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Illustrator 2020 keeps crashing on macOS Catalina

Explorer ,
Dec 22, 2019

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So, I just got my new 16" Macbook, i9 processor with 64gb Ram.

Only problem is that Ilustrator now keeps crashing. I don't have any issues with my old 2015 Macbook, or my iMac 5K, only with my new 16" Macbook. Only Illustrator crashes, and it happens at least 4-5 times during a day. No pattern. Latest version of Illustrator and lates version of MacOS.

 

I finally found a solution. It was another user who wrote me a message with a solution that at least worked for me.

I haven't had a crash in 2 days now.

Preference > Performance > uncheck "GPU Performance"

 

I have updated to the Metal Beta, available if you are signed in to Adobe:

https://www.adobeprerelease.com/beta/85A6F544-2705-49BD-8314-DD549C6A1713#

 

In the release note, it says:

 

Illustrator 24.3 Metal Build 3 (Mac Only)

Stability improvements - we believe several crashes are addressed by moving to Metal. (As OpenGL was deprecated – stability issues reported around GPU Rendering should be addressed with Metal support).

 

I would consider that to be an official admission that there is a GPU rendering issue with previous builds of Illustrator, which is what this thread is about.

 

My experience so far with the Metal Beta is that it is stable. It has not crashed at all after several days, whereas the current official release was crashing 15-20 times per day. It's obvious to me that the issue that caused this thread has been resolved in the Metal Beta.

 

However, the Metal Beta has its own issues, albeit much less important ones. I get error messages a few times a day, with a choice to quit or ignore. I have always clicked "ignore" and nothing bad has ever happened.

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Illustrator 2020 keeps crashing on macOS Catalina

Explorer ,
Dec 22, 2019

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So, I just got my new 16" Macbook, i9 processor with 64gb Ram.

Only problem is that Ilustrator now keeps crashing. I don't have any issues with my old 2015 Macbook, or my iMac 5K, only with my new 16" Macbook. Only Illustrator crashes, and it happens at least 4-5 times during a day. No pattern. Latest version of Illustrator and lates version of MacOS.

 

I finally found a solution. It was another user who wrote me a message with a solution that at least worked for me.

I haven't had a crash in 2 days now.

Preference > Performance > uncheck "GPU Performance"

 

I have updated to the Metal Beta, available if you are signed in to Adobe:

https://www.adobeprerelease.com/beta/85A6F544-2705-49BD-8314-DD549C6A1713#

 

In the release note, it says:

 

Illustrator 24.3 Metal Build 3 (Mac Only)

Stability improvements - we believe several crashes are addressed by moving to Metal. (As OpenGL was deprecated – stability issues reported around GPU Rendering should be addressed with Metal support).

 

I would consider that to be an official admission that there is a GPU rendering issue with previous builds of Illustrator, which is what this thread is about.

 

My experience so far with the Metal Beta is that it is stable. It has not crashed at all after several days, whereas the current official release was crashing 15-20 times per day. It's obvious to me that the issue that caused this thread has been resolved in the Metal Beta.

 

However, the Metal Beta has its own issues, albeit much less important ones. I get error messages a few times a day, with a choice to quit or ignore. I have always clicked "ignore" and nothing bad has ever happened.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 22, 2019

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Please tell us version numbers (system and Illustrator)

Is the dictation service in the system turned off?

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Explorer ,
Dec 23, 2019

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Hi Monika,

 

I'm using macOS Catalina (10.15.2) and Illustrator 24.0.1

Not sure what you mean about dictation service? Is that under System Preferences > Keyboard > Dictation?

If yes, then it's off.

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 23, 2019

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Yes, that one.

Can you tell us when Illustrator crashes? Is that when saving or printing?

Where do you save your files? Server, harddisk, synchronized folder?

Do you have a printer set up? Illustrator needs one.

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Explorer ,
Dec 23, 2019

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There are no pattern when it crashes, thats the odd thing. 

I save my files on an external SSD drive (USB-C).

Yes, I have two printers set up. I'm not on a network, so i'm printing over WIFI.

 

I had the exact setup on my old iMac and also my old Macbook, and never had an issue with Illustrator crashing.

 

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 23, 2019

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Which printer is the default one? Illustrator needs access to a printer every time it saves or opens a file as it writes printer information into the file.

