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Adobe is a bunch of greedy ********! (A rant, duh.)

by MarkatNite / November 1, 2004 1:44 PM PST

So I recently decided to upgrade my PC from an old 166 MHz machine running Win98SE to a new 3.4 GHz machine running XP. While I'm at it, I figure this would be as good a time as any to upgrade from Photoshop 5 to Photoshop CS (8).

Unfortunately, it seems that sometime during the last five years, I misplaced my version 5 CD-ROM. So I call Adobe Tech Support and explain the problem - near the beginning of the CS install, it asks for either the location where the old version is installed or the old CD-ROM. Well, I don't have the old CD-ROM and the location where the old version is installed is on the old machine. But I don't want to install CS on the old machine, I want to install it on the new machine.

After verifying via the serial number for the old version that I am indeed in their database as the registered owner of said product, the Tech's response is, "You need to buy another full version."

And then they wonder why people crack their software - Mark

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Could it be that they don't offer an upgrade from 5 to CS?
by Kiddpeat / November 1, 2004 2:16 PM PST

I wonder myself how many releases you can skip before you'll be required to buy a new version. At any rate, never, ever lose things like Photoshop installation disks.

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No, it's much simpler than that
by Dale Johnston / November 1, 2004 4:14 PM PST

Different machine, for which a new install is required and the old one removed, per the EULA. So since he has told them he cannot transfer the old version across (no CDs) under the existiing licence, he does indeed need a full version.

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No and yes.
by MarkatNite / November 2, 2004 11:51 AM PST

Sorry, I omitted some of the details of the conversation to make a long story short. But...

No, the Tech said that the CS upgrade should work from any previous full version. I even specifically asked him about version 5, and he said that wouldn't be a problem.

Yes, I f'ed up by losing the CD-ROM for version 5. And I'm quite willing to pay... oh, I don't know, $20 sounds about right, off the top of my head... for them to burn me a copy of a full version 5 CD with my same serial number and ship it to me.

Instead, they expect me to pay $600 for a full version of CS.

Hence, greedy ******** - Mark

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It's not just Adobe, Mark.
by Paul C / November 1, 2004 3:17 PM PST

I had the same issue with Roxio a couple of years ago over an upgrade of Easy CD Creator.

The problem, IMO, is less unbridled greed than it is that the software manufacturers have been so beaten up by software piracy that they're understandably leery about any situation that arises that's outside the norm.

I fear that we'll just have to live with this irritant - although I'm sure that shelling out for a new Photoshop full version isn't probably on your to do list anytime soon.

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The irony is they're encouraging piracy.
by MarkatNite / November 2, 2004 11:59 AM PST

By flat out telling me that my only option is to go out and buy a new full version, they're actually encouraging me, a formerly legal user, to go out and find a crack for the CS upgrade. Because, you're right, shelling out for a new full version is not on my "to do" list.

But I guess I better go vote now so I can complain Wink - Mark

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Try the Gimp
by C1ay / November 1, 2004 7:29 PM PST
The Gimp will likely do everything you use Photoshop for and more with available plug-ins. Of course the best feature is it's cost, free.

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Re: Try the Gimp
by MarkatNite / November 2, 2004 12:16 PM PST
In reply to: Try the Gimp

Yup, I'm definitely considering that, and will definitely do it if my only other option is to buy a full version of CS. But hopefully something else will work out.

Maybe they'll read my customer service survey response - Mark

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Re: Adobe is a bunch of greedy ********! (A rant, duh.)
by EdH / November 1, 2004 9:26 PM PST

Adobe pretty much has to act as it does. Photoshop is one of the most pirated programs around. They've heard the "I lost my installation disk" thousands of times.

You might try their Customer Service instead of Tech, or perhaps post on the Photoshop User-to-User forum. I am pretty sure I've seen a solution to problems such as yours that won't require buying the full program.

The Gimp is okay, but it ain't Photoshop, especially if you work in print.

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Thanks, I'll try their forum.
by MarkatNite / November 2, 2004 12:31 PM PST

But, as I said above, with customer service like this, it's no wonder their program is pirated so much. And remember, this is a verifiable case of "I lost my installation disk", as I'm in their database as the registered owner and have been since I registered my copy of version 5 five years ago.

In any case, I will check out their forum. Thanks - Mark

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Easy to resolve.
by James Denison / November 1, 2004 10:23 PM PST

Copy the windows directory and adobe directory over to the new drive, then run the upgrade disc. Another method is to copy those directories onto a CDR and save it for other such problems. Make sure if you have other programs that may need this approach you copy their folders over too. Then you only need to pop the CDR into the drive to "prove" you have the right to use the upgrade version. Yet another method is to buy an external hard drive enclosure cheaply at some place like compgeeks.com and put the old hard drive in it and access it through USB connection. More difficult, but also a work around is to plug the old drive onto the IDE data cable with the new drive, at least long enough to do install the upgrade on your new machine.

