illustrator opens PDF with corrupted characters

Explorer ,
Feb 22, 2013 Feb 22, 2013

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Hi,

When i open a PDF in Illustrator the characters become corrupted. It looks like "#D)9! etc.

Apples preview and Acrobat shows the text right. But when opened in illustrator everything is wrong. The font I use is plain Arial.

Viktor

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Community Beginner , Mar 23, 2018 Mar 23, 2018

Thanks hunterk53973462, I had the same issues "KRVA" described with a graph that was exported to pdf. I usually open in Illustrator to manipulate it. Sometimes the text turns into unreadable characters. Opened the PDF in Adobe Acrobat Pro, under Menu > Save As Other > Archivable PDF/A. Opened it with Illustrator retained readable text. I noticed one outlined line of text and another line of text was individually broken up into individual characters but the rest of the text was intact. Yeah!

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New Here ,
Feb 26, 2018 Feb 26, 2018

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Convert original PDF to PDF/A. Open the PDF/A file in Illustrator. A dialogue box should now pop-up noting missing font (in my case, Ariel). Change the font to an Adobe font (in my case the Ariel with the Adobe symbol next to it). You should now able able to edit the PDF in Illustrator without the strange corrupted character symbols.

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Community Beginner ,
Mar 23, 2018 Mar 23, 2018

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Thanks hunterk53973462, I had the same issues "KRVA" described with a graph that was exported to pdf. I usually open in Illustrator to manipulate it. Sometimes the text turns into unreadable characters. Opened the PDF in Adobe Acrobat Pro, under Menu > Save As Other > Archivable PDF/A. Opened it with Illustrator retained readable text. I noticed one outlined line of text and another line of text was individually broken up into individual characters but the rest of the text was intact. Yeah!

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New Here ,
Feb 02, 2021 Feb 02, 2021

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Thank you! This worked for me as well. 

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New Here ,
May 31, 2022 May 31, 2022

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Thanks! It worked perfectly

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New Here ,
Apr 25, 2018 Apr 25, 2018

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THIS DID IT! Thank you so much!!

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Explorer ,
Sep 25, 2019 Sep 25, 2019

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Brilliant! This worked perfectly 🙂

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Community Beginner ,
Apr 10, 2021 Apr 10, 2021

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This works! Save as other > archivable. Thanks!

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New Here ,
Nov 12, 2018 Nov 12, 2018

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Hi there,

I had the same issue, when I tried to open an Excel-generated PDF in Adobe illustrator. After reading all the posts here and trying here and there, I figured a way out: instead of open, but place your pdf file; after embedding into AI, then you will retain all the original contents, and edit as you see fit.

Hope this helps!

Andrew

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New Here ,
Nov 13, 2019 Nov 13, 2019

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I seem to have a slightly different problem with the same results:  I am sent a floor plan by a client as a pdf.  I then take that floor plan and open it in Illustrator in order to eliminate the portions of the drawing that I don't need and reduce it to fit on a sheet of 8.5" x 11" paper.  I then delete the room numbers and sq. footage that came on the drawing and use Arial, in Illustrator, to number the rooms and add a building name and address to the plan.  Once I do that, the plan is put into Dropbox.  I export the plan to Goodnotes when I need to markup the floor plan and then export it back to Dropbox.  However, in the last few days (and I have been doing this for about 5 years with no problems), when I open the floor plan in Illustrator CS6, the text is corrupted.  Yes, it opens fine in Acrobat.  I've read the entire thread, but most of you have created a spreadsheet or presentation in something else...maybe something Microsoft.  This isn't.

 

I am using Illustrator CS6, Goodnotes 5 and Adobe Acrobat 11.0.23.  I tried saving a text test that I created in Illustrator, put it into Dropbox and opened it in Acrobat.  I used the Save as Other option and selected the Archiveable PDF.  Then opened it in Illustrator and it was corrupted.  This is really the only thing I use Illustrator for...I don't draw my own things and, therefore, am conversant only as far as I use the program.  Please help!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 13, 2019 Nov 13, 2019

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"I am using Illustrator CS6, Goodnotes 5 and Adobe Acrobat 11.0.23.  I tried saving a text test that I created in Illustrator, put it into Dropbox and opened it in Acrobat.  I used the Save as Other option and selected the Archiveable PDF.  Then opened it in Illustrator and it was corrupted.  This is really the only thing I use Illustrator for...I don't draw my own things and, therefore, am conversant only as far as I use the program.  Please help!"

 

illustrator is not a general purpose PDF editor. Your workflow doesn't sound like a recommended procedure.

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New Here ,
Nov 27, 2018 Nov 27, 2018

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you rock

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New Here ,
Mar 29, 2022 Mar 29, 2022

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This is still an issue in 2022. Thankfully I cant trust Affinity Publisher to pull through with a multipage PDF with charts and graphs that I need to later be able to edit the text (without going back to the MS suite, export, place, etc.).

 

Since this opens near flawlessly in Affinity Publisher, looks like the default answer of blaming Microsoft is no longer valid, as some have noted. Your mileage may vary but this workflow works for me on macOS 12.3, Affinity Publisher 1.10.4, both on Apple silicon.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 29, 2022 Mar 29, 2022

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This thread and the solution with Calibri originated in 2013. Affinity Designer came into existence in 2014.

Since then there have been a couple of versions of both Illustrator and Office.

Has been a long time that I have seen the Calibri issue. Tried to reproduce it a few times more recently, but couldn't. This might also be caused by my version of the font (which might have changed as well).

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New Here ,
Mar 29, 2022 Mar 29, 2022

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Today, in 2022, I have the latest version of all software platforms mentioned in this thread and it's an issue on my machine when opening the PDF generated from MS apps and then imported into 26. The same PDF opened in Affinity Publisher had zero issues with the text.

 

I checked with another person on an Intel Mac with macOS 10.14 and the issues still exist as well.

Again, your mileage may vary.

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