by infinite_resolution


February 5, 2010

Enabling Editable Crop Marks Filter in AICS4

The Crop Marks filter is now available for download for those AICS4 customers who wished the CS3 Crop Marks functionality in CS4. This will enable the CS3 crop-marks functionality in CS4 but the CS4’s Crop Marks Effects functionality will not work with editable Crop Marks.

The filters are available at

For Mac filter go here.
For Windows filter find it here.

Here are the instructions to install and use this filter:

1. Quit Illustrator CS4, if it is running.
2. Remove the Crop Marks.aip plug-in from the Illustrator Filters folder (save a copy of this plug-in separately if you wish to use the Crop Marks effect in the future). It is located at Adobe Illustrator _CS4/Plug-ins/Illustrator Filters.
3. Download the provided CS3 Crop Marks plug-in to any accessible location on your computer (such as the desktop) and uncompress/extract the contents.
4. Place the Crop Marks.aip plug-in inside the Illustrator Filters folder (same path as in step 2).
5. Delete the Illustrator preferences. The Illustrator preferences file is located at Users\\Library\Preferences\Adobe Illustrator CS4 Settings.
6. Relaunch Illustrator CS4. The filter will be available at Object > Filters > Create > Crop Marks.
7. If the filter is not available, check to see if you placed the plug-in in the correct folder.

Important points to note:

• After switching to the Illustrator CS3 Crop Marks filter the Illustrator CS4 Crop Marks effect will not be available. Opening any Illustrator CS4 files that contain objects with the Crop Marks effect created using the Illustrator CS4 Crop Marks effect will require expanding the object to proceed with further editing. This is a standard Illustrator behavior when a plug-in is missing.
• If you wish to get the CS4 Crop Marks effect back, you just need to switch back to the original CS4 Crop Marks effect plug-in following the same steps and deleting preferences before restarting the application (resetting preferences is essential every time the Plug-in folder is modified).
• When reinstalling Illustrator CS4, you will need to perform the above steps again to install the Illustrator CS3 Crop Marks filter.

-Anil Ahuja
(Illustrator Team)


  • By Mohit Dhiman - 8:36 PM on August 12, 2010  

    Thank you very much, i have been looking for this tutorial from a long time. You have helped me a lot. Thank you again.

  • By Tom - 2:26 PM on August 18, 2010  

    The above process is not entirely correct. Actually, in AiCS5, you can have both plug-in’s available at the same time. The reason for this is that the plug-in’s are not named the same so one will not “replace” the other. In AiCS3, the plug in is named “CropMarks.aip”, in AiCS5, the plug-in is named “Crop Marks.aip” (with a space in the name). Adding the AiCS3 version of the plug-in will add the AiCS3 Crop Mark functionality to AiCS5, but it will be located in a different place and it works a bit differently.

    In AiCS3 you had the option of using your document setup size to create a “Crop Area” which created crop marks that were not editable, then you could release the “Crop Area” and get a box that is the same size as your document setup, then apply the “Crop Marks” filter to create the editable crop marks.

    In AiCS5, you need to create a box of the size of your document setup and apply the filter. The filter is located under Object-Filters-Create-Crop Marks. Now you will have editable crop marks in Registration color. The original AiCS5 plug-in also works, but it requires you to “Expand Appearance” in order to make them editable plus it groups them with the box that created them which you may not want.

    I hope this helps to clarify.

  • By smarDsign - 12:21 PM on November 14, 2010  

    Thanks for the clarification Tom

  • By Miles - 5:58 PM on December 1, 2011  

    I could not find the fifth step in this process. “5. Delete the Illustrator preferences. The Illustrator preferences file is located at Users\\Library\Preferences\Adobe Illustrator CS4 Settings.”

    Am I missing something? I’m on Windows 7.


    • By Neeraj Nandkeolyar - 12:26 AM on December 2, 2011  

      On Win7 the location is different.

      [Drive]:\Users\[username]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Adobe Illustrator CS4 Settings

      You would need to enable visibility of hidden folder to reach this location.

      Hope this helps.

      – Neeraj

  • By Miles - 12:25 PM on December 2, 2011  

    I actually searched around and found a solution to my step 5 problem:

    While launching Illustrator CS4, you can hold down Shift+Ctrl+Alt and that will delete/reset Illustrator preferences.

    Much easier than searching the HD for the right folder.

  • By Nalin - 8:28 AM on October 27, 2012  

    Very Easy to Work with this

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