Adobe apps on Leopard: What you need to know

Just minutes ago, Apple’s Mac OS X 10.5–"Leopard" to its friends–went on sale.  Congrats to everyone at Apple on what looks like a terrific release.

So, what does this mean in terms of running Adobe software?  The good news is that most Adobe apps don’t require updates in order to run well.  That is, the CS3 versions of Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Flash, Dreamweaver, Fireworks, and other apps are good to go for Leopard right now.  Rock out.

The CS3-generation applications that require patches are After Effects, Premiere Pro, Encore, and Soundbooth (due to go live in early December), and Acrobat 8/Reader 8 (due in January).  Although Adobe is working on these updates, here’s a key line from the Adobe Leopard FAQ (PDF):

Does Adobe recommend running Production Premium or Master Collection before its
updates are available?

A. Yes, we are comfortable recommending this. Our testing revealed a few issues in specific
workflows when running the video professional applications on Mac OS X Leopard. Many
video professionals would not encounter these issues on a day-to-day basis, but we want to
provide updates in December 2007 to address these issues and meet our standards of quality.  You can evaluate the issues by visiting and searching the online
knowledgebase for more information.

What about older versions of Adobe software?  The FAQ says,

While older Adobe applications may install and run on Mac OS X Leopard, they were
designed, tested, and released to the public several years before this new operating system
became available. You may, therefore, experience a variety of installation, stability, and
reliability issues for which there is no resolution.  Older versions of our creative software will
not be updated to support Mac OS X.

I can’t speak for other app teams, but while we naturally concentrated our testing on Photoshop CS3 (and beyond), we also tested CS2 a fair bit.  The only significant problem we discovered is that Photoshop CS2’s Web Photo Gallery module can crash while running under Leopard.  We plan to post an updated version that fixes the crash, but that won’t go up until Monday.  In case you’re impatient, I’ve attached the file here.

And that, in a nutshell, is it.  Have fun.

[Update: Adobe evangelist Terry White is one of the most deeply knowledgeable people inthe world when it comes to the Creative Suite applications. He’s been logging his Leopard upgrade experiences on his blog: see The Road To Leopard, parts 1, 2, and 3. On the whole, things seem to be going really well.

Per a note in Terry’s third installment, I’ve gotta say, I’m deeply disappointed that Time Machine now apparently won’t support backups across a wireless network. Good thing I rushed out and bought a new AirPort base station in February, along with a new USB hard drive (given that the base station doesn’t support the Apple-designed FireWire standard)–all in anticipation of wireless household backups. Here’s hoping the planned functionality will be enabled in an update.]

0 thoughts on “Adobe apps on Leopard: What you need to know

  1. Excellent John. Thanks for this info, I was reading it as I was inserting the Leopard DVD in the drive of the MacPro – main editing machine. Clean install when ok on hte MacBookpro.

  2. Unclear – based on your 10/26 post, is Photoshop Lightroom good to go with Leopard? Adobe PDF seems to say a patch is required. If patch is needed – when? Thanks —

  3. John,
    Being a Wintel user for a long time and not a huge fan of Vista, are there any performance benefits to switching platforms within your products? I have looked at Leopard and some of the features look very useful. I can always use the XP VM for things that are not available on Mac. I’m just not sure if the switching costs would be justified.
    [I wouldn’t encourage anyone to choose one platform or the other based on the performance of Adobe apps. They should run pretty much identically, so the question comes down to other factors (what you like about each OS, whether you want to be able to build your own hardware, etc.). –J.]

  4. Thanks for the update and info. My Leopard arrives soon, and it good to know Adobe will keep on clicking. Any idea what “full compatibility” for Acrobat 8 professional means – or a place we can find out – support doesn’t explain.
    [I’ll try pinging someone in Acrobat land to see what I can find out. –J.]

  5. Now that Leopard is out I’ll be thinking more seriously about buying an Apple. I’ve been using the CS3 suite under Vista but would want to move it to the Apple when I get one. Will I be able to use my current license under Leopard and just download the Mac version or some such?
    [You can call Customer Service in order to switch. Here’s more info. –J.]

  6. That’s awesome, thanks for the info! We received our copies of Leopard yesterday, but have only installed on our presentation Mac Mini, not our production machines. Just waiting to hear how it does with Mobile accounts.
    [Yeah–I’m really tempted to score a copy and install it this weekend, although I’m expecting there to be some snags with the various haxies I like so much. Decisions, decisions… –J.]

  7. seeing that some people rely on CS2 just to print on epson RIP, could someone clarify if you can still install cs2 after cs3 on leopard?
    [Yep–that should work fine. CS2 and CS3 are independent of one another. –J.]
    thanks for the great blog!
    [Thanks. ๐Ÿ™‚ –J.]

  8. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom will not allow users to print with leopard.
    When you click on the print module, it give the message that “An error occurred when attempting to change modules”
    I really hope this gets worked on asap.
    I would hate to have to go back to doing all my printing in Photoshop CS3
    [I talked to Tom Hogarty, Lightroom PM, about this today. They’re aware of the problem and are working on a fix. Tom plans to share more info on the team blog on Monday. Suffice it to say that a fix is do in fairly short order. –J.]

  9. Hi John,
    Thanks for your blog, I really enjoy reading it all the time. The info you put on here is great!
    [Many thanks for saying so, Jerimy. ๐Ÿ™‚ –J.]

  10. Yes, I concur with Petra. Is there any info available from Adobe that points out what’s “broken” in Acrobat 8?

  11. I’m glad to hear some verifiable reports that my photoshop CS2 will survive another day. This was my biggest concern about the leopard upgrade which I will be doing shortly.

  12. PDF printer 8.0 broken.
    I sincerely hope that we don’t have to wait till freakin January for a fix for that.

  13. So, you mean that my copy of Photoshop 6 ISN’T going to be supported by Adobe under Leopard?! This is outrageous! I pay for PS6, what, just 6 years ago, and you aren’t going to support it for the latest operating systems?
    Oh, wait, what was that? No Classic mode in Leopard?
    New rant…
    This is outrageous! I’ve been using Photoshop 6 in Classic mode for years, and now Apple won’t support it on my new Intel-based Macintosh….

  14. It’s great that you let us know some applications will require a patch, but incredibly frustrating that you don’t say what these problems these patches will fix – the offical adobe PDF on the matter sheds no light on this either.
    I spend my day in CS3 design premium which includes a lot of Acrobat using – I have leopard here but want to know what I will lose in functionality by upgrading.
    Can you shed some light on the Acrobat issues?
    [I’m working to gather some info from the Acrobat folks, but I don’t yet have a concise list that I can share. –J.]

  15. What do you know about Photoshop Elements? I’m running version 3 on 10.4 (on a G4 PowerMac).
    The only comment officially from Adobe is “Likely to encounter issues for which there is no resolution”. Which means, to me “we don’t know and we don’t care”, which isn’t much of an answer, especially when they say the same thing about version 4 – the currently-shipping version.
    Based on the Adobe FAQ, I’m thinking I should just forget using Elements altogether and buy some other product (like GraphicConverter), since there’s no way I can afford to buy CS3.

  16. Hi John,
    I just figured out that Photoshop will *not* install on my Leopard system. I chose as filesystem “Mac OS Extended” with case sensitivity. The installer tells me that it does not support the filesystem. Is there an updated installer or do I have to reinstall my Leopard operating system? Which filesystem is OK for the photoshop installer?
    Thanks in advance,
    [Jan, let me check on this and get back to you. || Update: The CS apps don’t support installation on case-sensitive volumes. –J.]

  17. Hello John. And thank you for a most informative blog. Making PS CS2 compatible with Leopard is really nice, especially when one considers the current FileMaker’s position for instance.
    I do have a couple of questions for you, though, not specifically related to Leopard.
    Can you tell me why the Adobe Updater won’t run correctly unless one logs in as “root” if CS3 is not installed in the main /Applications folder? That’s a big and visible bug and yet I can’t find it mentioned on Adobe’s support site (not about CS3 at least).
    [I’ve sent a query to the team responsible for the updater & will let you know what I hear from them. –J.]
    Also Adobe has chosen not to release CS3 as a truly multilingual set of applications for Mac OS X: Acrobat is multilingual, but all the other CS3 applications in the Design Standard package are deliberately restricted to only one language. Why is that? With the move to Xcode I was really hoping you could adopt better practices. I own two copies of the Design Standard suite, one in English (paid by myself) and the other one in French (provided by my university). I can’t install the same package using my two SN# because one is a volume license and the other is not (one must be activated but not the other). And so I have one Mac running CS3 in French and the other in English and no way to standardize! With applications as complex as yours having to deal with two completely different sets of menus is a nightmare!
    [We hear you. :-\ Unfortunately, even though we’ve modernized large chunks of Photoshop over the years, the app relies on some old plug-ins and other components, and it takes a while to revise all of these so that we can have a multi-lingual build. We’ll get there, but we couldn’t quite make it happen for CS3. We’ll keep trying. –J.]
    Anyway, your insight would be welcome.
    Best regards,

  18. Thanks for sticking your neck out there and I hope I’m not taking advantage of that.
    [No prob. –J.]
    I was occasionally using some ancient version of Photoshop registered to my late father. It didn’t work on Leopard (“do not” symbol superimposed on the icon) so I thought I’d download and try the demo of Photoshop CS3. reports: “System Requirements Error : This software cannot be installed because the file system of the OS volume is not supported.” Disk Utility reports that the boot volume is Mac OS Extended, case-sensitive, journaled.
    Any ideas?
    [Unfortunately the CS3 apps don’t support installation on a case-sensitive drive. I don’t know what options exist for changing the drive configuration. –J.]