Does the network printer have a printer queue? Illustrator doesn't like that.

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Explorer ,
Dec 23, 2019

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I can't remember the name of the printer, and yes it has a printer queue. But again, this is the setup I have used in years without any issues before now.

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 23, 2019

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You can insist that it won't help or you can just give it a try and set up a different printer.

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Explorer ,
Dec 23, 2019

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Sure, I'll give it a try.

Also, I do use an external monitor (LG 34WK95U-W 34" 5K) with my new Macbook pro. It's connected through Thunderbolt 3.

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Adobe Employee ,
Dec 27, 2019

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Hi there,

 

Sorry to hear that Illustrator is crashing unexpectidely. I would like to know if the steps suggested by Monika worked for you, or the issue still persists. If not, please share the crash report by following the steps shared on this help article (https://helpx.adobe.com/in/illustrator/kb/crash-next-steps.html).

While submitting crash report use the same email address, with which you are signed in on this community. This will help us find the crash report and help accordingly. 


Kindly update the discussion if you need further assistance with it.

Thanks,
Srishti

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Explorer ,
Dec 30, 2019

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No, none of the above have helped.

Everytime it crashes, I sent the crash report to you guys with the same email address with which I signed in to this community.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 30, 2019

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Sending the crash report does help them analyze issues, but probably won't help you get your personal issue solved.

 

In order to solve your individual issues the best method is to contact Customer Care: http://helpx.adobe.com/contact.html 

 

You can also try if disconnecting the 3rd monitor helps. Or saving to the internal disk instead of a removable one.

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Explorer ,
Dec 30, 2019

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I did try not using the external monitor, but that didn't help.

I could try to use the internal disk, the problem is that it's small (i bought it like that since I'm using an external harrdrive and internal space is very expensive) and don't have a lot of space, so it's not really a long term solution. But I will try it and see if that helps.

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Explorer ,
Jan 03, 2020

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I tried to save my work on the internal harddrive but that didnt make any difference. Illustrator keeps crashing at least 4-6 times a day.

I really don't understand it. I had no problem with my old 2014 Macbook pro or my iMac 5K. Now I bought the top of the line Macbook pro and now I have to deal with this every day!

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Jan 03, 2020

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Hi,

Illustrator may use internal storage in two places.
One is a Scratch Disk.

Screen Shot 2020-01-03 at 19.58.09.png

The other is a Data Recovery.

Screen Shot 2020-01-03 at 19.56.59.pngHave you changed these to external disks?
What is the free space on the current internal drive?

--
Susumu Iwasaki

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Explorer ,
Jan 03, 2020

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Hi Susumu,

 

Thanks for your reply.

So my Scratch Disks are set to Primary: Startup and Secondary: to the external disk.

Automatically Save Recovery Data Every: is set to 2 minutes and the disk is set to the internal disk.

I have about 470gb internal free disk space and about 1tb free external space.

 

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Jan 03, 2020

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Hi,

If you have 470GB of free space on your internal storage, you don't think there is a problem with Scratch and Recovery.

--
Susumu Iwasaki

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Explorer ,
Jan 03, 2020

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I don't know? I'm not very technical.

But on my old Macbook, I had less storage space and never had a problem.

 

It has crashed 4 times today so far, and I just about had it!

 

I also use Photoshop a lot and never have a problem with Photoshop crashing.

Only Illustrator.

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Explorer ,
Jan 06, 2020

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I notice that a lot of the times it crashes is when I move an object. It can be a small object or a big object, no pattern. (text, vector object or an image)

Also sometimes when I save

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Adobe Employee ,
Jan 07, 2020

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Thanks for sharing the crash report. Please try turning the Rulers (View> Rulers > Hide Rulers) in the document and check if that helps.

 

 

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Explorer ,
Jan 09, 2020

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I've now been testing with hiding rulers and unfortunatley it doesnt make any change. Still keeps crashing 4-6 times a day. Again, it happens a lot when I move an object, but also when I save a document or using the Marquee tool.

 

It's really getting frustrating, because I spent a lot of money on new hardware to get a faster workflow, and instead it done the opposite!

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 09, 2020

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Grupet_69 - 

 

I am having the same issues. Illustrator randomly crashes multiple times a day. I recently bought a new 16 inch Macbook Pro - all sorts of hardware upgrades - in hopes for a faster workflow - but it has also done the exact oppisite. 

