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Rename an open PDF in Acrobat?

New Here ,
Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

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I often receive PDF files that I want to rename once I have looked at the content more closely.

How do I just rename an open file in Acrobat (rather than Save As, or closing the file and going into the OS file manager to do it?)

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Edit and convert PDFs

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

LEGEND , Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

Not only can you not rename files INSIDE Acrobat, you cannot rename a file at all, in Windows, while the file is open. Acrobat is a perfectly normal app in this regard.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

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Acrobat can't rename files. Use your file manager.

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Explorer ,
Jan 09, 2020 Jan 09, 2020

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...2 years later.... is there any reason (that im not understanding) for that?  the point is ...that would be really usefull ! 

 

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Explorer ,
Jan 09, 2020 Jan 09, 2020

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not in acrobat but in document cloud we can! .... so i have to open 2 apps for work 1 file ! .... this is ...just a bit strange !  

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Community Beginner ,
Apr 09, 2022 Apr 09, 2022

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Indeed ended up tweaking File Explorer:

- Turn on thumbnail generation within Adobe as per: Enable thumbnail preview of PDFs in Windows Explorer (adobe.com)

- Turn on preview panel in Windows Explorer.

For Example: on the left side the filenames and on the right side the preview. Big enough to convey data to know how to rename.  

 

JoelDeBruijn_0-1649561541816.png

 

 

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LEGEND ,
Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

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Not only can you not rename files INSIDE Acrobat, you cannot rename a file at all, in Windows, while the file is open. Acrobat is a perfectly normal app in this regard.

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New Here ,
Jun 01, 2020 Jun 01, 2020

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It is possible in other apps. I have been using another reader on another PC and been renaming files while open for years.

Just now i am stuck on a PC with Adobe, and unable to rename. So I think its not normal, some apps can do it. 

I know your answer is 2 years old, i mean no offence but had to comment for others sake.

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Community Expert ,
Jan 09, 2020 Jan 09, 2020

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Would it be possible to achieve this with the filename stamper action plugin?

 

https://acrobatusers.com/assets/uploads/actions/File_Name_Stamper.pdf&ved=2ahUKEwiwraXS2PfmAhVOeKwKH... 

 

I mean, is the closest thing that you may achieve what you're inquiring from within the Acrobat application.

 

See slide:

20200109_184428.jpg

 

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New Here ,
Jan 23, 2020 Jan 23, 2020

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My workplace switched from Mac to PC, and I am shocked that it is not possible to rename files while they are open. This is a basic function that something like PDF Expert can do on a Mac. How is corporate America functioning with such outdated technology?

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 15, 2021 Jan 15, 2021

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Maybe so, but lots of imageviewers let you rename a picture which APPEARS to be open to the user (meaning you can see it simultaneously while renaming).

From a technical perspective I guess the file is closed/unlocked in the background without changing the 'screen looking at it, renamed and opened again.

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New Here ,
Feb 18, 2021 Feb 18, 2021

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Sumatra PDF is the only application I have found that does this well:

  • Open the PDF, to see what it is
  • Hit F2 (inside Sumatra PDF, while you're still looking at the PDF)
  • File selector dialog comes up, with title "Rename to"
  • Type new name of file, hit Save
  • Boom - you've renamed the file, and now have the renamed file open to continue viewing.

Adobe, why is this hard? I understand that there would be some issues if the user had already made edits, but you could easily force a save along with the rename.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 18, 2021 Feb 18, 2021

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In the mean time, the answer which didnt look any further then a superficial first glance is marked 'correct'.

Maybe its technically true, but misses your point.

 

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New Here ,
May 02, 2021 May 02, 2021

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This works! I can't believe Adobe Acrobat Pro DC doesn't have this simple but very useful function.

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New Here ,
Feb 05, 2023 Feb 05, 2023

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Thanks for the Sumatra tip, it works great!

As noted elsewhere here, Windows does not allow an open file to be renamed. Sumatra seems to load the file into memory without keeping it "open" as far as Windows is concerned. Which allows it to be renamed while open (either through Sumatra or File Explorer), unlike other PDF viewers. The Windows Notepad app works the same way.

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Community Expert ,
Feb 05, 2023 Feb 05, 2023

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Hey that is great info and I am really curious!

 

Would you mind sharing a screenshot of that feature?

 

I would like to test that myself with Adobe Acrobat to rule out if the concept of "renaming a file while it is opened in the host program" is not being confused interchangeably with the "Save As" action that is included with every software and every operating systems ever produced since the early 70's.

 

As you may already know, all software applications are restricted from interacting with the shell environment in that fashion, specially when they are hosted in closed-source and commercially licensed operating systems such as Microsoft's and Apple's family of products (not the other way around).