  19. I’d first like to thank you for being accessible in this forum.
    [You bet. –J.]
    Every phone call I make gets routed to India or Manila.
    Could you speak directly about the plans for Photoshop Elements for Mac? I, too, have version 3 (and 2) and I’ve been waiting for a new upgrade for 2 years.
    With the recent release of Version 6 for windoze, I’m getting ready to throw out one more Mac program Adobe has discontinued. Any reason for me to hold on?
    [Yes: the Mac version of Elements 6 will ship early next year. Here’s more info from Macworld. –J.]

  20. First, as many have posted, thanks for you availability in responding to some of our questions.
    I having a problem withe Photoshop CS3 after installing Leopard. If we open up three or four pictures to edit, the first couple we can do with no problem but when we start to edit the third and so on you can no longer tab to the next field. Next field meaning resolution or crop size. Instead it actually creates a tab in that field box. Also it will not let you change what is in the field box you are trying to alter, such as resolution. We have to restart photoshop and go again for a couple of photos then restart.
    We never had this problem before the Leopard install. Any suggestions?
    [This is news to me, but I’ll ask QE to investigate & will let you know what I hear from them. || Update: It’s a known issue that should be fixed by an OS software update. –J.]

  21. I’m having a seemingly similar problem to Holton. The program works fine for a while, and then several of the tools stop working properly. The ones that are most commonly affected are the marque tool, lasso, and clone too. In each case, the cursor flashes back and forth between the arrow cursor and the normal cursor for that tool, and the tool will not function. The selection tools won’t select anything, and the clone tool can’t be used as the option-click to select a source doesn’t register. Quitting Photoshop and relaunching it will fix the problem temporarily, but the problem always comes back eventually.
    Obviously this is Leopard related as it didn’t do this before. Is this the same issue as above or is this something else?

  22. Heh, I’ve just ordered Leopard for my G5, and it never even occurred to me that there might be issues with CS2.
    Unfortunately, I don’t intend to upgrade CS until either the European pricing issue is resolved by Adobe, or CS4 is released. So hopefully there won’t be too many issues with CS2 on Leopard on PPC.

  23. I’m glad to see other people are having the same problems I am with the tools. Especially the crop and text tools not being numerically changable. I’m running Leopard and CS2 on a G4 and thought I was going to gave to splash out thousands on a new setup.
    You mention this is an OS issue. By that to you mean the fix will come from Apple? If so we’ll never know when it’s going to happen since it keeps everything secret.
    [Well, to your point, I am certainly not in a position to disclose anything about Apple’s update plans. Sorry. –J.]

  24. Groggy leopard installer… my hp printer won’t scan… cs2 photoshop shuts down when I try to open ANYTHING… help… I know I am barking up a fruitless tree here but if anyone has any suggestions or links to patch… please send me a link. I made the mistake of watching the guided tour for leopard and the cute guy on the tour had me at hello… I ran to the apple store before the tour finished… talk about shopping regret… I didn’t get any sleep about this… I can’t afford CS3 right now… baby needs shoes!!!!

  25. Thank you for being available to help.
    I had some difficulty installing Leopard, but third time was a charm- using archive and install. Photoshop CS2 mostly works on my early G4 (quicksilver) EXCEPT: photoshop no longer recognizes the .plug-in file type so most of my filters are not available. Should I uninstall and then reinstall photoshop or is this a Leopard issue? Thanks, Mona

  26. John, does the update address the cursor problems as well as the text field entry problems?
    And is the update coming from Adobe or Apple?
    [All I can say is that Adobe is working on an update for Photoshop (addressing printing problems, as mentioned previously, and a few others), but it’s not designed for Leopard specifically. –J.]

  27. Since Adobe’s stance on patches for CS2 in regard to Leopard is a no-debate topic I am not going to be another person asking for them.
    As a long time user of Mac and Photoshop I will however add my voice to those who are disappointed. Disappointed that Adobe does not support a difficult transition for many of its users and disappointed in Apple that the new OS is not more tolerant of such an important piece of software. I’ve never had to delay an upgrade for one due to the other until now.
    As many I am on a tight budget but love what I do and want the best tools to do the best job I can. Eventually I will upgrade both, when I am confident it will not impact my workflow, when I have the money and time in the budget to upgrade. So there are no threats or bitterness. Just disappointment.

  28. Hi Jon,
    I was originally going to write a snotty comment about CS3 apps not appearing to support case-sensitive volumes on OSX. Then, I saw that you seem like a nice guy, so decided against it.
    [Heh–thanks, Joe. A little stress/snot-reduction goes a long way. ๐Ÿ™‚ –J.]
    However, what *IS* damned annoying is that I’m not actually trying to install onto a volume that is case-sensitive. It is simply that my OS volume is case-sensitive. But, does the installer even give me the chance to select WHERE to install? Erm, no. It just tells me that the OS volume is unsupported. Well, fine. But I wasn’t going to install there! Now… I guess someone could say, “It might need to use the OS volume for some things!”. Well, if that’s the case, I’d rather not have the thing installed on my system. That attitude reeks of Windows. I can only assume it’s just a sh!te installer. Either way, not pleased.
    [I’ll pass that feedback along to the installer folks. I’ll admit that I’ve never tried to install on a case-sensitive volume, so I don’t have a great appreciation of exactly how it does or doesn’t work. –J.]

  29. Hi – first of all – thanks for the informative blog. Now the issue…
    I find it amazing that Adobe has reported widely it seems that there are no issues with Photoshop CS3. Mine is the Extended version: opens quickly, opens files (a little pedestrian there) I work on the file – go to save, click save – CRASH! Every time this happens and it’s basically unusable. Patches anyone?
    [Sorry to hear about this. I’ll see what QE has to say. In the meantime, you might try going into Preferences->File Handling and disabling Version Cue support. I’ve heard anecdotally that this step can eliminate some crashes. –J.]

  30. Hi John,
    Thanks for your blog, I really enjoy reading it all the time. The info you put on here is great!
    [Many thanks, Jerimy. –J.]

  31. This is pretty lame. The AdobePatcher for CS3 doesnt work at all in Leopard. It just says “The Updater is unable to locate the product to be updated”.
    So I checked the support site and it recommended to uninstall / reinstall CS3. 1 Hour Later and it says the same friggin error message.
    Why does this have to be so difficult?
    [I haven’t heard of this problem. If I can find out more useful info, I’ll pass it along. –J.]

  32. I’ve been an ardent supporter and user of Adobe products for two decades now (even before the first version of Illustrator).
    I still primarily use Photoshop and Illustrator for my manga (Japanese comics), but the stability of these products on Mac OS X recently has taken a turn for the worse. Adobe software has been rock solid for me until a year ago, after which I’ve lost multiple files, had font issues, hundreds of crashes, incompatibilities between PS and Illustrator, etc.
    I realize that this may just be my experience, but if there is a general increase in issues, is it a QE problem, an issue with Mac OS X, or just chaotic bugs due to feature bloat?
    I rely on Photoshop and Illustrator, but have been wondering how I’m supposed to get work done efficiently going forward.
    I wish there were a forum to input bug reports and enhancement recommendations…

  33. Thanks for all the info. Can you confirm that if I want to use my Fireworks MX (yes from years ago), I will have to use it with the old operating system? I have been trying to use it with Leopard and it just freezes all the time. Should I give up?
    [I really couldn’t say. I’m not surprised that things have changed in the OS that now cause older software to have problems. The Fireworks team of 5.5 years ago was writing to a different set of specifications. I doubt that there are good solutions for the problems you’re reporting, other than upgrading to the current version of Fireworks (which works well on Leopard). –J.]

