Acrobat failed to connect to a DDE server

If you encounter an error: Acrobat failed to connect to a DDE server, the Adobe support pages indicate that this is most likely due to a combination of factors, primarily security settings. While the support pages have primarily suggested checking and adjusting security programs, it is also possible to adjust settings in the Reader program itself. Folowing are a few options for adjustments you can make.
To start with, open any PDF file either from the desktop, or the start menu. The adjustments noted below can be done regardless of the file you start with.

With the PDF file open, go to Edit > Preferences.

From the Preferences window, click Security(Enhanced) in the Categories list on the left hand side of the page.


From here, there are three primary adjustments that we have found suggested to resolve the issue:

  • Un-check the Enable Protected Mode at Startup box.
  • Uncheck the Enable Enhanced Security box.
  • Add a Privileged Location to Reader.

Since all ICLUB programs default to installing in the ICLUB folder, we suggest to start by adding the ICLUBcentral folder as a Privileged Location. If this does not work, then try turning off the Protected mode, and then lastly disabling the enhanced security if the other options do not work.
To add the ICLUBcentral folder:

First, click the Add Folder Path button near the bottom of the window.


This will open a new window. From here, naviagte to the ICLUBcentral folder.

For most current copiues of Windows, this will mean clicking on This PC (sometimes Computer) > OS (C:) > Program Files (x86) > ICLUBcentral

Depending on your version, you may not have a Program Files (x86) folder. If so, go to the standard Program Files folder instead.

Once you have selected the ICLUBcentral folder, click OK to return to the Reader preferences window.

Click OK on this window, to save the changes, and then OK again on the Preferences window.


As noted at the top of the page, we have found multiple suggestions on how to fix this issue, even on the Adobe support pages, including disabling security software, or switching from one security program to another. We are suggesting the steps listed here becuase they invovle making a change to the program that is directly encountering the problem. If you try all three of the suggestions listed above, and continue to encounter the issue, you may want to check the settings on any installed security programs; if so, we would suggest in that case to contact the manufacturer of the specific securty program for help.