May 16, 2007
FreeHand no longer updated; moving to Illustrator
After a long and storied career, Adobe (neé Altsys, Aldus, and Macromedia) FreeHand has reached the end of its development road. The application has not been revised since Macromedia released MX nearly four years ago, after which the company removed FreeHand from the Studio product line. Adobe has created an FAQ (PDF) that explains the details of the decision not to rev FreeHand, talks about Illustrator CS3 features added to make FreeHand users more comfortable, and more. [Note: The official product pages aren’t all updated yet; hence my posting this info on the blog.] Here are the highlights:
Adobe and FreeHand
Adobe does not plan to develop and deliver any new feature-based releases of FreeHand, or to deliver patches or updates for new operating systems or hardware. Adobe will, however, continue to sell FreeHand MX, and will offer technical and customer support according to our support policies.
FreeHand Upgrade Path
A special upgrade to Illustrator CS3 is available to all registered owners of FreeHand for $199 U.S. This upgrade is available worldwide through the Adobe Store and through the Channel. There is no direct FreeHand to Creative Suite 3 upgrade, but FreeHand owners who also own Adobe or Macromedia products that are eligible for upgrade to the Suite can use that path to move to the Suite.
Support for Customers Making the Move
A number of materials are available at no cost to help customers make the move from FreeHand to Illustrator. All of these materials can be found on the Switch to Illustrator pages on Adobe.com and on the Illustrator Design Center.
FreeHand to Illustrator Migration Guide—available as a PDF and in printed form.
Targeted to designers and illustrators, this four-color manual provides a graphical comparison of the FreeHand and Illustrator workspaces, along with differences in terminology, features, and functions between the two applications.
Migrating from FreeHand to Illustrator: A technical resource—PDF format
Designed for production managers, IT managers and designers, this technical resource provides the best ways to move legacy FreeHand content into Illustrator, handle different file formats, outputting files, and other information.
Migrating from FreeHand to Illustrator with Mordy Golding—(video training)
Video training produced by lynda.com. The CS3 update to this series is completed and will be available shortly.