Cannot open EPS files in illustrator

Community Beginner ,
Oct 27, 2013 Oct 27, 2013

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I am running illustrator CS6 16.0.4 on an iMac (new). I get the following error when trying to open some EPS files "can't open this illustrator file. the file was generated with a newer version of illustrator and cannot be opened. Please resave in a format compatible with your version of illustrator". As far as I can see I am running the latest version of illustrator and have updated everything that is available. I am having to get the files resaved in older versions to open

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Community Expert ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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If you open the file with a Text Editor, what are the first few lines?

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New Here ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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ShowLogo_noBox.epsEPSPART5 Ωä ì@ÅÅ?î≈–”∆ R˜ r˜ ∆ˇˇ%!PS-Adobe-3.1 EPSF-3.0

%ADO_DSC_Encoding: MacOS Roman

%%Title: ShowLogo_noBox.eps

%%Creator: Adobe Illustrator(R) 16.0

%%For: jeffk

%%CreationDate: 5/22/14

%%BoundingBox: 0 0 261 79

%%HiResBoundingBox: 0 0 260.9244 78.4415

%%CropBox: 0 0 260.9244 78.4415

%%LanguageLevel: 2

%%DocumentData: Clean7Bit

%ADOBeginClientInjection: DocumentHeader "AI11EPS"

%%AI8_CreatorVersion: 16.0.4

%AI9_PrintingDataBegin

%ADO_BuildNumber: Adobe Illustrator(R) 16.0.4 x691 R agm 4.6676 ct 5.2594

%ADO_ContainsXMP: MainFirst

%AI7_Thumbnail: 128 40 8

%%BeginData: 10110 Hex Bytes

Thank you

TATOMIR PITARIU

tatomir@grapheye.com

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New Here ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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i have just updated illustrator to 16.0.4

still cannot open.

TATOMIR PITARIU

tatomir@grapheye.com

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Community Expert ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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Alright lets try editing this. With the file open In the Text Editing app, delete everything in the first line up to the % sign and then save the file as plain text but with the eps extension. Then try opening in AI.

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New Here ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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Thank you Larry,

I tried and it opens the file as text in illustrator

i saved it out of word as eps.txt and deleted .txt

same from TextEdit

TATOMIR PITARIU

tatomir@grapheye.com

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Community Expert ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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You will need to use something like Notepad or Text Edit, not Word. I should have told you to work on a copy. Do you still have the original file?

Can you load it to Dropbox so I can try?

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New Here ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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Thanks Larry,

here is the link:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/0gxyzkyowb7xu8j/AACxK05yDFnDLEXV42Uz4wBOa?dl=0

i placed 2 peas files with the same problem

TATOMIR PITARIU

tatomir@grapheye.com

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Community Expert ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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I got the EPS file to open in AICS6. Here's a link to a PDF file I was able to save after opening the file

Dropbox - 14_SEMAShowLogo.pdf

and

Dropbox - 14_SEMAShowLogo.eps

The other was too messed up by our earlier fiddling.

If you can you should stop using EPS files and switch to PDF.

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New Here ,
Aug 27, 2014 Aug 27, 2014

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thank you so much Larry.

i have aics6 too, but for some reason i couldn’t open.

i owe you!

all the best and thanks again.

TATOMIR PITARIU

tatomir@grapheye.com

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New Here ,
Jan 06, 2016 Jan 06, 2016

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This Marketing Model will cut their sales... I for one will not use CC... I will go elsewhere with alternatives... This is just a money grab

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New Here ,
May 20, 2015 May 20, 2015

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EPS files do still have transparency with CC, there is an option to have it active still.

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Community Expert ,
May 20, 2015 May 20, 2015

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Zshirley schrieb:

EPS files do still have transparency with CC, there is an option to have it active still.

No. EPS files don't have transparency.

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Community Expert ,
May 20, 2015 May 20, 2015

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Zshirley wrote:

EPS files do still have transparency with CC, there is an option to have it active still.

EPS had never transparency, will never have.

Transparency and PostScript are not compatible.

STOP USING EPS. USE PDF INSTEAD.

See also:

I want to clarify the reasons for the several mentioned problems:

  1. Illustrator saves every Illustrator EPS together with the Illustrator fork of the selected or current version.
  2. EPS flattens transparency. When you place an EPS in any application including Illustrator you get a flattened version of that file without transparency.
  3. When you open an EPS which is saved from Illustrator in the same version or a newer version of Illustrator you get the transparency back, not because it is an EPS as EPS does not support transparency but because the Illustrator fork is included in that file which is used by Illustrator.
  4. You can open an Illustrator EPS and resave as PDF/AI. This will create a file with transparency. This transparency is also alive when you place this file in applications which support transparency, like InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.
  5. When an EPS is saved in a newer AI version either the EPS part is used or it is not possible to open. You get a flattened artwork without transparency.
  6. Illustrator is not a common PDF editor. The same is valid for EPS too. You will encounter the same problems you encounter when you open an non-Illustrator-PDF as you do with a non-Illustrator-EPS.
  7. You can convert any EPS in Adobe Distiller to a PDF. But be aware, even if the EPS has transparency information included in its AI fork, this information is lost by converting via Distiller. A Distiller PDF can not include any form of transparency.
  8. If you choose to convert an EPS in Distiller and you are aware about the transparency issues (as it is not a problem with older EPS or Freehand EPS or Corel EPS) use a setting which include all used fonts (they need to be available), turn off any image compression and image resampling and fit size to EPS content, and avoid any conversion of colors.

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Contributor ,
Mar 06, 2018 Mar 06, 2018

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For true compatibility I suggest to use EMF. You have transparency, color-management and are not dependent on the versioning madness of Adobe.

