Acrobat DC will not open old PDF files

Community Beginner ,
Jan 24, 2021 Jan 24, 2021

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I recently upgraded to the subscription version of Acrobat DC; I previously had Acrobat XI without subscription. I'm on an HP Spectre laptop with Windows 10.

The problem is whenever I try to open a PDF created with Acrobat XI, I get the following message:

"There was an error opening this document. The file cannot be accessed by the system."

I suspect I can find a work-around by opening with Edge or another search engine, but I don't think I should have to do that. 

Can someone please help?

Thank you.

Julie Klein

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General troubleshooting

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correct answers 1 Correct Answer

Community Beginner , Jan 25, 2021 Jan 25, 2021
Problem solved! I had to add Dropbox to to the accounts listed under Files on the Acrobat DC Home screen. Ta-da!One quirk, though, is that I have to open the file from Acrobat rather than double-clicking on the file in Dropbox.

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Jan 24, 2021 Jan 24, 2021

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This could be something to do with a cloud sync, perhaps not Acrobat at all. Try copying the file to your desktop first.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 24, 2021 Jan 24, 2021

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No luck, but thank you.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 25, 2021 Jan 25, 2021

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Update to previous post:

First, I cannot open documents on Google or Edge, so that's a failed work-around.

Second, when I open a PDF through Dropbox on my iPad, I can open it just fine. So the problem, I'm guessing, if not with Acrobat DC, is possibly with Windows?

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 25, 2021 Jan 25, 2021

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And just for snickers and giggles, I tried opening my old files with Acrobat Reader DC. Still unable to access them on my laptop.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 25, 2021 Jan 25, 2021

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Are the files saved on Dropbox?

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 25, 2021 Jan 25, 2021

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Bernd Alheit: Yes.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 25, 2021 Jan 25, 2021

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Problem solved! I had to add Dropbox to to the accounts listed under Files on the Acrobat DC Home screen. Ta-da!

One quirk, though, is that I have to open the file from Acrobat rather than double-clicking on the file in Dropbox.

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