Endpoint Services, MECM, Unified Acrobat DC/Acrobat Reader DC Installer

Endpoint Services-specific information about Adobe's unified installer for Acrobat DC/Acrobat Reader DC

Systems

Microsoft Endpoint Configuration Manager (MECM)

Affected Customers

University of Illinois IT Pros leveraging MECM, hosted by Technology Services Endpoint Services team

Actions

General Information

Adobe recently switched to a “unified” installer for Acrobat DC and Acrobat Reader DC in version 22.001.20142 (https://www.adobe.com/devnet-docs/acrobatetk/tools/DesktopDeployment/singleinstaller.html).

Some of the more notable implications of this new installer are:

Endpoint Services (EPS) made changes to account for this new unified installer in Acrobat DC version 22.001.20169. EPS will continue to provide the Reader DC 32-bit application, though we encourage departments to switch to Acrobat DC NU/SDL 64-bit where possible.

Known Compatibility Issues

There are known compatibility issues between Acrobat Reader DC 32-bit and Acrobat DC 64-bit. Please see the Deployment Recommendations section for recommended actions.

Acrobat Installer Behaviors

Acrobat DC behaves differently depending upon the type of Acrobat installer deployed via MECM. The “unified” installer is not available for Acrobat DC SDL. For additional information on the differences between a Named User License (NU) and Shared Device License (SDL), please refer to WebStore's KB article.

EPS provides three different types of installers for Adobe Acrobat DC:

Installer Type Acrobat Behavior
Acrobat DC SDL
  • Users are required to log in upon launching Acrobat initially. If they do not login, the Acrobat DC application will close.
  • When a user with the appropriate Adobe Creative Cloud subscription logs in, they will have access to the complete Acrobat DC feature set
  • User logins do not count against a user's personal Adobe device license count
  • Acrobat DC NU
  • Users are required to log in upon launching Acrobat initially. If they do not login, the Acrobat DC application will close.
  • When a user with the appropriate Adobe Creative Cloud subscription logs in, they will have access to the complete Acrobat DC feature set
  • User logins count against a user's personal Adobe device license count
  • Acrobat DC NU Unified
  • Users are not prompted nor required to log in. Without a login or appropriate Creative Cloud subscription, users will have access to the Reader DC feature set.
  • When a user with the appropriate Adobe Creative Cloud subscription logs in, they will have access to the complete Acrobat DC feature set
  • User education may be required to inform them of the need to log in to access Acrobat DC features.
  • User logins count against a user's personal Adobe device license count
  • Deployment Recommendations

    Below are Endpoint Services' deployment recommendations for Acrobat DC/Acrobat Reader DC for devices in different scenarios.
    Adobe's official product upgrade matrix is available here.

    Currently Installed Product(s): Recommendation:
    Acrobat DC SDL
  • Ensure the latest version of Acrobat DC SDL is deployed. If you're already using the 'Acrobat DC SDL - Latest' application, no action is required.
  • Acrobat DC NU
  • Ensure the latest version of Acrobat DC NU is deployed. If you're already using the 'Acrobat DC NU - Latest' application, no action is required.
  • Acrobat Reader DC
  • Ensure the latest version of Acrobat Reader DC is deployed. If you're already using the 'Acrobat Reader DC - Latest' application, no action is required. You may wish to consider transitioning to the Acrobat DC NU Unified installer, though ensure your environment does not have any Acrobat Reader DC 32-bit dependencies first.
  • Acrobat DC SDL & Acrobat Reader DC
  • Depending upon which application you wish to keep on the device, remove either all Acrobat DC SDL or Acrobat Reader DC 32-bit deployments.
  • If both Acrobat DC Shared Device License (SDL) and Acrobat Reader DC are necessary, consider transitioning to the Acrobat DC NU Unified installer.
  • Acrobat DC NU & Acrobat Reader DC
  • Remove all Acrobat DC NU deployments.
  • Remove all Acrobat Reader DC 32-bit deployments.
  • Create new Acrobat DC NU Unified installer deployments.
  • Configuration Item/Baseline

    To assist IT units in identifying machines with Acrobat DC SDL already installed, EPS has created a Configuration Item and Configuration Baseline to audit the presence of an Adobe Shared Device License (SDL) installation. The Configuration Baseline is named 'Audit Adobe SDL' and it can be found within the MECM console under “\Assets and Compliance\Overview\Compliance Settings\Configuration Baselines”. 'Audit Adobe SDL' will flag endpoints that have an Adobe Creative Cloud Shared Device License installed as compliant.

    To deploy the Configuration Item/Baseline:

    1. In the MECM console, navigate to \Assets and Compliance\Overview\Compliance Settings\Configuration Baselines
    2. Select the 'Audit Adobe SDL' configuration baseline
    3. Select 'Deploy' from the top ribbon
    4. In the 'Deploy Configuration Baseline' dialog box, select the collection to run this configuration baseline on
    5. Select 'OK'

    Creating a Device Collection Based Upon a Configuration Baseline

    To assist IT units with targeting the appropriate machines with Acrobat DC deployments (avoiding the deployment of NU Unified installers to devices with SDL installed, etc.), device collections can be created based upon an endpoint's compliance status with the 'Audit Adobe SDL' Configuration Baseline, specifically whether it has an Adobe Creative Cloud Shared Device License installed.

    To create a device collection based on the 'Audit Adobe SDL' Configuration Baseline:

    1. Deploy the 'Audit Adobe SDL' Configuration Baseline to a collection as outlined in the Configuration Item/Baseline section above.
    2. Right-click the baseline deployment, select Create New Collection, and either Compliant or Non-Compliant. Compliant will populate the collection with devices that have an Adobe SDL license file installed. Non-compliant will populate the collection with devices that do not have an Adobe SDL license file installed.
    3. Modify the new collection name as desired (ideally including your unit prefix) and set the limiting collection.
    4. The new device collection will be created at the root of \Assets and Compliance\Overview\Device Collections


    Contact the EPS team