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Distributing Forms with

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This tutorial will show you how to start off with a static Adobe PDF form, convert it to an interactive form so it can be filled out with Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader, and distribute it via the new service.

STEP 1 Open Form in Acrobat
Open up the existing PDF form and start the Form Wizard (Forms>Start Form Wizard). This is an improvement of the former Run Form Recognition option in Acrobat 8. In the Create or Edit Form dialog that opens, choose to either start with an existing PDF or scan a paper form in. Next, locate your PDF or choose to use your current document.

STEP 2 Review Form
Review form fields. To fix any fields that didn’t convert correctly, go to Forms>Add or Edit Fields. (Much of this will depend on the design of original form. Make a note of conversion errors and use that info when designing new forms or updating old forms.)

STEP 3 Add or Edit Fields
Add or Edit Fields will add the form tools to the document window. If you want to see all the tools at once, select Show Tools on Toolbar. You make edits the same as prior versions.

STEP 4 Distribute Form
When the form is ready, select Forms>Distribute Form.

STEP 5 Choose Your Distribution Method
Choose your desired method of distribution:, email, or server. For this example, we will be using; the other methods are similar to the methods in Acrobat 8. If you don’t have an Adobe account yet, click on the Learn More About link to set one up.

STEP 6 Email Form
Enter in your email address(es) or click the To button to open your default address book. Edit the message if desired. At the bottom, you can set the access level to anyone or just the recipients of your email. Then click the Send button.

STEP 7 Open Email
The recipients of the form just need to double-click the email attachment to open it up. When they’re finished filling it out, they can click the Submit Form button.

STEP 8 Send Form Info
The recipient double checks the Send Form info and clicks Send.

STEP 9 Open Tracker Dialog
Back at your computer, you can open the Tracker dialog box.

STEP 10 Monitor Tracking
The Tracker will show you any open comment reviews and distributed forms. Click on the form in question. (You can have multiple forms distributed at any time.) The Tracker will show how many responses you have received, allow you to stop collecting data, and either email all recipients or just those who haven’t responded.

STEP 11 View Responses
When you click on the View Responses link at the top, you’ll get a welcome screen. Click the Get Started button at the bottom of the window to get to your results. A spreadsheet opens that contains all of the data submitted for that form. You can view individual returns, filter the results by field content, export to CSV or XML, or archive the responses.

As you can see, the process is very simple overall. After you set up an account (which can be used for other Acrobat features too), you simply distribute the form. If security is your top priority, you may decide not to use But for many users, it’s a very nice addition to the Acrobat family.


  • Jon says:

    How can I distribute the form through, but instead of the recipient emailing it back to me, they can just click the submit button and the form data is collected through I have many customers using webmail who are older and they do not know how to attach a file to there email…they do not know how

  • Mark says:

    I would like to bcc or hide my recipient address when distributing the form using How would I do this as adding e-mail syntax in the (to:) form confuses Acrobat.

  • Sam says:

    I am in the same boat Mark. I live in the 21st century where people don’t like to receive emails with 100 addresses in the To: field. If anyone knows how to Bcc: addresses, this would be extremely helpful!

  • Tricia says:

    I have had issue with my distributed forms and response files disappearing from my tracker. The files still exist on, however, I am unable to access any updates via tracker. Please help!!

  • anita says:

    In the case of multiple forms within a binder that have a field that is the same across all pdfs, is it possible to have it so that the area need only be filled in one pdf and have it cascade the information to the others?

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    appreciation you for sponsoring the materials, a lot of riveting low-down. paraphernalia-bye.

  • Olin says:

    I want to create a fillable form in Acrobat 9 that is then posted as a link on my website. Data will be sent to for collection. My question is WHO can fillout this form? and WHO can submit it DIRECTLY through my website instead of saving a copy of the form and emailing the file? Do you need a specific version of adobe? I need this to be easy for the recipient (some are not so computer literate) Thanks

  • Jonathon says:

    How do you change the internal server location.. it’s driving me nuts!

  • Arlen says:

    Hi All,
    Apparently, no one is responding to the posts…
    This process allows people to fill out the forms with the Free Acrobat Reader v9. Responses are transmitted via Acrobat Reader and not email. Email input is for tracking purposes and is an option that can be disabled.