  34. I was all set to purchase a copy of Photoshop CS3 today once I’d got the trial installed, but now I won’t be buying because it won’t work on case sensitive filesystems. What makes it particularly annoying is:
    It’s a very silly restriction – OS X is UNIX, and UNIX filesystems are almost universally case sensitive
    It would be trivial to fix for a company with Adobe’s resources
    Adobe could at least have the decency to include mention of it in the system requirements!
    [If it were trivial, we would have addressed this limitation already. Everything is a trade-off. After Apple introduced this feature/capability/whathaveyou, we had a choice: should we put resources into building/testing for both case-sensitive & case-insensitive environments, or should we put that effort elsewhere? So far, lacking a case for the user benefit provided by case sensitivity, we’ve chosen to invest elsewhere. –J.]

  35. Photomerge will not work in Leopard on my Mac. After selecting the images, when I click the “OK” button, nothing happens – except when I use the sample files. If I boot back into 10.4 on a separate disk, photomerge works perfectly. The photomerge script resides in /Applications/Adobe Photoshop CS3/Presets/Scripts/Photomerge.jsx. The photomerge plugin resides at /Applications/Adobe Photoshop CS3/Plug-Ins/Filters/PhotomergeUI.plugin.
    Any help would be mightily appreciated.

  36. None of my marquee or lasso tools work properly in CS3 on Leopard. I purchased a brand new MacPro with quad core and installed Leopard and all the apps fresh. The box marquee and elliptical marquee always have a feather of about 25 no matter what numerical value is input. The lasso tool always has a zero feather no matter what value is assigned. Lots of crazy time spent on working around with paths, channels and blurs. Help if you can. Still no response from Adobe’s help site. By the way same problem occured on my iMac when Leopard was installed.
    [I believe this is a bug in Leopard that’s due to be fixed in a subsequent update. In the meantime you’ll need to relaunch Photoshop before you can enter another numerical value in the field. –J.]

  37. Since some people have expressed frustration with not being able to install CS3 on case-sensitive volumes (and since this page is the first one I found when googling for a solution myself), I thought I’d post my workaround here. It’s a bit of a kludge, but I get to keep my case-sensitive system and run Illustrator and Photoshop CS3 on my MacBook Pro. I must say, however, that I agree with Matt Clark and am very disappointed with Adobe for not even mentioning this in the system requirements.
    First, I formatted a removable firewire drive as case-insensitive and installed Leopard on it. Then, and this was the scary part, I resized the partition on my laptop hard drive to make it about 10 GB smaller (one should probably back up everything important before such a maneuver, but I live life on the edge). Next, I created a case-insensitive partition with the newly freed space. I figured this would be enough room for Photoshop, Illustrator, Civ IV (also doesn’t like case-sensitivity), and some contingency space.
    Then, I changed the start up drive to the case-insensitive Leopard on the firewire drive and rebooted. I inserted the Illustrator media and began the installation process. I made sure to specify the newly created case-insensitive volume on the laptop’s hard drive as the destination. Rinsed and repeated with Photoshop.
    Finally, I changed the start up drive back to the case-sensitive Leopard on the laptop and rebooted. I copied over /Volumes/firewiredrive/Library/Application Support/Adobe/ and /Volumes/firewiredrive/Library/Application Support/FLEXnet Publisher/ to /Library/Application Support/ where “firewiredrive” is the name of the case-insensitive volume I was on for the installation. In my case, this volume was called ScramJet, so I issued the command ‘sudo cp -Rp /Volumes/ScramJet/Library/Application\ Support/Adobe /Library/Application\ Support/’ and a similar one for FLEXnet Publisher.
    I fired up Illustrator, entered the product key, and everything worked. I did the same with Photoshop but got a pop-up message about some missing files in Adobe Application Support that are necessary for running Photoshop. I clicked “OK,” the message went away, and Photoshop seems to work fine.
    I think if you started up either Illustrator or Photoshop while booted off the case-insensitive volume, then you may need to delete /Library/Application Support/Adobe/Adobe PCD/cache/cache.db after you copy it over to the case-sensitive volume.

  38. Since I updated to Leopard, every time I quit PS CS3 I get a crash error message. I always send the crash report, but haven’t seen an update.
    Doesn’t happen with DW or ID.

  39. Case-sensitive file systems are common on the Mac and on many other platforms. In weighing the benefits of investing resources in supporting case-sensitive file systems versus other features, does Adobe realize there is a cost to *not* supporting case-sensitive file systems?
    [What is it you can do on a case-sensitive volume that you can’t on a case-insensitive volume? What are the concrete downsides to running in case-insensitive mode? –J.]
    Does Adobe really have the right balance here?
    I was planning on purchasing CS3 for the Mac, but I’ve decided not to now that I realize CS3 does not support case-sensitive file systems. To me and many other IT professionals, at best it seems like a silly restriction; at worst, it implies that Adobe’s engineering staff isn’t competent enough to handle writing case-clean code.
    [It’s really unhelpful when people jump to the conclusion that anything they don’t like is due to Adobe’s stupidity, laziness, greed, arrogance, or whatever. Why always go there? Anyway…
    It’s also worth asking why, the moment Apple changes the way things have worked on their OS since the dawn of time, the clock must start running to measure Adobe’s badness. –J.]

    Whichever is the cAsE, it’s a show-stopper for me. I have a Mac because it is a Unix platform, and I can run all of my standard Unix tools and applications with it. The Unix universe is case-sensitive. Adobe’s applications aren’t. I’m disappointed, and Adobe has lost my business today.
    I sincerely hope Adobe reconsiders this decision.
    [The most impactful approach is to let us know how the lack of support affects your other apps, production environment, etc. That would be very helpful. –Thanks, J.]

  40. Regarding case-insensitivety…
    I come from a UNIX background and case-sensitive just feel more like home. Sure, not much I do requires it. But I like it and some things I do benefit from it.
    So I want it.
    [That’s fine, but every time the team decides to do something, it means deciding *not* to do one or more other things–things that people need for various reasons. Why should we sacrifice other priorities in order to support case sensitivity? I need to know that this is more than some ideological litmus test.
    Note: This doesn’t mean that supporting case sensitivity is a bad idea, or that Photoshop and other apps will never do it. I just have a real problem with assertions that anytime Apple changes its mind about something, Adobe is expected to drop everything and change course, regardless of rationale or customer impact. –J.]
    But thats not the main problem with CS3 not supporting it. I can go for case-insensitive.
    BUT, I just spent quite a few hours reinstalling my iMac, configuring everything the way I want it. And silly me, CS3 was one of the last thing I tried to install.
    The main problem is not that I have to reformat as case-insensitive. That I just dislike. But I really HATE having wasted all those hours when I could have done something productive instead.
    The lack of support of case-sensitive filesystems does not really impact any other apps I run. But as it turns out, it heavily impact my economy by making me waste hours of work for nothing.

  41. The argument *against* case-sensitivity reminds me of some other, similar ones, made in years gone by. For example, there used to be a limitation on the DOS/Windows platform that file names had to conform to the 8.3 format.
    Playing devils advocate for a moment – “What is it that you can’t do with a 8.3 format that you can do with an unrestricted format?”. Errrr, somehow I can’t see people playing along with that one in this day and age. But, years back, you would find people who would pooh-pooh the idea of *having* to go with non-8.3 filenames. I mean, who would EVER need to name something other than 8.3 right? :-S
    [To me there’s no comparison in the arguments. I remember seeing a girlfriend’s PC in high school and being amazed that it was limited to using such crummy, opaque little file names. File names are probably the most universal way to locate and identify files, and having them crippled to license plate-length names was an obvious & pervasive functional problem. Lifting that restriction let people more accurately & completely describe assets, making those assets much easier to locate. That’s an obvious functional win, and it was obvious at least a decade before MSFT got around to fixing the problem.
    I’ve yet to hear a similar functional win identified for case sensitivity. I’m all ears, yet nothing has been forthcoming. Even if there’s nothing for Adobe apps to gain from running in such a configuration, just tell me how *other* apps would benefit. That would at least back up the idea that case-sensitive configurations are useful to customers & thus worth supporting. –J.]
    And then there was the limitation of Windows path names having to be under 255 characters. Similar arguments were heard, and of course, it would be unthinkable these days to go along with that kind of restriction.
    I would hazard a guess that Adobe have a lot of code that is shared between the Windows platform and the Mac, and I suspect that is why there is the limitation of not being able to run with case-sensitive volumes. Whilst I can totally understand the problem from a software development perspective, if you are going to trumpet that something works on Leopard, and it doesn’t, you are bound to get negative feedback.
    [The apps certainly do work on Leopard. They just don’t work on every single configuration–nor were they ever advertised as doing so. They don’t work on UFS-formatted Mac drives, either. But wait: now you apparently can’t install Leopard on a such a drive, either–despite Apple previously supporting that configuration. I mention it because it’s more important to make support decisions on the basis of functional impact to users than on the basis of platform ideology. –J.]
    And then telling people that they need to justify why they want it to work with a particular setting, one which is common-place to millions of UNIX users the world over… ?
    [See above. –J.]