 

I tried contracting customer care, and after bout 45 mintues with a guy - he uninstalled and reinstalled illustrator (which I have done a dozen times- and told me it was fixed. It worked for a few hours but now its crashing again.  

 

There must be a bug in the Illustrator software that hasnt been adressed. This is dirving me nuts. Maybe we should try installing and older mac OS? See here: https://helpx.adobe.com/illustrator/kb/illustrator-and-macos-catalina.html

 

What a pain! Ill let you know if I figure anything out.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 09, 2020

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All the same illustrator files run fine on my 2015 Macbook Pro running mac os Mojava

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Explorer ,
Jan 10, 2020

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Hmmm... I'm sorry that you have that issue as well, but I'm kind of glad that I'm not the only one, because that just state that there is a problem.

I'm running Catalina on my old 2014 Macbook pro and I don't have that problem at all. Same with my iMac 5K it also runs Catalina and don't have that issue.

Yes, please let me know if you hear or figure anything out.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 10, 2020

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Please contact Customer Care: http://helpx.adobe.com/contact.html

THis needs to be figured out on your machine.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 11, 2020

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I have exactly the same problem, Illustrator AND Indesign crashing randomly. New MacBook Pro 16 inch, Illustrator 24.0.2. Both programs even crash when running in the background, e.g. while I watch a film. Had a MacBook Pro 2018, also running on Catalina, had no problems at all. That’s why I think is has something to do with the new MacBook. 

If anyone has any solution, I would be grateful.

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Adobe Employee ,
Jan 14, 2020

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We are extremely sorry that it is still not resolved. I have sent you a DM for some details, please check.

 

Regards!

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 15, 2020

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Illustrator still crashing. Sometimes it also randomly gives me an error "cannot generate preview" and then puts the document into outline view. If I try to bring it back to over print preview or any other view and it says "cannot geneate preview" and I need to quite and re-open. 

 

Also, I was just drawing a simple rectangle and I was reciving an errror "the operation cannot complete because there isnt enough memory (RAM) avalible. I have 32gb of ram...should be enough to draw a rectangle. 

 

Crashes are at complete random, there is no pattern. 

 

Driving me nuts, have lost A LOT of work. Most files are recovered fine - but some have not been!!!  What in the world is going on? My work flow has significanly downgraded with this new comptuer.

 

Keep this thread alive as it seems there hasnt been a soultion posted. thanks 

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Explorer ,
Jan 16, 2020

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Still crashes 6-7-8 times a day!

Newest issue I have is that Illustrator isn't overwriting excisting PDF's.

So I make changes in Illustrator, save it as a PDF and say yes to overwrite old PDF with same name and then take me through alle the settings and saves.

Go back to look at the new PDF and it's still the old one.

I found this out after sending a bunch of PDF's to a printer in China and apperently he got all the old PDF's instead of the new and changed ones.

What the heck is going on with this now? Adobe, you have no idea how frustrated I am with you right now.....

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Explorer ,
Jan 21, 2020

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I have the same issue, but it's inconsistent. I save files and everything appears normal, but I discover later on that both the PDF (I "saved as" and the original file are yesterday's version.

Restarting seems to help, and I have not yet had this problem since granting Illustrator full disk access (see my later post on this page).

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New Here ,
Jan 21, 2020

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I also have the same issue, seems every time along with the countless random times when the machine sleeps.

I have also got a 2019 Macbook Pro 16"

Catalina 10.15.2

Adobe Illustrator 24.0.1

Very poor show as its almost unworkable and also loosing alot of unsaved and unrecoverable workings.

 

Please give some answers or guidance 🙂

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 21, 2020

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Same issues as what? There are countless issues in this thread.

The PDF saving has been addressed in version 23.0.3

The Sleep issues might be caused by Catalina. So you have to check your system as well. And then you can contact Customer Care to have them check your Illustrator installation.

Please contact Customer Care: http://helpx.adobe.com/contact.html

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 23, 2020

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I think the last person meant the frequent crashes with no pattern. I have the same setup, it's a problem since always. Mabcook Pro 16" with Catalina 10.15.2 + Illustrator 24.0.3

Day 1, brandnew system. Adobe Cloud softwares installed and updated. Illustrator crashes randomly (wether active or in the background). There's no cache to be clean, there's no custom changes to be reset, it's just factory settings.

