Grumble .. there simply is no alt. to Adobe Reader

Discussion in 'all things UNIX' started by Ocky, Jul 23, 2009.

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  1. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    I have just completed my income tax return online. For this nothing but
    Adobe Reader will do. Unlike with other (free) Readers, I can delete/correct
    figures and text entered in fields, there are highlighted and 'interactive' form
    fields - eg. pop-up notifications if something was done incorrectly, and I can
    check the digitally signed security certificate.
    Evince of course is absolutely useless here. When I was still using Windows XP,
    pdfXChange Viewer was nice, but also useless for the task mentioned, and I
    am not keen on using Wine anyway.
    I grumble to myself because there is yet another 'extremely critical' flaw in
    Adobe Reader which is somehow interlinked with Adobe Flash Player.
    It is recommended to :-
    Disable Flash in the web browser.
    Disable Flash +3D +Multimedia support in Reader
    and to delete or rename these files :-
    "/opt/Adobe/Reader9/Reader/intellinux/lib/libauthplay.so"
    "/opt/Adobe/Reader9/Reader/intellinux/lib/librt3d.so"
    Although this is for Reader9, one is warned that other versions may also
    be at risk. Nobody really seems to know.

    See here http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/259425
    (and also check the Secunia site)

    A real pity regarding the availability of a decent alternative Reader for Linux.
    :(
     
  2. Pedro

    Pedro Registered Member

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    Did you try Okular?
    Or rather, can you try it and report back? :D
     
  3. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

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    I was going to recommend Okular as well. I use it and would never go back to Adobe. Of course, I can't say for sure whether it will do the specific ask you are asking here, but it's worth a try.
     
  4. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    Thanks. I have my doubts but will give it a try despite running gnome and not
    KDE. I remember it having been mentioned in tlu's post re. history of nix, where
    even Adobe had problems viewing the pdf's.
    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showpost.php?p=1474973&postcount=1
    (Damn - the server for za seems to be is down - so hopefully tomorrow)

    Regards
     
  5. Pedro

    Pedro Registered Member

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    In any case, i present you what i believe is the best pdf reader for Linux. :)
     
  6. lewmur

    lewmur Registered Member

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    I'm using Mint 7 and Okular is in the package manager. You don't have to install KDE to use it. The package manager installs the KDE stuff it needs to run. I tried the IRS form and had no problem filling in the blanks but I don't know what "interactive" fields to try for the other stuff.
     
  7. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    OK tried Okular in Opera - no go .. this is what I get when opening a form...

    (Opera settings: Open with other application, and ticked 'Pass web address
    directly to application')

    Otherwise very nice.
     

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  8. lewmur

    lewmur Registered Member

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    You have to tell Opera to associate .pdf files with Okular. Otherwise, download the file, run Okular and use it to open the form. I'm loading Opera now so I can find out where the file association settings are. I'll get back to you shortly.
     
  9. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    lewmur, hi

    I have done the settings, it seems that the revenue services site only accepts
    Adobe - I can't explain it otherwise.
    Try if you want, open or save one of the forms. http://www.sarsefiling.co.za/Forms_Guides.aspx

    the IT ones not the Guides (they are fine).
     

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  10. lewmur

    lewmur Registered Member

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    Works for me but I just have "okular" in the "Other application box" instead of /usr/bin/okular and I don't have a check mark for "Pass Web address..."

    Of course I'm not "registered" with this private tax filing co so I can't check how interactive the forms are. They may well be using "Adobe only" forms. If that is the case, I'd find another co or get the forms directly from the IRS's site. Those forms work fine.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2009
  11. twl845

    twl845 Registered Member

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    I replaced Adobe pdf reader a long time ago with free PDF-Xchange reader at www.docu-track.com/ . It does all the things that Adobe does and uses approx. 15Mb of space, opposed to Adobe taking up 85MB.
     
  12. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    That is our gov. IRS efiling site. I have no problem with other pdf's viewed online. Will try tomorrow again with just okular, but frankly I don't see what
    difference it will make. Maybe I am missing some other setting either in Opera or in Okular.

    I think I will give you my particulars so that you can complete the return on my
    behalf, and that way I will not be responsible for any errors. :D
     
  13. lewmur

    lewmur Registered Member

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    Isn't that a Windows program? The download unzips to a .exe file. I believe he is looking for something that will work in Linux.
     
  14. lewmur

    lewmur Registered Member

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    I don't think so. That appears to be a private co. The IRS efiling site is here.
     
  15. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    My dear lewmur, I live in South Africa - that is the official site. :D
     
  16. lewmur

    lewmur Registered Member

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    Ooops!!!!:oops:
     
  17. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    What I get with Adobe - @lewmur do you get the same with Okular ?
     

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  18. lewmur

    lewmur Registered Member

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    I thought I had answered this post earlier but I don't see my reply so I'll give it again. Nothing seems to read that file right except Adobe. Apparently Adobe has come up with a way to keep other readers from opening their .pdf files.

    I used IE8 in Windows to download the file instead of just opening it. Then tried Okular, Foxit and CutePDF, all to no avail. All of them give the error message. The only thing that opened it correctly was Adobe.
     
  19. twl845

    twl845 Registered Member

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    Sorry, I didn't notice.
     
  20. lewmur

    lewmur Registered Member

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    Well, I found something that does work in Linux. It's Adobe's own version of Adobe Reader 9 for Linux. In the package manager, search for "acroreader" and install it. Yes, it's from Adobe but the Window flaws you sited in your original post shouldn't be a problem in Linux.

    (I'll expect the "usual suspects" to debate me on this but I'd certainly use it before trusting my IRS info to the Windows version.)
     
  21. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    Aha, now you see what I meant. I don't run Windows anymore, the
    screenshot shows the .pdf opened with Adobe 8.16 on Ubuntu 8.04.3.
    The 9xx Adobe Reader version is pretty bloated in comparison.

    Anyway, thanks for letting me know about Okular. I really do like it a lot - have
    it installed on Jaunty. It has nice features that remind me of PDFXchange
    viewer when I still used Windows.

    Regards.
     
  22. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    It's the same thing like it used to be with IE. People write things specifically to work in one program. But that's changing for browsers and will change for Acrobat too. Notice the plethora od pinatas ... eh ... vulnerabilities and suchwhat discovered recently, people will eventually get tired of those too and if someone smart grasps the situation, an alternative a-la PDFirefox will rise and fill the gap. And then things will start to even out.

    Mrk
     
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