  42. Looks like I am not the only one to have a problem with CS3 under Leopard, though I don’t see my problem mentioned – when I select something with Lasso or Marquee, oftentimes I get a white outline of the selection, which persists when I work further on the image. Anyone else seen this horribleness?

  43. John, you present an argument for case-sensitive filenames yourself when you say “Lifting that restriction let people more accurately & completely describe assets, making those assets much easier to locate.”
    Supporting case sensitivity allows one to more completely describe an asset without ambiguity, which remains in a case-insensitive system. For example, CamelCasing or ACRonymCasing is popular with software developers. Is flexnet easier to read than FLEXnet? Should something be called FLEXnet on disk, and FlEXnET in your code, and should that work? It seems like it is more difficult to maintain a large software base that is case-insensitive, than the other way around. But then again, I guess that’s what case-insensitive project-wide find/replace is for ๐Ÿ˜‰
    As for why I personally use a case-sensitive filesystem, I like to be able to rename files w/ different cases w/o worrying that I might clobber something by mistake (i.e. if foo already exists and I create Foo, foo remains). There are arguments both ways, and people use both systems (see also CR, CR/LF, LF text file line ending fun, or teh editor wars). To say one is right or wrong isn’t the point, but if it’s not difficult to support the choices that make people happy, then do so.
    I visited this with the release of Adobe CS2, which also didn’t run on a case-sensitive system. You can see my analysis here (search for case-sensitive). Simply fixing some filenames allows CS2 to run on a case-sensitive system. It’s not like there are specific qualities of a case-insensitive system that CS* requires in order to provide the functionality that users expect. Or is there? To play the devil’s advocate, can you tell me how requiring case-insensitivity fulfils a specific requirement that was in the CS* design specification? For example, in CS2 I couldn’t find any instances where I had to case-sensitive duplicate a file on disk (e.g., creating Foo from foo) to satisfy the code – it was internally consistent. If the code was looking for both Foo and foo all the time and expecting the same file, then sure, a case-insensitive system makes sense.

  44. First off, please allow me to thank you for maintaining this blog!
    I’ve been a user of Photoshop since the days of “Digital Darkroom,” but these days, being disability retired, I can no longer afford the full blown Photoshop I used at work, and make do with Photoshop Elements 4 on my Macs.
    I would like to move to OS X 10.5 for some of the useful features, but do not wish to lose the ability to use PE4 (or PE3, which I actually preferred).
    In contacting Adobe Customer support I was simply told that the only route out of the dilemma was to upgrade to CS3.
    I saw the link here to an external (non-Adobe) report that a new PE would be coming out for Macs in early ’08.
    Can you confirm, from the Adobe side, that this is true, and that the new version will work on OS X 10.5 AND on the non-Intel Macs (G4s in my case)?
    [Yes, a new version is due soon; look for more news in a bit. It’ll run on all the configurations you describe. –J.]
    (Maybe getting to the Customer Support folks with that info would help, too…)

  45. Dear John,
    I would first like to echo appreciation for maintaining this blog – it is the best source of information I was able to find on this topic after numerous reports of unsuccessful CS3 installion onto case-sensitive Mac OS file systems. I’ve read all of your posts in this thread with care, and it is clear that you hold little interest in entertaining the possibility of introducing case-sensitive workarounds into Adobe products. Although I understand your position, I respectfully submit that this is a mistake on your part.
    In all fairness to you, and as a fellow software developer, I readily admit that I am unaware of what would be involved in transitioning closed-source Adobe products to case-sensitive file systems. We are, of course, not privvy to Adobe’s source code and so I cannot attest to how case-sensitivity problems might be manifested in terms of normal program operation and backward compatibility. RA’s earlier post does address this issue but I don’t assume to know what’s going on under the hood.
    Having said that, one should keep in mind that many, many Mac users are attracted to this platform because it is a beautifully designed and robust machine that is also built on UNIX. Given your otherwise questionable and continued resistance to the commonsense arguments for case-sensitive file systems, I feel it necessary to reiterate that the value of this choice is self-evident for any UNIX user. Therefore, it is simply obvious that formatting a hard drive to host a case-sensitive file system is the first option any UNIX user would select. As a regular user of computers of any kind, I’m afraid you are not in a position to dispute this and frankly you should A) know better and B) give up on that front. I would wager that a vast number of UNIX users were delighted to see this option appear in OS 10.5, and selected it following a burst of celebratory gunfire.
    My team consists of over 30 people, many of whom have more than one machine. All of our computers are the latest Macs, and everyone uses them to interface directly to large UNIX-, IRIX- and Solaris-based compute farms. Like many others, we instinctively formatted our (50+) Macs with case-sensitive file systems to maintain UNIX compatibility. The provision for identical file names of mixed case to coexist is a real benefit; but moreover, files with mixed-case names already exist on many UNIX systems. Name clashes would be extremely problematic if an existing UNIX-based file system (such as any of our numerous Macs) were haphazardly reduced to conform with a case-insensitive version (for instance by backing up, reformatting and restoring them all), and this is not a reasonable or even viable concession to make in order to accommodate one commercial software vendor.
    The fact that Adobe products are incompatible with case-sensitive file systems was never advertised, as pointed out by Matt Clark and Dave P. This presents a significant problem for those of us who have already installed Leopard systems with this formatting option, and now wish to continue using Adobe software. In my case, I am simply not prepared to advise the reformatting of 50+ machines at the expense of personnel time, fielding of technical problems, and risk of potential data loss. The only option we have is to look for another software solution, as an alternative to Adobe products, that will serve our needs. It would have been highly desirable to know about this problem before purchasing our rather expensive commercial site license for your flagship product bundle. Under the circumstances this seems to be a dealbreaker in terms of our long-standing patronage of Adobe.
    The real issue at hand is that, unfortunately, personal computer operating systems tend to be a moving target for software developers. That is a difficult situation to be sure, and we are all empathetic to your plight. But it’s one to which you, as a software developer, must adapt. I am sorry to be the bearer of this sad news. Adobe products support the Mac OS, and should therefore support the storage formats on which the Mac OS resides. Period.

  46. Sharing case-sensitive and case-insensitive filesystems on a network is a NIGHTMARE. Without case-sensitivity, a Mac HFS filesystem is not interoperable with other Unix filesystems.
    Apple understands this, which is why they’ve offered a case-sensitive filesystem option for the past FIVE YEARS.
    Adobe’s decision not to get Photoshop working on a case-sensitive filesystem means that the end-user may choose only ONE of the following:
    1) interoperate reliably with other Unix systems on a network
    2) run Photoshop
    It’s unfortunate that Adobe should force its would-be customers to choose between the two.
    Having to prove to Adobe’s development team that case-senstivity has merit shouldn’t even enter this discussion. Interoperating with other computers has merit. Supporting Apple’s native filesystems has merit.
    I am a software developer, and I understand that nothing is “trivial,” but if I worked Adobe I’d be embarrassed that fixing this bug was being made out as any kind of big deal. Seriously, it makes the company appear incompetent.
    Adobe has burned a lot of people with this problem. It’s time to stop arguing and fix it.

  47. I should mention that in the past (with CS2 for example), software could be installed on a case insensitive drive even if the boot disk was case sensitive. Running Photoshop from a case insensitive .dmg was one workaround that is no longer available, as the installer now exits if it detects that the boot disk is case sensitive.
    And I would like to reiterate the other commentators’ thanks here for hosting this forum for us, John.

  48. John, you asked “What are the concrete downsides to running in case-insensitive mode?” I know this is very important for your team in order to prioritize customer requests, so I’d like to post an example of such downsides:
    A web-developer uses his Mac as a development environment and he hosts some (or all) of his web sites on Linux servers (pretty standard these days). The designer uses CS3 to create web pages. He creates an HTML file that includes the image “myimage.jpg”. Somewhere along the way he saves such JPG file as “MyImage.jpg”. Everything works fine on his case-insensitive Mac. So both HTML and JPG files are uploaded to the Linux server. Since everything has been tested on the Mac, there’s no need to re-test in the production server, right? But of course, “MyImage.jpg” is not being loaded when the Linux server looks for “myimage.jpg”.
    This is quite a trivial example, but it could happen with a crucial PHP script saved by Dreamweaver that needs to include “IncludeMe.php” and worked perfectly on the Mac case-insensitive system but of course wouldn’t work on the Linux case-sensitive server. If the Mac development environment were case-sensitive, this problem wouldn’t occur and the extra hours testing in the production server would be spared. OS X supports case-sensitive volumes in order to avoid this kind of problems (by improving interoperability), but the developer won’t be able to install CS3 in a system with a case-sensitive startup drive.
    I know there are workarounds, like switching the Linux servers to Mac servers (extra $), or buying a second Mac and running Apache on one and CS3 on the other (again extra $), or keeping one Mac and the Linux server and using a case-insensitive startup volume in order to install CS3 while moving Apache to a case-sensitive volume, but most web designers just want to use the Apache server that comes with OS X without having to install it on a separate volume, and they also want to install CS3 without having to follow intricate procedures as described by Dave or Arya above. So, at least for your web-designer client base, it would be nice for CS3 to support case-sensitive file systems.

