ACSM Files – What they are and how to work with them

ACSM files are a source of much confusion for people who buy ebooks that are protected with Adobe DRM. I’m going to go over a few of the most frequently asked questions about these files, and I hope it will clear up the mystery for everyone.

What is an .acsm file?

ACSM stands for Adobe Content Server Manager. That name gives a clue as to the purpose of these files — they are download manager files. They manage the download of your ebook.

The majority of the time, you don’t even see the .acsm file when you download an Adobe ebook. Usually the only time you see it is if you haven’t properly set up Adobe Digital Editions, or you don’t even have it installed. I can’t stress this enough: before you buy Adobe ebooks, whether PDF or EPUB, install the software you need! If you haven’t installed the correct software for any file type, your computer won’t know what to do with it.

If you do have Adobe Digital Editions installed and authorized correctly, then you won’t even see the .acsm file at all. It will do its job in the background of your ebook download. The purpose of this file is to communicate with Adobe’s content server and register the ebook to the Adobe ID that you have used to authorize ADE. If you don’t know how to do the authorization process, read my post about it.

What is the purpose of associating an ebook with your Adobe ID? That is how Adobe’s DRM system allows you to use your ebooks on more than one computer or device. If you authorize Adobe Digital Editions with the same Adobe ID on each computer/device, it will let you download the ebook to each of those locations.

This might be a pain sometimes, but it is what we have to live with, at least for now.

How to convert .acsm to .pdf?

You don’t have to convert the .acsm file to another file format at all. That would be quite impossible. This question is based on the mis-assumption that the .acsm file is the ebook. It is not. Let me make that clear: the .acsm file is NOT supposed to be the ebook. It is just a little file that manages the download of the ebook.

The idea that you could convert an .acsm file to a .pdf file is based on the assumption that the .acsm file contains all the text of a book, and that it’s just in the wrong format. That might be true if it was a .doc file, or any other text-based file. That is not what an .acsm file is.

There is no need for you to do any conversion. If you have Adobe Digital Editions installed, then all you have to do is open the .acsm file with that program. Then, the ebook download will continue. When the download is finished, you will have your PDF file.

I tried to download my ebook and all I got was this 1.4 KB .acsm file! That can’t be the entire text of a book!

This is the standard freak-out message that people send. This is usually the result of a person skipping over all the posted software requirements and instructions. Any website that sells ebooks in Adobe’s DRM-protected format will tell you ahead of time that you must use Adobe Digital Editions. If you skip over all those instructions, and you don’t install the software you are told that you need, then of course your computer won’t know what to do with this .acsm file.

As I mentioned above, the .acsm file is NOT supposed to contain the entire text of a book. It is not the ebook at all. It is a small file that manages the download of the ebook through Adobe’s content server.

Still confused?

I hope not, but just in case you missed all of the information above, this is what you should do if you have an .acsm file: open it with Adobe Digital Editions. Do not attempt to open it with Adobe Reader, Acrobat, or any other program.

For the super-confused …

The next question I get from those who have ignored all posted instructions and ended up with an .acsm file that they don’t know what to do with is: But how do I open it with Adobe Digital Editions?

I really have to bang my head on my desk for this one.

Ask yourself this: how do you ever open any other file? There are always three ways:

1. Double-click it. It will open in the program that your computer has associated with that file type. If you have messed up your file associations and the .acsm file is trying to open in the wrong program (like Adobe Reader, for example) then you need to try a different method.

2. Right-click it. Right-click the file, go to “Open With”, and choose Adobe Digital Editions. If that doesn’t do it for you …

3. Open manually from inside the program. Open Adobe Digital Editions. In the upper left area, find LIBRARY. Click the downward arrow next to Library, and click on “Open”. Find the eBook on your computer. It should be in a folder called My Digital Editions, which is in the My Documents folder.

(Those instructions are for Windows, but if you’re on a Mac, you get the general idea.)

Summary

ACSM files are not ebooks.
ACSM files manage the download of Adobe DRM-protected ebooks.
Always follow the posted download and installation instructions for any software you purchase.
ACSM files must be opened with Adobe Digital Editions.

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About The eBook Reader

I love reading and I love technology. eBooks are an interesting combination of the two.

61 responses to “ACSM Files – What they are and how to work with them”

  1. Terry says :

    Can you use Digital Editions on one computer for two different Nook Owners? Thank you.

