Adobe Reader is a program that has been designed to allow users to open, view and even annotate files that are in the Portable Document Format (PDF). On the other hand, Adobe Acrobat is a program that is capable of not only opening and viewing but also editing, creating and even publishing PDF files. Both Adobe Reader and Adobe Acrobat can be used to open and view PDF files. However, when a user tries to open a file in Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat that either program simply can’t open, they receive an error that reads something along the lines of:
“Couldn’t open the file because the file type isn’t supported or the file has been damaged or corrupted or was not correctly decoded.”
There is no specific solution to this error message as it is not an issue but merely an informative note on behalf of the program informing the user that the file they are trying to open in Adobe Reader or Acrobat cannot be opened in the program. This error message can be caused by one of two reasons – the file you are trying to open is in a file format that is not supported by Adobe Reader or Acrobat, or the file you are trying to open is supported by one or both of the programs but cannot be opened because it is damaged or corrupted and not whole.
If you come across this error, the first thing you need to do is check what format the file you are trying to open is in. Adobe Reader and Acrobat can only open files that are in .PDF (or, in some cases, .DOC) format, so you are going to be met with this error message whenever you try to open a file that is in some other file format (such as .PPT or .EXE). However, if the file you are trying to open is in a format that is supported by one or both Adobe programs but you are still unable to successfully open it, it is almost certainly corrupted or damaged and not in its complete form. If that is the case, all you need to do is get your hands on another (complete and undamaged) copy of the file and you should be able to successfully open it in both Adobe Reader and Adobe Acrobat.