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Restricting fillable fields or hide for web browser viewing, only show in Acrobat Reader

New Here ,
Aug 04, 2020

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Does anyone know how to either use the field properties of maybe document properties to restrict/hide fillable fields within a PDF when being viewed in a web browser but allowing them to be visible only when using adobe reader? 

 

I have been researching everywhere, and people have made mention of using a javascript to do this type of thing, but I have not found any details or searching for the wrong thing. 

Do to recent covid, we have a lot of government clients that are taking additional forms online, and these fillable PDFs a person will select from the site and most have the browser default to open the pdf in a new browser tab, they will fill out the form and then click save to discover they have now saved a new blank document, and lost all of the information they had entered. We have changed the html links to force the download, but from looking at data and feedback, many will click the download link and still load the file in the browser. 

 

I am open to any and all suggestions for how we could mitigate this issue, these are long applications for submitting for a building permit or new water service, etc. We have put verbiage on the sites to warn people to no complete the form in their brower view, but it seems like there would be a way to restric the fields of the form to only be visable and able to type when opened within acrobat reader. 

 

Other suggestions welcome!

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Correct answer by try67 | Most Valuable Participant

The problem with using a script for it is that many of these sub-par PDF plugins don't support scripts at all (or very partially)...

So the solution needs to be to hide the fields by default and then use a script to show them when the file is opened in Acrobat or Reader, not the other way around.

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Restricting fillable fields or hide for web browser viewing, only show in Acrobat Reader

New Here ,
Aug 04, 2020

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Does anyone know how to either use the field properties of maybe document properties to restrict/hide fillable fields within a PDF when being viewed in a web browser but allowing them to be visible only when using adobe reader? 

 

I have been researching everywhere, and people have made mention of using a javascript to do this type of thing, but I have not found any details or searching for the wrong thing. 

Do to recent covid, we have a lot of government clients that are taking additional forms online, and these fillable PDFs a person will select from the site and most have the browser default to open the pdf in a new browser tab, they will fill out the form and then click save to discover they have now saved a new blank document, and lost all of the information they had entered. We have changed the html links to force the download, but from looking at data and feedback, many will click the download link and still load the file in the browser. 

 

I am open to any and all suggestions for how we could mitigate this issue, these are long applications for submitting for a building permit or new water service, etc. We have put verbiage on the sites to warn people to no complete the form in their brower view, but it seems like there would be a way to restric the fields of the form to only be visable and able to type when opened within acrobat reader. 

 

Other suggestions welcome!

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Correct answer by try67 | Most Valuable Participant

The problem with using a script for it is that many of these sub-par PDF plugins don't support scripts at all (or very partially)...

So the solution needs to be to hide the fields by default and then use a script to show them when the file is opened in Acrobat or Reader, not the other way around.

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Aug 04, 2020 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
Aug 04, 2020

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The problem with using a script for it is that many of these sub-par PDF plugins don't support scripts at all (or very partially)...

So the solution needs to be to hide the fields by default and then use a script to show them when the file is opened in Acrobat or Reader, not the other way around.

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New Here ,
Aug 04, 2020

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Ok that makes sense. Thank you for helping me to understand to look at it the other way around. I was not thinking about it that way. 

 

Have you, or anyone else reading this post wrote any scripts that would do this? And if so does this script have to be added to every field seperately?

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try67 LATEST
Most Valuable Participant ,
Aug 05, 2020

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Yes, I have created similar scripts in the past, and not, it doesn't need to be applied to each field individually.

 

If you're interested I could develop a similar solution for you, too, for a small fee. You can contact me privately via [try6767 at gmail.com] to discuss it further.

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