    • eBook Reader says :

      You can only authorize ADE with one Adobe ID at a time. So, the only way you could make this work would be to use the same Adobe ID on both of them. If you do that, you’d have to be very careful to always use that same Adobe ID when purchasing ebooks on any websites, for both people.

      If you really want to do this, you should contact Barnes & Noble to see what they recommend. They might have a better system in place for this.

  2. smartUK says :

    So, ACSM files are like .ram files – tiny middle-men files that are in themselves just links to web content?

    • eBook Reader says :

      I’m not familiar with .ram files, but I don’t think that’s quite right. My understanding is that the .acsm file communicates with Adobe’s server regarding your Adobe ID authorization. It’s not a link to the ebook file. But you’d have to ask Adobe for a detailed explanation — I don’t work for them so I don’t have detailed information about what their servers are doing with these files.

  3. Rachel says :

    Hi, thank you for taking the time to write what you have. I am very new to the world of e-books so please forgive me, if I seem like I am not getting it yet. I have done all you’ve said which is fine. I can read my purchased e-book on the Adobe Digital Edition but I don’t particularly like the format it offers. Is there a way I can transfer this file to iBooks or another reading type program?

    I would like to have all my e-books in one place, (I am on a Mac laptop) rather than scattered into lots of programs. Is this at all possible? My intent was to very soon get an iPad that I can use as an e-Reader, that would sync with my laptop. If you could help me I would be very grateful. Thank you.

  4. Claire Ward says :

    I’ve read through all the info you’ve written about ADE – acsm, etc. I understand a lot more now, so thanks for that!
    BUT! There’s always someone with a but, eh?
    I’ve not been able to get that far with my non WiFi Kobo. Whenever I plug it into my desktop which runs XP, all it does is go straight to the “plugged in” screen & stay there frozen. Yet the Kobo is fully charged.
    So I can’t sync, it doesn’t bring up the option “manage library”, & the Kobo says it’s not registered to an account.
    I’ve done everything – created an adobe ID, downloaded the desktop app & ADE. The book I purchased from Kobo is an acsm file & is sitting in ADE & I can read it there.
    I, of course, don’t get the Kobo icon to be able to drag the book into.
    So my first & main problems are to get it registered to an account – which it just isn’t/can’t!
    Stop the Kobo from going to the “plugged in” screen & freezing there.
    Can you help me with this, please?

    • eBook Reader says :

      Hi Claire,
      Welllllll …. there probably isn’t much I can say to help with this. This isn’t a problem with the .acsm file. It sounds to me like there is something wrong with the Kobo itself. You won’t be able to authorize it with your Adobe ID until you can get past that first screen where it’s getting stuck.

      But, here are a couple things I would try:

      1. Turn off the computer, and turn off the Kobo. Then turn them back on again. This sometimes helps when you’re working with an external device.

      2. If that doesn’t help, see if Kobo has a firmware update that you could install.

      If that doesn’t work, you should just contact the folks at Kobo. You have one of their e-readers and bought one of their ebooks, so they’ll have the most information.
      http://koboereader.com/usd/help/

    • Brian says :

      Thanks Jared for helping us through this mire. (Who designed all this?)
      My first experience of downloading an ebook(last week) has not been good. I was on a reputable eBook supplier website, paid for the book and ‘downloaded’ it – using the download button on their webpage. Fine I thought. Paid for, and now downloaded. Then I discovered the type of file I’d downloaded was – yes – acsm. Funny, I thought, from what I’ve read, ebooks should be in pdf or epub. So I started on support calls/emails, getting nowehere, until i saw your blog and learned that the acsm file is NOT the book I thought I had downloaded. So I made sure Digital Editions was up and running,(I’d already downloaded this and authorised it). Then tried to open the acsm file but couldn’t as I wasn’t online. So I went on line and tried again and lo and behold watched a 22mb download process(a book with lots of diagrams). Great – except that the book still wasn’t visible- except using Digitial Editions. Using DE I could scroll through and read the book on my laptop, fine, but no way could I drag anything and drop it onto my(Sony 650) ebook reader. More support calls. Today – accidentally – I found the pdf of the book. Not in My Docs as one of your entries suggested – but in ‘recently changed’. It was showing as a pdf and I dragged it to the Sony and now it’s where it should be – and readable. Hope this helps others that the process is not straightforward. Apparently the book only downloads using Digitial Editions if you are online to the Internet. One other confusion. All the ebook sellers on the Internet seem to have their own ebook reader library software which they want you to download. I’ve already got three different programs from three sellers plus the one supplied by Sony. Do I really have to keep on downloading these?
      Finally, to help Claire with her frozen Kobo. My Kobo is on the scrap heap – I replaced it with the Sony(which is far far better). the Kobo has the most ridiculous arrangement for a book to be dragged onto it. It has to be in book transfer mode – meaning you have to press both the on/off button AND the menu button at the same time. If you’re lucky, the thing then goes into transfer mode(red light goes out), and some text appears to enable you to sync with your computer and then drag the book over to the Kobo. On the occasions I tried this, I must have tried twenty timer before happening to get the combination of the two buttons, and the time to press them correct and get it into transfer mode. Very frustrating.

