Launching Adobe Reader and Other Programs from inside of MS Word

I have had a few clients lately swear to me that they were once able to open PDF documents in Adobe Reader from within MS Word's file-->open dialog ... and now they are unable to do so.  It was my contention that this was never possible, you had to launch the docs by double-clicking them from within an explorer window to open them in the appropriate program.  But these clients swear the from within MS Word they could goto file and then open and from that dialog if they double-clicked a PDF it would open the document within Adobe Reader, or if it was an excel file it would open in excel, etc ...

So my question - does anyone know if this was ever possible and I am just going nuts, or am I right and it was never possible and they must've mistaken an explorer  window for the file --= open dialog ...???
Who is Participating?
ded9Connect With a Mentor Commented:
TBK-Consulting: Its a tricky question but there is a way to do it.

Open word-click File-Open-locate the pdf ebook -right on the ebook -select open with acrobat - and you will notice that ebook opens with adobe reader within word.

The question is can you open other programs within word and the answer is yes.

This is the only way and there is no other way......If they dont agree with this then they might be playing with you...which is making your more frustrated.


Don ThomsonCommented:
There is no way to load a PDF file directly without some third party intervention - The only one I know is   

I haven't used it but it looks like it may work - It attaches itself to the Office products and allows a WYSIWYG  copy of the PDF in Word

It t will import only text but formatted quite well
TBK-ConsultingAuthor Commented:
I am not talking about importing into Word, I'm saying they swear it actually opens in Adobe Reader thru the Word open document interface rather than going thru explorer ... am I going crazy and this was once possible and now patched to not work?
Cloud Class® Course: SQL Server Core 2016

This course will introduce you to SQL Server Core 2016, as well as teach you about SSMS, data tools, installation, server configuration, using Management Studio, and writing and executing queries.

Don ThomsonCommented:
As a PFD is a binary file - unless you had an add-on that did the conversion - It's not going to import or open it in Word.

The whole point of using PDF - is that you can send it to someone and they can't change it. If you created an estimate in word and sent it to a client - what would stop them from changing something  and it slipping by.

There are I'm sure products that will basically do the equivalent of an OCR  and bring the results diurectly into Word - but I've never seen any of them that work well
TBK-ConsultingAuthor Commented:
I am NOT talking conversion ... PERIOD.

I am NOT talking opening the PDF in Word either ....

I AM talking using the Word Open File Dialog to launch Adobe Reader with that particular PDF open, using the open file dialog essentially as it were an explorer window.

I understand what a PDF is and that in order to open it in Word you need a converter of some sort, however, AGAIN -- I AM NOT TALKING ABOUT OPENING THE FILE IN WORD BUT RATHER OPENING IT IN ADOBE READER BUT USING WORD'S OPEN FILE DIALOG TO DO SO.
TBK-ConsultingAuthor Commented:
INcreasing points as this seems more difficult to understand than I originally anticipated.
Don ThomsonCommented:
Based on ded9's solution that works with any program that has a file/open standard scenrio - as long as your can set the file type as *.* or all file types - at that point it's not word itself that you are opening the pdf from - it's actually windows itself - I sometimes use the file open to do stuff like rename a file - copy or move a file - It will work under virtually any Windows program that has a File - Open  option (except of course Outlook which isn't opening a file - just another mailbox) - In outlook you just open a file by double clicking the attachment  - very similar

Good catch
Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.

All Courses

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.