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New Here ,
Feb 05, 2023 Feb 05, 2023

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Hi,

If you mean a screenshot of SumatraPDF's feature, there's not much to screenshot - you just press F2 and you get a dialog which does look a bit like "Save as" but it's entitled "Rename To":

 

Screenshot 2023-02-06 101850.png

 

The semantics of "Save as" are to save a new copy, but keep the original. "Rename to" is different, it doesn't keep the original.

 

It's bizarre to me that this is so discussed and so misunderstood. Adobe Acrobat must read the file with a write lock (because it's likely to want to write back to the file). SumatraPDF must read the file without a write lock, so that it can rename the file if needed. There may be a few more hoops to jump through for Adobe Acrobat (e.g. ask the user to save any unsaved changes first) but really "Rename" could be implemented as a series of commands: save, close file, rename, reopen file.

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Community Expert ,
Feb 05, 2023 Feb 05, 2023

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Interesting!

 

Thank you very much for sharing that feedback.

 

I am trying to find what registry sub keys  SumatraPDF Reader was able to unleash (at least on the Microsoft Windows side of the house).

 

I mean, after all SumatraPDF is an open source project, so I assume that the registry hack must be documented and  released to the public somewhere.

 

The closest I was able to get to the bottom of this was trying to disable "Save As" (which is not that difficult from the registry) and some other editable registry features such as string values and  that with zero-length binary values combined with ProgID sub key (executable program by program ID name).

 

I can't find anything on how to add the DWORD value for the Rename interaction between an executable program and the windows shell environment, and I can't find it for SumatraPDF either... but I know it must be buried somewhere in that registry.

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New Here ,
Feb 05, 2023 Feb 05, 2023

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I doubt it's a registry hack and I also doubt it's a rename interaction with the windows shell environment. It's just programming: opening files (with or without lock), and renaming files on the file system are just function calls from the program.

I'm just suggesting that Adobe Acrobat programming could be changed to accommodate this feature request.

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Engaged ,
Feb 09, 2023 Feb 09, 2023

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Indeed, SumatraPDF is the way to go. Whilst open in SumatraPDF you may even copy-paste text from the contents of the PDF so as to use it for F2 File renaming. SumatraPDF is free and even available as portable.
If you are using a configurable Windows Explorer replacement, such as Total Commander, or Directory Opus, you might add a shortcut/button, reading like:

"X:\Path-To-Directory\SumatraPDF\SumatraPDF.exe" -new-window "%1"


Anyway, it is remarkable and difficult to explain that sometimes  free tools are able to do things that expensive applications aren't.
Ah, well, maybe not so difficult to explain: probably these 'feature requests' do not get the attention they deserve and developers even may not be aware of them, or do not consider them to be important.

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Community Expert ,
Feb 09, 2023 Feb 09, 2023

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Thank you @adwul62  it is also remarkable that Sumatra is a full blown document  viewer.

 

I am impressed with all the file types that can be viewed in it ( not just PDFs) , and the fles don't have to be automatically converted to PDF (or whichever program produced them) in order  to be displayed in the viewer.

 

I also noticed that it fully supports LaTex.

 

Very interesting and mostly impressed with the speed with how documents are loaded.

 

 

SUGGESTION:

 

If you would like Adobe to incorporate similar features, use the Adobe UserVoice channel.

 

You get a better chance to voice a request for features using the links below:

 

 

 

It may take a little while to see a request go through, but I believe that these features (or better) deserve  a chance to be considered in future updates of Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader.

 

 

 

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Engaged ,
Feb 10, 2023 Feb 10, 2023

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Thanks. For the uservoice, one needs to create a new account?
Or can the forum credentials be used?

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Community Expert ,
Feb 10, 2023 Feb 10, 2023

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LATEST

If you already have a free account here in the forums you can use that Adobe ID as the credential.

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New Here ,
Feb 06, 2023 Feb 06, 2023

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You are much more likely to get answers on the Sumatra forums:.

https://github.com/sumatrapdfreader/sumatrapdf/discussions

 

Sumatra PDF is obviously not loading the file the same way as Adobe Acrobat and other typical Windows applications. Sumatra PDF has the Rename function, but you can also rename the file in Windows File Explorer while the file is open in Sumatra PDF. Which you normally cannot do with an open file in Windows, Acrobat or otherwise. It is the exact behavior you see using the Windows Notepad application.

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New Here ,
Aug 05, 2021 Aug 05, 2021

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This a nightmare! I dont get why such sophisticated tool cannot do such a simple and absolutly necessary action. Will try another app now.

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New Here ,
Mar 16, 2022 Mar 16, 2022

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First If you click on the left side panel to expand it, you'll see the Page Thumbnails option. Should be the first one.

 

Then right click the page you want to rename, select Page Labels...

 

And then in the popup window you'll see an area called "Prefix" - you can change the name there and then press ok

 

That should work.

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