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My Adobe PDF form appears blank

New Here ,
Jun 26, 2016

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My Adobe PDF form is being sent as an email attachment. With the prior version in IOS IPhone when I opened the PDF through Adobe Acrobat the form would show all the populated fields.

With the new update, the form show up blank....the fields do not appear Populated unless I highlight the cell.  Once the cell is closed, the cell it goes blank again.

FYI on a Windows or Mac laptop the PDF is populated.   It appears to be an IOS issue. How can I modify or fix to allow the form to be fully visible on the IPhone?

Hi,

We received your PDF form via email.  Thank you!

First, I opened your PDF form in the desktop version of Acrobat Reader DC on a Mac computer.  The populated fields appeared blank as well.

The Document Properties dialog (File > Properties...) shows that the PDF form was generated by Mac OS X 10.11.1. Quartz PDFContext.

DocumentProperties.png

The PDF forms generated by Apple products or filled out in Apple Preview (desktop app) contain invalid entries that cause populated fields to appear blank.

To repair the existing faulty PDF form

  • Open the PDF form in Acrobat Reader (desktop or mobile app), click/tap each populated field, append space, and remove the space.  (This repairs an individual field.)
  • Open the PDF form in Acrobat Pro or Standard (paid desktop app), clear all of the text fields, then fill out the form again.

In the future, it is recommended to

  • Avoid using Apple Preview (desktop app) on a Mac computer to fill out PDF forms.
  • Use the Acrobat Reader mobile app for iOS or Android to fill out PDF forms.
  • Use the desktop version of Acrobat Reader DC on a Mac or Windows computer to fill out PDF forms.

Please let us know if you have further questions.

Thank you.

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General troubleshooting, iOS, View or share PDFs

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My Adobe PDF form appears blank

New Here ,
Jun 26, 2016

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My Adobe PDF form is being sent as an email attachment. With the prior version in IOS IPhone when I opened the PDF through Adobe Acrobat the form would show all the populated fields.

With the new update, the form show up blank....the fields do not appear Populated unless I highlight the cell.  Once the cell is closed, the cell it goes blank again.

FYI on a Windows or Mac laptop the PDF is populated.   It appears to be an IOS issue. How can I modify or fix to allow the form to be fully visible on the IPhone?

Hi,

We received your PDF form via email.  Thank you!

First, I opened your PDF form in the desktop version of Acrobat Reader DC on a Mac computer.  The populated fields appeared blank as well.

The Document Properties dialog (File > Properties...) shows that the PDF form was generated by Mac OS X 10.11.1. Quartz PDFContext.

DocumentProperties.png

The PDF forms generated by Apple products or filled out in Apple Preview (desktop app) contain invalid entries that cause populated fields to appear blank.

To repair the existing faulty PDF form

  • Open the PDF form in Acrobat Reader (desktop or mobile app), click/tap each populated field, append space, and remove the space.  (This repairs an individual field.)
  • Open the PDF form in Acrobat Pro or Standard (paid desktop app), clear all of the text fields, then fill out the form again.

In the future, it is recommended to

  • Avoid using Apple Preview (desktop app) on a Mac computer to fill out PDF forms.
  • Use the Acrobat Reader mobile app for iOS or Android to fill out PDF forms.
  • Use the desktop version of Acrobat Reader DC on a Mac or Windows computer to fill out PDF forms.

Please let us know if you have further questions.

Thank you.

TOPICS
General troubleshooting, iOS, View or share PDFs

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Jun 26, 2016 0
Adobe Employee ,
Jun 26, 2016

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Hi,

I created a new forum thread for you.

Have you used any other non-Adobe apps on your mobile device or computer to create or fill out the form?  In particular, have you used Apple Preview on your Mac laptop to fill out the form?

To properly diagnose the problem, we would like to examine your PDF form.

Would you be willing to share your PDF form with us (Adobe)?  I sent you a private forum message with the instructions on how to share your PDF form with us.

Thank you for your help!

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Jun 26, 2016 0
Adobe Employee ,
Jul 02, 2016

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Hi,

We received your PDF form via email.  Thank you!

First, I opened your PDF form in the desktop version of Acrobat Reader DC on a Mac computer.  The populated fields appeared blank as well.

The Document Properties dialog (File > Properties...) shows that the PDF form was generated by Mac OS X 10.11.1. Quartz PDFContext.

DocumentProperties.png

The PDF forms generated by Apple products or filled out in Apple Preview (desktop app) contain invalid entries that cause populated fields to appear blank.

