Adobe Acrobat Internal Error after removing admin rights

Posted on 2009-04-20
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
All of our computers were originally set up with Admin rights at the desktop.  Recently we had to remove all admin rights & degrade everyone to power users.  In doing that, several (not all) of our Adobe users (both reader & acrobat) are receiving errors about internal errors when trying to open any PDFs etc.

Does anyone know how to fix this?  Right when I add them back to the administrators group, it works fine.
Question by:rustyrpage
    LVL 32

    Expert Comment


    the explanation is easier than the fix...

    The likely issue is permissions on registry keys which have been set to Admin group with no access for Powerusers. hence when you promote users back to Admin level the errors disappear.

    Now you need to determine which keys are affected and add PUs to the permissions. Adobe have recommended to use a Reg monitor such as MJ monitor (, so you can find out which key is called when the error occurs.

    I always have users in the local admin group for the PC and use this account to install the Acrobat setup.

    So you could save time by reinstalling but it may be just as quick to fix the registry.


    LVL 6

    Author Comment

    Okay - so I sat down for a while & looked at an issue - I figured it out by troubleshooting a similar issue with Mozilla Firefox not starting on a user computer too.  The C:\Documents And Settings\Username\Application Data\Adobe folder had no access to non-admins.  I gave the specific user access to that folder & now it works without admin rights.  That was on a reader installation, so I will play with an Acrobat installation & let you know.
    LVL 32

    Accepted Solution

    Hm. Folder permissions...I would expect this being the same for Acrobat Pro.

    Good call.
    LVL 6

    Author Comment

    I will keep you posted, I have to find someone to test it on locally before I close this out.

    Expert Comment

    This worked for me. I gave full control rights to Everyone on the Documents and Settings folder. In my situation that is secure. That allowed Acrobat to run just fine. I tried giving them right to just the Applications Data folder on the user and administrator profile and that didn't change anything. I then decided to give them rights to the entire Documents and Settings folder and it worked. Thank you for getting me in the right direction.

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