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Home / Support for SWF or other embedded media files


I have a PDF file with embedded .SWF files which appear to be animations. I can’t find a viewer, other than Adobe, that will show these files. Clicking on these files in Sumatra just pops up a “Save” dialog. Can support be added so these animations can be viewed in the document rather than having to save them to the hard drive and viewing them in a separate application?

Rick C.


Support for .swf files won’t happen. There is no viable open source code that supports this format and Flash use is rapidly declining.


Ha, I knew playback support for embedded Flash would never be added (plus it might be a security nightmare given the nature of Flash), but thankfully was able to convince Zeniko Sumatra PDF Reader forum ( to add the extraction feature at least. It’s certainly made my job a lot easier over the years.


I have documentation for Dell laptops which use these embedded filetypes. I guess I’ll have to use the Adobe reader.


Is there any chance to play embedded multimedia within a PDF, I have a file with some .wav sounds which are play when I click in Adobe Reader but unfortunately Sumatra doesn’t recognize it.


It is unlikely, they will be allowed to run without a layer of security blocking which is built into most recent Adobe Readers.
SumatraPDF does not run embedded contents in ePub or PDF (only chm or ps or gif/tif image only animation from PDF were possible exceptions, but cant find any example that runs without embedded GhostScript active) and historically has only offered to export those file formats it recognises, so you can run them at your own risk externally.
This is one reason that SumatraPDF is not exposed to many exploits that affect other readers.

It depends on the embedding method how they are exposed, but in recent Daily build’s then Office or Media files may often be seen in the bookmarks pane where a contextual right click might allow for “save as”.