Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) is free software that lets you add eBooks to your Kobo eReader from other sources.
You can add eBooks to your Kobo eReader using ADE from:
- Public libraries
- eBooks from another store
- eBooks from the Kobo Store that are protected by Digital Rights Management (DRM)
What is Digital Rights Management (DRM)?
DRM prevents the unauthorized copying or redistribution of eBooks to protect the rights of authors and publishers. If you downloaded a book protected by DRM, you’ll get a license in the form of an .acsm file with your book. You'll then use ADE to add the DRM-protected content to your eReader.
To get started with ADE:
- Install Adobe Digital Editions.
- Get an Adobe ID.
- Authorize your computer and eReader with ADE.
You'll need to use ADE when you want to:
- Read an eBook that you've borrowed from the library.
- Read a protected PDF file you've purchased from the Kobo bookstore.
When you borrow an eBook from your library, your library should be able to provide you with instructions on how to download your book's .acsm file.
Some books in the Kobo bookstore may be in PDF format which requires ADE to load the PDF files onto your eReader.
If you use a Kobo eReader or Kobo’s reading apps, you may never need to use ADE. Kobo’s reading apps and eReaders can automatically download and open most books from the Kobo Store.
Step 1 of 4: Install Adobe Digital Editions
Install Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) on your PC or Mac to transfer Digital Rights Management (DRM)-protected content onto your Kobo eReader.
- Download ADE from www.adobe.com/support/digitaleditions/downloads.html.
- Find the ADE installation file on your computer.
- Open the ADE installation file.
- Follow the onscreen instructions to install Adobe Digital Editions.
Step 2 of 4: Create an Adobe ID
Once you’ve installed Adobe Digital Editions, you’ll need to create an Adobe ID. If you already have an Adobe ID, skip to Step 3.
- With Adobe Digital Editions open, click Help at the top of the screen.
- Click Authorize Computer.
- Click Create an Adobe ID in the Authorization window.
- Make sure the checkbox beside I want to Authorize my computer without an ID is cleared, and not selected.
- Beside the eBook Vendor dropdown menu, make sure Adobe ID is selected.
- Fill in the appropriate text boxes and click Sign Up.
- Your Adobe ID is the email address that you used to sign up.
- Your Adobe password is the password you used to create the account.
- You can use your Adobe ID and Adobe password immediately after you've created it.
Step 3 of 4: Authorize your computer with Adobe Digital Editions
After you’ve installed Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) and created an Adobe ID, you’ll need to authorize your computer with ADE. You only need to do this once.
- With Adobe Digital Editions open, enter your Adobe ID and password that you've just created.
- Click Authorize.
- Click OK when Adobe finishes authorizing your computer.
Step 4 of 4: Add books to your eReader using Adobe Digital Editions
If you downloaded a book protected by Digital Rights Management (DRM), you’ll get a license with your book. The license is also known as a .acsm file. When you download a DRM-protected eBook, you'll need to download a file that has .acsm at the end of the file name. Your library should be able to provide you instructions on how you can download the .acsm file. To get the book itself, just open that file in Adobe Digital Editions (ADE). ADE will verify your license, and then download your eBook in either EPUB or PDF format.
- Turn on your eReader.
- Connect your eReader to your computer using a Micro USB cable.
- Tap Connect on your eReader.
- Open Adobe Digital Editions.
- Under 'Devices', right-click on Kobo eReader and click Authorize Device. If you don't see 'Kobo eReader' under Devices, close Adobe Digital Editions, then open it again.
- Click Authorize.
- Click on File at the top of the screen.
- Click Add to Library. A browse window will appear.
- On a PC: Click the "E-Books" drop-down menu, and select Adobe Content Server Message.
On a Mac: Beside the "Show" drop-down menu, select ACSM Files.
- Locate the.acsm file that you downloaded from Kobo, or from your public library.
- Select the .acsm file you downloaded from Kobo, then click Add. The book will open.
- Click Library at the top of the screen to go back to the ADE home screen.
- Select your new book and drag it to the Kobo eReader bookshelf (listed on the left side under Devices).
- Eject your eReader from the computer, and unplug the Micro USB cable from your eReader. The book will appear in your Library.
Common ADE errors and solutions
If you see one of the errors below, follow the steps in Adobe's official support page for details to fix authorization issues.
Content Locked errors
Follow the steps in this article to solve 'content locked' errors:
If you see an error that's not listed above, search for the error name in the official Adobe Digital Editions support page.
Re-authorize your eReader
If you've followed all the steps above and still cannot load the DRM-protected PDF onto your eReader, you may need to re-authorize your eReader with the correct ADE sign in. If you have multiple Adobe Digital Editions accounts, make sure you are signed in to the correct one.
In order for you to sign in to Adobe Digital Editions with a different ID, you'll need to re-authorize your eReader.
Need more help? Here are more resources:
- Learn more about re-authorizing your eReader from Adobe's website here.
- Read about Adobe Digital Editions set up and troubleshooting from OverDrive's support site here.