So, I’ve managed to get the new computer up and running. Everything is plugged in and all the hardware seems to be working correctly. Now begins the slow tedious check of the software systems. First priority – make sure Photoshop runs! OK… the first thing to keep in mind is that Photoshop is activated to run on a specific computer – its “keyed” to the hardware. In order to activate it on a new system you have to de-activate it on the old system. This is fairly simple. Launch Photoshop on the old system and under the help menu select “Deactivate…” this will shut down Photoshop on the old system so you can activate it on the new system. I’m happy to report that this went exactly as expected on the new iMac. Photoshop was activated with no problem and I’ve been using it without incident ever since.

I upgraded my laptop to Snow Leopard around the same but it did not go so smoothly. There should not have been an issue with the laptop because I have been running Photoshop on it and I wasn’t changing the hardware – just upgrading the operating system. In retrospect, I think it would have been smart to deactivate it and then reactivate after upgrading. I opted to do a clean install by formatting the hard drive and installing the OS fresh then migrating my data from a backup hard drive. Apparently some of the licensing files got moderately screwed up because I could not run Photoshop on the new system without encountering an error message after Photoshop abruptly quit.Restarting the computer did nothing to solve the problem so I dutifully contacted Adobe technical support. After a short wait on the phone I reached our “man in Bombay” who very politely read off from a list of solutions – he then helpfully sent me an email with a link to a “TechNote” on Adobe’s website – out of the goodness of my heart, I am giving this to you here so you don’t have to suffer the indignation:

There is a long table of possible solutions which, of course, I tried in sequence and, of course, the last item finally worked to solve the problem. Apparently one has to rename the FLEXnet folder – on the Mac- /Library/Preferences/FLEXnet Publisher/FLEXnet folder – to FLEXnetold

This worked for me but at least one person had to delete the folder altogether in order to get it to work.

I’m tempted here to go off on a rant about the evils of Adobe’s licensing system but I’ll hold my tongue because it will no doubt have exactly zero impact on Adobe’s continued reliance on customer punishing anti-piracy schemes…

Anyway, this little adventure has taught me to be more vigilante in activating and deactivating software intelligently during the upgrade process. Happily, I haven’t encountered any issues with Lightroom or any other software I rely on day to day. It is perhaps important to note here that certain 3rd party Plugins will not run in Snow Leopard and new updated versions will have to be installed – OnOne software has an issue with the licensing activation under Snow Leopard and they’ve placed a compatibility not about this on their web site:

If you really need 3rd party Plugins to do your work you should probably hold off upgrading until updates are in place. This will probably not be long and it seems like most software is being rapidly patched for compatibility with Snow Leopard. Here is a page with a list of compatible software on the Macintouch website:

My saga continues but, for the most part, I’m a happy camper. My new iMac is way faster than my old Tower and it cost less than half what I spent on the old system. I’ve done a lot of necessary house cleaning and reorganized my archives, upgraded my hard drives and simplified my file organization. I’m still encountering a few glitches here and there mostly when I attempt to run some software that I haven’t upgraded in a while but really, everything is running pretty smooth right now.

Final Note:

Some time has passed since I originally wrote this and by now software glitches with Snow Leopard are mostly a thing of the past. Just about all Plug-ins have now been upgraded to work with the new operating system so, for the time being, this headache is over. Now we have a new version of Photoshop and a new version of Lightroom to consider… I’ll post some observations about this new software soon so stay tuned!