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Opening PDF Attachments

I have a new computer and I can't open some email attachments. These same attachments open fine on my laptop, but when I try to open them on my desktop computer, I get unreadable results. I have downloaded Adobe Reader. What am I doing wrong? Susan Keenan

First, let me say that it isn't necessarily that you are doing anything wrong. Different operating systems function differently depending on which version you are using along with the type of resources you have available as well as what you are attempting to do. I have seen the problem that you are describing on one of my older computers, so I am going to suggest trying the fist solution before attempting any of the others, as it is most likely going to be the one that works for you.

Typically, when you receive an attachment along with your email, you do need to exercise caution to make sure that you trust the source. Scanning it with a reliable anti-virus protection application helps to protect you. You should always complete this step before opening any attachment.

Opening PDF Attachments: Save the PDF File

Although this might appear to be quite a simple solution, it isn't one that most people would think of trying first. The natural conclusion when an attachment fails to open is simple that you must be doing something wrong. Sometimes, the failure to open is just a little quirk that can be fixed with this suggestion.

Instead of attempting to open the PDF file attachment directly through your email, first save the PDF file to the hard drive. When you double click or right click on the PDF attachment, you should see an option to save the file to disk along with the option to open the PDF. Simply choose "save it to disk." Make sure you look to see which location your PDF file will be saved at so you know where to find it.

Before you open the PDF file for viewing, scan the file with your anti-virus protection to ensure that it is clean. It should open easily for you now.

Opening PDF Attachments: File Association

Typically, you can see the file association for any attached files that you receive in your email. It is important to check for a PDF file association before attempting to open the file with Adobe Reader. Once you are sure that you are dealing with a PDF, the next step is to check that the application you are trying to use to open it is the correct one. When you attempt to open your file, you should receive an opportunity to select the application that you want to use. Take this opportunity to make sure that the proper application has been selected to do so.

Opening PDF Attachments: Updates and Installation

On the off chance that your Adobe Reader is in need of an update or it has not been properly installed, you can uninstall it and reinstall the application on your desktop computer.

Opening PDF Attachments: Alternative Applications

Adobe Reader does have a tendency to be a resource hog. Therefore, you might also want to consider using an alternative application to open PDF attachments. Both Foxit Reader and Sumatra can be used to open files with PDF file associations.

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