To repair the existing faulty PDF form

  • Open the PDF form in Acrobat Reader (desktop or mobile app), click/tap each populated field, append space, and remove the space.  (This repairs an individual field.)
  • Open the PDF form in Acrobat Pro or Standard (paid desktop app), clear all of the text fields, then fill out the form again.

In the future, it is recommended to

  • Avoid using Apple Preview (desktop app) on a Mac computer to fill out PDF forms.
  • Use the Acrobat Reader mobile app for iOS or Android to fill out PDF forms.
  • Use the desktop version of Acrobat Reader DC on a Mac or Windows computer to fill out PDF forms.

Please let us know if you have further questions.

Thank you.

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Jul 02, 2016 0
Community Beginner ,
Nov 27, 2019

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This seems to be an Adobe  bug - not an Apple preview bug.

 

I've been completing PDF forms with Apple Preview for literally years and never had a problem until recently with one customer. They found this bug report online and pointed me here.

Apple Preview SHOULD be compatible with Acrobat and PDFs in general and vice versa.

 

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Nov 27, 2019 0
Adobe Employee ,
Nov 27, 2019

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You are responding to a three year old thread but to address your comments …

 

Apple's Preview program does not fully comply with the ISO PDF specification and is known to corrupt PDF formsIt is not an “Adobe bug” …

 

            - Dov

- Dov Isaacs, Principal Scientist, Adobe

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Nov 27, 2019 1
New Here ,
Feb 12, 2020

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I won't label this as an Adobe "bug", but I do find it intriguing since I discovered this issue recently with our users as well. Adobe Acrobat(and Reader) are tremendously widely used programs on both Windows and Mac, both of which we have in our own environment. I have found that these PDF filled forms edited from Apple's PDF preview are readable in other applications outside of  Adobe. Is this particular "inconvenience" being addressed or is there any discussion between Adobe and Apple to sort this out? If Apple isn't complying with "ISO PDF" specification, shouldn't Adobe at least be working to ensure compatibility between the two? I see that above it is recommended to "Avoid using Apple Preview (desktop app) on a Mac computer to fill out PDF forms", but unfortunately this is often out of our control as we work with external contacts.

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Feb 12, 2020 0
New Here ,
Apr 03, 2020

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I am Tech Support for a high school and we have run into this issue extensively this year.  Our experience would most certainly support the conclusion that this issue lies somewhere in the Mac OS operating system, however it would probably take Adobe fixing it for this issue to be completely eliminated across platforms.  One of our administrators created a form for our teachers to fill out on his iMac (the majority of our teachers use PCs).  He did not however use Preview, he actually used Adobe Acrobat DC.  The issue is as others have described, filling in forms on this file and then saving will yield a file that opens and shows the fields as blank until they are clicked on.  I have found that simply adding a space to the field seems to "fix" the form and the text stays visible after a save and subsequent reopening of the file on another system.  I am guessing that however these forms are created by MacOS is somehow fundamentally different than on a PC so something is, in essence, lost in translation when the file is opened and edited on a PC. I have found that adding a change to the form seems to overwrite the previous data in the form and causes it to show correctly.  The other strange thing is that sometimes the forms will show up just fine, but opening the same file repeatedly on the same system will eventually cause some of the forms to go blank.  We also have seen it happen even when the latest Adobe Acrobat DC version is intalled, or when an older version is installed.  I would not be quick to assign "blame" to Apple or to Adobe, since each has reasons for the ways their code works.  I do think that since the one thing that is the same across platforms is the fact that Acrobat is an Adobe product, the burden of fixing this issue should mostly be the responsibility of Adobe.  Since getting the file to show "correctly" would essentially involve changing the file as it is opened, some sort of warning would probably need to be shown to the user (this file was not created on the same OS and must be reformatted to show correctly on your station, or something to this effect).  I have seen posts about this issue online that stretch back over a decade and going from Mac to PC (or vice versa) seems to be the common theme.  I'm guessing it is something that Adobe knows about but is probably a complex problem to fix as it involves proprietary code in Apple products. That code is also subject to change with OS updates and Apple is not exactly forthcoming with the inner workings of their devices, even to developers they have a decent relationship with (like Adobe).  Please excuse the long post to the this old question, just thought I'd add my 2 cents.

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Apr 03, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jun 24, 2020

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Just thought I'd mention.

 

I used to think this was a macOS Preview problem too, but recently I've noticed that this issue also exists when Windows 10 users filled-in PDF forms using Microsoft Edge.

 

We receive hundreds of applicants daily when our company is recruiting, and we ask them to fill in an application form. Sometimes I get the blank form issue when they email me back their response. Sometimes they are macOS Preview, but just as often, they're not.