      • eBook Reader says :

        Hey Brian,
        Thanks for posting your experience here! It sounds like you got everything working well in the end.

        About your question regarding different software from different companies — that depends. Some of them are just apps that you can use to read their ebooks on other devices like iPad, Android, etc. If you’re buying ebooks that have to be opened with ADE, and you’re only planning on reading them on your computer and/or Sony Reader, then you don’t necessarily need their special app. That being said, I recommend always installing whatever software you’re instructed, to make sure that your download goes smoothly. You could contact the company before you make a purchase and let them know how you plan on using the ebook, and find out whether they still need you to use their software.

        -Jared

      • Diana says :

        Thank you Brian! The website I bought a book from didn’t tell me this either. Your post here has been very helpful!

  5. Tony says :

    Thanks for the very clearly written article. Unfortunately I found it lucid, but sadly my experiences seem to contradict your instructions!

    Firstly, I had better state immediately that I am treading in unauthorized and unsupported waters, since I am using Linux. After going through some hoops – since the direct Adobe download doesn’t allow me to download the DE program – I got the latest version of DE to run perfectly well under wine. Or seemingly.

    I went to my local library’s website and tried to check out a title or two. I can download the .acsm file without any trouble, and save it. (It is just a simple xml file it would appear).

    However, I cannot open it within DE, as DE only seems to recognize .pdf or .epub files in the when I try to “add item to library”. When I enter the acsm file location in the field, DE then helpfully informs me that “Sorry, the file you are attempting to open cannot be opened by Digital Editions.”

    I’ve correctly associated the .acsm filetype so that when I doubleclick the file, it opens DE. With the above results unfortunately. It is also correctly set up in my browser (Firefox) so that when I download the book, DE is opened. And again I get the same result.

    I’ve registered DE with Adobe. I’ve used DE to add some epub files without any trouble.

    I’m not sure what else to do. I’m wondering if it has something to do with the fact that the DRM is time limited?

    Any thoughts?

    • Tony says :

      *sigh* Figured it out.

      In my defense I’m a web developer used to working with text editors, and am quite comfortable with the command line in linux. So naturally I tried to look for the most complicated way possible to make DE work with linux, by lifting the hood and tinkering with KDE’s innards. Turns out what works is the easiest!

      So, to open acsm files in linux:

      1. Download and install the latest version of DE. You’ll need to google for the file (I used the file from Tucows.com) or perhaps try this http://kb2.adobe.com/cps/403/kb403051.html as the official page does not let you download the windows file. (Even if you try and change your browser’s user agent to windows). It should run perfectly using wine. You may have to change the file permissions to executable.

      2. Open ADE and register it.

      3. Download the .acsm file and SAVE it – do not try to open it.

      4. (Here’s the bit that I missed). Use your file browser (Nautilus or Konquerer or Thunar) to open the directory that contains the acsm file. Then simply drag and drop the file into the ADE window.

      5. Read the book!

      Now, the file I used is a borrowed one from the library. So I’ve no idea if this works with a purchased book.

      • eBook Reader says :

        Hi Tony,
        I’m glad you figured it out because I am not very familiar with Linux and would not have been able to offer anything helpful.

        Thanks for posting your findings here. I’m sure they will be helpful for others. I suspect that this won’t work with purchased ebooks, but I’d be interested to hear the results if anyone tries it.

        -Jared

  6. dave says :

    is there any steps to get from an acsm file to a readable Kindle book?

    • eBook Reader says :

      No, there are not. Right now the Kindle can only read Kindle ebooks that you buy at Amazon (with some small exceptions). ACSM files are part of Adobe’s DRM system, and once you have the full ebook it will be either a PDF or EPUB file protected by Adobe DRM. That is not compatible with the Kindle.

