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For those that may use my Foxit PDF Previewer (for use with Outlook 2007 or Windows Vista and Windows 7), I wanted to provide a few updates.

Blank white screen previews

I’ve been getting quite a few reports lately about white screen previews while the PDF file renders fine in other readers.  After some research and patient testing with some of you that reported it, it’s been determined that the consistent piece is that the PDFs were documents that were scanned.  These documents in the PDF format contained a different format of encoded images.  The current incarnation of the Foxit PDF Previewer does not have the decoder embedded within the product.  Here is the workaround to get it to work:

  1. Download the JPEG2000/JPIG decoder file directly from Foxit: JPEG200 Decoder.
  2. Take the contents of that ZIP file (fxdecode1.dll) and place it in the directory where you installed the Foxit PDF Previewer (if you accepted all the defaults it will likely be c:\Program Files \Tim Heuer\Foxit PDF Preview Handler)
  3. That’s it !

The decoder library isn’t currently licensed for me to distribute with the previewer and thus this workaround.  It may be possible in a future version that this functionality will be built in, but this is a minor workaround.  The decoder is built into the Foxit SDK for version 3 (the previewer uses version 2).

Outlook 2010 Technical Preview

I have also received some comments from beta testers of Microsoft Office 2010 Technical Preview.  These reports have indicated that the previewer does not work in 64-bit mode for Outlook.  I can confirm this to be true.  I’ve logged a bug with the Outlook developer team to track this issue and will make any modifications necessary to make it work.  Please feel free to subscribe here for Foxit PDF Previewer specific updates (you may also subscribe to my main feed as well).

I would like to remind participants of the Office 2010 technical preview program of any confidentiality agreements they may have agreed to and to respect those in public.  If you are a part of the program, please log an official bug with the Outlook 2010 program channels with regard to Foxit Previewer not working…this will help my cause :-).

That is all.  Thanks for being a user of the software and as always, thanks to Foxit Software for being such a great partner to provide the licensing of the SDK for this software to exist.  They make other great PDF software so be sure to check them out.

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Welcome LifeHacker visitors!

[UPDATE: More updated information and alternative download links here: Foxit PDF Previewer.]

UPDATE: If you are experiencing problems with 'white page' PDF previewing, it is likely the PDF has scanned images.  See this post for an update on how to fix: Foxit Previewer Update.

in my daily work i spend a majority of my 'computing' time in outlook.  communicating with peers, team members, customers, etc. is mostly done via communication (sad, i know).  a lot of that time it involves sending information attachments back and forth, using office documents, etc.  i've said a lot about how much i love the preview functionality within vista and office 2007.  i even wrote a code preview handler for .cs, .vb, .sql, .js files.

one of the samples in the msdn article by stephen toub was for pdf files...of which i receive a lot.  i don't use adobe reader because i think it is overkill for reading pdf's personally.  the sample, however, relies on having adobe reader installed...which i didn't like.  i started working with the , because i love their reader product.  after some communication with the team at foxit, we started collaborating.

as a result of that collaboration, and i partnered to create the 'foxit pdf preview handler' which you can download for free!  this is a pdf preview handler for outlook 2007 and windows vista.  the current version requires vista, but we are working on a windows xp version for outlook 2007 on winxp.  what this enables you to do is, well...the following:

Foxit PDF Preview Handler

no need for adobe to be installed, etc.  it's fast, it's furious.

there is no official support included for this add-on, but i'm happy to field questions/suggestions myself.  keep in mind, i'm not going to be (nor will they) altering the pdf renderer...that's their product.  if you need pdf rendering capabilities within your application, i highly suggest looking at integrations using their dll and activex sdk's for your applications.  they are a great company with a great team.  it's a global team and they were very responsive throughout our communication.  i really appreciated their willingness to collaborate on something so simple and helpful to the greater community.  please give them a look-over.

why the 'banner' in the pdf render?  well, it's free :-).  that only shows up there as well...won't be in the printed document or anything...i think it is great to give them credit and a simple, small, unobtrusive banner is entirely appropriate.

please download the foxit pdf preview handler and install today!

Alternate Download Links here.

UPDATE (28-MAR-2008): Windows XP only version here.

file: Foxit PDF Preview Handler