I purchased Creative Suite 5.5 Design Standard for Mac on eBay and the applications have installed and updated. Each of the three main applications (Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop) prompted me for my Adobe ID when I first opened them after installation. All 3 apps have the "Deactivate..." option under the Help menu item, so I assume that means they've activated.
When I log into my Adobe ID account and try to enter the serial number to register the product I get the message "This serial number is already in use". I plan on contacting Adobe through the chat function but anticipate a long wait. If you can help answer any of the following questions I would be most grateful. The bottom line is, I just want to be able to use the 3 main apps without any problems.
1. Since the product has activated on my Mac but cannot be registered, does this indicate that the previous owner most likely did deactivate the software but did not submit a transfer of ownership form to Adobe?
2. Since this is older unsupported software, and I do have the installation DVDs and what appears to be a valid serial number, do I stand to gain anything by having the software registered? Or, put another way, as long as it stays activated and I can use it, am I out anything if I can't clear up the registration issue?
Thanks in advance for any insight you can provide. I appreciate your time.
1) Possibly. Buying any software from ebay is a WKrap Shoot. Usually what you get is WKrap.
2) No and No.
You are now Pirating software, simple fact.
If you have the same issue as I have, you may find a good answer here:
This seems more appropriate rather than assuming that I have pirated software.
As confirmed by you below you are using Adobe software that is Registered to someone else, Not You.
That is using pirated software. No matter what you paid for it or where you got it.
Best of luck to you.
After a conversation with Adobe through chat, they confirmed what I found in another post: you can only register a product once. The original owner of the software registered the software with Adobe many years ago and it is still registered to their account. But Adobe also confirmed for me that, although they cannot change the registration, the lack of registration will not affect the activation of the software. It will not be deactivated because you have not registered the software. Since Adobe no longer supports this older software it's not clear to me what anyone would stand to gain by having it registered anyway. I hope this helps anyone else who has questions about registration vs. activation of old unsupported Adobe software.
Activation is essential as it allows you to use the software. Unactivated software stops working when the trial ends.
Registration is not essential. It merely associates you with the serial number in case you need support. However, discontinued software is unsupported. So it's a moot point.
As of 2020, activation and registration servers for CS1, CS2 and CS3 are dead & gone. It's impossible to activate the software.
CS4, CS5 and CS6 are on life support but can still be activated if you have an older OS and the original media (disks or downloads) obtained at purchase along with a matching legitimate serial number. NOTE: Use unsupported software at your own risk.
Failing that, you would need a PAID Creative Cloud subscription:
Thanks for your reply. That's exactly the information I was looking for: a good explanation of registration versus activation. I have a follow-up question that I'm hoping you can answer. What will happen in the near future when Adobe shuts down the activation servers for CS4, CS5 and CS6? When that happens, assuming that I have the software still installed and it's running properly, will it somehow become automatically deactivated? Or can I continue using it?
My understanding is that if Adobe shuts down the activation server and then I have a hard drive failure or some other need to re-install the software then I'm completely out of luck, and I can live with that scenario. But what concerns me is if there's some kind of automatic deactivation of the software after Adobe shuts down the activation servers.
For what it's worth, I have nothing against paying for Creative Cloud. It's priced very reasonably. It's just that I have an older laptop (MacBook Pro, Early 2013) and an older OS (El Capitan). I tried installing Photoshop CC2018 and the cooling fan in the laptop went into turbo mode and would not shut off. Creative Suite 5.5 suits my needs and my hardware for the time being.
Some people are still using Creative Suite 3. If/when activation servers go offline, it doesn't effect your already installed & activated software. If you don't upgrade your computer, theoretically you can keep using legacy software forever. But you can't re-install it.
Though of course we don't know Adobe's future plans, and nor do they...