May 13 2015

Turn off Tools Pane in Adobe Acrobat Reader DC

I was frustrated with the Tools Pane being displayed every time I opened Adobe Acrobat Reader DC.  Surprisingly, there is no option/preference within the application to permanently turn this off.  Here is a nice trick to get the Tools Pane to not be displayed at all:

  1. Go to the install directory and head to the AcroApp\ENU subfolder, usually “C:\Program Files (x86)\Adobe\Acrobat Reader DC\Reader\AcroApp\ENU”.
  2. Create a new subfolder, the name doesn’t matter – for example “Disabled”
  3. Move the following 3 files from the “ENU” folder into the new “Disabled” folder: AppCenter_R.aapp, Home.aapp & Viewer.aapp
  4. Open a Adobe Acrobat Reader and the Tool Pane is no more!

If you are doing looking to customize Adobe Acrobat Reader DC for a mass deployment, it is recommended to use the customization tool rather than a hack like this – see



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Posted May 13, 2015 by danovich in category "Geek


  1. By Ric Fischer on

    Thanks for this. My IT manager just installed Reader DC for me yesterday and I was frustrated by the Tools pane constantly reappearing.

  2. By Rahul on

    In the DC version, stamped in help about 2015.008.20082, there is an option under Edit/Preferences/Documents.

    Uncheck “Open tools pane for each document” This will solve your problem.

      1. By Stan Walsh on

        Too bad it doesn’t work! I’ll stick with danovich’s original solution which DOES work.


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