Solved

How to save an Acrobat fillable form so the user's answers can't be changed

Posted on 2013-05-21
10
1,565 Views
Last Modified: 2013-05-28
I am creating a fillable form (using Acrobat XI Standard) for our staff to fill out in Reader and then send to our clients as a static pdf. I know how to save the form as a Reader file but when I fill it out and send it it is still modifiable.

How can I create a fillable pdf that is then:
1. Saved as a form to be filled out by in-house staff using Reader
2. saved as a static pdf that will be sent to cients.
Corp-Employee-Ltr-Experts.pdf
0
Comment
Question by:rumorandfolly
  • 5
  • 5
10 Comments
 
LVL 44

Expert Comment

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
Comment Utility
You would flatten the document - that would convert interactive content to static PDF content. The easiest way to do that is by installing the "Page Flattening Tools" from pdfscripting.com: http://www.pdfscripting.com/public/Free_Acrobat_Automation_Tools.cfm
0
 

Author Comment

by:rumorandfolly
Comment Utility
It seems that the Page Flattening Tool is for use by Acrobat which would be fine if I was doing all of the page flattening. However, all I'm doing is creating the fillable form, saving it as a Reader document which my staff will then fill in with our client's information to be sent to the client. Will the recommended Tool work as a Plug-in with Reader so that my staff can save each client-specific document and send to them as a static pdf?
0
 
LVL 44

Expert Comment

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
Comment Utility
No, this will not work with Reader, only Acrobat. One option would be to sign the document and select to lock the form with the signature. This way, the elements remain interactive, but can no longer be edited.
0
 

Author Comment

by:rumorandfolly
Comment Utility
So, to clarify your statement above: my staff who are going to be using Reader would have a way to sign the Reader doc with an e-signature which would make a "lock" available before sending the completed memo to their client?

If yes, then I would need to find out how each of them can acquire an e-signature. Is this correct? Any suggestions on that?
0
 
LVL 44

Expert Comment

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
Comment Utility
Yes, this is correct. If they have Adobe Reader XI, you don't have to do anything special besides adding the signature fields (and supplying the electronic signatures, or let your staff create them themselves). If they are working with older versions of Reader, you would have to Reader-enable the document (File>Save As Other>Reader Extended PDF>More Tools).

When you define the signature field, you select what should happen with the document once it is signed. You would select to lock all form fields.

Because you are not using the signature as a means to verify who signed the document, you don't need "real" digital signatures: You can create self-signed signatures with Acrobat form your staff.
0
How to run any project with ease

Manage projects of all sizes how you want. Great for personal to-do lists, project milestones, team priorities and launch plans.
- Combine task lists, docs, spreadsheets, and chat in one
- View and edit from mobile/offline
- Cut down on emails

 

Author Comment

by:rumorandfolly
Comment Utility
I get what you're saying but I can't seem to create the self-signed signatures. I have installed Reader XI and I use XI Standard to create my forms. I do not find Digital IDs in either program. I'm hunting everywhere and nothing turns up. Any advice on how to do this?
0
 
LVL 44

Accepted Solution

by:
Karl Heinz Kremer earned 500 total points
Comment Utility
It is possible that this is not available in Standard. I only have Pro, and I have to rely on Adobe's feature comparison to figure out if something is available in Standard or not.

In Pro, I go to Preferences>Signatures>Identities and Trusted Certificates>More...

Give that a try and see if you an create IDs this way.
0
 

Author Comment

by:rumorandfolly
Comment Utility
IT is going to be installing Pro XI for me this afternoon so I'll be able to follow your instructions soon. I believe you are instructing me to create e-signatures for all of the Reader users who will need to sign and lock their client memos. Correct?
0
 
LVL 44

Expert Comment

by:Karl Heinz Kremer
Comment Utility
Yes, that's correct. You could just create one digital ID, you are only using it to lock the file, so everybody could use the same.
0
 

Author Closing Comment

by:rumorandfolly
Comment Utility
Great solution and it's already in use. Creating IDs is not available in Standard but is in Pro. This is a very slick solution that we will be using for a lot more forms in the near future. Thank you VERY much!
0

Featured Post

How to run any project with ease

Manage projects of all sizes how you want. Great for personal to-do lists, project milestones, team priorities and launch plans.
- Combine task lists, docs, spreadsheets, and chat in one
- View and edit from mobile/offline
- Cut down on emails

Join & Write a Comment

*Adobe Acrobat 9 was used for this article.  Particular steps may vary depending on software versions. Adobe Acrobat has many, many variables that my be utilized to customize your forms for clarity and ease of use. The Form Editing Tool will be y…
PaperPort (http://www.nuance.com/for-individuals/by-product/paperport/index.htm) is among the most important applications that I run on my Windows computers. I use it every day, for nearly all of my document and photo scanning, as well as most of my…
This video Micro Tutorial is the second in a two-part series that shows how to create and use custom scanning profiles in Nuance's PaperPort 14.5 (http://www.experts-exchange.com/articles/17490/). But the ability to create custom scanning profiles a…
In this seventh video of the Xpdf series, we discuss and demonstrate the PDFfonts utility, which lists all the fonts used in a PDF file. It does this via a command line interface, making it suitable for use in programs, scripts, batch files — any pl…

762 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question

Need Help in Real-Time?

Connect with top rated Experts

6 Experts available now in Live!

Get 1:1 Help Now