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A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

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New Contributor

A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

The website I am accessing is https://ebill.3rivers.net/siscss/pt/logonSubmitForward.do. I am able to get a PDF from it with IE and to get PDFs from other websites in Firefox, but not this one. I also have Firefox set to use it's PDF viewer. I am using version 20.0.1 of Firefox.

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

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Legendary Contributor

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

Okay, yes, that's the issue with this site. If they were launching you directly to the PDF, Firefox would close the window. But instead they are launching a page that frames the PDF together with another web page. In that case, Firefox doesn't close the window.

11 REPLIES
Site Moderator

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

Try temporarily disabling the new pdf viewer that is now built into Firefox

This is fairly new and sometimes has problems.

New Contributor

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

Thanks you for your reply. While waiting, I did try that and it worked but interestingly Firefox still opened up the download window and then the PDF showed up in an Acrobat window. So in other words, it opened two windows.

Legendary Contributor

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

By download window do you mean a blank new window or tab, or the Download Manager dialog? You can get the blank window/tab if you Shift+click/Ctrl+click the link to the PDF. Otherwise, Firefox should close it for you. There may be situations in which it doesn't close, depending on how the site is set up.

Site Moderator

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

You can set the pdfjs.disabled pref to true on the about:config page to disable the build-in PDF viewer.

You can also check the value of the plugin.disable_full_page_plugin_for_types pref and remove the application/pdf part if present. Otherwise Firefox won't use the Adobe Reader plugin, but will offer to open the files in the external viewer.

New Contributor

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

By download window do you mean a blank new window or tab, or the Download Manager dialog? You can get the blank window/tab if you Shift+click/Ctrl+click the link to the PDF. Otherwise, Firefox should close it for you. There may be situations in which it doesn't close, depending on how the site is set up.

I mean a blank new window. It comes up when I click on one of there links to bring up a pdf of a bill, and that was w/o using shift or ctrl.

New Contributor

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

You can set the pdfjs.disabled pref to true on the about:config page to disable the build-in PDF viewer.

  This option made no apparent difference in the functioning probably because the built-in wasn't working anyway for this website.

You can also check the value of the plugin.disable_full_page_plugin_for_types pref and remove the application/pdf part if present. Otherwise Firefox won't use the Adobe Reader plugin, but will offer to open the files in the external viewer.

  This stopped the Adobe viewer from opening which I needed to be open given that the internal viewer was not working for this website.  So I added the PDF part back.
   http://kb.mozillazine.org/about:config
Legendary Contributor

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

I mean a blank new window. It comes up when I click on one of there links to bring up a pdf of a bill, and that was w/o using shift or ctrl.

Yes, I've seen that on some sites. They pop up a window on the assumption that the PDF will open in that window using the Adobe plugin, since that is how most people have worked over the years.

At this point, is your PDF preference (Options > Applications) set to:

  • Use Adobe Acrobat (in Firefox) -- should open in that pop-up window
  • Use Adobe Reader (default) -- should launch in stand-alone Adobe Reader
  • something else?
New Contributor

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

Anything referencing Adobe I have set to use Adobe by default now, but that blank window still pops up before Adobe does.

Legendary Contributor

Re: A PDF from a website does not download even though a window pops up, how do I fix this?

I'm not in a position to test that site myself, so could you take a look at this:

(1) Does the URL of the blank window end with .pdf?

(2) If you right-click the blank window and choose View Page Info, what is listed for Type?

(3) If you view the source code of the blank window (Ctrl+u), is it basically empty? If not, does it contain any <object or <embed tags?

(4) If you close the blank window and return to the main page, then disable JavaScript before clicking the link again, does it behave any differently?

orange Firefox button (or Tools menu) > Options > Content