OK, so your old computer is running out of gas, you’re upgrading or changing systems, adding a new machine, or switching from a PC to a Mac, or vice versa — and you want to move over your purchased CS6 (or CS5 or CS4 or CS3 or Creative Cloud or any other) Adobe software — what do you do, and how do you do it?
As we’ve covered previously here, you are generally allowed to install and activate most Adobe software on up to two computers, with the restriction that the software can not used on both systems at the same time. So right off the bat, you might be good to go with installing the software on a second computer, although you may wish to double-check the licensing agreement for your product to be sure.
Adobe Evangelist Terry White has a great new training session out showing you how to get started achieving immediate and productive results using new Illustrator CS6… This 42-minute class covers all the basics and walks through how to accomplish the top 10 techniques that beginners always want to know how to do. Earlier Terry did similar introductory primers for Photoshop, Lightroom, and InDesign – and now it’s Illustrator’s turn.
Here’s the overview:
This is one of the most common questions we get, and the answer may pleasantly surprise you… The place to look to find the answer is the Software License Agreement, also called the EULA. This agreement governs the use of your Adobe product, and is translated into 28 languages within each document. It also covers some basics about product activation.
So, in general, how many systems can you install Adobe software on, including CS6 and Creative Cloud? The answer for individuals (as opposed to businesses) in most cases is two. The catch is that both computers must be used only by you and the two systems cannot be used at the same time. This policy was designed so that you could run (say) Creative Suite at home on your desktop PC, as well as while traveling with your laptop. But the types of computers and their usage has blurred so much now that you can just pick any two you own and the product should install and properly activate on both…
2.1.3 Portable or Home Computer Use. Subject to the important restrictions set forth in Section 2.1.4 [having to do with volume licensees], the primary user of the Computer on which the Software is installed … may install a second copy of the Software for his or her exclusive use on either a portable Computer or a Computer located at his or her home, provided that the Software on the portable or home Computer is not used at the same time as the Software on the primary Computer.
This is one of the top questions we get. Especially now that Adobe is releasing a new version of Creative Suite once per year – with each edition potentially bringing a different or expanded file format – customers want to know if their existing projects will easily carry forward with them when they upgrade, or if they will be able to save back to older formats for clients or colleagues who are still running an earlier version of the tools…
OK then, here’s how it works. Generally, your new CS6 tools (including those in the Creative Cloud) will be able to open and use any and all earlier project and data files no problem (including CS3, CS4, CS5 and CS5.5 files), without any loss of information. In other words, all Adobe software is able to read or import file formats from previous versions of the same program – and it should happen automatically.
Going the other way, when wanting to use CS5 or older tools to open a file saved from a CS6 product, the answer is it depends… Let’s take a look at the interoperability for each application within the Creative Suite, then at the bottom we’ll talk about some additional tips and best practices no matter what your situation.
Some folks think it might be a good idea to try to save a few bucks and buy Adobe software off of eBay, Craigslist, Amazon Marketplace, or from any vendor who is unfamiliar. It could be CS6, Photoshop, Lightroom, Acrobat, Elements, or any other item – in a retail, student, full or upgrade version… or sometimes it’s the “OEM” scam, or the “extra” volume license.
But it’s actually not a very good idea at all. Why?
The first problem is that Adobe does not recognize these venues as valid or authorized resellers. So as a result, it’s like Adobe will not officially recognize any of those buyers as actually owning their software. Yes, you read that right.
Meaning, you think you own the genuine article but effectively you don’t. You can’t provide an accepted proof of purchase – so you can’t formally prove you own the products, can’t ever legally transfer the software to someone else, may not be able to get technical support or ever upgrade to the next version, and so on… You also aren’t able to return the software to get your money back from Adobe like you normally can.
Why doesn’t Adobe recognize the people that go through those places? Doesn’t that seem unfair? Can’t these software vendors who you’ve never heard of be trusted?
No, because in this area, reputation matters… a lot. The simple reason is – and the real problem is – that 90% of the software sold on places like eBay is counterfeit! Yes, it’s true. And it’s not a new problem.
