Free Creative Suite downloads? Not so fast, says Adobe

Adobe offers free downloads of Creative Suite 2 - but says they're only meant for existing customers

Stewart Mitchell
8 Jan 2013

Adobe has moved to clarify its position over an apparent Creative Suite giveaway that has caused confusion for would-be downloaders.

In short, the company says it isn't giving away older versions of the Creative Suite Premium Plus from 2005, despite the fact that it is available for download with no activation servers validating copies of the software.

The company says the confusion stems from a technical problem, which forced it to make copies of Creative Suite 2 available for download from its website, along with valid serial numbers to use with the software. The suite includes software such as Photoshop, InDesign and Premiere Pro.

You are only legally entitled to download and install with that serial number if you have a valid license to the product

"Adobe disabled the activation server for CS2 products and Acrobat 7 because of a technical glitch," the company said in a statement. "These products were released over seven years ago and do not run on many modern operating systems."

The documentation lists the software as working with Windows 2000 and Windows XP, as well as Mac OS X v.10.2.8 to v.10.3.8.

The download potential was quickly circulated by numerous websites, including our Breakfast Briefing, suggesting the company was offering free software.

Adobe has since responded to the rumours that anyone could download the software, saying that although the software is available it is only intended for existing customers, and that anyone else downloading the software would be doing so illegally.

"Adobe is absolutely not providing free copies of CS2," the company said in a post on its forums. "You are only legally entitled to download and install with that serial number if you have a valid license to the product!"

The response was met with disappointment from users who believed the company could afford to make the old versions available without affecting sales of current versions.

"You've already put CS2 up on the internet for free, with your magic serial number that will work for anyone," posted Matthilio. "The horses are out of the barn, and you can't put them back, so you're going to shoot them instead?"

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