Adobe Livecycle Rights Management

Rights Management Rights Management ensures that the business-critical information you distribute is exposed only to the intended people. You control how people can use the information to prevent it from circulating too far. Your control over the use of information continues even after you distribute the information. Note: If you are an administrator who is deploying Adobe® LiveCycle® Rights Management ES Extension for Microsoft® Office to a large number of users within your organization, you can modify the registry settings for the MSI file to preconfigure the connection to your deployed instance of the LiveCycle Rights Management ES server. Through a connection to the Adobe LiveCycle® Rights Management ES Server, users may retrieve the most updated documents or be assured that only the latest documents are used or in circulation. Administrators may also set document privileges and apply security policies through the server, preserving persistent and dynamic policies at any time. Adobe LiveCycle Rights Management provides dynamic watermarking capabilities on PDF documents. A watermark is an image that is superimposed over the original base document. In a rights managed document, the image can be applied dynamically as the document is viewed in.

Name: LiveCycle Rights Management ES
Price: $120/per recipient

Quick Read

Full-featured document lifecycle workflow and management.
Solid product, but the documentation could use a bit of tweaking to be perfect.

Rating Breakdown

SC Labs Reviews

Reviews from our expert team

Value for Money:
Adobe Livecycle Rights Management
Ease of Use:
Rating: 4.00/54.00/5


Adobe LiveCycle Rights Management ES is a client-server-based digital rights management (DRM) product that integrates with most existing infrastructure, including directory systems, operating systems and databases. The tool allows organizations to create enforcement and control policies on a document basis to prevent printing, editing and copying for file types. LiveCycle can also provide dynamic watermarking for additional protection to add information, such as username, IP address, or even policy name. Embedded metadata in files allows them to link back to policies on the server with a centrally managed interface so users and/or administrators can change or edit policies in real time to remove or add users and groups.

Installation and deployment is quite straightforward. The installation is guided by an in-depth setup wizard, which installs the server software, as well as the application server needed by the product. At the end of installation, a second wizard is launched, which assists with initial configuration and deployment. After installation, the product applications are also simple and intuitive to use.

LiveCycle uses an application and web server to host documents. This allows for a great amount of flexibility and transparency to the end-user.

Documentation was comprised of a number of well-organized PDF guides. However, there were just too many. We would like to see them consolidated for better ease of searching.
Adobe offers an online knowledge base as free technical support. Enterprise-level support can be obtained through support contracts at a price of 20 percent of the license fee. This support includes phone and email technical support 24/7.

Adobe LiveCycle Rights Management ES pricing varies based on the number of users/recipients and forms. Volume discounts apply. With a price starting at $120 per recipient, this product can become expensive. However, we do find it to be a good value for the money based on its ability to control the entire document management process.

Adobe LiveCycle
Developer(s)Adobe Systems
Stable release
Enterprise Suite (ES4) / March 22, 2013; 7 years ago
Operating systemWindows, Solaris, AIX, Linux, Android, Windows Mobile, iOS, BlackBerry OS
TypeCollaborative software

Adobe LiveCycle Enterprise Suite (ES4) is a service-oriented architectureJava EE server software product from Adobe Systems used to build applications that automate a broad range of business processes for enterprises and government agencies. LiveCycle ES4 is an enterprise document and form platform that allows capturing and processing information, delivering personalized communications, and protecting and tracking sensitive information. It is used for purposes such as account opening, services and benefits enrollment, correspondence management, request for proposal processes, and other manual based workflows. LiveCycle ES4 incorporates new features with a particular focus on mobile devices. LiveCycle applications also function in both online or offline environments. These capabilities are enabled through the use of Adobe Reader, HTML/PhoneGap and the Flash Player clients to reach desktop computers and mobile devices.

LiveCycle mobile app icon
Adobe Livecycle Rights ManagementAdobe livecycle rights management es

The LiveCycle platform is made up of a number of integrated solution[buzzword] components and developer tools, some of which are discussed below.

LiveCycle ES4 solution[buzzword] components[edit]

LiveCycle ES4 solution[buzzword] components are various types of services available to developers including those needed to capture information, manage and optimize processes, secure information, invoke web services, create documents, and integrate with other applications and data sources. The solution[buzzword] components leverage[buzzword] shared 'foundation' services which include administration and configuration services, service orchestration, invocation methods across components, and encryption services.

LiveCycle ES4 data capture products[edit]

LiveCycle Forms Standard ES4[edit]

LiveCycle Forms Standard allows users to create and deploy XML-based form templates as PDFs. Forms can be saved for offline use in Adobe Reader when they are reader extended, a capability included in Forms Standard. LiveCycle Forms ES4 supports a PDF document, the user selects the capabilities they want to enable, then Reader would enable that functionality when opening the document or form. The user can select all or any combination of the following capabilities: commenting, import and export of form data, ability to submit outside of a web browser, enable database and web services capabilities, capture digital signatures, enable data capture in 2D barcodes and embed file attachments.