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Community Expert ,
Mar 06, 2018 Mar 06, 2018

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theking2  schrieb

For true compatibility I suggest to use EMF. You have transparency, color-management and are not dependent on the versioning madness of Adobe.

EMF???

That is a format that relies on Windows system routines.

Using EPS is really not a good idea for most workflows, but so is suggesting EMF as an alternative.

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Contributor ,
Apr 26, 2018 Apr 26, 2018

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Windows system routines rock!

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Contributor ,
Sep 13, 2018 Sep 13, 2018

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We've been using EMF in our (pure  Microsoft Windows) office environment with success. It creates a clean-lean workflow and for the outside world creates awesome PDFs

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Community Expert ,
Aug 28, 2014 Aug 28, 2014

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I want to clarify the reasons for the several mentioned problems:

  1. Illustrator saves every Illustrator EPS together with the Illustrator fork of the selected or current version.
  2. EPS flattens transparency. When you place an EPS in any application including Illustrator you get a flattened version of that file without transparency.
  3. When you open an EPS which is saved from Illustrator in the same version or a newer version of Illustrator you get the transparency back, not because it is an EPS as EPS does not support transparency but because the Illustrator fork is included in that file which is used by Illustrator.
  4. You can open an Illustrator EPS and resave as PDF/AI. This will create a file with transparency. This transparency is also alive when you place this file in applications which support transparency, like InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.
  5. When an EPS is saved in a newer AI version either the EPS part is used or it is not possible to open. You get a flattened artwork without transparency.
  6. Illustrator is not a common PDF editor. The same is valid for EPS too. You will encounter the same problems you encounter when you open an non-Illustrator-PDF as you do with a non-Illustrator-EPS.
  7. You can convert any EPS in Adobe Distiller to a PDF. But be aware, even if the EPS has transparency information included in its AI fork, this information is lost by converting via Distiller. A Distiller PDF can not include any form of transparency.
  8. If you choose to convert an EPS in Distiller and you are aware about the transparency issues (as it is not a problem with older EPS or Freehand EPS or Corel EPS) use a setting which include all used fonts (they need to be available), turn off any image compression and image resampling and fit size to EPS content, and avoid any conversion of colors.

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Enthusiast ,
Aug 28, 2014 Aug 28, 2014

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Or stop using EPS, like all have said here, and step in here and now:=)

You mentioned that you even ask your suppliers to give you EPS, just change your deliverable spec  and you wil have less work to solve all problems later.

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Community Beginner ,
Oct 01, 2014 Oct 01, 2014

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I encountered this issue today when another designer sent us an EPS file from a newer version of AI. We use CS5 and are perfectly happy with the functionality - just because Adobe decides to update their software does not mean the additions they've made have value to us, so we rarely upgrade unless absolutely necessary. The plugins for our equipment aren't always readily compatible with newest version of Adobe products, so sometimes we have to skip a version entirely to avoid shutting the whole shop down.  Also, FWIW we don't always get a say in how files are sent to us. We own a commercial sign shop, and sometimes we have to work with completely mangled files. "Just don't use EPS" isn't always a realistic option when the customer hired a hack to design their logo.

Anyway, here's how we solved this version compatibility problem: Please note we are on a Mac platform. Open the newer EPS files in Preview and then Save As a PDF. Preview will save to a clean version of PDF that is compatible with earlier versions of AI, at least it did for us. I did not test for transparency, but it did a good job of preserving the original file's colors, line weights, and gradients.

For those who might question our logic about upgrades, think about this: Software updates are effectively legalized extortion. If Ticonderoga makes a new updated pencil, that doesn't give them the right to break into your office and snap all your existing pencils in half, but the software industry gets away with this (along with making crazy profits), because "licensing." I flat out refuse to downgrade to a software that requires a monthly tithe to the software gods. Until some feature comes out that we absolutely must have, we'll keep our older machines with CS5 going as long as they run.

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Community Expert ,
May 20, 2015 May 20, 2015

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Stupid workflow. Stop using EPS.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 02, 2017 Jan 02, 2017

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I just ran into the problem so I'm years out of date, but I found this great solution if you haven't seen it: [SOLVED] - Can't OPEN THE ILLUSTRATION - NEWER VERSION ERROR - YouTube

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Community Expert ,
Jan 02, 2017 Jan 02, 2017

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janzky schrieb:

I just ran into the problem so I'm years out of date, but I found this great solution if you haven't seen it: [SOLVED] - Can't OPEN THE ILLUSTRATION - NEWER VERSION ERROR - YouTube

That video just shows you to File > Place the EPS and embed it (as has been mentioned in this thread a couple of times already). And then it shows you a couple of steps that are irrelevant and just way too complicated und completely unneeded.

This method will work. If it doesn't work, there's something wrong with the file anyway.

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Explorer ,
Apr 18, 2017 Apr 18, 2017

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Here is a work-around I used on a Win10 machine. Your results or error messages may vary.

Problem1: Open or try to edit a legacy eps or ai file from a file explorer box and nothing happens.

Problem2: Open AI and then try to open a legacy file from the explorer box and AI locks up (kill it on the task bar or task manager).

Solution that worked for me.

Open Illustrator

From the Illustrator menu, open the legacy file. It should open. I had one from the year 2000 and it opened.

Click File>Save As

Save as .ai or .eps, to overwrite the old file and save it in the newest format

AI will now launch the files correctly without locking up.

To summarize: Only open legacy .ai or .eps files from within the Illustrator File> Open menu and do a SaveAs

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Guest
May 25, 2017 May 25, 2017

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What I do is open it in Preview (the Mac program that opens pictures) and then export it out as a PDF or maybe just save a copy.

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