Q: How can I create a custom version of Adobe Reader X that can install to an alternate location?

A: The Adobe Reader X installation doesn’t prompt for any configuration or allow any customization. You can create a custom Adobe Reader X installation by using the Adobe Customization Wizard X, which can be downloaded from Adobe’s site. Then follow the installation instructions.

After you have downloaded the customization wizard, download the full Adobe Reader X installation file from Adobe.  After you open the FTP location, select the language for your location and download the executable installation file.

The next step is to extract the setup files from the the setup executable:

AdbeRdr1010_en_US.exe -nos_o"d:\temp\Adobe_Reader_X" -nos_ne

Now open the Adobe Customization Wizard X, and from the File menu select Open, and select the MSI file (AcroRead.msi) from the extracted setup files. This allows customizations, including items like the Installation Path (see screen shot below).

You can also set items such as suppressing the EULA. Within Online and Acrobat.com you can set options to disable all automatic updates, which is useful if you want to control the deployments and updates. Under Direct Editor, you can even remove the automatic update service by selecting ServiceInstall and dropping the ServiceInstall1 entry.


After all your customizations are complete, select Save Package from the File menu. This saves a transform file named AcroRead.mst to your extracted file location with all your customizations, which will be used when installing.

Get more help from John Savill on everything Microsoft--and more--at John Savill's FAQS for Windows.

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