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How Long Do Adobe Free Trial Periods Last? Here’s Why It’s 60 Days

How to Download and Start an Adobe Software Free Trial

How long are the free trials for Adobe software? Most people would say 30 days – but practically speak­ing, it’s actually twice that, at 60 days.  Here’s why, and how…

After downloading and installing Adobe’s free trial software – whether it’s the just-launched CC 2014 (have you tried it yet?), CS6, Acrobat, Captivate, or Lightroom – your official free trial will begin for 30 calendar days from the date you first run the application (like Photoshop) on your computer.

Once you reach the end of that month – if you haven’t already purchased the product – then that free trial period will end and all the files you created will still be yours, but the software itself will no longer start on your system. And redownloading or reinstalling it won’t give you a new free trial.

So, if your initial trial has expired but you haven’t decided yet whether you want to keep the tools, then what do you do? Well, aha – there’s a little-known tip, and it goes like this:

  1. The Adobe product lines mentioned above all have month-to-month subscription plans available that can be canceled at any time for any reason (yes, even CS6 and Lightroom which are both included together with CC). Even individual apps like Illustrator or InDesign.
  2. This is the key point. Adobe actually has an excellent Return Policy for all purchases that are made directly from them… All software orders are 100% fully refundable within 30 days for any reason at all, via a simple live chat that only takes a couple minutes.
  3. So if you want or need another month to use the apps, sign up for the Monthly option and the product will work again. Then in 30 more days, if you don’t want to continue, just cancel the plan online before that month is up for a complete refund of what you paid.
  4. Per their Refund Policy, when you cancel any Adobe-direct purchase within 30 days of your order, you’ll receive a full refund issued back to your credit card within about a week.

So there you have it: a low-hassle way of extending all your Adobe free trials to 60 days, effectively doubling the length of time that you can try out and use them without any financial commitment. And of course if you want to keep on using the tools after that, even for a short time, then you’d only be paying by the month.

Adobe clearly states: “Memberships canceled within the first 30 days after purchase will be fully refunded…” And we have done this so we know it works! Just make sure that you get the software directly from Adobe in order for this policy to apply, and not from a reseller or retailer:


This basic technique can also be used if you have already completed your 30-day free trial at any time in the past. So it’s especially good to know with the new CC 2014 release having just come out, where all CC app trial periods were reset anew.

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Note that all CC 2014 trials are fully functional and can run side-by-side on your system with older CS versions, without interference. The Windows or Mac OS downloads can also be installed on multiple computers if desired – and easily converted to full versions without having to reinstall the software.

No license key, serial number, or credit card is needed to download or run the initial free trials. And importantly, even after the final expiration of any free trial period, you can still keep and maintain the free level of Creative Cloud membership with permanent benefits for life, at no cost.

Addendum: The strategy described above is also helpful if you buy a perpetually-licensed product and a new version comes out within this time window, then you can simply trade what you have and get the next release instead…  So say for example you buy Acrobat XI now, and then Acrobat XII comes out in a month – well then you could return it for a refund and get version 12 instead (or the Creative Cloud, which would always include it) – meaning you’ve got some “insurance” (or a grace period) for a free upgrade, which is a nice side benefit.

See Also

Download New Adobe CC 2014 Free Trials (Direct Links)

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  1. Heinrich

    Honestly, A 30 day trial is way to short for a non-commercial buyer. I downloaded Adobe Premiere Pro (and many other apps) and I then just got so busy in that month that I couldn’t really use the trial apart from opening it the first time :) and then the trial expires without me using it.

    I have often then bought some of these softwares, (when I download a trial there is usually a good chance that I will end up buying the product), but it would really be great if the software companies could change the trial periods from 30 DAYS, > to rather allowing you to open the application a maximum of 30 TIMES or 3 / 4 or 6 months, whichever occurs first.

    • Hi Heinrich, that’s a neat idea and perhaps Adobe will adopt a plan like that someday! One challenge though might be that you can keep a single launch of an application “open” for a long time on your computer, during hibernation and sleep, etc… So definitely there has to be that time-limit component in there as well.

      In the meantime, hopefully you can use our technique above on how to double/extend your free trial period for up to 60 days, which works for most any Adobe application.

  2. ashwin

    I just want to try out Prelude CS 6, is there any way to do this as I have no use of other products included

  3. Lacey

    So, how many times can one do this?

  4. Grateful

    THANK YOU SO MUCH! i only need the cloud for a month while my computer is being repaired and since i had done a trial a little bit ago (but didn’t choose to upgrade from cs6) i thought i was SOL. This helped me IMMENSELY

  5. Karen

    I have your PS/LR plan but I wish you had an option that would let me add Illustrator. I can’t afford everything.

  6. faizan

    my cs6 photoshop is expired, and its not showing in program and features to uninstall. i just want to uninstall it, please give me some advice.

    • Sure Faizan, if you have already used your operating system’s uninstall function and it didn’t remove everything for some reason, then you can completely uninstall any Adobe application (of any version) by just downloading and running the official Adobe Cleaner Tool, and then rebooting your computer afterwards.

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