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# ist replaced by %23 in URLs ==> Error 404

Community Beginner ,
Feb 05, 2014

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URLs (Links) do not work in my PDFs (from Word Documents), because # ist replaced by %23, which results to an Error 404 in Browsers. Is there a workaround for this bug in Adobe Acrobat XI Standard?

Hi, I've come across a simple workaround which is ideal for me — double high five. I Simply bitlyed (https://bitly.com) the link and that ugly error message vanished. Boom.

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# ist replaced by %23 in URLs ==> Error 404

Community Beginner ,
Feb 05, 2014

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URLs (Links) do not work in my PDFs (from Word Documents), because # ist replaced by %23, which results to an Error 404 in Browsers. Is there a workaround for this bug in Adobe Acrobat XI Standard?

Hi, I've come across a simple workaround which is ideal for me — double high five. I Simply bitlyed (https://bitly.com) the link and that ugly error message vanished. Boom.

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Create PDFs, Windows

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Mentor ,
Feb 05, 2014

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Is you have any spaces in the Urls change them,either remove them at the origination point if it your site.

Example: RubberBabyBuggyBumpers

Or insert underscores

Example: Rubber_Baby_Buggy_Bumpers

Some Web Browsers, and some servers try to insert the code for space and it doesn't always work out.

If it not your site try another browser.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 05, 2014

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Hi. Thanks for your answer, but there are no spaces in the url. The "#"-sign in the URL is replaced by "%32".

Example: The correct link is

http://www.example.com/home.html#chapter5

When I print this word file to a PDF, then Adobe changes the link to

http://www.example.com/home.html%23chapter5, which is not an existing URL and therefore causes an Error404.

The PDF has to be distributed to hundreds of people, so it has to work with any browser.

It is neither a server nor a browser who makes this mistake. I created the PDF local on my computer with a local installed Adobe software and open this local PDF with the Adobe Reader which is installed on my Computer. The wrong link is already shown by mouseover in Adobe, even before clicking on it in order to open a browser. Internet or browsers were not involved. It's all on my local harddrive.

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Mentor ,
Feb 05, 2014

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Sorry about not paying attention to the # in your question can you exchange the # for an _ and see what happens?

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 05, 2014

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The underscore is not replaced, but this does not solve my problem, as the link does not work with _ instead of #.

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Mentor ,
Feb 05, 2014

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Something is happening when I copied the entire link:

http://www.example.com/home.html#chapter5

I go this:

SeaMonkey001.png

Its not just an issue with PDF when I copied this link to this thread and made the entire thing a Hot link. When I  submitted.  The # and Characters after became unlinked.  Evindently # is an illegal charcter. when I went back and did it again I got it straighten out.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 06, 2014

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Thanks for testing. "#" is not an illegal character. I'm 100% sure it is correct. It is very common in HTML to define anchors in the code with the "name" tag (e.g.: <a name="chapter5"></a>). With the # in the URL, you can then jump directly to that anchor anywhere on the page instead of the top of the page.

It should be absolutely unimportant if a link is correct and currently exists or not. Adobe should be able to transfer any link from a word file into a PDF exactly as it is, without making any changes to it. Is anybody here who has a solution?

Just for testing:http://www.example.com/home.html#chapter5

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Mentor ,
Feb 06, 2014

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Been trying to get Adobe to handle  URL from Word since I was a young kid in my 40's I am almost 65 now. The last time They sent me a choice worded message That they had no intention of ever fixing it. And some other issues related to MicrosoftwoWord Mac.  So you'll just have to repair the defect manually.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 07, 2014

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Thanks for your answers. Today I called the Adobe phone hotline. They told me they will not answer my question because I bought my OEM version preinstalled on a Dell notebook without an installation-disk ==> no serial number available. I only bought Adobe because I needed clickable Links in PDFs. It seems that exactly this feature does not work properly, so this software is useless for me. Quite frustrating.

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LEGEND ,
Feb 07, 2014

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If you go to the URL discussions, "#" is one of the characters that may need encoding, but not always. Apparently it is a server issue. As far as the behavior in Acrobat, it sounds like Phillip has experienced the problem and knows more than I do about it. If you had a sample WORD file and PDF that you could post some place, then others of us could play around a bit and see if we can reach any other conclusions.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 07, 2014

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What do you mean with "server issue"? As I have already mentioned: There is no server or network involved. All takes place on my computer. Word and Adobe are installed on my computer. After saving the local Word-doc as a local PDF on my computer, the link is already broken (# replaced by %23) before I upload it to anywhere.