 

In either case, I find it interesting that when I open these "blank" forms with other (non-Adobe) PDF readers, I can see the content with no problems. In most cases, I find if I open these forms with non-Adobe PDF readers, and re-save the forms, Adobe Reader can then view the file with no issues.

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Jun 24, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jul 03, 2020

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Incorrect. The exact same bug occurs when using Microsoft Edge, on Microsoft Windows so this is not an Apple issue. There is no evidence that the files are "corrupted". Please don't make spurious accusations. Remember, if Adobe think everyone else is the problem, it's probably Adobe.

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Jul 03, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jul 03, 2020

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Jul 03, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jul 19, 2020

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Hi...so what is the FIX? My clients are sending replying to forms that I sent to them. SOME of the work, some don't...there is no rhyme or reason that I have found. I see all the lines filled in when I preview it before I open the file, then after I open it the file is then blank! 

 

The original post was for 2016 and I am having trouble in 2020 in NEWER versions of Acobe Creative Cloud. In a world of COVID people will be turning more and more to electronic documents but if I can SEE the information on line and then open the document on my MAC, which the OS has been updated several times since this question was originall asked...why hasen't this been fixed? 

 

To the posts that say to 'add/append information to the form", you can't do this if the document is signed. 

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Jul 19, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jul 20, 2020

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Try using a different application to open it, like PDFpen Pro or PDF Expert (both Mac OS applications). I never see empty form issues using these applications.

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Jul 20, 2020 0
New Here ,
Sep 24, 2020

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Just faced the same problem as another MacOS user, but I was able to find a better fix for myself.
In Apple Preview.app, Exporting as PDF after editing, works just fine...

It's frustrating to read such comments from Adobe experts ! I don't like when someone tell me what I should use or avoid as tech. Filling PDF forms (on MacOS preview.app) worked just fine before the last Adobe updates : even my old forms are note readable anymore on adobe pdf reader but I still open them on Preview.APP. I realy don't care whos fault it is.

I believe that Adobe Forms should accomodate the END-USERs and what they are using as tech. There is much butter alterantives for forms and I think that Adobe has to adapt to some new realities and acomodate more the end-users otherwise the PDF Forms, will be left behind. Just a thought !    

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Sep 24, 2020 0
New Here ,
Oct 14, 2020

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Hi all. I dont use Apple at all. I am using latest version adobe Acrobat Pro DC voia subscription, as is a collegue. She can see data in the forms. I can't. Help required. I tried one fix offered, ie. Optimize PDF> discard objects>flatten form fields, but an error comes up and wont allow save as a different name

 

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Oct 14, 2020 0
New Here ,
Aug 13, 2020

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That "solution" doesn't work for me either. Adobe Reader is the problem. It is opening PDFs as blank when the same pdf can be opened in Chrome or other applications completely populated. Clicking on the cells where there should be text doesn't reveal anything. This seems to be a new development in Adobe Reader; I haven't had the issue before today.

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Aug 13, 2020 0
New Here ,
Aug 26, 2020

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Just talked wtih a support rep from Adobe. Sounds like it has to do with changing over to Adobe Sign. Will need that to view and fill forms out from now on I guess. Happened to us too and we already pay for Adobe Pro DC. 

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Aug 26, 2020 0
New Here ,
Sep 01, 2020

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**My workaround to view a completed form that comes back "blank"**

I created an adobe fillable form for my clients, and they must have completed it in another app because their responses came back blank. Adding a space into the fields when viewing didn't work for me as they disappeared again as I continued down the form. My workaround is to right click and open the completed form in Preview (mac), and export it, choose jpg format and save it as a jpg. Then the form is viewable with the data. Hope this helps.

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Sep 01, 2020 0
New Here ,
Sep 29, 2020

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Quick work around to this is to print to pdf the form that appears to be blank, it will print with all the fields filled out. This works from adobe pro dc. 

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Sep 29, 2020 0
New Here ,
Oct 11, 2020

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its not working. this is not MAC issue as well, because i am using an android device and its giving me same problem

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Oct 11, 2020 1
New Here ,
Oct 14, 2020

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same. I use PC. Can't get it to work

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Oct 14, 2020 0
New Here ,
Oct 14, 2020

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Hey wow, actually yes i printed and it worked- now, how to save  the soft copy version without having to hand scan 40 pages?

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Oct 14, 2020 0
New Here ,
Oct 14, 2020

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thanks Sophie, this worked- however how do I save a soft copy with form fields that work without manually scanning each page? I have hundreds of docs to do

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Oct 14, 2020 0
New Here ,
Oct 14, 2020

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You print as PDF so that it saves as a file and not actually print it with a printer.

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Oct 14, 2020 0