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Interesting ideas, which bring to mind a few questions.
by MarkatNite / November 2, 2004 12:58 PM PST
In reply to: Easy to resolve.

I did ask the Tech if copying just the Photoshop directory would work, and he said no. Before I try copying both the Photoshop and Windows directories, I have a few questions:

I know in theory it shouldn't cause any problems to have a second OS on a non-bootable partition. i.e. extended, logical drive. But has anyone actually tried this with XP (and ideally with Win98 on the logical drive)?

If the answer to the above is yes, does anyone have any thoughts on drive letters? i.e. if it makes a difference to the CS install that Win98 is no longer on drive C:, is there anything I can do about that? What happens if I boot into XP and then reassign "C:" to a logical drive on an extended partition?

Thoughts, anyone? - Mark

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Re: Interesting ideas, which bring to mind a few questions.
by James Denison / November 2, 2004 2:31 PM PST

You won't know until you try, and it depends on how the upgrade installs. If it gives you a choice of installing it to a different directory, then you are probably home free on that and it will do a complete install, just checking the path you point it to find the qualifying files from the prior install. For instance with windows upgrades you only need to insert the previous disc version, even if the previous disc was an upgrade itself. If using only the older Photoshop disc would have qualified you for installing the upgraded version, then it means it will install the complete new version and isn't dependant on the prior version actually being installed already. "Upgrade" can be a relative term, which can describe what should better be termed a large service pack in which case it would need the prior version already installed, or it could mean it's able to do a complete install on it's own if qualified by evidence of prior older install or a qualifying older install CD.

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I recently bought a new computer ...
by Evie / November 5, 2004 11:47 PM PST

... and purchased a USB-to-USB networking cable to access the old computer. If you partition the new hard drive, you could copy the contents of the old computer over in its entirety to D: or whatever other drive letter it would be. Might this work for you? You won't have to fiddle with conflicting Windows that way I don't think. With this connection I don't have direct access to the other computer as a "location", rather software shows the directories of each. I think you can network directly serial-to-serial and recognize that other HD as a location in XP, but I'm not sure how. Another thought might be what James suggests which is to put the old HD into a cheap external HD case that attaches with a USB. Not bad for backup, and saves the hassle of having to copy over everything "just in case" you miss something.

Good luck! I'm trying to find my old MSOffice CD's. I have the case (with the "key"), and the second CD is in the case, but have lost the first. When I get around to it I'll see if I can just get a copy to install it. But heck, I'm lazy, the new computer came with a 3 month trial of Office 2003 so knowing me I'll wait until the day before it expires to do something Wink

Evie Happy

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Re: I recently bought a new computer ...
by MarkatNite / November 7, 2004 9:52 AM PST

Hi Evie,

Yes, in theory, it should be OK to copy a second version of Windows to a non-bootable partition. But what should work in theory doesn't always work in practice, especially with computers.

I'd also have some reservations about leaving the directories on the old PC and pointing the install at the USB mapping/connection, as I'm not sure the installation program would interface with the USB software.

In any case, good luck with MS Office - Mark

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Re: I recently bought a new computer ...
by C1ay / November 7, 2004 10:50 AM PST

Sometimes when an upgrade CD asks me to find the old version I just browse to the CD itself and it qualifies itself as a qualifying version for the upgrade Happy

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(NT) (NT) I gotta try that neat trick!
by James Denison / November 7, 2004 11:19 AM PST
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(NT) (NT) LOL! Ditto what James said.
by MarkatNite / November 8, 2004 2:08 PM PST
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Re: Interesting ideas, which bring to mind a few questions.
by Edward ODaniel / November 8, 2004 1:37 AM PST

Hello Mark,

Since you have XP you could have simply added the old hard drive to the new computer as a slave or the primary on the second controller. NT isn't bothered by multiple primary partitions marked active (although you could ensure the proper active partition with FDISK).

You could even give yourself a multi-boot option with a little work. Here is a link that supplies most of the necessary steps (do note that this isn't going to work if your c: partition is NTFS) .

Then make sure your boot.ini file references the Win 98 installation properly as proper_driveletter:\="Windows 98" as the last entry of the Operating systems section.

