Getting too commercial Rated 2 out of 5 stars

The Pros:

This add-on has two important features which I really needed when I installed this add-on long ago.

1) The ability to browse PDF documents as HTML instead. Believe me, this is an *important* feature, especially on slow internet connections. Instead of having to wait an hour for that 5 MB PDF to finish downloading, only to find that it isn't the doc you're looking for, you can start to view it through their server almost immediately.

(This feature does not work on "private PDFs", for example, when a company serves a PDF for an order confirmation, as this would be unavailable to their servers).

2) Let's you bypass adobe's plugin when PDFs are downloaded. As Adobe's plugin tends to slow down Firefox with large documents, and has other bugs which in the past have crashed Firefox, I'd rather not use it. Over the years, PDF Download has gotten better and better at handling different ways of delivering PDFs, to the point where it can now bypass 99% of all PDF downloads.

The cons:

PDF Download has always come with some advertisements, especially on their "view as HTML" server, for other products by the same company. I was comfortable with this, as they at least weren't advertising other companies products, and I know that they do have to make money somehow. But, lately, it seems like I'm getting more and more advertisements showing up here and there when I use any of their features.

Now, they've added this status bar icon to my browser, with no way of getting rid of it, with the proposed feature of being able to turn off the plugin for a specific page. Since their dialog box already comes up with a "bypass" option, I don't really see why they need this. I feel that this icon is cluttering up my status bar merely as another attempt to advertise. I do not like that.

In addition, although their HTML viewer always had bugs, being only able to show about 90% of PDFs, and even then often with poor formatting, it was better than nothing. However, now, Google has improved their own PDF viewer quite a bit, giving it an Ajax interface, and appears capable of showing 99% of PDFs in a way that very much resembles the original document.

The Results:

After years of this add-on being in my top ten, I am going to try to get rid of it. I will instead be looking at a number of other plugins which let you view PDFs in Google's viewer, and I will be simply disabling the Adobe plugin so that PDFs will not even have the option to show up in that.

If any developers are reading this, that status bar icon without the option to turn it off was the very last straw. This plugin has officially become adware in my book.

This review is for a previous version of the add-on (