I have a PDF file with fields to fill in.

On my machine with “Acrobat Reader DC” (2015 Release | Version 2015.016.20045), I can fill in the fields, save the file & email the file (from within Reader), and the data remains in the fields.

We have another user in the office running “Acrobat Reader X” (Version 10.1.1) who can fill in the fields, but cannot save the file (File|Save As). She can email the file from within Reader, but a blank copy of the document is sent, not a copy with the filled in data.

When she opens the document she gets this message:

enter image description here

And this message when she attempts to clicks on a field or save the document with data in the fields:

enter image description here

When I click the "Standards" icon in my version (Reader DC), it tells me:

  • Conformance
    • Standard: PDF/X-4
    • ISO Name: ISO 15930-7
  • OutputIntent
    • Identifier: CGATS TR 001
    • Info U.S. Web Coated (SWOP) v2

None of this means a thing to me, but I thought it might be useful to someone who knows more.

When I select Document Properties it reports (selected, relevant looking fields only):

  • Description tab
    • Application: Adobe InDesign CS4 (6.0.6)
    • PDF Producer: Adobe PDF Library 9.0
    • PDF Version: 1.6 (Acrobat 7.x)
  • Security tab
    • Security Method: No Security
    • Document Restrictions Summary: All are allowed except “Document Assembly” and “Page Extraction”
  • Custom tab
    • Property Name “GTS_PDFXVersion”
    • Property Value “PDF/X-4”

  1. Is the inability to save/email the document with data filled in not available with Reader X? (If so, really, what was the point???)
  2. If not, are there any properties of the document I can change (in Reader DC or in full Creator) that will impact the ability to save/email?
  3. Is there anything else that can be done to allow this user (and most of our other users) to be able to save filled in documents?

Note: I have admin rights to my machine, so I installed the updates to Reader DC when I was notified that it was available. Most of our users do not have admin privileges, and only get the updates that our IT department pushes. Therefore, updating the other users to Reader DC is, most likely, out of the question unless that's the only solution in which case we may be able to weasel our way into it.

  • The reason you can save the document is because of your admin permissions. The other user is being restricted by a group policy to prevent PDF documents from being saved
    – Ramhound
    Commented Jul 6, 2016 at 18:10
  • Really? Could our IT department be that stupid? Don't answer that...
    – FreeMan
    Commented Jul 6, 2016 at 18:15
  • Related
    – Ramhound
    Commented Jul 6, 2016 at 18:15
  • You tell me. You cannot create new .PDF documents with Reader but you can save an existing PDF document which you have filled out. The user might also be able to print to a PDF depending on various factors.
    – Ramhound
    Commented Jul 6, 2016 at 18:17

1 Answer 1



Adobe Reader X (and older) can not save filled forms, unless the form has been granted "Extended Rights" (for Saving, it is sufficient to add the needed rights using Acrobat Pro).

Adobe Reader XI and newer no longer need those Extended Rights for saving; that restriction has been lifted.

Suggestion: Considering that Adobe Reader X is already quite old, and no longer properly supported by Adobe, you better update your user to (at least) Reader XI, or, preferrable, Reader DC.

  • That does seem to be the issue, Max, thank you. Unfortunately, our corporate IT is rather... slow ... about pushing updates/upgrades to the common plebe, could you, therefore, provide instructions for granting "Extended Rights" via either "X" or "DC" to make your good answer great? (Slow you say? We just got off IE8 last fall. Yes, slow.)
    – FreeMan
    Commented Jul 8, 2016 at 11:55
  • I did find these instructions which appear to be from a "Max Wyss" (any relation? :D), however, they're for v9.x and from 200x some time, and appear to be out of date...
    – FreeMan
    Commented Jul 8, 2016 at 12:00
  • I found a user here still on version 9.x & followed the directions. She was able to fill out & send a form with the data in it. However, another user on version X was not able to do the same with the same "Extended Rights" granted version. It does appear that we will be able to get our users updated to version XI (at least), so that will solve the problem in the long run. Thanks for your assistance!
    – FreeMan
    Commented Jul 8, 2016 at 12:38
  • One thing which might get your IT department's asses moving could be that Acrobat/Reader X is beyond end of life at Adobe. There won't be any (security) updates, and by not updating, they put their user's in danger. Yeah, that old "instruction" is from yours truly. About the not being able to save in Reader X, which Acrobat version was used to assign the Extended Rights?
    – Max Wyss
    Commented Jul 9, 2016 at 3:59
  • Added the extended rights in V9.x.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Jul 10, 2016 at 17:18

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