  7. steve says :

    hi, this site has probably the most useful material on the ACSM files I have found, thank you.

    my question is this: I want to gift an ebook to a friend. I have purchased an acsm file from a popular ebook website, but have not opened it or registered it in any way with Adobe DE, I don’t even have Adobe DE installed – just the ACSM file downloaded.

    I haven’t tried any of the following yet, but am wondering:

    Can I mail the ACSM file to my friend and have her associate the file with her own Adobe DE Identity and download/own the epub file from then on?
    If not, what is the correlation between my account at the ebook website and the Adobe DE identity that would prevent it from working? does the email address have to match or something? of course, this could be worked around…

    thanks for any clarification

    • eBook Reader says :

      I think that theoretically that might work, but I don’t know for sure. I have never heard of anyone successfully emailing one of these files to someone else. However, as you said, there shouldn’t really be anything tying it to your own account if you don’t do anything past downloading the ACSM file. If possible I’d recommend using a gift certificate instead of trying to get around the DRM.

    • Mel Mathews says :

      We have purchased and emailed ACSM files that have never been opened and forwarded them to reviewers and this has worked out for just fine for us in the past. However, it will not work if the file has previously been opened by someone with a different Adobe DE identity. Once the file is opened and identified with another Adobe DE identity, it will not open for someone else with a different Adobe DE identity.

  8. orlando says :

    thanks for the information. very clear. the only thing left is to curse [once more] to the companies that strive to relegate culture exclusively to proprietary formats, thereby chaining us to Microsoft.

  9. Mel Mathews says :

    Thank you for posting this information about ACSM and ebook files. Very helpful!

  10. Helen Anne McCann says :

    I keep getting error 1069 that an acsm file is expired & I can’t download a book using Overdrive through my library. I’ve reinstalled Overdrive & reauthorised adobe but still get message. Please help!

    • eBook Reader says :

      I really don’t know much about how this works in a library system. But if it’s expired that sounds like your allowable time to download the file has run out. As far as I know, it works similarly to when you check out a paper book — you only get to have it for a certain period of time. But again, I don’t know any details about this, so I’d recommend contacting your library for help.

    • Angie says :

      I was having this same problem – not sure if this will help, but what I did was ensure the date and time was set accurately on my tablet…then it worked. Good luck!

      • Amber says :

        Can I just say…I love you? Who would have thought that a simple thing such as the date being wrong could cause a person so much grief. 2 days of grief to be exact. PEOPLE, MAKE SURE YOUR TIME AND DATE IS CORRECT!

  11. Anna says :

    How do you open ACSM files on android phone? I borrowed books from library which I can read on my laptop with ADE but i can’t download them on my phone. Library websites says to download it on computer and then transfer to phone… but even then I can’t open them.

    • eBook Reader says :

      You can’t open ACSM files on an Android phone, or any other phone. ACSM files can only be opened with Adobe Digital Editions. When you do that, the download of the ebook should start. When that’s finished you’ll have either an ePub or PDF file (whichever your library is offering). That is the file that you transfer to your phone.

      If you’ve got an Android phone I recommend using the app called Aldiko for ebooks. Once you’ve got your ePub or PDF you can send it to your phone and open with Aldiko. More information here: http://ebookreadersoftware.wordpress.com/2011/03/01/aldiko-for-ebooks-on-android/

      Although, you should check with your library to see if they recommend a specific app.

      • Erin says :

        If you use Android, they give you the ability to purchase ebooks through the new Market app which has been in roll-out mode for phones with 2.2 (Eclair) or higher. Just click on books at the top of the screen (this is if you want the ability to download it onto ADE (Adobe Digital Editions….as if we all didn’t know that, right? ;D) You can also do a search for the book you want in Apps and get the book as an app. The new Market rocks! I love it!

  12. j nehring says :

    I have 2nd gen iPod Touch that I’m trying to use with my library’s OverDrive ebook download service. I have an adobe ID already and have authorized my device. I have successfully checked three ebook titles out from the iPod BUT CANNOT DOWNLOAD THE CONTENT!!! I keep getting an error message for EACH title stating:
    “The ACSM file you are attempting to use has expired… Please download a new copy of the ACSM from your original source.”

