Cannot Open PDF in Safari on Mac (macOS 10.15 Included)


• Filed to: PDF Tips

The Mac user base is though limited as compared to Windows but still they are in abundance. There are Safari is the main browser of Mac based systems. From iPhone to macOS the Safari ensures that the users can view the web and internet based content. The best part of this is the fact that a single browser is used over all devices. When it comes to PDF it enjoys a good integration with the browser and therefore it means that the PDF based content can also be viewed. In some cases however it is not possible as the reasons could be numerous. From plugin malfunction to broken links Safari can undergo various issues which does not allow the users to view PDF content. There are many alternatives and online forums which can be availed to get rid of the issues. This also brings the best out of PDF + Safari combo.

Part 1. Open PDF with Safari Alternative

The Best Way to Open PDF

The PDFelement Pro is one of the best ways to solve the problem that you cannot open PDF in Safari. With the help of this PDF editor, you can easily open PDF files, even the password secured PDF documents.

Step 1. Import PDF to the Program

From the official website you can easily download the Safari alternative. Install the program and once the process is finished launch it. You can import the PDF file to the program by clicking on the "Open File" button or you can also drag and drop the PDF files to the program directly.

import pdf files

Step 2. View PDF Files

After you've imported your PDF files to the program. You can view the PDF files according to your needs under the "View" tab. Under this toolbar, you can easily zoom in or zoom out the PDF files.

edit pdf files

Step 3. Edit PDF Files

With multiple PDF editing tools in the PDF editor, you can edit texts, images and pages in PDF files easily. Click on the "Edit" button, and then you can edit the element in the PDF file on the right side toolbar.

edit pdf text

Why Choose PDFelement Pro as the Best Alternative to Safari

The PDFelement Pro is awesome to view, edit and OCR PDF. It is very light and therefore does not consume system resources as compared to Safari. The PDF can also be secured which means unauthorized access is limited. The ways and means of using the program are simple. The official website of the program is full of the tutorials which can be applied easily. The program is also known for PDF form creation.

Key features of PDFelement Pro:

  • It comes with sticky notes, drawing tools, text box, mark up tools, and so much more.
  • Add notes to a PDF on Mac with this software and your text analyses will be more productive.
  • From a dropdown menu on the Tools option, you can access and even customize any of these note-taking tools. This makes the program as one of the unique.
  • It provides you many PDF editing tool to edit, convert, create, secure, OCR and share PDF files.

Part 2. How to Open PDF in Safari on Mac

It is basically a configuration which is important for opening PDFs on Safari. If the steps are followed completely then a PDF file which has been accessed using safari will always be opened in a new tab. The configuration steps which are to be followed are as under.

  • Step 1. Once the Safari has been launched click preferences. Click the Safari on the left most top corner of the browser. The preferences are located within the list as shown in the figure below.
  • Step 2. On the next page there are a number of options which can be seen. Click security option.
  • Step 3. On the next page of security settings click on web settings button to proceed with the process.
  • Step 4. Choose adobe reader from the left panel to see the related options.
  • Step 5. Beside "When visiting other websites" option select always allow.
open pdf in safari

Note: If the configurations have been done successfully then the Safari would first download the file and then open it using default PDF viewer. Such configurations are also important for other add-ons which means that browser based issues are resolved using the steps mentioned above as they are not PDF limited only.

5 common issues on opening PDF in Safari

It is very important that the issues of PDF related to Safari are resolved for a seamless view. It will also make sure that PDF files opening never requires an external program such as abode reader.

1. PDF won't open in Safari no matter what

This issue has led the Mac users to change the browser. For resolving it is advised to Open Library > Internet plugins and delete the adobe plugin to resolve the issue completely.

2. The PDF viewer opens but PDF is not load. Instead, a blank page is shown

This is also a common issue which can easily be resolved. It can be done by accessing user > username > library > internet plugins and then delete Adobe PDF.plugin

3. The PDF file is distorted if Safari preview is used to access the file

It is very common issue and once again the resolution is simple. Just restart Safari and reload the PDF file to resolve the issue completely.

4. Adobe could not open PDF name in Safari

Try reopening PDF in Safari. Click the save button at the top of the window. When the download completes click it to open PDF in Safari.

5. PDF cannot be saved from Safari

Press Shift + Command + G once the Go > Go to folder has been accessed. Copy the text line which appears and then access Library > Internet plug-ins > AdobePDFViewer.plugin. Delete the selected item in the finder window to resolve the issue.


Ivan Cook

chief Editor

> PDF Tips > Cannot Open PDF in Safari on Mac (macOS 10.15 Included)