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Acrobat Reader 5, 6 plugins – what they do

I wanted to fasten the start-up of Acrobat Reader 6 and followed the common advise to move the plug-ins to the Optional folder. But which plug-in is neaded for a specific task, for example, to access web pages? These plugins must be in the plug_ins folder at startup.

I found the information in Help > About Adobe plugins… while all plugins were in the plug_ins folder. I have compiled it here for your convenience.

Speed up the start of Acrobat Reader

As a minimum You need to have the following plugins: EWH32.api and IA32.api

To allow acces to Web pages from links within the pdf, you need in addition: weblink.api and EScript.api

List of plugins and their pupose

Plugin xxx.api Pupose Loading need Full function needs (in addition)
Accessibility The Acrobat Accessibility plug-in allows assistive technology such as screen readers to interact with Acrobat. Acroform, EScript, PDDom MakeAccessible
AcroForm The Acrobat Forms plug-in allows users to work with electronic forms using Acrobat. EScript WebLink, IA32, WebPDF, SendMail, Spelling, DigSig
DigSig The Digital Signature plug-in (DigSig) provides a generic PDF file digital-signing service. Signing plug-ins can register with this plug-in to provide specific signing implementations (e.g. public-key digital signatures, or biometric signatures). Acrobat includes the PPKLite security plug-in which provides public-key digital signature capability. Check the Adobe web site to find signature handlers from other security product vendors. AcroForm, EScript LegalPDF, Checkers, SendMail, WebLink, Updater, EFS, PPKLite
eBook The Adobe DRM plug-in provides features for obtaining and reading documents protected with Adobe DRM technology. None Comments, EFS, Weblink, SendMail, Make Accessible
EScript The Adobe EScript (ECMA Script) Plug-In allows PDF documents to take advantage of JavaScript. See the Acrobat JavaScript Object Specification (AcroJS.pdf) for more details. This document can be accessed through Adobe's web site. None EFS, Movie, Search,SendMail, Spelling, Weblink, and Web Capture
EWH32 The Acrobat Browser Manager plug-in (External Window Handler) allows users to view PDF files in their web browser. Netscape, ActiveX  
HLS The Acrobat Highlight Server plug-in allows users to see search highlights from web searches in PDF files in their web browser. EWH None
IA32 This plug-ins provides Internet Access for Acrobat. None None
MakeAceesible Converts untagged PDF to tagged Adobe PDF. Tagged PDF can be read by a screen reader. In addition, tagged Adobe PDF can be reflowed with the new reflow feature in Acrobat 5 as well as saved into RTF (Rich Text Format) format. For more information on creating accessible PDF. None Spelling
PaperMetaData The PaperMetaData plug-in supports live updating of specialized barcodes in fillable forms. AcroForm, EScript, XFA None
PDDom Structure and content toolkit used for accessibility and content re-purposing. None MakeAccessible, AcroForm
PPKLite [1] The Acrobat Public-Key Security plug-in provides public-key signing and encryption services. The plug-in includes generic services that can be used by all public-key security handlers (plug-ins). The plug-in also includes two public-key security handler implementations from Adobe Systems Inc: integration with Microsoft Windows certificate and cryptographic services (MSCAPI, Windows only); direct support for industry standard PKCS#12, password-protected private key storage files (Default Certificate Security). Check the Adobe web site to find public-key security handlers from other security product vendors. EScript LegalPDF, Checkers, SendMail, WebLink, Updater, EFS
refow Reflows the contents of a page to fit the width of the window. None None
SaveAsRTF Filter for saving PDF text and images as Rich Text Format. PDDom MakeAccessible, ImageConversion, EScript
Search [2] The Search plug-in serves as a backend for providing search services. It also loads indexes for special documents that contain the AutoIndex key. none none
Search5 [3] The Search5 plug-in serves as a backend for providing services to search indexes created by earlier versions of Catalog. Search none
SendMail The Acrobat SendMail plug-in adds a toolbar button to enable sending the current document as an attachment from the specified email client. External : Email client installed on user machine None
Soap The SOAP plugin allows connectivity to Web Services through the SOAP Protocol. Escript, EFS None
Updater The Updater plug-in manages the list of updates that are available for the Adobe Reader and Adobe Acrobat products. EScript, IA32, SOAP, WebLink  
weblink [4] The Acrobat Weblink plug-in allows users to link to web pages from PDF files. EScript None
XFA XML Forms Architecture (XFA) extensions to Acrobat Forms. It provides a template bsed approach to building business forms documents. AcroForm, EScript, DigSig Annots
Annotations folder Annotate PDFs with notes, memos and stamps AcroForm  


[1] This plug-in includes libraries that are licensed from RSA Security Inc. RSA and RSA Security Inc. are registered trademarks of RSA Security Inc. For more information on obtaining RSA security components please visit www.rsasecurity.com.

[2] Uses Onix full-text indexing and retrieval toolkit. Copyright 1993 - 2003 Lextek International.

[3] TOPIC® Full Text Engine Inside (c) Copyright 2001 Verity, Incorporated. All rights reserved. Verity® and TOPIC® are registered trademarks of Verity, Inc. This product incorporates the Verity full-text search and intelligent document retrieval engine which is new technology proprietary to Verity, Inc.

[4] If my favourite browser is open already it is used. Bbut if it is not open, Internet Explorer is used to display the web-page. I have not yet found out how to always use my favourite browser.

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 URL:  Created: 2004-09-10  Updated:
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