  49. To reiterate what has been said by many previous posters, it seems strange that CS3 would not support case-sensitive HFS. UNIX interoperability notwithstanding, the fact that a good amount of CS3’s customer base finds any kind of merit in a case-sensitive filesystem should be enough reason for Adobe to at least consider supporting it. I’m sure many hours have been wasted by the users who had to backup and reinstall their whole system due to this issue. This should be merit enough for Adobe to invest the time to fix this issue. Of all my programs I’ve only had this issue with CS3 programs since I upgraded to Leopard. As “Case Dismissed” mentioned, it is a software developer’s job to support changes in the OS they develop for. It should also be a software developer’s job to support the users they develop for. Us users want this problem fixed.

  50. Why do I need case-sensitive file system?
    Well because working on other peoples code is problematic. Have you ever used Subversion for file revision control? More then once I have run into name clash because the original developer created his project on a case-sensitive file system. Just take one person to create a file called code.c and another called CoDE.c for a fatal name clash. When you try to checkout the project to a case-insensitive file system the checkout fails.
    More and more developers are moving towards OSX with case-sensitive file systems.
    I would have loved to have at least known that Photoshop required a case-insensitive OS drive before I purchased it. I did not see it mentioned on the System requirements (as of 2008.01.12): “2GB of available hard-disk space (additional free space required during installation)”.
    I’m just very disappointed about this.

  51. This is asinine. I can make this real simple. The case-sensitive vs. case-insensitive issue is exactly like the extended filenames vs. 8.3 filenames issue. (You can make the argument that case-sensitivity is not as useful to YOU as extended files, but that’s not the point.) The fact is extended filenames can support every conceivable 8.3 filename, but the reciprocal is not true. Every single case-insensitive volume could be copied to a case-sensitive volume without data loss, but the reciprocal is not true. Using a case-sensitive file system allows me to contribute to any Open Source project, but this is not true of a case-insensitive.
    The only issue that could arise is if code is poorly written, it could look for a file using the incorrect capitalization. This is a bug that would only expose itself on a case-sensitive file system. Once I corrected the bug and submitted the code, it would work on either kind of file system.
    I am an engineer. I cannot accept this flaw.
    Unfortunately I did not purchase CS3 or else I would return it and tear someone a new one when they refuse to accept a return on open box software.
    It seems the only solution it to copy an installed CS3 from a friend who does not work in my office so that there is no chance of a serial conflict. (Since I’m not sure if it will prompt me for the serial number issued to me.)
    My goal is to contribute to FLOSS and give of myself in the form of code. Thank you Adobe for making me a criminal. I do everything online under my legal name and I’m sure your logs have my IP address.

  52. Why case sensitive? Because I develop MySQL databases that use case-sensitive table and column names. I cannot do my web design/dev work on a case-insensitive system.

  53. I just bought a copy of Master Suite, and can’t install it because I’m running HFSX on my system disk.
    I’d like to add my vote for support of case-sensitive HFS+ support. You ask (rightly) why Adobe should devote development resources to supporting HFSX. I’ll give you my two cents:
    1. Your customers are asking for it, as evidenced in this thread.
    2. For those of us who work primarily in a Unix/Linux environment, and use Macs as well, using case-insensitive filesystems causes serious problems. I NFS-mount much of my data from Linux servers which *are* case sensitive. I rsync data from remote systems (and NFS mounts) to my local system. If half of my system is case-sensitive, and half is case-insensitive, I’ll almost certainly delete files by accident.
    3. Someone earlier made the argument that case sensitive filenames convey more information. Indeed, when my developer hat is on, case is extremely important. Your developers certainly agree (I note that your javascript code all follows consistent case usage conventions).
    4. Future versions of OS X may force the issue anyway. If xfs ever becomes the default filesystem for OS X, you’ll have to deal with the problem sooner or later.
    That said, the biggest problem here is that I can’t even install on a case-insensitive partition; the installer checks the root partition for case-sensitivity and errors out if it is case sensitive.
    Thanks for listening to our feedback. Keep up the good work.

  54. John:I just wanted to provide a comment, that you are asking for other apps where I use cose-sensitivity: iTunes. My music library is on a case-sensitive volume, and I had to spend an extra two hours moving and renaming things, when I temporarily moved things to case-insensitive volume when I was resizing things.
    This may not be the best example, but it is a major influence on my operations and thought.

  55. Hi folks,
    I read all the comments on this thread. It took me more than half an hour.
    It is enough said about the need of supporting case-sensitive file system.
    I still cannot believe it, it seems like a bad joke. A major product, is not supporting case-sensitive file systems, which are in fact absolutely necessary for productive use in UNIX enviroments (as you might know: half of the internet ist UNIX…)
    Sorry for being sarcastic, I am just disappointed. And pi***d of, as iI have to return the (not so cheap) CS3 to the shop.
    Luckily I do not depend on CS as I am very familiar with gimp, but especially Photoshop is more easy to handle. And I like Photoshop very much. I am expecting a fix, but as i do not know it there will be ever a fix, I will return the box.
    Please never ask again for advantages of a case-sensitive filesystem over an insensitive one. Asking that makes me doubt if you know who your customers are.
    But, at least you have a blog and you respond to comments. This is a big step towards improving customer relationship.
    Happy Easter anyway to you John and all the others too!

  56. Thanks for the WebPhoto Gallery update for Leopard. I couldn’t figure out what was going on with Photoshop CS2 since it was crashing, but your update fixed it.
    Great job!

  57. It’s been said before, but it’s just sooooo extraordinarily lame that I honestly still cannot believe it.
    Adobe CS does not support case-sensitive filesystems!
    So that means that nobody in that entire huge company made some serious noise after he found out what was just decided. Can you believe that!?!?
    You know, Adobe software is important, but not important enough to clear my entire drive and start all over again case insensitively (which has a lot of disadvantages). Honestly, it annoys the crap out of me having to use other software now, but I’m just forced to.
    Oh my god, this truly is the lamest thing since Windows Me.
    I’m sorry for the rant, but I was just sooo baffled when I found out why I couldn’t install CS on my brand new sexy iMac. First time in my life that I own a Mac and what’s the only problem I have? — I cannot use Adobe stuff. Whahaha, what a joke.
    I’m sorry guys, but this thing is not doing your reputation much good. And the I put it mildly. Wake up, it’s no longer the 90’s! A major incompatibility like this is just simply plainly unacceptable.

  58. Like many others who have posted to this blog, I can only share my disappointment regarding Adobe’s choice to not support case sensitive file systems. Please 1) change the listed system requirements so you are not misleading your users and 2) fix the software. I will be returning my copy of PS Elements 6 in the morning.

  59. I have Photoshop 7 which does not work on Leopard. My question is, if I get a CS2 upgrade for Mac and try to upgrade the PS 7 on Leopard, should that work? Thanks!
    [Yes, getting the CS3 upgrade will do the trick. –J.]

  60. It won’t if you’ve got a case-sensitive file system – something banged on about here, but not mentioned in system requirements.
    As a web developer relying heavily on Unix servers which are case-sensitive it makes absolute sense for me to also use a case-sensitive file format also. I find the argument of, “…lacking a case for the user benefit provided by case sensitivity, we’ve chosen to invest elsewhere” is misguided. Sure, it might not matter to a lot of people, but there’s a clear sub-set of users for whom it is a big issue. I doubt very little of the functionality offered in Photoshop is used by all users, yet it is provided. I see compatibility with a case-sensitive file format as no different.
    No, I’ve never been involved in coding an application as big and feature-rich as Photoshop, and I’m sure a change would not be totally trivial, but it does suggest some laziness / lack of foresight on behalf of Adobe. I’ve used a case-sensitive file system when using Tiger – it’s not an option that has been introduced as new with Leopard. I think to point the finger at Apple is misguided.

