How to download Mavericks to keep Adobe CS 5? Become an Apple Developer?
July 11, 2016 12:33 PM   Subscribe

I have a Mac Mini (2009 model, I think version 3,1). I am running 10.6.8 and Adobe CS 5. I want to keep CS 5; can I download Mavericks somehow?

I am a hardcore Photoshop and Illustrator user (pro designer and digital artist). I browse the internet and keep my new iPad Pro running off this machine as well. To do that, I installed El Capitan in its own partition, but it's pretty clunky to restart into another OS to manage my iPad, plus El Capitan can't resize its partition relative to my Snow Leopard partition.

I do not want to switch to CS 6 or CC, and am not ready to jump to Affinity Designer or Corel Painter just yet. I'd like to upgrade to Mavericks as that should let me run CS 5 while also supporting iOS 9+ devices and also update Chrome, which no longer supports OS 10.6, 10.7 or 10.8.

Of course you can no longer download Mavericks from Apple (or, can you?). I looked for DVDs for sale, but then realized that all of the DVDs on eBay are homebrew as Apple never released Mavericks DVDs (I don't think). That seems like a risk vector for malware.

So, in Googling, it looks like maybe I can sign in with my Apple ID and say I am an Apple Developer and then maybe download Mavericks? Is this possible? Are there other solutions?
posted by Slothrop to Computers & Internet (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

I just checked my developer account, and I do see the Mavericks GM in the downloads area, so that would probably work.

Are you sure that CS5 won't work on El Cap, though? My Illustrator and InDesign CS5 work ok (I subscribe to CC for Photoshop and Lightroom but not Illustrator and InDesign). Some little UI quirks, but overall it's functional. Then again, I may be on CS 5.5 on that machine (not in front of it now so I can't check)...
posted by primethyme at 12:43 PM on July 11, 2016

Oh, and BTW, I think you probably need a paid developer account to get to that part of the downloads area.
posted by primethyme at 12:44 PM on July 11, 2016

If you're close to an Apple Store, you should be able to set up a Genius Bar appointment and have them install it. Back up your data before the appointment.
posted by bluloo at 12:47 PM on July 11, 2016

Response by poster: Sorry forgot a few details, and to answer the questions -

1) I did not ever download Mavericks. I am usually fine with old hardware and software, but it's the iOS situation that is forcing my hand. In the last two years, I got a new iPhone and a new iPad, which are great, but they don't work with 10.6.8.

2) I haven't tried to install CS 5 on El Capitan. I could try that on the partition and just see what happens, I guess.

3) If I say I am an Apple Developer, just as an individual, will that change my account in any significant way? My wife and daughter use my Apple ID as well, so I don't want to make it weird just to get Mavericks.
posted by Slothrop at 12:48 PM on July 11, 2016

In theory you can run CS5 on El Capitan by changing the Java Runtime Environment. It's kind of a pain in the ass, and it may create a security risk, but the problem appears to be Apple running its own JRE fork with El Capitan, while the main version (from Oracle/Sun) will still let you use CS5.

If you can't find Mavericks in the app store, my next call would be to an Apple store to see if the geniuses there can help you load it. I can confirm that CS5 works fine on Mavericks, and it also works fine on Yosemite. (Not wanting to install a new JRE is what has prevented me from getting El Capitan. I had to do it once for some terrible work-related software on Mavericks and it was kinda a pain.
posted by klangklangston at 1:14 PM on July 11, 2016

I'm a daily CS5 user and I've run it without any issues whatsoever on Mavericks, Yosemite and El Capitan.
posted by humboldt32 at 2:05 PM on July 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

I experienced some crashing in CS5 when I upgraded to El Capitan. I was restoring my computer to a new machine from my backups. I had to go in and change couple extensions in the guts of CS5 when I moved over to El Capitan. I followed the instructions here, but I use it every week and haven't experienced any crashing since. *shrugs*
posted by furnace.heart at 3:37 PM on July 11, 2016

Response by poster: So, I installed CS 5 on my El Capitan partition. I downloaded the Java 6 restore from Apple available at this link. klang, Apple has made it pretty easy to go back to Java 6, although El Cap is the last OS they will do it for they say. I just downloaded the disk image from the link and installed it and I was set.

I have started and quit Illustrator and Photoshop a few times and it seems that they both crash upon quitting, although Illustrator stopped doing it while Photoshop has done it every time.

furnace.heart, I'll follow your link and see if that helps. Thanks!
posted by Slothrop at 5:15 PM on July 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

I too am running CS5 in Yosemite, and there are some parts of CS/CC that I will always be running CS5 for (Bridge CC in particular is completely useless when it's not crashing).
posted by infinitewindow at 5:27 PM on July 11, 2016

I forgot to mention that both Dreamweaver and Photoshop crash on exit. This isn't an issue for me.
posted by humboldt32 at 1:03 AM on July 12, 2016

Response by poster: I am going to try to get some time to do further testing today, but it looks like furnace.heart's link worked to fix the crashing! I launched Photoshop last night and worked in it some. When I quit it did not crash for the first time. I am only using Photoshop and Illustrator so far... Thank you all! This has been great to have some progress on my upgrade path.
posted by Slothrop at 4:29 AM on July 12, 2016 [1 favorite]

Just as a follow-up, did you ever try running anything else from the suite? InDesign?
posted by klangklangston at 11:26 AM on March 16, 2017

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