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Re: Interesting ideas, which bring to mind a few questions.
by MarkatNite / November 8, 2004 2:25 PM PST

Hi Edward,

The problem for me with moving the entire drive is that this particular mother board only has one IDE controller, and that has the DVD-ROM and DVD burner on it. The hard drives are SATA and, while there are two free SATA controllers, I would need to buy an IDE to SATA adapter. That's certainly an option, but I was trying the free/cheap ideas first.

Thanks for that link. I didn't know you could set up a multi-boot "backwards". I thought Windows required that the older version be installed first.


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Re: Adobe is a bunch of greedy ********! (A rant, duh.)
by Dick White / November 1, 2004 10:35 PM PST

Yup, that's why I carefully save all original installation materials (disks as well as paperwork upon which the serial number was printed). I never let the kids install their own software, except games that I don't care about, and then I keep the all the disks.

That said, could you try this for a work around. Network the old and new machines, even if only with a simple crossover cable. On the old machine, enable file sharing, and then set the C: drive to shared. With the old one running, start the new one, and in Network Places officially map the C: drive of the old one as, say, Q:. Now the old system is just another drive letter to the new system. When your PS8 install requests the location of an earlier version, just point it to the Q: drive.


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Thanks, I'll definitely try to network the machines.
by MarkatNite / November 2, 2004 1:20 PM PST

To me, that seems a lot less likely to hose something up than copying the Windows directory. It also should be a bit easier and less time consuming. I probably won't be able to mess with any of this until the weekend, however.

And yes, as I noted above, I realize I f'ed up, and I'm willing to pay Adobe a modest sum to help me out of the mess I got myself into. But there's literally an order of magnitude difference between even $50 for a replacement CD and $500 for a new full version.


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Re: Thanks, I'll definitely try to network the machines.
by TONI H / November 2, 2004 8:43 PM PST

When you try to do the new installation and need to verify the location of the previous install, if you are given the opportunity to browse for that verification, first use the folder where the version 5 was installed to, and if that doesn't work, browse to the Windows folder itself or the System32 folder itself as many programs keep license/registration information in those two folders (also in the registry .dat files which is inside one of those folders that is used during backups). Just wanted to remind you not to give up solely on the C:\Program Files\Adobe or Photo folder not giving the results you need.


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Thanks, Toni. And an update.
by MarkatNite / November 5, 2004 3:46 PM PST

Before I spent the weekend browsing Adobe's forum and/or buying a crossover cable, I decided to try a combination of James' and ****'s suggestions: instead of networking the machines to share the drive or copying the directories to the new PC, I burned both the Windows and Photoshop directories from the old PC onto a CD-R. After booting the new PC and running the CS installation program, I inserted the CD-R, pointed the install to the CD/DVD drive, and voila!

So thanks, everyone! CS is up and running on the second monitor as I type - Mark

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(NT) (NT) Happy Days! Glad you got it working!
by Cindi Haynes / November 5, 2004 11:18 PM PST
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(NT) (NT) Good Job!
by James Denison / November 6, 2004 3:17 AM PST
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One other approach to consider ...
by Bill Osler / November 5, 2004 11:31 PM PST

This wouldn't be free, but it might work.

You may be able to buy installation CDs for the version of Photoshop you already legally own. You could then use those CDs to enable the upgrade on your new computer. I've occasionally bought old versions of software at ebay or wherever. Availability is unpredictable.

It is even possible that Adobe would be willing to sell you new installation CDs for your registered version since they have you in the database. I don't know what their policy is regarding replacement of installation materials. Of course, they might be willing to replace the installation CDs only for reinstallation on the original machine.

Since you have (I'm guessing) already paid for the upgrade version, a little more expense to enable the upgrade might be money well spent.

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(NT) (NT) Oops ... I missed your post about 'Mission Accomplished
by Bill Osler / November 5, 2004 11:32 PM PST
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(NT) (NT) Me too :(
by Evie / November 6, 2004 3:20 AM PST
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Re: Old full version.
by MarkatNite / November 7, 2004 9:40 AM PST

Hi Bill,

Yup, that should work. But I was saving that option for last since the old full versions I saw online were going for around $100 or more.


P.S. No worries about posting after I found a fix. Maybe your tip will help someone else who has a similar problem.

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Re: Old full version.
by Edward ODaniel / November 8, 2004 1:04 AM PST
In reply to: Re: Old full version.

Hi Mark,

I see you have already solved the problem but for future consideration, much stress can be avoided by getting a "PC Relocator" application such as "Aloha Bob" (there are others but I chose that as an example for obvious reasons Wink )
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1759,1593237,00.asp (and the same page lists 3 others)

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