  61. Does Photoshop Elements 6 work on case-sensitive files on Leopard/Intel systems? And I do not understand if “case sensitive” applies to all files OR just the photo files? I was going to buy CS 3, but after discovering this blog…I am dismayed….but wonder if I should buy Elements instead?

  62. I would just like to add myself to the list of those who were disappointed to find they couldn’t install CS3 without a reformat due to the lack of support for case-sensitivity. I’m a theoretical physicist, and in my work I find it much more convenient to use a case-sensitive file system for organizing my data and for compiling complex packages of code that get confused by case-insensitivity. I use case sensitive UNIX systems on a regular basis, and it is much better for my mac to behave similarly. Not having to play around with reformatting would be a significant user benefit to me. I have quite a number of colleges who feel the same. Although I would like to see full support for the case-sensitive file system, I’d be happy if we were simply allowed to install the software on a case-insensitive partition or some other compromise at our own risk.

  63. Please add me to the list of case-sensitivity supporters too. I have got only
    Flex Builder on my Mac. There could be more Adobe products. But I’ll learn to live without them.

  64. Mmm, Ive got adobe creative suite premium CS. That would be from 2003. That wont work either then?
    What do I do , buy an old powerbook just to run it , might be cheaper than buying a new suite , same problem , new mac and i cant use my adobe software on it , oh dear . I miss it …

  65. I am having a huge problem using CS3 with our Leopard. My dad and I are photographers who work with many ad agencies and websites who require specific crop sizes. When we go to crop an image it never gives us the precise crop we want. e.g. cropping an image at 10X8 it will give us 9.373×7.655 do you have any idea how we can fix this problem?

  66. As somebody who has been using case-sensitive volumes almost exclusively since 10.0, it is not practical to -ever- move back to case-insensitive volumes. I would probably lose files, so it would take thousands of hours of my time to sort things out.
    No previous version of Photoshop failed on case-sensitive volumes. (There were occasionally glitches, but they were always trivially fixable.) CS3, by contrast, fails with an AMT error even after fixing every one of your incorrect paths as described at:
    I’ve spent hours with trying to figure out what is broken, and I’m still completely baffled.
    At this point, I’m out several hundred bucks of my hard-earned money for a piece of software that I will never be able to use. There was no indication in your marketing materials about this flaw or I would never have bought CS3.
    How can I get back up and running?

  67. Hey, add me to the list of people who aren’t buying Photoshop because it doesn’t install on a case-sensitive disk.
    And seriously, a tradeoff? You’re telling me it’s so difficult to go and capitalize a few letters (since clearly it won’t matter at all on case insensitive systems).
    Well, so far you’ve lost a nice big list of customers and pissed a whole bunch of people off. And no matter what you say, most of us are going to chalk it up to incompetence, whether it is incompetence in programming ability, or incompetence in leadership, you are seriously failing here.

  68. This is absurd – this has been identified as an issue since CS3 came out, and the only official response is a FAQ entry? No official word about if this will ever be fixed?
    The vast majority of web designers operating on Macs interface with Linux machines. I was looking forward to having Photoshop and NFS mounts on the same machine, and have them play nicely with our SVN systems and Linux developers.
    No can do – and the only suggestion is to reformat?! After not even indicating on the product page that a case-insensitive file system is required?
    At least document it, in big, bold letters. On the box. Please.

  69. I recently purchased a new Mac book pro,
    not EVEN thinking about software NOT
    working. I use Adobe Illustrator all day
    long, It was an upgrade from CS. Can I load it on my Leopard. what about the older CS. Is it usuable
    I don’t know how to give my URL or I would have.

  70. About support for case sensitive file system.
    The reasons one may have to choose for a case sensitive filesystem should not be relevant to Adobe. Adobe should abide to sound development paractices, which requires them to follow Apple’s guideline (includes support for case sensitive FS).
    The argument that Q&A would need to test on both type of FS is not very strong: it’s all about the case of a small number of filenames, e.g. Resources i.s.o. resources, which is a build-time issue that is quite easily statically checked.

  71. Yet another case sensitive file system supporter …
    I downloaded a trial version of Flash to find it would not install. I used flash extensively on Windows a few years ago and thought I’d get it for my Mac – luckily I didn’t buy it. There’s no chance I’ll be buying until this bug is fixed!
    It seems illogical to me that an application specifically designed for creating for the web (which is mostly case specific) cannot even install (let alone run) on in a case sensitive environment!

  72. Agree with all the comments here about case-sensitivity. Why the hell wasn’t it mentioned clearly in the system requirements? And given that the majority of Adobe’s customers are creative professionals (I’d say many of them use Macs), what could have possessed them to overlook this fundamental issue?
    [Because the number of Mac users willing and motivated to reformat their drives for the sake of case sensitivity is very, very low. (Can you produce any evidence to the contrary?)
    I’m not arguing that support for case-sensitive drives is a bad idea, or that it’s unimportant to the people requesting it. I’m saying that I remain unconvinced that it’s a widely used configuration whose support should be put ahead of other customer-demanded work. –J.]
    The more important question is, where can we go to make Adobe listen? This is very definitely a bug in my opinion, since it’s not clearly stated in the Sys Reqs. Adobe are doing themselves out of a great many sales because of it.
    [Based on what data do you say that?
    I’m not trying to say that Adobe apps should never support case-sensitive drives, but simply having a bunch of people post comments on one blog post does not equate to proof that Adobe should invest time in this effort *at the expense of other work requested by customers*.
    Feature development is *always* a zero-sum game. Doing one thing *always* means not doing something else. I get a little tired of people making declarations with absolute confidence and yet no visible data to back up their assertions. –J.]

  73. I seem to have a real problem with CS2 illustrator. While photoshop and Indesign transferred via Apple transfer and updated their licence to our new Mac pros illustrator simply says it can’t initialize when I try to open it. I have tried to reinstall but the disc for creative suite (CS2 update) simply has all the software greyed out and unavailable to install despite putting in all the requested information when I try to select them. Any idea what the best solution is?

  74. I wouldn’t have commented here– as many others have already stated my concerns, except for you last comment about zero sum games and that we represent a minor part of the market.
    Now I’m grumpy.
    When you look at the install hacks provided by private citizens, it doesn’t say much for your engineering team that they can’t make this work for case-sensitive machines.
    And for you to argue that not many people need this is short-sighted if not backward-looking. Case-sensitivity is hammered in even the most basic programming classes. Good grief.
    Aside from it being basic to good programming etiquette, has no one at Adobe analyzed the 5-year growth curve in the number of customers who transfer code daily with unix-based machines? Esp. since the takeover of macromedia made you the leading internet software application provider?
    In most areas of the web, there is a clear move toward better interoperability and greater compliance (just read the Standards white papers on everything from server to client-end programming.) I don’t understand why Adobe would even want to be seen arguing in favor of a less compliant, less rigorous, less precise file system.
    Thank you for all your answers here. I hope you will be able to tell us whether the Adobe team is considering a patch for the case-sensitivity issue and on what time-frame. Perhaps there is enough concern in the comments here that they will give you a full answer.

  75. I found myself in a similar position needing to install Flash CS4 on my MacBook which runs leopard under a case-sensitive filesystem. For many of the reasons listed above reformatting the internal drive to case-insensitive wasn’t a practical option. I finally partitioned the internal HD to create two bootable partitions: one case-insensitive for Flash CS4 and one case-sensitive partition for everything else.
    So I boot from the CI partition when I need to use the Flash authoring tool. It’s kind of an ugly hack but it more or less works. For some reason that I don’t understand printing is broken when I use the CI partition. Setting up partitions this way is not for the faint-hearted. If you try it make a good backup first.
    Mike Ormsby

  76. I agree, of course, with all of the reasons for supporting and intentionally installing case-sensitive OSes for interoperability.
    What I think adobe in their smugness are here missing is that there are many users who have performed a re-install or an upgrade and have opted for what seems naturally to be the more advanced of the two options apple provides.
    [Who is being smug? And by the way–though perhaps you’ll find this smug, too–I’ll repeat what I say to the Linux enthusiasts who keep saying that “every day Linux market share grows”: please show me. Seriously. Show me any evidence whatsoever that quantifies the percentage of Mac users who elect to wipe their hard drives, then install the case-sensitive option. That’s the kind of data I’d need to argue that we should spend time spreading engineering and QE thinner to support these scenarios. Otherwise there’s plenty of other work Mac users (and others) would like to see us do first.
    If you just read blog comments, you’d think the world was full of FreeHand and ImageReady users who want case-sensitive HDs. (Heck, you’d even think that LiveMotion was a big hit.) Getting lots of blog comments, however, doesn’t equate hearing an argument based on real percentages. –J.]
    I’ve just been called on a support call to help an end-user install CS4 on his macbook. He is not a power user, but he has a case-insensitive OS installed. When I asked about this, he was not sure why, but did say that he had reinstalled once and ‘must have picked it if it was a choice, because it seemed better’.
    [He wiped his hard drive, then reinstalled the OS, choosing a non-default option without understanding that option? –J.]
    I don’t believe that after all of this, Adobe released another major revision of the product without case sensitive support. I’m advising my client return his software. This, naturally, has made him rather irate.
    [Why not advise him to reinstall without this option (which he clearly doesn’t understand, need, or use)? –J.]