LiveCycle ES4 document security[edit]

LiveCycle Digital Signatures ES4[edit]

LiveCycle Digital Signatures automates electronic signature workflows for assurances of authenticity, integrity, and non-repudiation. Organizations can use this component to sign documents in bulk, such as university transcripts, government documents, annual budgets, grant approvals, or tax returns. This component will also validate previously signed documents in bulk. The digital signature capabilities are based on the functionality available in Adobe Acrobat and Adobe Reader on the desktop.[1]

LiveCycle Rights Management ES4[edit]

LiveCycle Rights Management is an enterprise digital rights management (EDRM) product that provides data centric security with user access and control policies to various types of data including PDF and Flash Video - and also native formats including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Rights management allows document 'leasing' for a finite period of time before it has to reconnect with the server. The product also includes detailed audit trail reporting for rights-protected information, dynamic watermarking, expiration, and version control.

LiveCycle ES4 document generation products[edit]


LiveCycle PDF Generator ES4[edit]

LiveCycle PDF Generator is server-based software that automates the creation, assembly, and manipulation of PDF documents. It converts documents authored in native source applications such as Word, Excel, or PowerPoint and many others into PDF documents. It supports the creation of customized PDF document packages by assembling or disassembling existing PDF files or PDF pages and adding dynamic custom elements such as headers, footers, links, bookmarks, tables of contents, and watermarks. In addition, it can convert PDF to PostScript, image, or PDF/A formats for direct server-based printing or compliance with archiving requirements. There is also optical character recognition (OCR) functionality with this product to create searchable PDF documents from scanned images.

LiveCycle Output ES4[edit]

LiveCycle Output automates the generation of template-driven, final-form documents. It merges XML data with LiveCycle Designer templates to generate personalized documents in PDF, PostScript, PCL, or Zebra label formats. It includes capabilities to assemble or disassemble existing PDF files or PDF pages and supports adding dynamic custom elements such as headers, footers, links, bookmarks, tables of contents, and watermarks to create customized PDF document packages. It also converts PDF to PostScript, image, or PDF/A formats for direct server-based printing or compliance with archiving requirements.

LiveCycle Correspondence Management ES4[edit]

LiveCycle Correspondence Management centralizes the creation, management and delivery of customized correspondence. Personalized communications such as statements, letters, or notices can be created with a mix of custom-authored and pre-approved content and delivered through the customer's channel of choice. The solutions[buzzword] can also increase organizational compliance, consistency, visibility, and control with templates, pre-approved content blocks, audit trails, and advanced archive searching.

LiveCycle ES4 ECM connectors[edit]

LiveCycle ES4 Connectors for ECM integrates other ECMs (enterprise content management systems) with LiveCycle for design time asset management and runtime process management. At design time, users can manage assets for the application including forms, fragments, images, and other content assets in the ECM system. Developers can then access those assets directly within LiveCycle Workbench ES4 for the creation of forms, documents, and packages. The connectors also enable business processes to retrieve content objects, as well as their content attributes or metadata directly from the ECM system. Specific ECM systems supported by these connectors include IBM Content Manager, IBM/FileNet content repository, Microsoft SharePoint, and EMC/Documentum's document repository. LiveCycle also provides native support for connecting to Adobe Experience Manager (AEM), its web content management (WCM) system.

LiveCycle ES4 tooling products[edit]


LiveCycle Workbench ES4[edit]

The primary development tool to create LiveCycle applications is LiveCycle Workbench. This is an Eclipse-based development environment which allows developers to create form templates and process designs that can be integrated with a variety of data sources and existing applications. It includes an integrated repository for collaborative development, and simplifies deployment via an archive file which contains all of the assets associated to the application. The process design environment enables drag and drop of process services to create process workflows and also provides the ability for developers to save them as single WSDL-based components for others developers to use.

LiveCycle Designer ES4[edit]

Adobe Livecycle Rights Management Server

Form authors and developers use LiveCycle Designer to build templates that merge with enterprise data to deliver interactive forms or personalized documents in a wide variety of electronic or print formats. LiveCycle Designer ES4 is included in every LiveCycle ES4 installation and embedded within LiveCycle Workbench ES4.

Adobe Flash Builder integrates with the LiveCycle ES4 environment. Using Flex Builder developers can create RIAs and create custom additions to forms created in LiveCycle Designer.

Implications for Document Management Systems[edit]

PDF documents restricted with LiveCycle DRM are sometimes impossible to use in non-Adobe document management systems because LiveCycle can prevent third-party software from disassembling the PDF, extracting pages, and displaying the contents.[2] In these cases, if LiveCycle does not also prevent printing, users may resort to printing PDF documents from compatible Adobe software and scanning the printouts into unrestricted, rasterized PDF's that are usable in third-party software.

Adobe Livecycle Cost

For example, a university admissions department may be unable to load an electronic transcript received from the National Student Clearinghouse, which allows client schools to restrict e-transcripts with Adobe LiveCycle,[3] into admissions CRM software.


  1. ^
  2. ^Clark, Alexander. 'Restrictions of electronic transcripts'. Slate Developer Network. Technolutions. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
  3. ^'Transcript Services FAQs'. National Student Clearinghouse. Archived from the original on 5 January 2017. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
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