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Old 08-01-2004, 01:52 AM   #1
Registered: Aug 2004
Distribution: Mandrake 10.1
Posts: 204

Rep: Reputation: 30
Configuring Adobe Acrobat5

I just installed Adobe Acrobat 5.09. It came as a tarball, and when extracted, there was an installer built in.

I ran the installer (following the readme file).

Acrobat installed to


However, I cannot find the actual executable in there. There is a file called


which is a shell script that launches the file.

What I am trying to figure out are the steps to take to make PDF files, when double-clicked, automatically be passed to Acrobat for reading. Currently they are linked to KGhostViewer or something like that, and it cannot view them.

When I execute the shell script acroread, Acrobat launches. When I use the open function in Acrobat, PDF's will display properly. However, when trying to associate PDF's with the application...

1. Do I associate them with the shell script or with the raw binary (assuming I can find it)?

2. How do I do that? When I right click on a PDF file, I can choose OPEN WITH... and attempt to define a link between PDF and Acrobat, but I have no idea what data to put in there to make it work.

Any suggestions?

Using Gnome 2.4 under Mandrake 10 Linux.
Old 08-01-2004, 02:35 AM   #2
Registered: Feb 2004
Location: Australia
Distribution: Ubuntu, Fedora 10
Posts: 632

Rep: Reputation: 31
there will be something in the menus somewhere that allows you to change preferred applications.

I use KDE and that is easy because you just right click on the file and choose "Open With" and choose the acroread script and check the "remember this file association checkbox".

When I first installed Linux I used Gnome and like you I found it very unintuitive. I sould recommend installing KDE and using that.

Oh and yes you do point to the acroread script file.

You may want to add it to the /usr/bin directory with

ln -s /usr/local/Acrobat5/bin/acroread /usr/bin/acroread

Last edited by jax8; 08-01-2004 at 02:38 AM.
Old 08-01-2004, 11:03 AM   #3
Registered: Aug 2004
Distribution: Mandrake 10.1
Posts: 204

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 30
Originally posted by jax8
ln -s /usr/local/Acrobat5/bin/acroread /usr/bin/acroread [/B]
Thank you so much! Following this command, Gnome added Acrobat to my "View With" right click menu, and I was able to choose the script.

For those who will later search and read this article to solve the same problem...

For those who don't know why this fixed the problem: The problem was that my $PATH environment variable. Every user, when they log on, has a configuration setting called $PATH that is loaded with directories where executable system files live.

My path looks like this:


When you type a command like "ls" on the command line, it works from everywhere because in one of those directories in your path, there is a link or the actual program for ls.

If a program is not in your path, and no link to it is in your path, then when you try to run it from somewhere, the system won't find it.

So, the solution is to either add the Acrobat5 directory to my path (ill-advised), or to put a symbolic link (sort of like a command line version of a Windows shortcut) in a directory that is in the $PATH.

To understand this command

ln -s /usr/local/Acrobat5/bin/acroread /usr/bin/acroread

I recommend the following for more info about what your $PATH is.

This page describes the ln command and why this worked to solve this problem:

Good luck!


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