Adobe Reader Has Stopped Working


This issue has just come up, and seems to be affecting many people around the world. Adobe Reader X and XI seem to be crashing at startup, after a wait of 10 seconds or so. You’ll see the great ‘Adobe Reader has stopped working’ crash message:


Some quick research showed that others were also experiencing this. I found a few people on Twitter complaining about similar things. @CurtinOasis said “Currently issues with adobe reader crashing on lab computers. May prevent accessing PDF docs. Investigating as a high priority! Sorry guys!” and @VillSumith “Adobe Acrobat Reader, crashing due to faulty network proxy. What’s the connection? Anyone? #adobe #techsupport #windows

One of the fixes was to either update Adobe, or reinstall – both seemed to work, but a rather poor solution for a multitude of installs.

I found this post on the Adobe Community forums: which mentioned this same issue. Ashen.NZ found that Adobe Reader was doing a request to the file and blocking that URL actually fixed the issue. I confirmed this myself, checking that file came up in the network traffic logs, and then blocked the whole subdomain – and it worked.

This is by no means a proper fix, but until Adobe work out what’s going on, this will at least keep you going. I’ll update this post if I come across any further information.

Update: The Adobe forums thread above has been updated with an official comment (as pointed out by @Jacobestrin) –


Hi Everyone,

 This was a temporary glitch with our servers that has now been resolved. Please re-launch Acrobat/ Reader and let us know if you still face this issue.

 Thanks for your patience.




I’ve disabled the workaround and everything seems ok. Just a slight slipup from Adobe if it was a ‘glitch’ :)

7 thoughts on “Adobe Reader Has Stopped Working

  1. Just resolved.
    The problem seems to have stemmed from the new “Protected Mode” feature in version 10 and beyond. If you open a pdf document, it crashes.
    If you open adobe reader, go to options/security enhanced and turn off protected mode.
    All is good again.
    This feature is obviously flawed.
    Turning it off puts you back to how things were in version 9.
    The annoying part is that the error message gives no hints that protected mode caused the crash.

    1. 3rd party addons have an issue with Protected Mode being on – so I have that off by default anyway. If there’s a problem at Adobe’s end this option won’t help. Adobe have been changing a lot due to all their issues over the last few years…

  2. There is another way of fixing this issue :

    Under HKCU\Software\Adobe\Acrobat Reader\10.0\Privileged, there is a key called bProtectedMode. It will be set to “1” Switch its hexadecimal value to “0”and Adobe Reader will immediately begin working properly.

    1. Interesting, the original issue I had was due to an Adobe outage but it doesn’t surprise me that turning off Protected Mode via the registry at startup gets around some other issues. Hopefully that helps someone else who stumbles across this thread, thanks for sharing!

    2. Thank you! This resolved our issue with Adobe Acrobat Reader DC crashing upon exit. I would have thought that Adobe would have resolved this issue as it has been more than a year now.


  3. my pc is hp with 64 bit. i have the same problem. i often uninstall my adobe acrobat reader because it has stopped working. adobe acrobat reader that i have is adobe acrobat reader XI. and windows that i used is windows 7 profesional. so i ask you to help me, what can i do to solve my problem?.
    my pc has 2 GB of RAM.
    Thanks :)

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