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back to article Critical Adobe updates overshadow MS Patch Tuesday

January's Patch Tuesday update from Microsoft was overshadowed in importance by fixes that defend against highly publicised exploits in Adobe Acrobat and Reader. The vulnerabilities in Adobe's software have been the target of hacking attacks since mid-December and so rate higher in important than Microsoft's solitary update, a …

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Silver badge

Another step backwards for computers

just ditch Pointless Document Format altogether!

If you want to make life really difficult for yourself there are plenty of other one-way encryption algorithms out there - Office, Open office, waste paper basket...

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Anonymous Coward

Actually it's not pointless at all

Together with ODF, PDF it's one of those formats that are really portable from one platform to another. Also in case you might ask, plain text is not quite portable because of different EOL codes among platforms.

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FAIL

Crashes?

Is it just me, or does Adobe Reader screw up your PC?

Whenever I use Adobe Reader, the PC fails to logoff or shutdown cleanly. If I haven't used Reader, I never have a problem, so it must be a stuck process created by Reader.

I'm with Tom - get rid of Adobe.

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Anonymous Coward

What's that?

Adobe reader? What's that?

Hasn't been on my PC for some years now. I got fed up with the big downloads, the slow startup, the absurd banners, and ditched it.

Many others have too. If you, dear reader, are still using Adobe, you too can tell it to take a flying trapeze without a safety net. Several alternatives: all better.

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Adobe reader...

...coupled with "Reader Speedup" (it is oldish software so it cannot 'remove' the 3D stuff (3D? In a document? WTF?)) but it gets rid of all the other plug-ins. Start-up banner off, don't verify anything, don't even look for updates...

It starts quickly, there're no "absurd banners", the document I'm wanting to view just loads.

I'm not saying Adobe Reader is great (the installer is crap), but ill-informed opinions do nobody any favours - five minutes tweaking the settings will make it a much better experience, therefore I don't need to look for replacements, not yet.

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Never mind Reader...

On my last Flash update, it nagged me about installing Norton Security Scan. Now, I'd personally compare any Norton product to herpes (is always there, difficult to remove and prone to irritating flareups that can have serious consequences) but due to a combination of new monitor and mouse, I managed to accidentally click "Yes". I did manage to get it uninstalled eventually, but I could have done without the hassle.

This is nasty adware, nothing more. Come on Adobe, tell Symantec to f-off!

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Happy

This is an *update*???

173 megs to update Acrobat Pro is an "incremental" update?? I'm not sure their software could get any worse.

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Grrrrrrrrr!!!!!!!!!!

Adobe works their update like Sun java does!

Grrrrr!

So you get the update but does not remove the older versions of the software.....

For what reason is that?

Why does my uninstall window show 5 different versions of java installed when there

should only be one? Do the developers at Adobe and Sun fail to understand how to uninstall their own product when installing a new version VS an update patch?

I visit countless number of pc's and I see the same thing from seeing Java version 1.4 to version 6 all on the same pc along with adobe acrobat 4 and 5 and adboe reader 6 and 7 and 8 all on the same pc.

Someone who is a amster of their job but does not have admin rights will not know why their apps do not work and I blame Adobe and Sun for their failures.

Keep it up Adobe and Sun! You keep IT in business with your failures.

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GR9!11

This multi-version thing happens with most software I install. The vendor gives you the choice to remove the old version when you are sure that you have reconfigured/upgraded other applications which depend on the old versions. Also, If you find problems with the new version, you can go back to the old one and see if it fixes the problem.

My main gripe with PDF formats, and Flash etc. is that they are rolling standards, always adding new wow! features. PostScript is by far the best method of encoding documents, but having Java in PDF files just breaks all my software which I am too busy to upgrade anyway, so I ignore PDF files on the web (and Flash).

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Uninstalling old versions

"So you get the update but does not remove the older versions of the software.....

For what reason is that?"

Some applications are tied to a particular version of Java. For example, until recently Symantec Endpoint Protection Manager did not run well under a JRE newer than 1.6u7. Symantec has since fixed that problem, but I had to keep the older JRE around until then. I did, however, keep up with the newer versions while that was going on.

Adobe Reader 9 has the ability to uninstall previous versions going back to version 5 or 6. I don't recall if 8 does, though.

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FAIL

Adobe's update process is still HORRIBLE

Well Reader 9 may uninstall previous versions but Reader 8.20 certainly doesn't.

It might make sense with the Java JRE or some other compiler runtime ie .NET or Visual Basic (where you do indeed have cases where certain applets/applications require some older version of the runtime) but it makes NO sense with Adobe Reader - when you're trying to plug security holes!

Back in the Reader 5.x, 6.x and early 7.x days, if you had ie 6.0 and wanted to update to 6.0.4, you had to:

- Install the 6.01 update

- Reboot

- Install the 6.02 update

- Reboot

- Install the 6.03 update

- Reboot

- Install the 6.04 update

- Reboot again

Then you had to REVERSE that to uninstall!

When they finally started releasing incremental patches (the .MSP files) I rejoiced that they might have almost joined the modern era. (BUT THE PATCHES STILL WEREN'T CUMULATIVE)

But 8.20 is back to "LA LA LA LA we don't know anything about that 'other' Reader app you think you have installed... we're just pretending this is the first time you ever installed Acrobat..."

As for 9.x: I'm philosophically opposed to installing a PDF reader that doubles as a Flash thingy.

(I would probably be using 3rd-party PDF viewers if it weren't for the fact that some of the people I support have special add-ins (ie for secure PDF printing) that require the Adobe one.)

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To veiw PDF I would go with Sumatra

All of my stuff gets saved into Rich Text Format, I might want it back someday.

And yes, AC, acuread hangs(It is one memory leaking MF); that was one of the reasons people hated ME* so much.

*If a process could hang under ME it would hang; I could do ctr-alt-del in my sleep after a while.

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