Software Update 10.6.3 Killed My Adobe Photoshop CS3

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It’s been 3 days since I updated to Software Update 10.6.3 and it’s been 3 days that I have not been able to use Photoshop CS3. Photoshop CS3 crashes 3-5 seconds upon initializing and I tell you, I am very, very frustrated by this.

I’ve been lurking the Adobe Support Forum and the Apple Support Forum but I have yet to find any concrete solution (like maybe a patch perhaps, hint hint) to this really annoying problem. I know there’s a love-hate relationship between Adobe and Apple. But it is simply ridiculous that every time a Software Update comes up, all Adobe users have to cross their fingers that the update won’t screw up their apps.

There are however several arbitrary solutions that worked for some people. I’ve tried all of them and unfortunately none of them worked for me. If you’re having the same problem, you might want to try the following. You might be one of the lucky ones!

  • Solution #1. Turn off “Open using Rosetta”. Right-click CS3 icon, click Get Info and uncheck “Open using Rosetta” (a lot of people swear by this, but this feature was unchecked on mine begin with)
  • Solution #2. Reinstall 10.6.3 by manually downloading the 10.6.3 combo update.
  • Solution #3. Run Applejack, verify and fix disk permissions
  • Solution #4. Delete the Photoshop plist file. Path is at User/Library/Preferences/com.adobe.Photoshop.plist. (Before deleting, please keep a copy of the plist file just in case)
  • Solution #5. Delete the FLEXnet folder. This would require however to input your CS3’s serial number. Path is at Library/Preferences/FLEXnet Publisher/FLEXnet
  • Solution #6. Revert back to 10.6.2. Honestly though, this should be your last resort since it totally defeats the purpose of the 10.6.3 update.

Adobe has also said that they have determined the root cause of the problem, with some Apple machines having invalid serial numbers such as “System Serial#”, or “SystemSerialNumb”. And they also concurred that it happens on machines where the serial number is a value with more than 12 characters. So one of the solutions is to obtain a new system serial number. Wow, what a hassle.

My serial number only has 10 characters so I personally think that’s a dumb rationalization. Come on, Apple and Adobe, you can do better than that!

As for me, I’ve installed CS4 in the meantime, but I’m missing the actions that I’ve installed in my CS3. I might downgrade to 10.6.2 soon (when I find my installer) but like I said, it really defeats the purpose of the update. If you haven’t updated to 10.6.3 yet and you are a CS3 user, you might to hold off on the update for a bit until things get sorted out.

[ Image via Tech Shout ]

Picture of Lia Espina

Lia Espina

8 thoughts on “Software Update 10.6.3 Killed My Adobe Photoshop CS3

  1. Hello…didn’t Adobe tell everyone that CS3 would no longer be supported on Snow Leopard before you even bothered to upgrade to SL?

    so the fact that you even have the gaul to bitch and moan and groan is completely annoying

    if you wanted to guarantee that you were going to be able to keep using CS3 then you should have NEVER BOTHERED to UPGRADE to SL…hello common sense!!!

    please don’t write these articles trying to get sympathy and attacking Apple at the same time

    THIS isn’t APPLE’s fault…it is yours

    1. Who says I was bitching and groaning and saying it’s apple’s fault? Maybe if you read more, then you’ll realize this article could actually be quite helpful to some people who are on the same boat as I am.

      And FYI, I was already in SL 10.6.2 and my CS3 was perfectly working until 10.6.3. So it’s not SL that ruined my CS3, but that particular update per se.

      Now if 10.6.3 is doing wonders for you, then great. But as for people who have the same problem as I do, I’m just sharing what they can do, especially to those who don’t want to upgrade their CS3 to CS4.

  2. Does this happen when you create a new test user? I witnessed this problem yesterday and was able to get Photoshop CS3 working under 10.6.3 by removing the Photoshop prefs from ~/Library/Preferences.

    FYI, there are multiple pref files and folders here. By creating a new test user you can determine what these files are.

  3. @Lia…the fact still remains that Adobe said from before SL was even released that there would be no support for CS3…so that should tell you that it may not work…and if it doesn’t you are on your own

    I get that CS4 is an expensive upgrade…but if you are relying on CS3 to support your life in some way shape or form then you should have spent the last 9 months saving up for CS4 so you would not have to worry about an update from Apple breaking your software that you are lucky has still worked this long

    the last thing Apple is going to do is cater to Adobe…that is evident by SJobs stance on Flash

    I’m sorry that I came across so rude…and re-reading it…I was rude and uncalled for and I admit that…but I really get sick and tired of these types of posts by bloggers lately…

    I am right in the thought that you shouldn’t and can’t expect something that is way over a year out of production will continue to work with OS upgrades and incremental updates…the first rule of thumb on ALL upgrades and point upgrades is to make sure all your important apps work with the new version

    and I expect someone that is versed in CS would understand that stance

    the title of this post seems way too critical of Apple by saying they “Killed” something…the didn’t kill anything they just have moved forward and everyone has to decide to move with Apple or not

    I’m sorry that your program doesn’t play nice with10.6.3 but I still believe that you were forewarned by Adobe to expect it not to work at all…and I think you have gotten almost a year more out of them without them even being on board

    if CS is so important to your life you should to get the new one because you will be protected and be confident that if something doesn’t work you have support from Adobe or whatever other developer is out there…

    again I’m sorry for my rudeness but I do still stand behind the premise of the comment…CS3 doesn’t have to work with SL at all…and I am glad you found workarounds that work for you

  4. 10.6.3 killed my Photoshop as well, except I HAVE PS CS4..

    I attempted to launch Ps CS4 and immediately I got a crash report that said,

    “Adobe Photoshop CS4 cannot be openeded because of a problem.
    Check with the developer to made sure Adobe Photoshop CS4 workds with this version of Max OS X…”

    so I turned to Google to see if others were having similar problems after the 10.6.3 update and I found this page.

    I after reading Adobe’s Technote on how to fix the issue for CS3, I noticed the “disable open using Rosetta” and since mine was already disabled I decided to enable it. However this being a CS3 issues I didn’t expect it to fix my issues but, to my surprise, enabling the “Open using Rosetta” option actually allows Ps CS4 to launch now.

    Hopefully I find another fix because running under Rosetta makes Ps CS4 a little sluggish.

  5. Same problem, but seems related to any time I try to open a file selector dialog box (open, save as, etc). If I open the file to be edited by right-clicking on it and selecting “open with photoshop CS3” the file opens, but if I start by opening Photoshop, it’s fine until I go to “File > Open” and then Photoshop crashes. If I open a file (with the method above), I can work and edit as usual and everything is fine until I go to “Save As” and then it crashes. I find I can workaround now by just hitting “Save” instead of “Save As,” which of course prevents me from changing file name, format,, etc, but I can do that using other apps for now, until/unless this gets fixed.

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