Here an example file:

http://www.wandertreff.ch/download/link.docx

http://www.wandertreff.ch/download/link.pdf

If I enter the Link with # in a browser, it works perfectly. The page and anchor exist.

If I enter the Link with %23 in any browser, I get an error 404:

nf.jpg

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Mentor ,
Feb 07, 2014

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Now that you have saved with a working link in Word.

Do the following: and see what happens:

  1. Create and save word file with link(s)
  2. Locate .docx file just created
  3. Locate the Acrobat icon in the Dock (Macintosh)
  4. Next drag file to icon of acrobat in Dock and when the acrobat icon changes appearance release.
  5. Wait ....
  6. When PDF opens save PDF to desired location.
  7. Now click on links see if they  work.

As long as they were not created with Word URL Wizard (Insert Menu > URL) but with the Auto-Correct they should work. 

I just verified by doing as above on your Word Sample. Works perfectly except it asked whether I wanted to trust the site.

Here is link to it from dropbox: https://www.dropbox.com/s/aweu6e8n0pcl4hu/link.pdf

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 08, 2014

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Didn't work. Same problem. It makes no difference how the link was created (menu or auto correct).

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Mentor ,
Feb 08, 2014

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I give up there is something unique to your setup. I've always been able to make PDF with clickable links. Using method above.

I even create a PDF that worked for me that went a German website. And the other went to the site I showed with screen shot.

I just don't know what to offer. And evidently I am the last person left to support Mac.  I've run out of suggestions.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 09, 2014

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Hello Phillip

Why Mac? My System is Microsoft Windows 8.1 on Dell Hardware, Microsoft Office Professional 2013, Adobe Acrobat XI Standard (V 11.0.06). No Apples or any other fruits inside.
I have no "Dock", I even didn't know what this term means, but after some research, I found out that you probably mean the Windows Task Bar.

I appreciate very much your support and your patience. Many thanks.

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Mentor ,
Feb 09, 2014

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Assumed Mac because PC never ever has this problem.

And in Mac this is 10-15 year old bug that Adobe refuses to fix. The claim its Apple and Microsoft Issue. It has been proven time and time and time again its an Adobe issue.

They are: just to lazy to fix it, Don't have enough Mac people to find a Cure, or because they have had an ongoing fued with Apple they don't want to fix it to tweak Mac Users and get them frustrated enough to bail to PC side.

There is one thing adobe and all software companies should realize. Diehard Apple Product users are just that. They will remain come hexx or highwater or until a certain place freezes over and Apple should go out of business.

You'll have to get some of the PC people to figure it out. You should not be having this issue at all with windows version.  Acrobat is supposed to be 100% foolproof with Windows.

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Adobe Employee ,
Feb 11, 2014

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Hi,

I looked into your problem. Since '%23' is the URL-encoding for the chracter '#'. Any URL should work with '#' replaced by %23 as well.

For example, consider the URLs

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer#The_modern_computer

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer%23The_modern_computer

Both these URLs are considered same and should ideally work with all browsers.

If this thing is not working for you for some URLs, can you please provide the specific URL in which case this is not working?

Thank you.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 11, 2014

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Hi Parul.

It's with any link on the site histaminintoleranz.ch, for example.

http://www.histaminintoleranz.ch/en/symptoms.html#zusammenfassung

http://www.histaminintoleranz.ch/en/therapy_dietarychange.html#zusammenfassung

http://www.histaminintoleranz.ch/histaminose.html#zusammenfassung

...

Before, this site was on a server in Germany. A few weeks ago, the site was transferred to a server in Switzerland. There is no relation between those two independent providers. On both servers, it did not work. Is this a hint that either it is not a server issue, or both servers have an "unusual" configuration that does not understand the "%23" replacement?

There is still the question left:

Why does Adobe replace "#" by "%23", if "#" is correct and working, and "%23" doesn't? What can I do to avoid this? Does anybody know an alternative PDF-software that leaves my links unchanged as they are and does not produce such nonsense? Will there be a bugfix soon?

