After you uninstalled Adobe Reader, what do you now have associated with .PDF files (type
assoc .pdfin a Command Prompt window)?
The answer to typing "assoc .pdf" in the black Command Prompt box is:
I've never used assoc before, and I don't know what AcroExch means.
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When I open Control Panel\Programs\Default Programs\Set Associations, the "Current Defalut" for .pdf files is
Adobe Reader 9.3
and the icon on the left is the icon I don't like, that is, the ugly whie rectangle containing a tiny red icon.
Interestingly, just underneath is .pdfxml, also set with Adobe Reader 9.3 as "Current default. It's icon is con 2 on my list, which I want.
Ok, the file association is correct (AcroExch.Document will point to your Adobe Reader).
You should be able to change the icon associated with the PDF file type; on Windows Explorer use 'Tools' | 'Folder Options', then tab 'File Types'. Select the 'PDF' extension, then click 'Advanced'. Here you can use the 'Change Icon' button.
[I can't do this with Windows Explorer. Windows 7 is different and "Tools | Folder Options' has only 'General', 'View'. and 'Search'.]
But I can do the steps with Dirctory Opus, my Explorer replacement, and I have gone through its 'Change Icon' procedure many times. Only trouble is, nothing happens. I can change the icon as much as I like, but when I go back to the list of files, the ugly icon is still there. Even rebooting doesn't bring the change into effect.
Interestingly, when I open a .pdf file, the icon in the tray at the bottom is Icon 2 in my list, even though the cion to the left of the file in Windows Explorer and in Directory Opus is the ugly one.
It looks as if Adobe might be protecting the Registry somehow and not letting the change go through.
Some further details about my attempts to change the icon.
1. Using Directory Opus, I can change other file icons on my system. This process does not change the file associations, only the icon. I can, for example, even download an icon from the web and change a file icon to the downloaded icon (without changing the file association).
This process, however, does not work with Adobe Reader 9.3. With this programme, everything seems to work exactly the same during the change process, but the file icon does not change. Even when I reboot, no change occurs.
2. I went on the web and found clear instructions about how to change the file icons in Windows 7 at
I went through their steps, as administrator, and navigated to
The (Default) reads (value not set)
I entered the following value there:
* C:\Program Files\Adobe\Reader 9.0\Reader\AcroRd32.exe,0
which was the same value as at the other place they mentioned:
But I can't do this. I keep getting an error message:
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Error Editing Value
Cannot edit : Error writing the value's new contents.
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CONCLUSION: It does seem that Adobe is somehow protecting the Registry. Please, Adobe techies, how do I do this?
I uninstalled Adobe Reader, and cleaned the registry with jv16 power tools.
Then I installed Foxit reader. The file icon for .pdf files was now the foxit icon.
I then reinstalled Adobe Reader 9.3. The file icon remained the Foxit icon, even after rebooting.
I then changed the icon in Directory Opus in the usual way. When I restarted Directory Opus, the icon was the one I wanted. I have no idea why this worked.
1. Why is there all this fuss over the .pdf file icon, when other file icons can so easily be changed?
2. Do the Adobe techies read these forums? Are they asleep? Is anyone at Adobe interested in their users' problems?
This is a user-to-user forum; there is no guarantee that Adobe staff read any posts here.
This is how I solved the same problem you have.
When you have tried everything, you just cannot change the icon back. Try FileTypesMan.
Launch it, look for .pdf, select it, press F4, Detach the file type, OK, close it.
select .pdf again, press F4, select AcroExch.Document.7, OK.
This solution is for anyone who has tried editing Registry, use FileTypesMan to replace file extension with new default icon...etc. but it just won't work.