dragged and dropped into it.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Acrobat 3D PDF Contest

"The Acrobat 3D PDF Contest is a great opportunity to win yourself some cool prizes while sharing examples of your great work with the entire Acrobat community."

"Large assemblies are strongly encouraged - the bigger and more complex, the better. Solid models that contain PMI, such as dimensioning, tolerancing, and annotation on the 3D model, are also encouraged."

Full contest details can be found here.

Via Jim Merry: Adobe Sponsoring '3D PDF Contest'

Friday, August 17, 2007

Start a Windows application within AutoCAD

One way is achieved by the AutoLISP function startapp. Notice that the control of what is started is not in the hand of AutoCAD. So if you have an AutoLISP program the code will just continue executing.

Here is an example how it can be used to open with Notepad the acad.pgp file that AutoCAD uses. If you do edit the acad.pgp file you need to run the ReInit command and select the PGP file check box so the changes will be used by AutoCAD. Or if you want to use AutoLISP: (setvar "re-init" 16)

Command: (startapp "notepad" (findfile "acad.pgp"))

33 is the return value. As long as not nil is returned the function is successful.

Notice that if one of the arguments contain spaces you need to use double quotes like this sample: (startapp "notepad.exe" "\"file with spaces in the name.txt\"")

If you want to launch Windows Explorer here is one way to open the folder of the current drawing: (startapp (strcat "explorer /e," (getvar "dwgprefix")))

To open a PDF file in the default PDF reader.
(startapp "explorer.exe" "C:\\PDFs\\test.pdf")

If you want to open a PDF file in Adobe Reader 8.0 at a specific page this can be used.(startapp "\"C:\\Program Files\\Adobe\\Reader 8.0\\Reader\\AcroRd32.exe\"" "\"/A page=5 C:\\Program Files\\Adobe\\Reader 8.0\\Reader\\plug_ins\\Annotations\\Stamps\\ENU\\StandardBusiness.pdf\"")

If you want to open a DWF file in Autodesk Design Review here is how:(startapp "\"C:\\Program Files\\Autodesk\\Autodesk Design Review\\DesignReview.exe\"" "\"C:\\Program Files\\Autodesk\\Autodesk Design Review\\Tutorial\\IRD Addition Autodesk Design Review Sample.dwf\"")

And another one if you want to open a DWF in your favorite web browser:
(command "_browser" "")

To run a VBScript this can be used:
(startapp "wscript" "c:/MyCoolScript.vbs")

There is also the AutoCAD command SHELL.

With SHELL, you can execute operating system (OS) commands while remaining in this program. When SHELL prompts you for an OS command, you can enter most valid commands for your OS. When the command has been executed, SHELL returns you to the Command prompt. You can also call the SHELL command with AutoLISP like this: (command "_shell" "dir *.dwg /p")

Another alternative is if you have DOSLib. In that case you can use the function dos_execute (Runs an external program), dos_exewait (Runs a program and waits for completion) or dos_shellexe (Opens or prints a program or file). You can with these also control how the newly opened window is to be displayed.

I think you pretty much get the idea. If you have any sample you want to share please add a comment below.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Adobe will remove "Send to FedEx Kinko's..."

Finally according to a press release from Adobe.


Adobe will remove the "Send to FedEx Kinko's" service and functionality, currently available to US customers in Adobe Reader and Adobe Acrobat. The versions of Adobe Reader and Acrobat that are scheduled to be released in October will not contain the feature. We are implementing these changes as quickly as we can. However, we need time to write and test the software. Adobe Reader and Acrobat are critical pieces of software for tens of millions of customers and we have to be sure the software we deliver is up to its usual quality.

The press release also talks about "Moving forward Adobe is setting up a Print Advisory Council to investigate how best to integrate third party print services into Adobe products, as more partners invest in online print infrastructures."

How about Autodesk making a button to publish to DWF? Maybe using this new service.

This was introduced in Adobe Acrobat 8.1 and in Adobe Reader 8.1 not long ago and there were a lot of complaints about it.


Friday, July 13, 2007

Uninstall AutoCAD 2008 silently

If you as are managing installations on many workstations you probably at some point want to uninstall software's easily. This is one way to do it. You can often find the uninstall string in the registry.

Uninstall AutoCAD 2008

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Autodesk\AutoCAD\R17.1\ACAD-6001:409\ProductCode
    The value can be something like this:

Uninstall AutCAD Architecture 2008

    The value can be something like this:

Uninstall Adobe Acrobat 8 Professional

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Adobe\Adobe Acrobat\8.0\Installer\ENU_GUID
    The value can be something like this:

Uninstall Acrobat Reader 8

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Adobe\Acrobat Reader\8.0\Installer\ENU_GUID
    The value can be something like this:

If you are using VBScript you can read the registry using WshShell.RegRead

Below is a sample code showing how it can be done. Save the text in Notepad with the file extension VBS.

on error resume next
Set WshShell = CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
WshShell.Run "msiexec /x " & uninstallstring & " /q",1,true

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Adobe License Manager (ALM)

Adobe License Manager (ALM) was the new embedded volume license management solution for Adobe’s most popular desktop applications. ALM was first included in Acrobat 8 for the Windows operating system. ALM is based on FLEXnet from Macrovision but the experience was not good so Adobe is working to find another solution.

ALM was rolled out in Adobe® Acrobat® 8 for Windows to our volume license customers worldwide. However, during the subsequent three months, we have learned that ALM requires a greater level of administrator resources than many of our customers have available to them. In some instances, there have also been difficulties in managing certain customer workflows and requirements.

As a result, we have decided to disable the ALM technology in Acrobat 8 for all new volume license copies sold after March 9, 2007. Effective immediately, all Acrobat 8 for Windows installation media will be provided with ALM disabled. The final date for availability of ALM-related processes on the Adobe Licensing Website is April 9, 2007.

PS. If you do have ALM it is possible to have it running together with network licenses from other vendors like Autodesk. JTB FlexReport is also supporting it.

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