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problems viewing and downloading pdf files from email attachment

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When I try to view a pdf file that is attached to an email it opens a poor copy with word online, that can't be printed.

When I try and download the pdf file from the email attachment a dialog box ALWAYS pops up asking "what to do with this file?" The dialog already has my default reader selected and the "do this automatically for files like this from now on" box is checked.

Every time I try and download the dialog comes up.

I'm running windows 10, firefox 45.0.1, foxit reader Emails are on outlook.

All Replies (13)

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In order to change the default reader for PDF files (to not open PDF files with Firefox's internal PDF reader), follow these steps:

  1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and click Options (Preferences for Linux and Mac).
  2. In the Options (Preferences for Linux and Mac) tab (window for previous than 38.0 firefox version), select the Applications panel.
  3. In the Search field, type PDF. You should find Portable Document Format (PDF).
  4. On the right hand side you should find an Action column. Use that to select your favorite PDF reader. In order to view PDF files in Firefox, choose Preview in Firefox.

Did this fix your problems? Please report back to us!

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Thank you. I have already checked that and foxit reader is selected. Also there is no choice to view pdf files in firefox, which I find strange.

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You could have to set your default PDF reader on your operating system. To do so, please refer to this How-To Geek article:

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Wesley, I really appreciate your suggestions. The defualt reader is set to foxit. I'm really puzzled why I'm not given the choice to view in firefox pdf viewer or why the dialog always comes up when I download.


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It was suggested by some other support team members that you try renaming the mimeTypes.rdf file in your Firefox profile to mimeTypes.rdf.old and then reconfigure your default PDF reader in Firefox.

For more information on locating your Firefox profile, please refer to this Mozilla support article:

Warning: Close Firefox completely before completing the steps above.

Note: If this doesn't fix the issue, delete the new mimeTypes.rdf file and rename the mimeTypes.rdf.old file back to mimeTypes.rdf.

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Thanks, I had tried that too. But no luck. I will try again right now, just to confirm.

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No It didn't make any difference. I was thinking about "preview in firefox" and I do have that as an option. But in Outlook "view online" takes me to some funky word viewer that doesn't work well... perhaps that is an outlook problem? With the "download" choice it seems like firefox is stuck on always ask. I tried switching reader do adobe, but again it always asks for reader instead of doing it automatically.

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I tried one more thing (mentioned elsewhere), I turned off all extensions (2) and plugins(7) (I don't have any services).

Made no difference.

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On Outlook, selecting their view option will open it in their OneDrive platform. I think that Outlook may simply have some code that prevents Firefox from setting the default PDF viewer.

Please consider contacting the Microsoft support team regarding this issue. You can also try filing a bug report so that the Mozilla developers can take a look at the issue and potentially create a patch.

Sorry for any inconvenience.

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Wesley, I agree outlook might be the problem with the view option. On the download option I have the same issue whether I'm using my hotmail account (outlook) or my gmail account. When trying to download, even though "always do this in the future" is checked it asks me everytime. Do you get that dialog when trying to open a pdf attachment in a email? mark

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I just tested the issue in my Firefox browser and the issue does occur for me as well. Therefore, if you file a bug report about the issue (using the link provided above), our developers can take a look at the issue and search for a potential patch in the future versions of Firefox.

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at least I know I'm not crazy...... well not totally
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No problem. Sorry I couldn't help you fix the issue, but hopefully the developers can fix this issue in a newer version of Firefox.