    What does this mean?!?! What is the “original source”?
    I’ve uninstalled and reinstalled the OverDrive app, deauthorized and reauthorized my iPod with my Adobe ID.
    The only thing I haven’t done is connect my iPod to my Mac Laptop to try this, but the OverDrive help says I cannot transfer ebooks from my Mac to my iPod anyway, so I don’t think that’s the solution.

    Anyone else have this problem? Thanks in advance for any advice!

    • eBook Reader says :

      So far the only information I’ve read about this has said that this error occurs when your computer or device’s clock is wrong. See Angie’s post above, for example. I think I remember reading the same thing on Adobe’s forums. You should also check directly with your library because they’ll have more information about their own system.

      If anyone else has more info on this, please leave a comment.

    • Tammy says :

      I had issues downloading books as well with the library overdrive and received the same message. I also did the exact same thing you did to try to correct it. I took the advice posted here and corrected the date on my device. That helped because I can now see titles in the bookcase. Maybe it will work fully for you. Unfortunately, I got the message that the book failed to download and after requesting help from the Support team was unable to get any further assistance wih this.

  13. Muerk says :

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!

    Without all this info I would have never worked out how to read my ebook from the library on my ipod rather than my laptop.

    My hero :)

  14. Vgs says :

    Thanks to Angie’s post of September 5th regarding date/time setting. I was unable to download (getting ACSM file you are attempting to use has expired) and this was the problem. My ipad was set to 3 days in the future somehow.

  15. Debi says :

    Thankyou so much. I was lost and I don’t exactly know how I finally got it to work but with your advice and my frantic clicking it finally happened. Now that is done I only pray that I have everything set so that it all works well the next time. At least I have the Adobe Digital Editions.
    thanks again
    lol, now that this is all on my desktop I would rather have it on my laptop, hmmm, probably easier than I think….or not?
    thanks for your help so much

  16. Carpie says :

    THANK YOU!!!!

  17. Sherri says :

    I am also having problems with my ADE not opening ebooks that have DRM (non DRM books are fine). I have downloaded the program, went to the site to download the book, and keep getting an “Error getting license Server communication problem: E_ADEPT_IO” error message. From what I understand from many hours of frustration, Adobe is no longer supporting the ADE software, and the website page to get the license is no longer functional. Any other ways to open the books that have the DRM?

  18. Ann says :

    I still cannot get my Adobe Digital Edition to open an ebook. I believe I have followed all the correct steps. I have spoken to a public library technician about my problem, and he thinks my IMAC lion computer has a firewall which is preventing the ADE from opening it. Not sure if I have a firewall, or how I would add ADE to my approved list. I no longer have mac support, so I am wondering if you have some ideas on this. Also, I have an Adobe ID which is my email address starting with an upper case letter. But my computer is approved for my email address starting with a lower case letter. Should that make a difference? I’ve tried changing the Adobe account to the lower case, but it will not let me, and I would have to pay $40 for Adobe support in order to do that.

    After I download an EPUB ebook file from the public library:

    1) when I click on ADE, and go to library, then add item to library, I find the ebook in my Downloads on the computer. When I click on the ebook, it is greyed out, and won’t allow me to click on it

    2) or when I find the ebook name in downloads on my computer, and double-click on it, it opens the ADE app, but then it doesn’t show up in ADE.

    3) I’ve tried clicking and dragging from download folder on the computer to the ADE, but doesn’t work either.

    I have Adobe Flash installed on this computer (I am pretty sure). I have emptied the cache folder by going to Safari, and “empty cache”. I’ve checked that I have Java enabled under preferences, and security tab. Hoping someone can help with this problem. Perplexing.

    • Ann says :

      Just as an update, still cannot get the ACSM ticket to open in ADE. I have checked the computer, and the firewall is not on. This is an apple computer. Any ideas yet?

    • Ann says :

      Finally, a solution to my problem, even if it is a round about way – for my iMac computer – Lion OSX10.7.2 Could work for your macbook as well. Unfortunately, the Adobe Digital Edition is not completely compatible with my “version” of apple computer and that is why I had so much trouble. If you check all the requirements before you download ADE, you will see which versions of computers they are compatible with. There is the following workaround. So I’ll give you the step by step to make it really easy for you:

      Download Adobe Digital Edition. Get an account – this is important. And I do believe it should be done from the computer you plan to download the ebooks from.

