This chapter describes what you can do if you do not get the results you expect when you run Redax:

  • Review the troubleshooting checklist
  • Clean suspect PDF files
  • Contacting support

Troubleshooting Checklist

The following sections answer common questions about problems you may have with the following:


I cannot install Redax.

You must be logged in with administrative privileges to install Redax. See your local system administrator for assistance.

I installed Redax, but I don’t see the Redax menu.

Make sure you are not running Acrobat in certified mode, as follows:

  1. In Acrobat 7, select Edit > Preferences > Startup. In Acrobat 8, 9, X, & XI, select Edit > Preferences > General.

  2. Is the Use only certified plug-ins box in the Application Startup section checked?

    • If yes, you are running in certified mode and must switch to uncertified mode. Go to step 3.
    • If no, you are not running in certified mode. Click Cancel to exit the Startup Preferences, and then go to step 6.

  3. Click the Use only certified plug-ins box to clear the checkmark. A message is displayed, telling you to exit and restart Acrobat to load any non-certified plug-ins that are present.

  4. Click OK to close the message.

  5. Click OK again to exit the Preferences dialog box.

  6. Exit and restart Acrobat. If Redax is installed, you should see the Redax menu.

  7. If the above steps did not work and you are still in certified mode, select Help > Repair Acrobat Installation.

  8. If this option does not work, you may need to uninstall and reinstall Acrobat.

Instead of exemption codes, I see the word “Demo” over my redactions.

You will see the word “demo” in redacted areas when using a Redax evaluation license. In order to remove the “Demo”, you must purchase Redax and update your serial number. See Redax Menu > Enter Redax Serial Number.


I am having problems with a specific PDF file.

It may be broken or corrupt. Try cleaning your file.

I edited my redaction list file, and now I get an error when I try to use it.

The redaction list file is a plain text file. To be safe, always edit it with a text editor (for example, Notepad or BBEdit). If you edit it with a tool that supports different file formats (for example, Microsoft Word), make sure to save the file as Text Only.

I get an error message saying, “You are not authorized to modify this document.”

Your document is secured with an Owner password (also called a Permissions password). You must supply the password before using Redax, as follows:

  1. Do one of the following, depending on your version of Acrobat:

    • Acrobat 7: Select File > Document Properties > Security tab
    • Acrobat 8, 9, X, & XI: Select File > Properties > Security tab

  2. The document security settings are displayed. The Security Method box should say Password Security.

  3. Click Change Settings, enter the Owner password, and then click OK. You are returned to the document security settings.

  4. Click OK. You can now process the document with Redax.


I selected text for redaction, but it won’t redact.

Possible problems are:

  • Form Fields. Is the text in or part of an active form field? Redax cannot redact text in active form fields. Before redacting the document, remove the fields by selecting Redax > Remove All Form Fields
  • Exemption Codes. Have you assigned an exemption code to the Redax box? If not, either:
    • Assign a code to the box
    • Make sure you check “Allow redaction without exemption codes”. See Redax Menu > Redax Preferences > Redax Options

I used a redaction list file. Redax found some occurrences of the words, but not others.

Possible problems are:

  • List File Construction. The words and phrases in your list file must be specified correctly. For more information, see Redaction List File Tips.
  • Inline Character Images. If your document is scanned, the OCR software might have replaced all or part of a word in your list with character images. Since the Find Using List feature only finds text, it would miss any words that include character images. These words must be marked up with the Draw Box tool. Refer to Finding Inline Character Images for details.

More text was redacted than I selected.

This can be a problem for small text in which the letters or lines are close together. Make the size of the Redax box a little smaller. Refer to Moving or Resizing Redax Markup.

Sensitive information is still displayed in the comments pane of my redacted document.

Before releasing a document, be sure to remove all annotations.

Select Redax > Remove All Annotations.

How can I use Redax to redact my scanned documents?

Redax only supports PDF documents. To redact any other type of document, convert it to a PDF file first using Adobe Acrobat or your preferred PDF creation software.

My bookmarks disappeared from my redacted document.

Your processing option preferences determine whether bookmarks in the original document are preserved or removed following redaction. For instructions on setting your preferences to preserve bookmarks, see Defining Processing Option Preferences.


My Redax boxes won’t print.

You must specify an option to print the document with markups (also called comments). See Printing a Document with Redax Markup for detailed instructions.

When I print a redacted document, it uses too much ink/toner.

You can conserve ink by filling redacted areas with blank (white) space or increasing the transparency level of the fill color. Refer to Defining Redaction Preferences.

Cleaning Up PDF Documents

Often running a file through Distiller can fix a lot problems that occur in Redax. If your document contains Redax boxes, you must remove the boxes first to run the file through Distiller. Follow the steps below for saving Redax boxes, running the file through Distiller and then re-importing the boxes.

  1. Back up your original file.

  2. Open the file with Redax boxes (before redaction) and select Redax > Export Redax Template.

    A dialog asks you to enter the number of pages for the Template to repeat. By default, Redax uses the total number of pages in the PDF file. Make sure the number that appears in the box matches the total number of pages in the document.

  3. Click OK and save the template file.

  4. Remove the boxes from the document by selecting Redax > Remove all Redax Boxes.

  5. Select File > Save As and give the file a new name (do not overwrite the original file). Under Save As Type, choose PostScript File (*.ps)

  6. Open Acrobat Distiller (installed with Adobe Acrobat) and browse for this file or go to the directory where the file exists and double click on the file.

  7. Open the newly created file and import the template by selecting Redax > Import Redax Template.

  8. Browse for the template file that you exported and click Open.

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