Can AI open Macromedia Freehand documents?

Explorer ,
Jun 24, 2020

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Beginning an update to our systems and I have been migrating files from some older workstations. I noticed a few Freehand files, something I have a little experience with and I got to thinking, and as I've never attempted this, can AI open FH files or would I have to export as PDFs from FH?

I'm not likely to ever have to do this but it could come up.

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Draw and design, Import and export, Print and publish

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1 Correct Answer

Adobe Community Professional , Jun 24, 2020
Monika Gause Adobe Community Professional , Jun 24, 2020
The current version cannot open FH files. Version CS5 still can There's also a plugin available (from tensai.co.uk) that can - I'm not sure if it can be installed in Illustrator 24.2   Exporting a PDF from FreeHand is the worst idea (unless those files are just simple paths), since FreeHand only supports ancients PDF versions.   If you want, zip those files and upload them to Dropbox or the like. I could give them a ride in Illustrator CS5.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 24, 2020

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The current version cannot open FH files.

Version CS5 still can

There's also a plugin available (from tensai.co.uk) that can - I'm not sure if it can be installed in Illustrator 24.2

 

Exporting a PDF from FreeHand is the worst idea (unless those files are just simple paths), since FreeHand only supports ancients PDF versions.

 

If you want, zip those files and upload them to Dropbox or the like. I could give them a ride in Illustrator CS5.

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Explorer ,
Jun 24, 2020

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Appreciate the offer Monika but we still have a workstation with FH and some older AI versions too. I can open the files there, its a Power Mac and not as young as it used to be. All the files are just being archived for now.

I did try it myself just for giggles and you are absolutely correct, it doesn't open them in AI2020.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 24, 2020

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If you choose to go the export route in FreeHand, I'd recommend to export as .ai.

 

FreeHand MX was (is) able to export to the .ai file format at least to version AI 7. The export quality is, well, somehow not bad …

 

Don't go the .pdf route (or only if you know what you are doing and what you are willing to accept).

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New Here ,
Dec 07, 2020

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Hello Monika, is that offer still open to convert some .fh5 files? 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 08, 2020

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Sorry, just noticed your post today.

 

I can try if I can get them through FreeHand 7 and then into Illustrator.

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New Here ,
Dec 09, 2020

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Hi Monika,

I was able to find a copy of Macromedia Freehand MX and was able to open and export the .fh5 files. 

 

How generous of you to respond and offer your help. Those files were from a music CD project I designed and the band wants to pursue a re-release of the content. 

 

Cheers,
Gregg

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 09, 2020

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Hi Gregg,

if you still need help, I'll be happy to give it a try.

I can directly import FH7 to FH11 files. but could also work with the FH5 files.

 I don't think I still have a working copy of Illustrator CS2 unfortunately, which would allow a direct import of FH5 - but would need to check that.

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