      Download Sony Reader app. http://ebookstore.sony.com/download/ (Even though my ereader is a KOBO, I can use this Sony Reader Program. So why didn’t KOBO come up with a solution? Makes me think a Sony Reader would make it so easy. Kindles are no good for us in Canada if we want to get ebooks from Public Libraries because Kindle is only good for United States libraries).

      Go to your public library site, download an ebook in EPUB form or PDF format. You will see a quick download. It is an acsm ticket.

      On your computer, open “Finder”.

      Click on “Downloads” on left side.

      On the right, find the name of the newly downloaded book and right click on it, and make sure the default program to open it will be “Sony Reader”. If not, then choose Sony Reader as the default.

      The Sony Reader program will open up, and the book will load. You will just see the cover of the book. DO NOT OPEN THE BOOK AND VIEW PAGES. THEN IT PROBABLY WILL NOT TRANSFER TO YOUR EREADER!

      Turn on your ereader. Connect it to your computer. When ereader asks if you want to connect, click connect.

      On computer, open “Finder” and click on “Applications” on left, double click on Adobe Digital Edition program to open it.

      In your ADE, at the top, go to “Library”, and click “add to Library”.

      You must find where the book is now located on your computer: click on “Documents” on left side in Finder, then “My Books”, and under “Reader” you will find the name of the ebook with a Sony Reader icon beside it. That is the opened file so click on the name of the downloaded ebook. It will appear on the right hand side. Click on it to highlight it – drag and drop it to your “Kobo” or other ereader device name on the left hand side (all within Adobe Digital Edition). Wait a few seconds for it to transfer.

      Eject your ereader by clicking on the arrow beside your device name (left hand side within ADE).

      Now unplug your ereader, power on, and wait for it to load on ereader device. That should be it.

  19. Judith says :

    I just bought an ebook that was only available to download with acsm; I have it on my computer and can read it just fine with ADE, but when I transferred it to my Kobo I found that the font size on the Kobo is terribly small and cannot be adjusted the way it can be with epub books. Is there any workaround solution to this?

    • Adriana says :

      I am at my wits end and was looking for an answer to this very question. I’ve already spent a week with the Kobo help desk and their final response…”You will have to use the zoom function, and use your navigation pad to scroll across.” What!! Certainly the first error was on my part for not noticing it was a pdf/acsm.

      My logic, if I am using the Kobo site to buy an e-books to use on my Kobo e-reader they but default should be easily readable correct? I don’t want to read them on my computer even though the file looks fine on it. Boy was I bamboozled. I have the original Kobo reader. Not wireless and no special buttons. I just want to be able to read my e-books on my e-reader and in a perfect world download from any site I want. Any help would be much appreciated. Just another reason I cherish a real book in hand;)

      • The eBook Reader says :

        Hi Judith and Adriana,
        I don’t really know of a good answer to this. With a PDF file you should be able to increase the font size, but it doesn’t work as well as with an ePub. On an eReader like the Kobo, PDF will allow you to increase the font size a little but then it starts to just increase the entire page size, which does result in you having to scroll across. All in all, it’s better to use ePubs whenever possible.

        • Adriana says :

          Thank you for the quick reply. Live and Learn… Two other questions that I can’t find the answers to is 1) Can I off load my Kobo files to Calibre in order to keep only 1 complete library? I believe it can be done but I can’t find the simple step by step directions for my plebian brain. My second question is can I change the name of downloaded books to correctly reflect the book title? BN downloads are all obscure numbers. I’ve tried and can’t. It would help when I have to load a book again. Again, any help is appreciated.

  20. Wendy says :

    Thank you all for you advice about the message “ACSM file has expired” . I fixed my date and time and now it works! Thanks!!

  21. Lauren says :

    Hey I keep trying to open the .acsm files like you said but it can’t seem to find them. My Adobe Digital Edition is fully authorized but it still won’t load. Please help!

    • The eBook Reader says :

      When you install Adobe Digital Editions, it creates a folder called ‘My Digital Editions’ in your Documents/My Documents folder. That’s usually where the files are automatically saved to. If not there, they could be in your Downloads folder.

  22. KAIT says :

    Hi! i just wanted to say you did a very good explaining ACM files. My question is i am using an app on my i pod touch called ‘overdrive’ when i try to download the e-book an error message pops up saying ACM file has expired…and i’m not sure how to update it???

