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Opening Freehand 8 Files

Community Beginner ,
May 10, 2021 May 10, 2021

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This discussion pops up every so often, but I don't see any recent posts regarding what I'm trying to do, so hopefully it's an okay time to update this sort of info, if anyone can help.

Without getting into the use of third party software, can anyone confirm a chain of versions and appropriate/compatible Mac OS's that can get me from Freehand 8 files to the current CC Illustrator?
I have a few (very) old Mac's, and I think the old versions of Freehand/Illustrator are available (on eBay, etc). I'd be willing to buy what I need to convert from one version to the next until I'm current. 
So, I need to know, for example, the last software that opened Freehand 8 files, and what it ran on. And on from there...
Alternatively, perhaps there's someone out there doing these conversions as a paid sevice?
Any help or recommendations would be much appreciated.
Thanks!

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How to, Import and export

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 10, 2021 May 10, 2021

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Yes, there's the Tensai plugin:

 

https://www.tensai.co.uk/ai/plugins.php

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Community Beginner ,
May 10, 2021 May 10, 2021

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Thanks for the info and quick reply. I may end up going that route.

However, I was wondering about getting this done without the third party plug in, as I have heard mixed reviews.

For example, from User1 on this forum, from Jan 2020:

 

"I originally used Tensai AI Plugins to convert my files. It's a hit and miss situation. Some of the .fh9 files were too old or complex to convert. My best solution was found in my old macs lying in my garage, luckily It hadn't been updated since 0S9."
https://illustrator.uservoice.com/forums/333657-illustrator-desktop-feature-requests/suggestions/336...

 

Are there any updates on success (or failure) with Tensai?
Also, I'd still like to hear if anyone can confirm which versions I'd need to convert up to current, or if anyone is doing these types of conversions.

Thanks again!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 10, 2021 May 10, 2021

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Jacob provides a rundown of what can open what here. Obviously, disregard the bit about the CS5 trial, which I don't think even ProDesignTools has anymore:

 

https://community.adobe.com/t5/illustrator/freehand-to-iilustrator/m-p/8731762#M32192

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 10, 2021 May 10, 2021

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About how many FreeHand files are you talking?

If the number is not too great, I may do the conversion for you without charging (I would – of course– appreciate if you were willing to donate to a children's hospice).

 

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Community Beginner ,
May 10, 2021 May 10, 2021

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Thanks for the generous offer, Kurt.

I have about 70-75 files in total, each formated to fit an 8.5 x 11 piece of paper, if that gives you a sense of the size of the project. They are not large file sizes.

I think they are "simple" files, but I can't say for sure. For some of them I had imported some graphics and used fonts from music notation software. I vaguely remember those being a little fussy to work with, but maybe not. 

If that number (70-75) is high:
Perhaps I could send a couple to see how they transfer?
I might consider trying Tensai, and perhaps taking you up on your offer if just a few files don't convert well?
Certainly some payment or donation sounds fair.

I'd be happy to hear whatever you're comfortable with.

Thanks again!

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New Here ,
Oct 07, 2021 Oct 07, 2021

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I personally have thousands of old designs I have been trying to find ways to convert for years. Most of my files are fh8 or fh11

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 07, 2021 Oct 07, 2021

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The tensai plugin might be worth it.

The tensai people are also offering file conversion services (not for free of course).

 

And then with version 8 and higher you can try using Scribus for coversion. It's free.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 10, 2021 May 10, 2021

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Yes, feel free to send me a couple of sample FreeHand files.

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 07, 2021 Oct 07, 2021

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Just a note: AFI has never sent me some sample FreeHand files in this context.

 

Reliably converting thousands of files is a different thing, of course. And it will not be something that can be done for free.

 

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