  77. I purchased Illustrator 10 for my mac OS X leopard because that was the version I was familiar with, and the Apple guy said that while it was compatible, it wouldn’t be nearly as friendly with the mac as the new versions. It would not install, however. Is there any way to make it work?

  78. John —
    Thanks for keeping this blog. You can take solace in knowing that you’re being more responsible than the official Adobe organs at supporting this product.
    I understand that the Adobe development team wants unknowable data about the number of drives partitioned various ways as an input to its development process. (Nice way to punt, that requirement.) I understand that Adobe considers programmers who install Photoshop a useless market (those are the people who care about Unix interop), and that Adobe’s target market is people who only install Photoshop and Office.
    What I don’t understand is why they refuse to document this on the box. Yes, I know it might confuse some people. But the disk space requirements confuse some people, and the CPU specs might as well be gibberish to many. So my suggestion would be a simple label on the side of the box documenting this bug/design choice.
    Also, since Leopard offers case-insensitivity as a choice during installation, many people are certain to choose it during an install (though nobody will ever have any hard data on how many, much like Microsoft will never be able to produce the aggregate hours spent playing Minesweeper). So consider that this is just one way Adobe can do the right thing.
    Steve Jobs said something many years ago to the effect of “if Apple can save every user 10 seconds, over millions of users we have made a difference.” The ramification of this issue with CSx is many hours for each affected person. And of course, anybody who has to reformat his disk to install a single piece of software will not have a very good impression of that software, even if forced to use it. Think about the impact Adobe could have by fixing this (for it is broken).
    And lest you doubt the impact is hours, my situation is this. I had a disk crash in my MBP. I reinstalled Leopard from scratch, and chose the option from the dropdown because it made sense to me and I didn’t have any idea that it would break anything (also, I had no idea what my previous install was set as). Now, I am going to go to the store to buy a hard drive. Then I will do a complete backup and restore using Time Machine. My drive is 500GB so this will probably take the entire afternoon. Then I will install the CS3 upgrade. Unless it finishes and then I find out I have to install CS2 before I can install the upgrade.
    This is just one more instance of the installer being really bad in relative terms. On OS X, most software is installed by dragging a file to a folder. The Office install is a double-click and a key entry. iWork ditto. Adobe’s installer might require a reformat/restore, installation of the old version, then and installation of the new version. The worst case install that I appear to be facing is totally ridiculous.
    Be careful, guys. A $700 product with no real competition is a bullseye. Customer sat is the only way to maintain this untenable position.

  79. Sorry if I’ve missed this scanning this thread, but the obvious reason for running case-sensitive is being able to run all of your programs/scripts on OSX before deploying them on a UNIX system.
    Apple’s up to a 10% market share (significant growth in the last few years).
    [Of that percentage, how many are wiping their hard drives and reformatting for case sensitivity? I don’t know, and I’m guessing neither do you. This thread is exactly like any Linux-related one, where advocates swear up and down that “Here it comes!!” yet never–ever–present hard numbers. –J.]
    Growth that can be attributed to MS’s failures with Vista and that OSX is BSD based.
    [Out of curiosity, how many of the people you see thronging Apple stores look like they know BSD from LSD? I think they’re buying Macs for a lot of good reasons, but not because they’re Unix peeps. –J.]
    This allowed them to become more accepted in corporate environments (indeed, in our organization, all of our Engineering departments are migrating to them).
    Per the Linux comments – Linux is owning the server market (with the exception of the organizations still bound to Exchange and some proprietary applications) – but has yet to make significant headway into the mainstream desktop market (but initiatives such as Ubuntu may change that someday).
    *NIX operating systems will continue to dominate – whittling away Windows market share. Not embracing this leaves the door open to other organizations which will.

  80. Well it would seem Adobe CS4 is also not supporting case sensitivity. Very poor, because what about ZFS that most certainly WON’T have a case insensitive option. Currently 10.5 includes read only support for ZFS, but you can bet apple will probably make it the default filesystem in 10.7 or 10.8. (Seeing as read/write will probably be experimental in 10.6 as HFSX is now).
    And anyone who is saying it shouldn’t be supported because OSX is a minority alike are idiots. MS windows some day will probably be case sensitive. (That is when microsoft get off their asses and give windows a better filesystem)

  81. Hi there John,
    Just yesterday I tried to create a web photo gallery in PS CS/2, running Leopard, and low and behold, crash, crash, crash.
    So I read your post here that speaks directly to that issue. I just clicked on the link you provided for the plug-in (WebContactSheetll.plugin), and received this error message in PS:
    “Could not complete your request because PS does not recognize this type of file.”
    I wonder if I need to drag the plug-in you provided into the PS Plug-Ins and then into a particular sub-folder….?
    Thank you very much for your help.

  82. Yesterday I have downloaded trial for Adobe Dreamweaver CS4. I am very disappointed – it won’t install on a case sensitive filesystem. So far it seems like there are no workarounds available.
    I work on a unix systems on daily basis, developing, testing various applications for HP/UX, Solaris, Linux etc. I can not afford having a case-insensitive filesystem.
    I am sorry to say – unless Adobe fixes this annoying design flaw, I am not even beginning to think about buying it’s products.

  83. Disappointed! I was stupid enough to install Leopard thinking it would be an improvement to Tiger. Now I have to drop a couple of Gs to upgrade the programs that no longer work. OR I can lose a couple of Gs in business I’m going to lose while I’m uninstalling Leopard and reinstalling everything on my system I’ve acquired over the last 6 years of being a Mac user. Lame, lame, lame, lame, lame!!!

  84. I upgraded from Tiger to Leopard.
    Fireworks MX does not work. Fireworks files open, but Fireworks hangs when you try to edit them.
    BUT, I have found a last ditch workaround. Fireworks in Leopard WILL let you EXPORT existing Fireworks as Photoshop .psd files, and, thank goodness, Photoshop retains the layers you made in Fireworks. You’ll still have to adjust them a bit, but at least it means that you can rescue all your old Fireworks work without needing to buy the latest version of Leopard-compatible Fireworks.

    I had a GREAT experience recently with Adobe Techsupp.
    Back when they first acquired Macromedia I had to call Adobe Techsupp, and I spent HOURS on hold waiting for help. After about 6 hours of sticking by my ph on ‘speaker’ I heard someone pick up. I franticly lifted the phone an quickly described my prob, trying to get it all out before they went away. False alarm: somehow I was connected with another poor sucker who had been on hold for about 8 hours!
    But my recent interaction with Adobe customer service people was Primo – up there with GoDaddy and Apple – and THAT, me thinks, is high praise indeed.
    When I posted the comment above on 6:16 PM on June 16, 2009, someone from Adobe contacted ME (that’s the first time any Tech Support contacted ME to fix a problem). I dealt with two people there, and they were as helpful as could be. Problem solved.
    Thanks Adobe. Great job! –James S.

