PDFs in Safari | Acrobat 8 | Mac OS X

System requirements

Adobe PDFViewer for Mac OS X does not run correctly on a system that doesn't meet the following requirements:

  • Safari browser
  • Mac OS X v10.4.3 and later

Acrobat/Reader 8 supports viewing PDF files inside Safari windows on Mac OS X, and runs only on Mac OS X 10.4.3 and later. It does not support any other browser (such as Firefox and Opera).

Note: If you don't have Acrobat or Adobe Reader, then Safari running in 10.3.9 or later shows PDFs inside its window using the Mac OS X native PDF support; this setup does not support many Adobe PDF workflows (such as the Collaboration feature or many Forms and Security features).

Configuring Acrobat to display PDF files in Safari

Drag the Acrobat application folder from the CD (or disk image) to the Applications folder to install Acrobat. The first time you start Acrobat you are prompted to accept the end user license agreement (EULA) and register Acrobat. After you accept the EULA, Acrobat runs a self-healing procedure that checks for any Acrobat components that need to be installed in other applications. The self-healing process installs the Adobe PDFViewer plug-in file, which is used by Acrobat to view PDF files in the Safari browser on Mac OS X. This file is installed in the Library/Internet Plug-Ins folder.

If you updated or reinstalled your copy of Safari to view PDF files, then do the following:

  1. Completely remove the old version of Safari.
  2. Install the latest version of Safari.
  3. Remove the Adobe PDFViewer.plugin from the Library/Internet Plug-Ins folder.
  4. In Acrobat, choose Help > Detect And Repair and select Adobe PDFViewer.

The first time you start Acrobat or Adobe Reader 8 on Mac OS X, it automatically installs itself as the default PDF viewer for Safari. To turn off this setting, start Acrobat or Adobe Reader and go to Preferences > Internet. Deselect the Display PDF in browser option, which causes the PDF to display inside the Safari window using its native PDF viewer.

Known issues

The following are known issues in Acrobat 8:

  • When you upgrade from Adobe Reader or Acrobat from 7 to 8 on a Mactel machine, PDF files no longer show in the Safari window. Instead a large Acrobat or Adobe Reader icon displays in the middle of the Safari window. This issue is caused by running Safari under Rosetta; Acrobat and Adobe Reader 8 do not show PDF files in Safari run under Rosetta, whereas Acrobat and Adobe Reader 7 shows PDFs in Safari only under Rosetta. To work around this issue, you have to turn off Rosetta for Safari, or start Acrobat or Acrobat Reader and go to Preferences > Internet and turn off Display PDF in browser (PDF files then display in Safari using the Mac OS X native PDF viewing engine).
  • When you upgrade Adobe Reader or Acrobat from 7 to 8, PDF files no longer show in other non-Safari browser windows. Instead a large Acrobat or Reader icon displays in the middle of the browser window. PDF viewing is not supported for any WebKit-based applications other than Safari. Work around this issue by starting Acrobat or Adobe Reader, and choosing Preferences > Internet and turning off Display PDF in browser.


If you delete the AdobePDFViewer files, they self-heal when you start Acrobat again. You can also fix Safari manually by choosing Help > Repair Acrobat Installation.


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