How do I purchase Adobe Illustrator without a subscription?
There have been no non-subscription options since 2013.
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I can be possible, see how below, depending on the actual version, which may make it impossible to get things to work or keep things working, especially depending on system requirements/compatibility; an old computer/OS is the safest bet.
As I remember it, it ought to be possible with CS6, CS5 (and CS5.5 which is the same as CS5), CS4, and CS2 (with certain additional requirements), as well as pre CS versions as follows:
You can buy an old version legally from someone that has stopped using it, but it is a matter of trust, and luck; maybe best from/through someone you know. A crucial limitation is that if the seller has upgraded, the whole set of original licence and upgrade licences are needed and must be transferred as a whole.
If the serial number has been registered with Adobe, a license transfer is necessary:
Before any (possible waste of time and money on at least one side by) sending of boxes, you could ask for the serial number(s, plural in case of upgrades), then (try to) register:
It may not be the ultimate test of a legal product, because Adobe is continuously weeding out fake
But it can worth trying, and hoping for success on the first (or second) go.
You can also read this:
Edit: And what Doug said while I was trying to find the (hopefully) right words.
Of course I should have appended "...from Adobe" to my comment.
If you put in the effort and have era-appropriate hardware and software, as Jacob suggests, you may be able to acquire a copy.