PDF fillable form not displaying field data

New Here ,
Jun 09, 2020 Jun 09, 2020

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Greetings, 

I have an employee who is receiving fillable PDF forms for work via email. When opening file preview on the form within Outlook Desktop the form is displayed and the field data is in the fields designated. When opening the PDF with Reader or Acrobat Pro the forms field data is blank. Clicking on fields to highlight test does not reveal anything, and trying to insert a space and delete the space within the field nothing is revealed. When opening the file with MS Edge, all the forms field data is then viewable. I have another employee that was able to open the same form using their Acrobat XI and was able to view the field data as well. With opening the PDF's via Edge, we are able to print form to MS Print to PDF and upon doing so and opening with Reader or Acrobat Pro the form data is viewable.  I have checked the versions of Reader and Acrobat Pro and both are up to date as well. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.

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PDF and browsers, PDF forms, View PDF

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correct answers 1 Correct Answer

Most Valuable Participant , Jun 14, 2020 Jun 14, 2020
This is usually the fault of the application used to fill in the form, most likely Apple Preview, MS Reader or one of the browser plugins. Instruct the users to only use Adobe Reader and it should work fine.

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 12, 2020 Jun 12, 2020

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Having a similar issue: Upon opening the PDF in Acrobat Reader (ver. 2020.009.20067) the form fields are blank. But, in our case, if you click in a field location, the data shows up - only for that one field.
Another interesting discovery is if you zoom the window (in any direction) everything suddenly appears.  Very strange. 

NOTES: We received the document from someone else but the properties reveal the following: 
Application: Acrobat PDFMaker 20 for Word. 
PDF Producer:  Adobe PDF Library 20.9.95
PDF Version is:   1.6 (Acrobat 7.x)

I have played with different settings in Adobe Reader, but do not want to spend a lot of time on this. I have the feeling it will be fixed with a software revision: Either Adobe Reader or Acrobat PDFMaker 20 for Word??? 

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Jun 14, 2020 Jun 14, 2020

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This is usually the fault of the application used to fill in the form, most likely Apple Preview, MS Reader or one of the browser plugins. Instruct the users to only use Adobe Reader and it should work fine.

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 15, 2020 Jun 15, 2020

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Thank you for the reply.  But, for myself and T_Hubbard, Adobe Reader IS the problem this time. Ironically, other applications and plug-ins are not having an issue displaying field content. 

 

Adobe Reader = fields are blank until you click in them or resize the window

Outlook Desktop with preview pane = OK - the fields are all populated

File Explorer with preview pane = OK - the fields are all populated

Chrome Browser = OK - the fields are all populated

Edge Browser = OK - the fields are all populated

 

It is not a big deal for me because my user has a "work-around" for this one particular document. But I am curious as to why it is happening and if it will be fixed on the next Adobe Reader update. 

 

 

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 16, 2020 Jun 16, 2020

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But this is NOT the correct answer in this case.  Both posts My post states that Adobe Reader DOES NOT WORK. Other applications do. 

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Jun 16, 2020 Jun 16, 2020

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The fact they work doesn't necessarily mean they work correctly.

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New Here ,
Jun 16, 2020 Jun 16, 2020

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BC-TW, This was the correct answer for my issue. After having the original user use Adobe Reader to complete the form, instead of MS Edge previewer, and resubmitting it there were no further issues. It may not be the correct issue for your case, but it was for mine.

 

In addition, I tested this theory myself as well by using the same form. When opening the file with Adobe Reader the form date was present. Upon opening the same file with MS Edge previewer and editing the form and then saving as a PDF, the form data was no longer able to be seen via Adobe Reader, but was able to be seen when re-opening it via MS Edge previewer. There seems to be an issue with saving a pdf via another program and then trying to use Adobe to open that said file. Hopefully Adobe can correct this in a future update.

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 16, 2020 Jun 16, 2020

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Ah I see.  Thank you so much for the update. I apologize for any mix ups of our issues.  Glad you are all set. Thank you for setting me straight. 

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 12, 2020 Jul 12, 2020

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Also experiencing this problem (field data does not appear until field is clicked) in a document that has been created and used in Acrobat Pro ONLY (i.e. no other software used to view, edit or fill in form). This is therefore (at least) an Acrobat problem.

I've noticed that repeated openings of the same document result in different fields within the document being displayed - i.e open once, field A is blank, field B is shown; open a second time (without saving in between) and field A is shown, field B is blank.

It looks very much like a screen refresh/redraw problem to me. The document is reasonably complex (~300 fields), and sometimes just scrolling down and then up again will refresh the display so all fields show. Also, just changing the display theme in Acrobat (View, Display Theme, choose an alternate value) will resolve the problem and display all the fields properly.

This is occurring in both Acrobat Pro 2017 Release (Classic) | Version 2017,011,30171 and Acrobat Pro DC Continuous Release | Version 2020.009.20074.

