I thought I had already posted about this but I guess not. If you use acrobat reader for viewing PDFs the time to stop is now. It is a bloated machine hogging beast that deserves nothing short of removal from your system. There is a free alternative which can handle any PDF you throw at it, doesn’t require installation, is less than 1MB in size, and opens nearly instantly.

It’s called Foxit Reader and is made by a small company called Foxit Software. I don’t work for them or have any affiliation with them at all. In fact I just heard about Foxit Reader last month but can’t recommend it enough.

You owe it to yourself to at least try it out. Like I said it’s free - and it does a damn fine job.



You are correct John. I was inspired to post about this year by a post at slashdot where everyone was complaining about having to downlaod a PDF and deal with Acrobat Reader and it’s bloat/system hogging during initialization.

Most of the time I just need to read a PDF file so a good, lightweight reader, that lets me search the text is all I need. Foxit fits that bill nicely.

John Dowdell

Hi Bill, there are many PDF readers out there – the file format is well- described – the most famous alternate is probably that built into recent versions of the Macintosh operating system, but even old standbys like GhostScript can work.

The key is which features they cut. If you’re just looking at a PDF file, you may not need the document-workflow components… best tool depends on the task, agreed?