Some funny things happened on the way to installing Adobe Reader…

By Sandra Clitter  

Where does the time go? Somehow, I think I got buried under the winter…I must have been mentally hibernating. Sorry, gang. Didn’t mean to abandon you!

I’ve been having an…ummmm…interesting time with Adobe, in particular, Adobe Reader, lately. You know Adobe Reader…that ubiquitous program that allows you to read PDFs. 9 times out of 10, if you’re on a page that has a PDF, there’s also a note which says ‘download the free Adobe Reader here’, or words to that effect. That ‘Adobe Reader’ allows you to open up those PDF documents and interact with them.

So, whenever I get a new computer, one of the ‘to dos’ on my list is to download Adobe Reader…until recently. I was setting up a new machine and trying to install Adobe Reader when I hit that proverbial ‘wall’, and the installation file just wouldn’t, well, install. It would hang…or fail…or otherwise indicate that it really wasn’t working. I got annoyed.

I’m well aware that it is CRITICAL to update Adobe Reader (and any of the ‘free’ Adobe products) when the patches come out because these ubiquitous programs are FULL of security risks…don’t use old installation files…don’t use old versions…Adobe plugs one hole and another one opens up. The ‘bad guys’ spend lots of time trying to crack Adobe Reader, find the loopholes and flaws because almost every computer has it installed – therefore, just by having it installed, you’re more prone to attack. I don’t like that.

I got frustrated…very, very FRUSTRATED…so, I went looking for an alternative…Yes, you can use OTHER PROGRAMS to open/read PDFs. You do NOT need Adobe Reader. You can even find ones with more features, and which consume less of your system resources, too!

This terrific article in PCWorld gave me a good summary:

As Brad Chacos writes, “Ditch the PDF headaches”…so I took his advice and I did.

I tried all three of the suggestions he had and settled on Nitro…the free version (there’s a paid version, as well, but you don’t need it unless you want additional features). It is “light” in computer software terms – it doesn’t consume alot of system resources. It allows me to open multiple PDF’s in a ‘tabbed’ format (I like that). It has a good search feature. Bingo! We have a winner!

Best feature: It doesn’t appear that Nitro is in the hacker’s crosshairs. Oh yeah, it also installed!

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