  23. gretchen says :

    Have a Samsung Galaxy. Won’t accept Adobe Digital Editions. Have been using Overdrive for library downloads but that now tells me ACSM file has expired. Library and Overdrive blame each other. Any suggestions?

  24. Marina Evans says :

    I downloaded the Adobe Digital Editions and installed it on my MacBook computer. Then I authorized my computer to use ADE. When I downloaded an e-book from the library, the ADE opened but no book was shown as downloaded. The only file I received was the .acsm file in my download folder. I did all your three ways, and none of them worked for me. I went to my local library with my computer and the IT person who works there told me that I did everything right, and he didn’t know why it didn’t work for my Mac. I’m confused, and I too really want to bang my head on my desk.

    • Ann says :

      Finally, a solution to my problem, even if it is a round about way – for my iMac computer – Lion OSX10.7.2 Could work for your macbook as well. Unfortunately, the Adobe Digital Edition is not completely compatible with my “version” of apple computer and that is why I had so much trouble. If you check all the requirements before you download ADE, you will see which versions of computers they are compatible with. There is the following workaround. So I’ll give you the step by step to make it really easy for you:

      Download Adobe Digital Edition. Get an account – this is important. And I do believe it should be done from the computer you plan to download the ebooks from.

      Download Sony Reader app. http://ebookstore.sony.com/download/ (Even though my ereader is a KOBO, I can use this Sony Reader Program. So why didn’t KOBO come up with a solution? Makes me think a Sony Reader would make it so easy. Kindles are no good for us in Canada if we want to get ebooks from Public Libraries because Kindle is only good for United States libraries).

      Go to your public library site, download an ebook in EPUB form or PDF format. You will see a quick download. It is an acsm ticket.

      On your computer, open “Finder”.

      Click on “Downloads” on left side.

      On the right, find the name of the newly downloaded book and right click on it, and make sure the default program to open it will be “Sony Reader”. If not, then choose Sony Reader as the default.

      The Sony Reader program will open up, and the book will load. You will just see the cover of the book. DO NOT OPEN THE BOOK AND VIEW PAGES. THEN IT PROBABLY WILL NOT TRANSFER TO YOUR EREADER!

      Turn on your ereader. Connect it to your computer. When ereader asks if you want to connect, click connect.

      On computer, open “Finder” and click on “Applications” on left, double click on Adobe Digital Edition program to open it.

      In your ADE, at the top, go to “Library”, and click “add to Library”.

      You must find where the book is now located on your computer: click on “Documents” on left side in Finder, then “My Books”, and under “Reader” you will find the name of the ebook with a Sony Reader icon beside it. That is the opened file so click on the name of the downloaded ebook. It will appear on the right hand side. Click on it to highlight it – drag and drop it to your “Kobo” or other ereader device name on the left hand side (all within Adobe Digital Edition). Wait a few seconds for it to transfer.

      Eject your ereader by clicking on the arrow beside your device name (left hand side within ADE).

      Now unplug your ereader, power on, and wait for it to load on ereader device. That should be it.

      Let me know if this helps. :)

    • KAK says :

      I took this dude’s advice and it worked for me: With Digital Editions closed, in your Digital Editions folder ( in your Document directory on the Mac ), rename the restore folder to something like restore.bad. Then Start ADE and try to use an .acsm file to fulfill a book.

  25. Fred Gardner says :

    I’m an old print journalist who intends to publish an anthology of articles that first ran in a tabloid newspaper, with graphics. They can be readily turned into 11×17 pdfs. What I have in mind is the e-quivalent of a “coffeetable book.” Is there an e-book format that would accommodate such a project? If not, and I have to lay the material out anew, what program would you recommend? Thanks in advance if you’re able to provide advice, and if not, for what I’ve already learned from your site.

    Fred G.

    • The eBook Reader says :

      Hi Fred,
      I think the best thing I could recommend would be to stick with PDF. Anything else would probably turn into a big pain to do. Just keep in mind that large PDF pages will be near unreadable on e-reader screens, so the book would really only work on a computer screen.

  26. Dalton says :

    This information was very concise and helpful. Thank you so much for your clear links and good use of information to explain everything so clearly!

  27. Benjamin Arnaud says :

    When I try to download e-books and save, it goes to URL link, and hence I can’t read the book. can you suggest what I’m doing wrong.

Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. How do I open an ACSM filetype ? - October 27, 2011
  2. Saving downloaded photos etc - Android Forums - December 7, 2012

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