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Solving Adobe Update Problems

Some things in life are certainties. Along with death and taxes, you can add the guarantee that Adobe will continue releasing updates. But sometimes, installing those fixes can themselves be the source of problems.

It's been a busy week around here, but I've heard from some users that they've had a hard time with Adobe's recent upgrades. Here are some things to check.

Even as the capacity offered on new disk drives continues to rise, our existing disks don't get any bigger. The more you install on a computer, the more space gets consumed. A big hurdle encountered by some users stems from this space crunch. Some Adobe components common to multiple applications have to be installed on your C: drive, but you do get a choice for a few things. But the only way to move other pieces is to uninstall all Adobe software first.

Photoshop 2021 installs as an entirely new application, alongside your old version, rather than just an update to it. On the laptop where I am writing this, the latest version occupies around a gigabyte. That may seem like a lot or a little, depending on how overburdened your computer may be. While I would generally recommend keeping your old version for some time until you get used to the new one, you can free up a good chunk of space by removing the old during your upgrade.

Upgrading could also be a prime opportunity to do a once-over and get rid of any other deadwood on your drive. Whether you're on Windows or Mac OS X, drive space shortages can cause all sorts of headaches. As disk drives fill, their contents progressively become fragmented, slowing down just about everything. In the end, if you find yourself cramped for space, it may be time to consider upgrading your hardware. You wouldn't be the first person to have a significant software upgrade turn into a computer upgrade. As painful as it may be, though, new generations of computers are almost automatically faster than the old in so many ways. Progress marches on.

If you do find it necessary to upgrade your computer, remember that Adobe licensing allows you to install the software on as many computers as you want, but that only two can be activated at any given time. To avoid complications, deactivate the software on your old computer before activating it on the new. You can leave it installed, just in case you have problems and need to return to the old one while you sort things out. You can wait on uninstalling it until you'll sure things are good with the upgrade.

Remember that you need to be connected to the internet for the download to install successfully. If you install Photoshop on a traveling laptop, remember to check your network settings first. If you are connected to a corporate network or are otherwise behind a firewall, verify that you have probably credentials to access the internet. If you're connected via wi-fi, change to a wired connection to improve speed and reliability.

If you run into unexplainable errors, try rebooting your computer and rerun the upgrade. The old adage of "if at first you don't succeed, reboot and try, try again" can sometimes prove correct. You may have had a prior failed installation from Adobe or some other company that left resources locked. There's nothing like a freshly reboot computer to clear away the cobwebs.

But beyond this, all sorts of other problems could arise.

Make sure all your operating system updates have been installed. Check computer error logs for indications of difficulties. If problems persist, check with your operating system vendor for troubleshooting steps. The problem may have started before your attempted upgrade.

Try disabling your anti-virus software to avoid possible conflicts. New versions of many popular anti-virus suites block far more than they sometimes should.

Make sure you are running the upgrade under an account that has sufficient permission.

Check your hard drive for corruption. Some errors may lie there dormant and only crop up when you right to a given disk sector.

And remember, even after you get the upgrade installed, your may still have work to do. Many third-party plugins require re-installation to be recognized by the new Photoshop. Some may not even be compatible and need to be upgraded themselves.

Date posted: November 8, 2020


Copyright © 2020 Bob Johnson, Earthbound Light - all rights reserved.
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Related articles:
Upgrading Photoshop Actions, Plug-Ins, and other Odds and Ends
Preventing and Resolving Photoshop CS5 Installation Problems

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