When trying to install Adobe Reader or Flash you get a partial install then it fails with the following error message.
“Metafile download failed error”
This may occur with both Windows XP 32bit and some with Windows 7 64-bit.
The solution in my case was not to use the default link from the adobe site but rather http://get.adobe.com/reader/enterprise/ and then select the O/S and version required and downloading the full .exe installer.
Simple but hopefully that will save someone else stumbling around trying to fix the error.