Uninstalling A Bootleg Copy of Photoshop CS3 (Mac)
May 20, 2008 9:44 AM   Subscribe

I am trying to help a friend remove a bootleg copy of Photoshop CS3 from her iMac (Mac OSX 10.4.something) so she can install a legit version she purchased. The legit copy thinks that Photoshop is already installed and won't install itself.

She deleted every file with the term "CS3" in it (including quite a few she didn't need to delete) prior to asking me for help. I tried using the Adobe Remover utility, but it wouldn't work because she had removed some of the necessary files.

Obviously, there is some file or setting that remains that tells the installer what is or isn't on the machine already, even though she did get rid of the application. How do I find and delete/modify this so that we can proceed with installing the legit copy?
posted by briank to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Try using Adobe's CS3Clean.
posted by zsazsa at 9:51 AM on May 20, 2008 [1 favorite]

If CS3Clean doesn't work, you can always reinstall the bootleg copy (restoring needed files), then proceed to use the uninstaller and other removal utilities.
posted by truex at 9:57 AM on May 20, 2008

AppCleaner is an essential (and free) OS X utility to have. Even if you lose original Uninstallers, it will wipe the computer clean of any files (hidden or not) associated with a program you want to get rid of.
posted by self at 10:00 AM on May 20, 2008

The preference files are, most likely, the culprit.

In the finder, go to your hard drive, then to library, then to preferences. In here, delete every .plist file that is associated with adobe photoshop CS3.

Repeat the deletion process in the user>library>preferences folder as well.

Finally, empty your trash.

"Self" mentioned Applcleaner, and this program, like others, accomplishes the same thing that you will now have to do manually.

Hope this helps!
posted by mahoganyslide at 10:58 AM on May 20, 2008

For future reference, the CS3 programs want you to use their uninstallers. It's unintuitive and goes against the "Apple way," but there it is.
posted by svolix at 11:30 AM on May 20, 2008 [1 favorite]

Trashing prefs won't work. You have to use the CS3 Uninstaller. Look for it in your Utilities dir.
posted by BorgLove at 1:49 PM on May 20, 2008

This guide was written for the beta version of (Photoshop) CS3, but it does list several file locations that should be deleted manually.
posted by O9scar at 7:51 PM on May 20, 2008

If all the files she deleted are still in the trash, make a new folder on the desktop and drag them there. Then try to use the photoshop uninstaller. I think that's what I did when I had a similar situation...
posted by alitorbati at 8:59 PM on May 20, 2008

This exact thing happened to me except it wasn't a bootleg copy, I had used a trial and then later bought the full suite but it showed Photoshop as already installed even though I had dragged it to trash. Even reinstalling and then using the Adobe uninstallers were no help. In my case I am almost certain I ended up uninstalling everything and then going to HD/Library/Preferences and removing all references to adobe, photoshop, etc. Make sure you empty your trash too.
posted by genial at 5:42 AM on May 21, 2008

Response by poster: CS3Clean worked perfectly, and now my friend is too legit to quit.
posted by briank at 6:21 PM on June 2, 2008

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