So you can be pretty sure that what someone’s getting on those auction and vendor sites is not legitimate, not able to be legally transferred, and possibly even quite unsafe.
The Adobe Student and Teacher Editions look like a great deal. They offer big discounts, as much as 75% off normal prices. They’re available for most of Adobe’s most popular products, including Creative Suite 6, Lightroom 4, Acrobat XI, Elements 11, and the Creative Cloud. They can be purchased by anyone who qualifies – primary and secondary school students, homeschoolers, college or university students, faculty, teachers, and administrators. Even part-time students or teachers can be eligible, and there is no age limitation. They’re available pretty much worldwide in many languages on both Windows and Mac, and you don’t need any kind of coupon or promotion code to get the deep discounts.
So what’s the catch? Is the Academic software different or limited somehow? Is there any sort of time restriction, time limit, or time out – do Adobe Student Editions expire? Or are they unusable for commercial purposes?
[UPDATE (May 6th) – Major news out: Adobe Unveils New “CC” Release (CS7)...]
When Creative Suite 6 arrived last year, there came with it a new way to buy Adobe software that the world had not seen before: the Creative Cloud. Traditionally, most Adobe products have been sold with “perpetual” licensing that doesn’t expire. The flip side is that these best-in-class tools often come with a steep price tag that is out of reach for many customers – though there have always been discounts when upgrading from recent older releases, plus much lower pricing for some market segments like students and teachers…
Enter the Creative Cloud – which, yes, is cloud-based in some ways – but at present, is primarily a different way of buying all the Adobe products you know and love. Creative Cloud membership is served as more of an “all-you-can-eat buffet” of the best software out there for any creative purpose, for one attractive monthly price ($29-$49/month standard in the US). Read more…
We’ve mentioned Adobe TV in the past, but it just keeps getting bigger and better… When Creative Suite 6 was released, they published a 15-hour series of new online tutorials – but have recently doubled this to over 30 hours now of free video training for all CS6 tools.
You’ll learn the basics with Getting Started overviews plus What’s New reviews by product experts, with 274 total chapters covering all major CS6 applications.
If you don’t already have the programs installed on your computer but would like to get going today, you can easily download the free working trials for any CS6 product for Windows or Mac – then install, run, and start your training…
[ Trying to decide which is right for you? See: Creative Cloud vs. CS6 Comparison ]
Lastly, if you also like learning in print, then don’t miss this nice set of free new CS6 e-books (over 1,000 pages). But here’s how the video courses break out:
We’ve previously featured 30 hours of free video tutorials for Adobe’s Creative Suite 6, as well as four hours for Lightroom 4 – so here are some terrific (and free) learning resources for the recently released Elements 11 product line…
In the course given below, the experts share how to get started with Premiere Elements 11 for editing your videos, the essentials of the software, new features added in PRE 11, how to use important tools and functions, plus their best tips and techniques. In total, there is over 2 hours of free video training, spanning 21 separate chapters.
Most modern cameras now take both great photos and videos, so Premiere Elements is well-integrated with Photoshop Elements for your image editing – and since many people use the two tools together, you may also be interested in three hours of free tutorials for learning how to use Photoshop Elements 11.
Because Elements 11 has an all-new intuitive editing environment with a revamped Organizer plus other new features, the content here doesn’t carry well to older versions of Premiere Elements. However, we do also have a page still available with several hours of free tutorials for PRE 10 & 9 and earlier.
If you need a copy of Premiere or Photoshop Elements 11 to get going right away, just download the free trials and they will work fully on your computer for one month, which should be plenty of time to get through the classes. Note at the bottom of this page, you’ll also find quick demonstrations of the two programs.
There’s a terrific free tool we’ve become quite fond of in the office here lately – a searchable online ‘assistant’ to all the power that is Photoshop CS6… Photoshop is obviously a very sophisticated application and this Photoshop Quick Reference Guide helps you find answers fast for where any feature is located, what it does, and its keyboard shortcuts on both Windows and Mac: