How to autorun a PDF file

Written by andrew meer
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How to autorun a PDF file
(Siri Stafford/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Creating a file to autorun itself is a quick and efficient way to open it. If the file is an executable (.EXE), you can make it to autorun itself by creating and editing an “Autorun.inf” file through Notepad. However, you cannot do the same with files that have different file extensions. If you want to autorun a PDF file, you must download an executable file that can link to the PDF file.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Starterfile, Shellrun or AutorunPro
  • Blank CD or flash drive

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  1. 1

    Download an executable link file such as Starterfile, Shellrun, or AutorunPro (see Resources).

  2. 2

    Create a text file and label it as “Autorun.” To do so, right-click and point to “New.” Select “New Text Document,” type “Autorun” and press “Enter.”

  3. 3

    Change the file extension from “.txt” to “.inf”. To do so, click “Start,” type “Folder Options” and press “Enter.” Click the tab labelled “View,” remove the check from the box next to “Hide Extensions” and click “Apply.” Right-click your newly created “Autorun” text file and select “Rename.” Replace the part labelled “inf” to “txt” and press “Enter.”

  4. 4

    Double-click the “Autorun.inf” file to open it in Notepad. Type “[autorun]” without quotes and press “Enter.” Next, type “open=starterfile.exe PDFname.pdf” without quotes. Replace “startfile.exe” with “shellrun.exe” if you are using the Shellrun executable file, or replace it with “AutorunPro.exe” if you are using the AutorunPro executable file. Replace “PDFname” with the name of the PDF file that you need to autorun.

  5. 5

    Save the “Autorun.inf” file by clicking “File” and then “Save."

  6. 6

    Burn the PDF file, the executable link file and the “Autorun.inf” to a blank CD. Alternatively, you can also copy and paste the files into the root folder of a flash drive. The next time you insert the CD or the flash drive, the PDF file will automatically launch itself.

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