  86. I can’t believe that after all these years of having the case-sensitive option on Mac’s that Adobe still doesn’t work with it (over four and a half years at least, according to the earliest report I found the problem being reported on the web in Feb 2005 – see ). When was this first reported to Adobe? Probably at least by then.
    One thing that makes sense to me as to why they don’t is because of programming that created code in one instance that opens file “ABC” and another that opened file “Abc” and they expected them to be the same file. I suppose there are also scripts that are used to process source and contain lists of filenames that might also need fixing for the subsequent changes. What kind of a case-insensitive insulated world does Adobe live in?
    How do you sit in your cubicle of arrogance and dare to lecture people that complain about the lack of support for case-sensitive file systems? You’ve already admitted the problem – just fix it. The fact that Adobe’s solution to the problem forces people to reformat and reinstall everything on their computer is more than a minor inconvenience in my opinion.
    Your argument about having to QA both on case-sensitive and case-insensitive file systems is incorrect I believe. If things work on the case-sensitive filesystem, they would have to work on the case-insensitive one. Can you describe a scenario that wouldn’t?
    Case sensitive file systems have been around for DECADES. What sort of abacus does Adobe use to calculate the benefit of living in the computing environment of the 20th and 21st century?
    Get with it Adobe, and fix the problem. How embarrassing for any self-respecting professional programming enterprise in this day and age to hide behind these sorts of insults to people who complain about a legitimate bug. The problem is not the people complaining, the problem is Adobe’s unwillingness to come up with the solution and devote resources to resolve it.
    I honestly would think that a few days of filtering thru source code could isolate the offending code and come up with consistent filenames. The time consuming work would be in doing the consistency comparisons to make sure nothing new got broke. But Adobe does the latter every time they release a new version (and even more often I would bet), so the extra time involved would just be the initial source code cleanup that could very easily be automated to a large degree. That’s one of the things that is so great about computers – they don’t care if it has to search 100 lines of code or 10 million.
    I would wager that someone with the complete source could filter the code and come up with a list of the problem opens and then write a script to automate the needed filename and code changes and be done in a day or two, a week at the most. This is so small in comparison to the entire development effort that it gets lost in decimal digits too far right of the decimal point to even be measured compared to the effort involved in getting a new release out and to claim that solving the problem would prevent significant other work to not get done is absolutely riduculous. This is not a big deal. Just a matter of a programmer with the ability to understand the problem and access to the source – there are a few thousand at Adobe I would guess that fit this bill.
    My suggestion would be for someone at Adobe to tackle the problem on their own initiative and then do the source updates. Get in touch with me and I would be happy to help write scripts to look thru and filter the code. Then the next release cycle would validate the changes along with all the others not related to the case-sensitive changes, and we could then applaud Adobe for making such a remarkable effort solving such a difficult problem.
    Adobe would also have to have some source management policies to then enforce the correct naming conventions for all subsequent changes – perhaps they already have these sorts of naming convention policies in place and it’s only a matter of digging thru the code and finding the existing offenders.

  87. Well I did a little more research into this. I tried running Photoshop CS3 on a case sensitive file system and sure enough it croaks. But the good news is that the report details has a hint at what the problem is. And sure enough it’s exactly like I thought. A file what was being opened as the name “A” is really named “a”. Well 30 more of these same sort of mistakes and I get to the point where it now crashes with a different sort of error that doesn’t give a clue to me as to what the issue is (but someone with source could track it down without much of a problem). I would bet again that the name of some file used in an argument is not the correct case and another crash is the result.
    So, Adobe, get it together, and learn the difference between A and a and maybe we can finally use the software on either type of file system without this case sensitivity being an issue.

  88. Yes. Not supporting case-sensitive is nothing short of lazy.
    Developers and web masters often deploy to Linux servers, and so case-sensitivity makes a lot of sense for us.
    Please Adobe. Consider this important!
    It could so easily be fixed in an auto-update.

  89. came to this blog after searching for a solution to install CS4 here in my case sensitive Mac. it’s said to read comments saying that it’s not important to adobe even with all these comments (here and elsewhere)

  90. I can’t get Photoshop CS2 or GoLive CS2 to work with Snow Leopard. I have a registration problem.
    Adobe says they are NOT compatible. Any work arounds?

  91. Case sensitivity? Even after creating an extra partition which is case-insensitive, CS4 still doesn’t install. Hello?! Where are you taking the right from to dictate WHAT MY SYSTEM PARTITION LOOKS LIKE?!

  92. I am having problems scanning and importing files from my Lexmark X5150, I never had this problem on earlier versions of PhotoShop . Oh! and I have upgraded my Power Book to Version 10.5.8, which want allow me to use Classic.Which also inhibits the use of earlier versions of PhotoShop.The CS4 version of PhotoShop is outstanding so is MAC 10.5.8 but together they have presented me with a nightmare!

  93. Requiring me to re-format my hard drive to be case insensitive in order to install CS4 is a major waist of my time. You have a really attitude passing this bug on to your customers.

  94. I just spent $700 dollars on CS4 because I read that CS3 is no longer supported on snow leopard. To my surprise, I can’t install this on snow leopard either because of case insensitivity.
    Adobe, what am I supposed to do now? Your software isn’t $7 or $70. It’s $700. This is not pocket change.
    I can’t even begin to express the level of frustration I have at this moment and the pure HATE that I have for your company and your product right now.

  95. I’ve been using Macs for 5 years and have always used a case-sensitive filesystem as I develop software for Unix systems and have to maintain full compatibility with them. My colleagues all run their Macs the same way for the same reason.
    We recently downloaded the trial of Flash Professional CS4 recently to see whether it was worth us taking flash content creation in-house… but that idea has fallen flat on its face at the first hurdle.
    There are other ways to create similar content without using Flash Professional, so we are currently exploring them instead.

  96. I can’t open pdfs on my brand new macbook pro bought a few weeks ago – it says to open photoshop but when I do it still does not work – I am frustrated – can you hep?

  97. I’m going to keep this simple.
    I hate you Adobe, this is the stupidest thing that any commercial software product has ever done. I’ve installed a lot of software over the years, lots of it free and open source and I’ve NEVER seen a requirement of that software being if the file system is Case-sensitive.
    Adobe have a PAID FOR product, and they charge plenty for it too, they can afford to pay a developer to find a work around for a non-case-sensitive file system I’m sure. I truly can’t believe I’m going to have to reinstall my OS just cos Adobe are tight with their money and don’t care about us. Actually it’s very simple guys, they don’t care about us, they couldn’t give a stiff so long as they can take as much cash as possible for as little effort on their part as can be they don’t care. I’m debating bringing CS5 back and using open source products that have people actually think about weather or not what they’re coding will work here’s a start link for everyone
    Also can’t wait till html5 comes out, I’m looking forward to having flex/flash our of my browser just cos it’s being developed by a stupid greedy company.

  98. I work for a product company too and I can see where John comes from. We need to constantly make decisions that might irritate some customers just so we can keep the product relevant and work on features that are important. But a bug like this is misrepresentation and that makes bad business sense. I haven’t bought Photoshop and now probably never will – because I think I understand how development at adobe now works. My guess is that adobe has an engineering team that offshore and now in maintenance mode. They have a build system that’s on a case insensitive machine. This machine cannot be touched/modified and the engg team probably has no motivation to fix it since they all use case insensitive FSs anyway. So when management comes to them asking if it’s a feasible task to fix this bug – they will probably say that it’s going to take time to pour through all the code and fix it, while it’s just the matter of moving the build systems to case-sensitive boxes and fixing the build scripts. I could do that in 2 days – a week at max. No – really! I think Adobe has to take a good hard look at the engineering team. They’re either misrepresenting or someone is just plain lazy!

  99. Two years ago when I posted you could not have convinced me that Adobe would continue to have this case-sensitivity problem in their next 2 MAJOR releases. I would think that all of the new iOS developers would have shifted Adobe’s stance on this issue. This arrogant insistance of sloppy product development is a perfect example of why Apple doesn’t trust Flash to run on their iOS devices.
    [And in those years no one (including Apple) has produced evidence that any substantial percentage of Mac or CS customers wipe their hard drives & make them case-sensitive. Yes, a fair number of people find my blog & comment here on this subject, but that doesn’t translate into a meaningful percentage of customers. The case sensitivity work would come at the expense of other user-requested work. Thus it’s a business question of what will serve the greatest number of people & cause them to spend money in exchange for their problems being solved. I don’t expect you or any other case-sensitive users to like this answer, any more than any Web designer, photographer, etc. likes hearing that we didn’t do Requested Feature X because other work was deemed higher impact, but that’s how the system works. –J.]
    Unfortunately, their is no competition against the tools in Adobe’s Creative Suite. They know that, and they take comfort in it.
    [No, it’s that we make decisions based on the greatest good for customers, not the serving of small groups based on their vocality. –J.]

  100. I’m trying to install Photoshop Elements 6 on my new PowerBook running OS 10.6.7. In the middle of the installation I get the message:
    “Please insert Adobe CS4 Web Standard to continue installation.”
    The Elements disk then pops out. Where do I find “Adobe CS4 Web Standard”? Help.

  101. Adobe, emotionally sensitive not blissfully insensitive (stubborn) to needs.
    whats up with this weirdness. case-sensitive is insensitive compatible… if you’re building for insensitive then files are already unique in name.
    also, this case-sensitive requirement be a easy problem to solve. at most 8 FTEs of work. seems like pure laziness to me.
    witness one fellow who produced a shell script after 7 hrs without intimate knowledge of the product.
    what exactly is going on here. nevermind all this “substantial percentage” customer” bs or “produced evidence of”

  102. The Mac people tarnsfered my apps frtom my old Mac (10.4.11) with video problems to my new Mac (10.6.7). Photoshop7 won’t open on new Mac- I get “an unexpected and unrecoverable problem has occured because of a program error. Photoshop will now exit:. After dumping from new Mac and rerinstalling from original disk – same result. Is this an issue witth Snow Leapod?