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New Here ,
Feb 19, 2014

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Hi sdfkjhbf23.

I too am experiencing this issue and like you, I am also on Windows 8.1 using Word 2010 and Acrobat XI Pro. I've tried to create the PDF from within Word using the Create PDF and I've also tried creating the PDF from within Acrobat. Both methods failed, each time converting the pound symbol "#" to %23. I also don't have any spaces in the url. It's driving me crazy, and like you I have a long document with a cazillion hyperlinks to anchors existing on various web pages. The hyperlink with the # works perfectly well independent of the PDF when you copy and paste it into any browser or even just click on it from within the Word document, indicating that it's not a browser or a server issue.

If anyone at all knows a fix to this issue, please HELP! Otherwise, I'm looking at having to edit each hyperlink individually in Acrobat, which could take days!

Signed, a distraught, depressed and disillusioned Acrobat user!

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New Here ,
Feb 19, 2014

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Thank Heavens! I've just discovered it's Adobe's stupid Create PDF plugin that's causing the problem. If you just do a Save as PDF, the links are preserved. Hallelujah!!!

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Adobe Employee ,
Feb 19, 2014

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Hi,

We are sorry that you are facing this issue with Adobe PDF Creation plugin.

We are able to reproduce the reported issue. And we are actively looking into this.

Thanks,

Parul

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Community Beginner ,
Apr 24, 2014

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Thanks for looking into this, but now, more than two months later, there is still no update available which solves the problem. When will this update be ready?

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New Here ,
Dec 09, 2014

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I had the same problem today with the "#" being translated to a " - ".

Found this link and it resolved the problem doing a Save As to create the PDF.

Don't know why this cannot be fixed in the code.

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New Here ,
Dec 09, 2014

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Use Word to convert to PDF to save the bookmarks

Step 1 - Launch Microsoft Word and open the document you want to convert to a PDF.

Step 2  - Click the "File" tab.

Step 3  - Click "Save As" to show your document on the screen and open the Save As dialog.

Step 4  - Select "PDF" from the Save as Type drop-down list.

Step 5 - Click "Options" to open the Options dialog box.

Step 6 - Check the "Create Bookmarks Using:" option under the "Include non-printing information" header.

Step 7 - Choose whether you want Word to create bookmarks from the document's headings or Word bookmarks. Headings will let you jump directly to a particular section in the document. Select this option if you did not create bookmarks in the document. Word bookmarks will use any bookmarks you defined in the document.

When the document is converted, it will not retain the blue underined hyperlink style/look, but when you hover over, you will see the # is retained and the link is active when you click.  Hope this helps.

I agree, Acrobat should have a "import/save/modify" option under bookmarks/targets.

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New Here ,
Jan 14, 2015

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Will someone at Adobe please let us know when we can expect this to be fixed?  This is unacceptable behavior for a product designed to integrate with Word.

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New Here ,
Jul 08, 2015

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I am having exactly the same problem with # being replaced with %23 and links not working (MS Word 2013, Acrobat XI Pro 11.0.11, Win 8.1). Why has this problem not been fixed?

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New Here ,
Jul 16, 2015

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Well version 11.0.12 is now out and still no fix. Sigh.

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Explorer ,
Jan 22, 2015

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Hi, I've come across a simple workaround which is ideal for me — double high five. I Simply bitlyed (https://bitly.com) the link and that ugly error message vanished. Boom.

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New Here ,
Feb 09, 2015

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Yeah, that's a good idea Claire.  I used Google's URL shortener since we already use that in a couple of places.  Not an optimal solution, but it will work for now.  I would still like to hear Adobe's plans to fix this.  It doesn't look very professional having the shortened links in there, plus it obscures the location when the user hovers over the link.  That's both irritating, and a potential security risk from an end user standpoint, since they don't know where the link will take them.

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Explorer ,
Feb 16, 2015

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True, it's more a workaround rather than a fix.

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New Here ,
May 08, 2015

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I had this same issue (except with dashes in the URL) and this post saved me. As clairecessford mentioned, this is a workaround and not a fix. Please fix this Adobe and it's easier to Print as PDF instead of going through the Save As process.Given the date on the original post, this issue has been around for awhile now. And I'm running on the latest CC version so I know it's still a problem.

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