I really like the PDF reader app in Windows 10. I already found out how to open PDF's via command line with it:

C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe /c start "reader:"

But when entering this in TeXnicCenter as the viewer path it only opens the PDF, it does not "update" the PDF without closing the reader inbetween after a re-compilation. I always have to close the app myself and reopen it, which is very annyoing when doing tiny changes rapidly.

I assume I have to enter some of these DDE commands, but I have no clue which ones. Searching online for combinations of "Reader", "Windows", "DDE" and so on only leads to Adobe Reader for Windows or a general (end-user) help page for the Windows Reader, since these are very generic keywords.

How can I use the Windows Reader to work like Adobe Reader, so that it updates the PDF even if it is already opened?

  • I use acrobat instead of reader, and I definitely have to close the pdf display before recompiling (cannot modify file, already open). Aug 4, 2015 at 11:47
  • @JohnKormylo Correctly configured, Adobe Reader will automatically update the changed PDF without needing to be restarted or manual actions. This definitley works, I've been using this on several machines on Windows 7 and 8, since Adobe Reader 9 up to DC ("12"). Between major versions of Adobe Reader the needed DDE commands/server names changed, however, so one needs to adjust the configuration manually once after upgrading to a newer Adobe Reader major version. But I don't know the correct configuration for the Microsoft Windows Reader.
    – Foo Bar
    Aug 4, 2015 at 12:06

1 Answer 1


I suggest you ask the microsoft support for help.

The problem is, that the application reader has to use DDE commands or other documented parameters to control the behaviour of the programm. Without theese possibility you are not able to use the windows app reader inside TeXnicCenter.

I do not think that is possible, because I didn't find any documentation to reader mentioning the needed possibilitys. It seems only Microsoft can know ...

At last I suggest you to use SumatraPDF. This viewer can be controled with DDE command and can stay open while compiling. Acrobat Reader has to be closed. At last SumatraPDF seems to be the best way for viewing compiled PDF.

For printing you can use the Viewer you prefer for printing, of course.

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