Edit 11/25/2011: After hours of troubleshooting and starting completely over from scratch with fresh PDFs from InDesign, the problem happened again, implying this is most likely a bug with Acrobat Pro 10.1.1. I was able to get one of my two files finished without any problems, but the second one gave the error when I tried to save. This is a serious problem and I’ll be filing a bug report.
I’ve reverted back to Acrobat 10.0 for the time being hoping that will be more stable.
At least two different PDF files are giving the error “The document could not be saved. There was a problem reading this document. [#]” where ‘#’ is some number, different for each of the files. I created these files on the computer that I’m trying to edit them on. I’m making very simple edits (just changing the file destinations of a few buttons). Often Acrobat will crash if I attempt to do anything else with the file after I get the error message. Once I get this message, the file is corrupted and can no longer be opened (luckily I had backups and only lost the minor edits I had been trying to make).
- Mac OS X ver. 10.6.8
- Acrobat X Pro ver. 10.1.1
- Files were exported from InDesign CS 5.5.1 about 2 months ago and edited heavily in Acrobat X Pro.
- Only relevant changes on the system that I’m aware of since I last worked on the files 2 months ago have been minor OS updates and, if I remember right, the Acrobat update from 10.1 to 10.1.1.
- Documents in question are 200+ files full of bookmarks, buttons, hyperlinks, and cross references, but no comments or form fields.
- Update: problem happened again with brand new file exported fresh today from InDesign. The edits I’m doing in Acrobat Pro involve creating/editing several bookmarks, changing document meta data, initial view settings, rotating several pages, and changing the file destination of about 100 buttons (as InDesign is incapable of setting them properly to open in new Acrobat Windows). On the first file I did it worked fine, but the second file gave the error when I tried to save it.
I suspect stability issues in the 10.1.1 update, although I have no proof at this point. The files worked fine prior to installing updates, and a new PDF got the error after working in 10.1.1 after about 1 hour. I reverted back to 10.0 and redid the file with no problems, but that’s no guarantee of a solution, as I could have just been lucky. The error most likely involved the many buttons linking to other PDFs; it is necessary to use Acrobat to reset the link destination for each button, because there is no way in InDesign to specify that the links should open the PDFs in new windows. For some reason changing many of these links in 10.1.1 causes the file to become corrupt. I have not had any problems prior to installing the 10.1.1 update.
The following troubleshooting steps were NOT beneficial in solving the problem, but I’ve included them here to show what what I did along the way and to help others if my solution doesn’t solve the problem.
- Save As immediately after opening a clean copy, before making any edits. In my case, I was able to Save As if I had not made any edits, but if I edited the file in various ways, then Acrobat would often crash and the file become corrupt.
- Doing different types of test edits. I tried using the Touch-Up Text tool and Touch-Up Object tool as well as changing my button properties and had the same error message when trying to save.
- Try different files. same problem happened on at least two different files. This often implies it’s not a problem with the files. However, the files were last saved on the same day a couple months ago.
- According to various posts on Adobe’s support forums, this message has historically been linked to invalid annotation objects (usually comments). As I have no comments in the document, I felt this was not very likely, but I still tried extracting all 330 pages as individual files and then looked for missing pages. There were no errors and no missing pages. However, reading the support post helped confirm my (incorrect) suspicions that the problem might be related to my installation.
- Uninstall/reinstall Acrobat. At this point I started to think it might be my installation of Acrobat or my computer. I uninstalled Acrobat X, found and removed leftover prefs and app support files, reinstalled, applied updates, same error.
- Uninstall/reinstall without updates. Tried without the update, same error.
- Different computer. To rule out any problems on my computer, I installed Acro X on my old Mac (it still had 9 on it) and got the same error.
- Saving As an Optimized PDF. At first I thought this had fixed the problem, as I was able to make several changes to the file and save. However, I eventually got the same error. I used the following settings in the optimizer:
-Made compatible with Acrobat 7 (this is the standard for this particular project)
-Left images and fonts unchanged
-The only two “Discard Object” options enabled were alternate images and embedded printer settings
-No “Discard User Data” options were enabled.
-All “Clean Up” options were enabled except for “Discard unreferenced named destinations.
- Starting over with completely new PDF files. Worked for one document. The other gave the same error when trying to save the final version. This leads me to conclude that Acrobat 10.1.1 might have a bug, or there might be some other issue on my system. If I continue to have problems on my computer I’ll try using it on another computer, and also try reverting back to Acro 10.0.