Open your .ACSM files

by Julie Splinters - -

Adobe Content Server Message files have the .acsm extension and are designed in order to be used in conjunction with Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) or Adobe’s eBook. The .acsm files[1] prove the legal purchasing of eBooks and are used activate and download content – eBooks via Adobe Digital Editions[2] that are protected by Adobe DRM. In addition, ACSM files are not textbooks like PDF or EPUB, instead, they are text files that only can be opened and read by Adobe Digital Editions. These files include data that communicates with Adobe’s servers and indicates that eBooks are legally purchased, thus, ADE can download the eBook and enable users to open and read it. 

.acsm files how to open

There are instances when users purchase or download an eBook and receive an ACSM file. The file proves ADE that the users legally purchased the eBook, so the ADE is able to download the eBook and empower a user to open the eBook on all of the devices that include ADE.

Even though it is not required for a user to read the eBook the ACSM file via ADE, ACSM files can only be accessed through ADE. Users can transfer an eBook reading software after the ACSM file is activated in order to prove the legal ownership. 

If you want to open an ACSM file via Adobe Digital Editions on your Windows PC, take the following steps.[3] 

  1. Download the installer of Adobe Digital Editions from its official website 
  2. Locate the installer of the program and double-click on it.
  3. Follow the on-screen instructions and prompts in order to successfully installed Adobe Digital Editions. 
  4. Open Adobe Digital Editions
  5. In order to authorize your PC use the credentials of an eBook Vendor. Simply type in the credentials for your Adobe ID and select Activate or Authorize. Users could also access the drop-down menu next to eBook Vendor and tap into another eBook Vendor and type your account credentials with that particular eBook Vendor. In addition, users can check the checkbox named “I want to authorize my computer without an ID” and select Active or Authorize. However, this method is not recommended as users will not be able to access their eBooks on any other devices. 
  6. On the next page select Finish
  7. Launch the directory on your PC which includes the ACSM file you want to access. 
  8. Select the ACSM file and double-click on it. If the ACSM file is not associated with Adobe Digital Editions, then right-click on it, select Open with and click on Adobe Digital Editions

By doing so the ACSM files will be accessed via Adobe Digital Editions. The data will be used in order to prove that the eBook was purchased legally and the eBook will be downloaded in EPUB or PDF format. If you want to access the eBooks you purchased, launch the ACSM files in Adobe Digital Editions’ Library. They also should be found in the directory …\\My Documents (Documents)\\My Digital Editions. 

Whenever you download an eBook to ADE using an ACSM file, this eBook is available to you on every single device which has Adobe Digital Editions and is authorized with the same eBook Vendor credentials, across all operating systems, including Windows, Macs, Android, and iOS. 

About the author

Julie Splinters
Julie Splinters - VPN service analyst

Julie Splinters is a VPN service analyst at, who specializes in VPN services and anti-spyware applications. Her major of English Philology and her passion for IT helped her choose the path of an IT writer.

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