How to Add an Adobe PDF Printer

By Andrew Meer

Adobe Acrobat XI, unlike Adobe Reader, fully supports PDF printer functionality, and automatically adds a PDF printer upon installation. The Adobe PDF printer lets you save your documents as PDF files, which makes it convenient to share them due to the PDF format's wide-spread use. If Adobe Acrobat failed to add the PDF printer, or if you accidentally deleted it from your list of PDF printers, you can manually add it via the Add Printer Wizard.

Step 1

Press “Windows-R” to open the Run box. Type “control printers” (without quotes), and then press "Enter" to open a list of available printers. Click the “Add a Printer” button to open the Add Printer Wizard, and click either the “Next” button or the “The Printer That I Wanted Isn't Listed” option on the opening screen.

Step 2

Check the radio button next to the option labeled “Add a Local Printer or Network Printer...,” and then click “Next.” Check the radio button next to “Use an Existing Port,” and then use the pull-down menu next to it to select “Documents\*.pdf (Adobe PDF).” Click “Next.”

Step 3

Click the “Have Disk” button, click “Browse” and navigate to the Adobe installation folder, located by default within “C:\Program Files\" (Windows 32-bit) or “C:\Program Files (x86)\" (Windows 64-bit). Once inside, double-click "Acrobat 11.0 | Acrobat | Xtras | AdobePDF." Within the AdobePDF folder, select the file labeled “AdobePDF,” click “Open," and then click "OK."

Step 4

Select the sixth “Adobe PDF Converter” option from the list of converters; if the sixth option doesn't work for you, try the other converters on the list until you find the option that works for you. On the following screen, select the “Use the Driver that is Currently Installed (Recommended)" and then click “Next.”

Step 5

Enter “Adobe PDF Printer” as the printer name, click “Next,” and then “Finish.” Open your computer's Control Panel, and click "Devices and Printers." The Adobe PDF printer should show up under the Printers section.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you fail to manually add the Adobe PDF Printer, you must repair your Adobe Acrobat installation before trying again. To repair, open Adobe Acrobat, and then use the Repair Acrobat Installation option under the Help menu. If repairing fails, uninstall Adobe Acrobat from the Control Panel, and then reinstall it (download link in Resources).
  • If the operating system prompts you for an ADPDF9.PPD file, either select the one within the “C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 11.0\Acrobat\Xtras\AdobePDF\I386\” folder for 32-bit versions of Windows, or the “C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Acrobat 11.0\Acrobat\Xtras\AdobePDF\AMD64\” folder for 64-bit versions of Windows.
  • Applications such as CutePDF Writer and doPDF (download links in Resources) are free to use, and add a PDF printer option to your list of printers upon installation. Both PDF printers work similarly to the Adobe PDF printer, letting you print documents from your Web browser or word-processing application.
  • Adobe Acrobat provides a free 30-day trial where you can try out all features of the product.