 

I noticed Adobe Bridge is doing the same thing, but worse. It won't last open for 5 seconds.

I'm contating Customer Care to see what they can do. Thanks.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 23, 2020

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Did you read the answer by A_C_Swift?

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 23, 2020

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Yeah, I've just tried it. I'll post a feedback tomorrow with the results for Illustrator.

However, it didn't work for Bridge. It still opening and crashing immediately.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 23, 2020

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For Bridge please post in the Bridge forum.

There they know the common issues better.

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Explorer ,
Jan 22, 2020

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TLDR:

After six weeks' use, granting Illustrator full disk access fixed virtually all of the crashes when I was actually using the program.

 

It still crashes several times a day when I'm using another program or when I'm not there. I come back to a message that Illustrator crashed.

 

To grant full disk access, go to System Preferences › Security & Privacy › Privacy › Full Disk Access

  • Click the + button to add Adobe Illustrator.
  • Restart Illustrator.

 

Before this change it was crashing more than 30 times a day while I was actively using it.

 

I can confirm that disabling GPU Performance in the preferences fixes all the crashes, but at the cost of making all the artwork ugly. Not really an option.

 

I have also tried disabling Automatic Graphics Switching in my system preferences but it didn't change anything.

 

Original post:

Yesterday I was using Illustrator all day and it crashed at least 30 times.

 

I have a Macbook Pro 16" (fall 2019) with 32GB RAM and a 1TB SSD.

 

Everything is up todate: Catalina 10.15.2 and Illustrator 24.0.3

 

· · ·

 

Based on this thread, here are all the things I tried:

  • verified that dictation Service is off in keyboard prefs
  • left my wifi-connected printer turned on
  • verified that no external disks or monitors were connected
  • turned off data recovery in Illustrator
  • turned off "optimize file open and save on slow networks"
  • changed "update links automatically" to "ask when modified"
  • hid the rulers
  • changed update links to "manual"
  • gave all permissions on my working folder:

 

 

 

$ chmod -R 777 /Users/Username/Documents/Working\ Folder

 

 

 

 

None of that helped. Illustrator still crashed constantly.

 

Here are a few crash instances:

  • resizing a rectangle over a placed image
  • moving three separate lines of text
  • opening about 12 documents at once
  • while saving one of the 12 documents when they were all open
  • when I wasn't doing anything
  • when I wasn't there

 

I assume that these crashes happen because Illustrator is trying to access files that are now protected because of changes in Catalina.

 

Many files that used to be accessible by default now require disk access to be explicitly granted by the user.

 

However, my previous (2018) Macbook was running up-to-date versions of Catalina and Illustrator and I never had this problem.

 

I believe that the default permissions on a new computer sold with Catalina are different than those of an older Mac that is updated to Catalina.

 

So it wouldn't be surprising if a new buyer of a different model had the same issues.

 

· · ·

 

Finally, I tried granting Illustrator full disk access (see the top of this post), and it seems to have fixed the problem.

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Explorer ,
Mar 04, 2020

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Thanks man. I'm gonna try this and PRAY it helps. I'm also having this same issue occasionally in Acrobat (and more rarely in Indesign, not Photoshop tho...I don't believe). Do we think granting full disk access to those programs would help that as well? Suppose it can't hurt....   

 

I loved one of their other suggestions: "Turn off rulers". Hahahaha, yeah, I kinda need those...on occasion. 😛

 

Thanks and lets hope this works! 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 04, 2020

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"I loved one of their other suggestions: "Turn off rulers". Hahahaha, yeah, I kinda need those...on occasion. 😛"

 

You don't understand debugging.

If there are issues, the first thing is to try and locate where it is. Trying out a lot of different (sometimes stupid things) is necessary to do that, because the cause of the issue is not the same for everyone and even if you and your coworkers all experience the issue, that doesn't mean everyone else has it too.

 

Turning off important functionality is not meant for solving the issue permanently. It only help with debugging and in case some time is needed to fix an issue, it might help you to get the application to work at all. I assume you would always prefer a partly working app to one that doesn't even launch, won't you?