Adobe, it looks like some work is needed here...

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New Here ,
Jul 28, 2020 Jul 28, 2020

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Hi all,

 

Does anyone's PDF form look this screwed up....I have uninstalled/reinstalled adobe, restarted computer, updated graphics drivers, updated adobe, opened other PDFs which only blackout when scrolling.  I did not purchase adobe, only need the reader.  My HP laptop is new (4 months old) Envy x360. 

 

Wherever i move the cursor and click the area will become partially readable but only in that area the previous area i clicked on will turn black.

 

 

any ideas?

 

 

Ty2020_0-1595970597519.png

 

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New Here ,
Jul 29, 2020 Jul 29, 2020

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I have one staff member that is having this same problem.  I have found no solution for this.  Help from Adobe would be much appreciated.  Thanks.

 

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New Here ,
Oct 14, 2020 Oct 14, 2020

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Using Acrobat Pro DC- updated version via subscription. A collegue uses same and is able to see data in form fields, and I am unable to. HELP????

 

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New Here ,
Oct 29, 2020 Oct 29, 2020

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Same here - the pdf fillable form was created using Adobe.  I am running Adobe 20.012.20048.  Same behavior happening as Zaniwoop.  You shouldn't have to use edge or preview to see the pdf data.  Adobe - please send out a patch update on this.

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Community Beginner ,
Aug 13, 2020 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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New Here ,
Aug 21, 2020 Aug 21, 2020

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I have encounter this issues as well. The PDFs show properly when previewing in Outlook, but once you open the PDF in Adobe Acrobat STD or Pro the fields no longer show the data. I was able to solve the issue when the PDF Producer was MAC ios by going to Edit>Preferences>Forms and unchecking ‘Show border hoover color for fields’. I am still encountering the blank fields on a PDF that has the PDF Producer as Adobe LiveCycle Designer 11.0. Please let me know if you can think of anything else to try!

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New Here ,
Oct 05, 2020 Oct 05, 2020

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Having the same issue, any one found a fix for this?

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New Here ,
Oct 05, 2020 Oct 05, 2020

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using Adobe Acrobat Reader DC 20.012.20048 version 

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New Here ,
Oct 14, 2020 Oct 14, 2020

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I found the work-around: File > Save As Other... > Optimized PDF... > then click on Discard Objects > then check off Flaten form fields > click OK > then save it (either rename it or replace it). (Note: my path here is on Acrobat Pro DC 2020.012.20041 on macOS Catalina, so you route to that feature may differ.)

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New Here ,
Oct 22, 2020 Oct 22, 2020

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The "Correct answer" is no kind of answer.

This worked for me. It requires Micro$oft Word.

Adobe Acrobat, open file: File > Export To > Microsoft Word > Word Document

Open in Word: File > Save as... > File Format (drop-down menu): PDF

Re-open in Acrobat and the previously hidden fields should be visible.

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New Here ,
Dec 30, 2020 Dec 30, 2020

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Hi defaultxea3z0klm42a

 

Did you ever get a REAL solution to your issue with PDFs being empty or not showing data.  I'm have expereinced the same issue after performing a update of Adobe DC.  So far the only solution I have fould was to install a product called PDF-Xchange Viewer, now I can see all the data again.  I am not promoting the product, but it worked to the point where I can at least view the data in the files again without going through a bunch of Garbage the lazy tech was asking you to go through.  Please let me know if that helps.

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New Here ,
Jan 28, 2021 Jan 28, 2021

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SOLUTION finally! I have been trying to open the documents in Adobe Acrobat Pro or Adobe Acrobat Reader, and neither was able to reveal the filled-in fields by a work colleague. I resolved this by opening the PDF in a different browser. I have been using CHROME but switched to FIREFOX. This worked. THEN I saved the document via the "Printer" function setting the "Save As" as a PDF. Once this was saved this way, it could be read with Adobe sw. YAY!!

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New Here ,
Mar 26, 2021 Mar 26, 2021

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I don't call that a solution. If you are wasting all that time opening it in a browser whats the purpose of opening it in Adobe then?

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New Here ,
Jan 29, 2021 Jan 29, 2021

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I don't know if this will help, but I gave up on support and found PDF XChange viewer, that seemed to do the trick, I can read all the files again.  It's sad when the "master" changes their software so much to add "features" rarely used and cripples the product to the point that the customer-base that made them what they are today has to find other products to get their job done.  The even the product support or QA can't offer a solution.

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New Here ,
Mar 26, 2021 Mar 26, 2021

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Completely agree, they are ruining their product!

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New Here ,
Mar 24, 2021 Mar 24, 2021

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On mobile app when we check on mobile android app we didnt se it on screen but in a computer we see the check mark

 

Only happens whe the check mark square is small 

 

Is it something that can be fixed?

 

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