I've found this question about impossibility of inverse search with acrobat, but it is from 2012 so I decided to post in case there is some update.

Does anybody know if situation has changed in any way? Any hope for inverse search from acrobat?

  • From what I understand of the matter this is not supported, because Adobe doesn't implement synctex which is necessary to inverse search the source file.
    – hugovdberg
    Mar 23, 2014 at 9:27
  • Well there might be some other solutions. E.g. I remember winedt was doing inverse search from dvi for quite a while and I believe before any synctex files appeared in my outputs. Mar 23, 2014 at 9:29
  • 1
    You should remember that DVI and PDF are very distinct filetypes, so not having seen synctex with DVI doesn't mean it isn't necessary for PDF. Inverse search takes two things, some kind of database (either as separate file or inline comments) that relates a position in the document to a position in the source, and a piece of software that actually reads this database and performs an action based on that info. As long as Adobe doesn't implement the latter, inverse search will not work.
    – hugovdberg
    Mar 23, 2014 at 9:43
  • I see. That's sad :( Mar 23, 2014 at 9:47
  • Not that sad, really. Just another reason to avoid Adobe's software 99% of the time ;).
    – cfr
    Mar 24, 2014 at 2:09

1 Answer 1


The sad answer is, that situation is unchanged from about two years ago, the time Joseph Wright answered the linked question Using SyncTeX with Adobe Acrobat Reader.

As hugovdberg writes inverse search would only be possible if Adobe would implement the SyncTeX feature, but this was until now not the case.

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    It might be possible to have a package that creates a bunch of hyperlink to the original text file (and line numbers). See here tex.stackexchange.com/a/132867/1871 . I managed to create this links manually as a proof of concept That would be independent of Synctex but I agree it will 1) polute the resulting PDF with mouse-active zones and 2) opening specific files and line numbers from PDF. while possible, can be a pain to set up.
    – alfC
    Apr 6, 2016 at 21:03

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