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Explorer ,
Mar 04, 2020

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Hmmm...

Your right, I guess I dont' understand debugging. What I DO understand is that, like SO MANY OTHERS here the program crashes constantly now, when it didn't previously. And when asked to turn off a key feature of the program (like GPU Perfromance or the ability to use RULERS), in a way, that actually DOES solve the crashing problem, because it quickly becomes a program I no longer use and transition to a competitor. Cant' crash if it's not running at all.

Thanks for insight on debugging tho.

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New Here ,
Jul 12, 2020

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I fee your frustration but what you seem to have not figured out is DO NOT UPDATE ADOBE until they've released the third round of debugging. 

unless you don't mind being what is essentially a beta tester. Ever since the general adoption of iterative releases of software, we get to try out new features while they sort out unexpected bugs. With Apple doing the same thing, software has to scramble to keep up. It's that or you wait a year or more for cool features. I prefer the new approach. 

This is also the reason they have steps to install older version of their software which allows you to do critical workflow on the older version while trying out new tools and finding bugs in the new system. 

maybe change your workflow to allow for this iterative process so you don't lose work time?

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 12, 2020

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Older versions are also crashing on the Macbook Pro 16" 2019.

They clearly can't configure the application for the new GPUs Apple are using.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 23, 2020

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Glad I'm not alone with this problem.

 

The worst part is that they always do the same diagnostic over and over and try to say a third-party application is the problem.

 

What are the specs of your MacBook Pro ? Here are mine :

MacBook Pro (16-inch, 2019)

Catalina 10.15.2 (19C57)

2.6 GHz 6-Core Intel Core i7

64 GB 2667 MHz DDR4

AMD Radeon Pro 5500M 4 GB

Intel UHD Graphics 630 1536 MB

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 24, 2020

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Please contact Customer Care: http://helpx.adobe.com/contact.html

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 24, 2020

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I'm already with them. As of now, A_C__Swift solution seems to help. Will be updating after working more with that solution. And I already gave Customer Cares the control to my computer several times and it is always the same steps and it is going nowhere.

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Explorer ,
Jan 24, 2020

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Excatly, having someone from customer care take over your computer doesn't do anything. I tried that with other issues, and it never goes anywhere, so that's actually why i hasn't even contacted customer care with this issue.

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Explorer ,
Jan 24, 2020

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My setup is:

 

Macbook Pro (16", 2019)

Catalina 10.15.2

2.3 GHz 8-core Intel Core i9

64 GB 2667 MHz DDR4

AMD Radeon Pro 5500M 8 GB

Intel UHD Graphics 630 1536 MB

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 24, 2020

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I'm also having the same problem related here by other users and my configuration is pretty much the same...

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Community Beginner ,
Mar 17, 2020

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same problem, same macbook

Illustrator /photoshop / indesign crashes constantly every day 

on activity monitor there are always more than 4GB RAM load even if Im not working on photoshop at all.

App is just open..

its more than horrible work nowadays

1hour call with apple care doesnt help

please hepl us!

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Adobe Employee ,
Mar 24, 2020

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Hi there,

 

Sorry about this. Did you try the steps shared above? Also, please do share the following information:

  • OS and version of Illustrator/InDesign/ Photoshop.
  • Screenshot of Activity Monitor.
  • Graphic card installed on the machine.
  • When did this start happening? Are there any recent changes made to your system? For example, any antivirus, system updates or web extensions installed recently.

 

I would also request if you could create a new thread and post all this information there. Issues mentioned above are specific to Illustrator. 

 

Regards,

Srishti

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 15, 2020

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Hello all,

 

I have exact same problem.

macOS Catalina, brand new 16" MacBook Pro, latest Illustrator, unexpectedly quits on the regular. 

2.4 GHz 8-Core Intel Core i9

32 GB 2667 MHz DDR4

AMD Radeon Pro 5500M 8 GB

Intel UHD Graphics 630 1536 MB

Crashes randomly, seems to happen when I come back to illustrator screen after being in Photoshop or other programs, but it's mostly random, not linked to a specific task.

I feel all your pain, know you are not alone, let's hope they find the bug. It is frustrating to have a new computer and working slower.

 

Hanging in there!

BC

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 15, 2020

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Lets keep this going for them to find a real solution instead of trying to
kill our 4k machines...

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