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Acrodist.exe problem

Registered: May 20 2008
Posts: 8

Hi all!

We seem to be having some type of conflict with the acrodist.exe process.

When the user logs into the machine the acrodist.exe (as well as the acrotray.exe) process starts.
If the user tries to use My Computer or right click on any icon, the system hangs (worst case) or it just ignores the input. In the case of the “ignore” the acrodist.exe process will continue to stay in the Task Manager. If this happens the system will continue to have issues: slow or hanging on opening PDF files, won't open any drive, hangs some webpages, hangs on PDF creation.

If the user waits until the acrodist.exe process goes away (as in not doing anything with the system except for opening the task manager to watch the process end) in under 30 seconds, the computer acts normal and exhibits no issues whatsoever.

This mainly happens on installs of Acrobat 9 Standard and Pro. We have some Acrobat 7 installs that show this, but it is much more rare. This happens on updated machines (ones that went from 7 to 9) and on clean installs. Some of the machines are new deploys so no virus or any other issues, many of the machines are 1 year old, or more, deploys and have no other symptoms becides this one. HQIT pushed out AcroReader 9 to all machines and I thought there might be some conflict but that so far does not seem to be the case, and Yes I told them not to do this to our group...

Recently I built a new image and installed all the programs and updates before I installed some of the Enterprise software. It seemed that I had the issue startup right after one of the latest McAfee updates. I am thinking that there might be some issue with the process scan with the antivirus.

Does anyone else see these issues or have any idea where to go?
I work semi-independent of IT and they have had no answers so far. I cannot turn off McAfee…
Oh and we run XP Pro and Novell for our backend storage.


My Product Information:
Acrobat Standard 9.3.1, Windows
Registered: Nov 3 2008
Posts: 1202
I don't see a reason for those executable to run from start up.
They generally are started from the moment the pdf printer is used, a file is converted to pdf or a pdf is opened with a browser.
You can TRY following:

Open the registry editor and look for this directory
If the acrodist/acrotray are listed there delete the keys for the files and reboot the computer.

LoveCycle Blog
Documents you need:
LiveCycle Designer ES2 Docs

Registered: May 20 2008
Posts: 8
Thanks radzmar,

I didn't think that it should run but was unsure if it was because the process had to initialize or something odd like that. But it looks like you pointed me in the correct direction!

What I show in the Run key:
acrotray.exe (asst 8.0)
acrobat_sl.exe (speed launcher for acrobat full)
adobeARM.exe (which could be the problem it is some update deal, see below)
reader_sl.exe (speed launcher for reader)

Ok so two speed launchers could have issue; I will disable one for sure.

The ARM is interesting, I finally found some people who have similar issues I am seeing.

Seems for some it pops up as a virus/malware and might explain the issue with the McAfee load up and start of the problem. I don’t like McAfee but that is another issue.

I will continue to look at this and disable on one of my test machines and get back to you all.

If anyone has some other ideas or maybe a thought on the possible solution with the ARM please speak up!

Thanks for Looking!!!
Registered: May 20 2008
Posts: 8
OK Update,

It seems that the problem process was acrotray.exe.

My guess is that the assistant fires up the acrodist.exe at startup.
Not sure why it hangs everything, again guess is due to McAfee scanning the processes.

Any other thoughts before I close this as answered?
I will monitor the systems I modified in hopes there are no other issues.