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The PDF file that I need to open is a form. The form is only supported by Adobe Acrobat. This implies that I need to open the form with the Adobe Reader.
It is possible to open the Adobe Reader within the Internet Explorer browser if it is configured as a add-on. The other way is to download the file and then open it with the Adobe Reader.
Is it possible for Confluence to open the PDF file in the Adobe Reader rather than the default PDF viewer?
The PDF will automatically preview in Confluence if you don't download the file.
You can turn off the Confluence Previews add-on but then this will disable previews for all files, for all users.
There may be a way for you in IE to tell it default behavior of a PDF file when downloading it, but not within Confluence.
This sounds awful. In order to use features of PDF we will always have to download first then open Acrobat. I've noticed that your previewer is significantly crippled. I can't even search of goto a page. You should at least allow the user to start acrobat after opening the doc in the previewer. Give us a little flexibility!