Stop User from Working in Browser?

Mar 20, 2019

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Hi there,

This may not be the correct forum to ask this question, but I figured I'd start here first...

More and more, I am running into problems with employees who do not understand the difference between opening a PDF in Adobe Reader, vs. opening a PDF in their browser. I have given tutorial after tutorial on how to avoid this, but it never seems to stick. I'm constantly getting phone calls saying "my formula won't work" or "when I click the button nothing happens", and it's ALWAYS because the user didn't properly download the file.

I'm hoping that there might be a script to prevent the user from doing anything to a document if it's open in say, Google Chrome vs. Adobe Reader. Or perhaps, have the document just be one page with a button that says "START", that you can only click if it's open in Adobe.

Any thoughts?

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Acrobat SDK and JavaScript, Macintosh, Windows

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Stop User from Working in Browser?

Mar 20, 2019

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Hi there,

This may not be the correct forum to ask this question, but I figured I'd start here first...

More and more, I am running into problems with employees who do not understand the difference between opening a PDF in Adobe Reader, vs. opening a PDF in their browser. I have given tutorial after tutorial on how to avoid this, but it never seems to stick. I'm constantly getting phone calls saying "my formula won't work" or "when I click the button nothing happens", and it's ALWAYS because the user didn't properly download the file.

I'm hoping that there might be a script to prevent the user from doing anything to a document if it's open in say, Google Chrome vs. Adobe Reader. Or perhaps, have the document just be one page with a button that says "START", that you can only click if it's open in Adobe.

Any thoughts?

TOPICS
Acrobat SDK and JavaScript, Macintosh, Windows

Views

141

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Mar 20, 2019 0
Mar 20, 2019

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This is currently a major issue for many of us. Unfortunately, there's not much that can be done about it.

The best solution I've been able to come up with is to place a very large, very visible warning on the first page of the file and then use a script to hide it when it is opened in Adobe Acrobat or Reader. If it is opened in another application (even if it doesn't support scripts) the warning will remain visible and the user will have at least some kind of indication that something is wrong.

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Mar 20, 2019 0
Mar 20, 2019

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Thanks so much - that's along the lines of what I was thinking. If I can't stop them completely, that would at least make them stop and think for a second.

I found this script in the SDK Documentation - is this the approach you'd recommend?

if ( this.external )

   {

     //Viewing from a browser

   }

   else

   {

     //Viewing in the Acrobat application.

   }

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Mar 20, 2019 0
Mar 20, 2019

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No, I would do it like this:

if (/Reader/.test(app.viewerType) || /Exchange/.test(app.viewerType)) this.getField("WarningCover").display = display.visible;

The "WarningCover" field should be an opaque, read-only field (maybe a button) placed above a static warning text and made hidden. The code will make it visible when you open the file in Acrobat or Reader, thereby covering the warning.

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Mar 20, 2019 0
Apr 01, 2019

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This is an additional countermeasure that may work for you: If your Webmaster can format the code behind the form's link with "<a download= ...." instead of "<a href= ...." (see HTML a download Attribute), then the form (or any file) should download instead of displaying within the browser.

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Apr 01, 2019 0
Apr 02, 2019

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That's a good solution!! although not supported by all browsers.

As to the "WarningCover", it needs to be Fail Safe. This means that if the document is opened in a PDF viewer that does not implement JavaScript, then the "WarningCover" is already in place.  So don't make it hidden. 

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Apr 02, 2019 0