Problems with Winedt 7 and Adobe Acrobat?

I just spent a while trying to solve this problem: the latest version of WinEdt (v7) seems to be unable to close the pdf document that it is working on and therefore can’t compile a new version of it (because Adobe Acrobat is blocking access to the file). I keep getting an error message saying “Cannot Open DDE Link to: “C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Acrobat9.0\Acrobat\Acrobat.exe” Service: AcroviewA10 …” (see screenshot below).

Some posts (can’t find it anymore) suggest that this is not so much a problem of WinEdt but of Adobe constantly changing the interface of their pdf software. Whoever is to blame: I could not find a solution that works with WinEdt 7. Regardless of some people stating that the solution is the same for any version of WinEdt, the idea of  replacing DDE Service Acroview with AcroviewR10 (Acrobat Reader) or AcroviewA10 (Adobe Acrobat) in “PDFCloseDoc.edt” (that’s what the file is called in WinEdt 7) does not work (for me).

So what’s the solution? It’s more a workaround than a solution: don’t use an Adobe product as your pdf viewer when working with WinEdt. You can keep Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader and use it as you like, but don’t have it as your pdf Viewer in WinEdt. Use Sumatra pdf instead. WinEdt works fine with it and you no longer need to close your pdf-document manually everytime you compile your LaTeX text.

How do you change the settings in WinEdt? – Go to

Options -> Execution Modes -> PDF Viewer

and change the path to the “PDF Viewer Executable” to wherever you installed SumatraPDF (in my case, it is “C:\Program Files (x86)\SumatraPDF\SumatraPDF.exe” because I have a 64bit version of Windows). Voilà!

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Which cloud? Dropbox vs. SugarSync

I think I should add dropbox to my list of good applications. Obviously, the qualities of dropbox are not a secret, but I have been using it now for a couple of months and I have no reason to complain about it (and I like to complain!). If you’d like to try dropbox for free and get an extra 250 MB on top of the 2GB free storage space, use this link (it will also give me 250 MB extra).

But now to the main point of this post: I just spent some time reading about other cloud storage services, and found that SugarSync is actually a serious alternative to dropbox. Check out this really excellent review by Jack Busch (see also the recent comparison by Matt Smollinger)! And note that the SugarSync bonus program has been extended until the end of March 2011 31 May 2011, so if you use this link to try it out, we’ll both get 500 MB extra free.

Personally, I have yet to try out SugarSync in practice, but it looks like I will be using both: Dropbox to sync my daily work and frequently used files (because of dropbox’s speed and 30 days undo history) and SugarSync for my large pdf library (because of the larger free space and cheaper upgrade option) and other files that are rarely changed but that I still want to be accessible anywhere (Sugarsync’s fee plan only gives you access to the last two versions of a file).

P.S. If you are  also annoyed by dropbox only syncing what’s in the dropbox folder, check out the option to sync any folder – as it were – by using symlinks. One big advantage of Sugarsync is that you can choose any folder to be synced (no need to put them into the dropbox folder).