    For those of you who want to post the form online, just upload it to your web server and link accordingly. It should work. My form is on my blog. People download the file and submit the results to me. It’s that simple.

    Tricia, I’m having a similar problem… I want to move the files to another computer and tell tracker on that computer to update the results and so far I can’t figure it out…

    🙂 Arlen

    PS- I’m a nobody, just working with this new tech and making mistakes as I go. It’s the best way to figure it out.

  • Deb Newman says:

    When I distribute the form to other people, the Submit button does not appear next to the Highlight button. It appears on my form if I send it to myself. Does anyone know if there is a setting that needs to be changed on other computers or is the form itself.

  • Robin C says:

    Here’s my problem…I’ve done everything that all the instructions, help files and tutorials have suggested but when I test the form and it goes to the email there’s no send button on the email page. I get the message that this email was not sent. Also, when I start to distribute the form I get this message “Note: Your license limits forms distribution and/or aggregation.” Is this my problem – does my IS department need to purchase a different license for my Adobe Acrobat – noone in that department seems to know what’s wrong or how to fix it. Does anyone have any ideas?

  • Binayak says:

    I have created a interactive Form using Adobe Livecycle Designer. It i want to send to many user they have to fill it and send it to me.
    The problem is that this from cna not be saved by any acrobat Readers. Uer can only send me xml file.

    Can anyone of you have idea how i can again generate PDf or like wise file from xml data.
    Or is there is any option to save this form by adobe readers(Verson irrelevant).

  • Jim says:

    does anyone know how to change the email address that the form is sent too once the recipient hits the submit button?

  • Jaime says:

    What happens when the Tracker is not in synch with the pdf response form?? The pdf responses are being populated correctly, but the tarcker is no longer in synch, could it be because the person I am getting to do the tracking is missing something?? Software?? Priviliges??

  • Steve Thomas says:

    I see that on one has the answer for hiding recipient names during the the Distribute Form process to Only the To: and Cc: options are presented, no Bcc: is available.

  • Steve Thomas says:

    I figured it out. Distribute the form to yourself via It will send you a link via email. The link can be copy/pasted into an email which you Bcc to your recipients. I tested this and it works nicely.

  • Jamika says:

    I just tried to create a form and send it. Apparently it aggregates teh form responses and serves them up as a CSV. Has anyone tried this with any success

  • Peter says:

    When I distribute using, my recipients get a link to the Acrobat page requiring a sign-in (username + password), instead of just their name + e-mail address. I have distributed for “open access,” and can’t find another setting to adjust. The tutorial is clear and makes it seem easy -what am I missing?

  • Frank says:

    I too am frustrated with not being able to change the response mail address after the first time distribution was used. And not being able to change the distribution method to manually send, changing from the adobe server method. Even after turning off the distribution, it continually uses the adobe server. What gives? This is very buggy and can find nothing i the forum system.

    Some answers please.

  • Michael says:

    Has anyone figured out how to edit the recipient list in Tracker? I want to remove a few recipients but I can not find anything that tells me how or even if it is possible.

  • Melissa says:

    I am receiving an error message stating”Acrobat cannot find email addresses for these names:… Either these names are not in your email Address Book or theiy are aliases. Please resolve these names by either replacing them with email addresses here, or by resolving them in your email Address Book. If you leave these names unresolved, you might see ambiguous informaiton in Tracker. Click Cancel to resolve the names, or click OK to continue without resolving them.” I have recieved this message after trying to use the “To” button to insert email addresses, as well as typing the addresses in manually. Has anyone else received this message? How can this be resolved?

  • asiskumar says:

    I have created a interactive Form using Adobe Livecycle Designer. it continually uses the adobe server. What gives? This is very buggy and can find nothing i the forum system.

  • Desiree says:

    Hi David,

    I created a form using Adobe earlier today, distributed the form to myself, and then forwarded it over to my boss. The intention was to have him send the form out to several of our members as a survey, and then use the reporting/tracking feature in Adobe to track the responses. Before he forwarded the form on, he changed the file name, which I did not realize right away. When I tried submitting this newly-changed PDF form, it still allowed me to submit it, and says that the responses will go to my name… but I’m not receiving anything on my end. And nothing is showing up under the original file tracking. After hitting submit I did get a little pop up that says “Your response has been queued for submission”… is there anyway to track these responses from this newly named file?