Adobe Installation and Licensing

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Jan 8, 2010

Closing Firefox to Install Adobe Creative Suite

Customers have stated very clearly that they do not want to close other applications while installing Adobe software. For some applications, we really do have to quit those processes in order to successfully install due to locks on system resources, etc. This may be acceptable with respect to closing other Adobe software; but, it isn’t acceptable when users have to close critical tools such as browsers.
We had really hoped to improve this aspect of our installers in the coming CS releases. We have made some inroads on our upcoming installers; but, there still are some limitations. Most importantly, there are two cases where we still need browsers to close before we can successfully finish installation:
(1) When installing plugins for various browsers we need those browsers to quit. This usually happens when installing a product that also installs the Flash Player. Such products include Flash Pro and any Creative Suite that includes Flash Pro in its distribution. Fireworks also deploys some browser plugins and needs browsers to quit.
(2) When installing some color settings files we need Firefox 3.0 to quit. Firefox 3.0 holds a lock on system color files while executing. We deploy versions of these same color files and cannot do so when Firefox has a lock on them. This was fixed with Firefox 3.5; however, there are still 14.5% of our user base using a version of Firefox prior to Firefox 3.5. Complicating this fact is that the process name for Firefox has no indication of version number. So we will still require Firefox to quit before installing upcoming Adobe product releases. Once more users have shifted to Firefox 3.5+ we will be able to remove this obstacle.
We have at least addressed one of the worst consequences of needing to close browsers while deploying by limiting the amount of time the browser needs to be down. With upcoming CS releases non-Adobe conflicting processes can remain open throughout most of the installation process. We cache any locked files until the very end of the install process. At that point a warning dialog is provided to the user to close conflicting processes such as browsers for the last minute or so of installing these few remaining, cached files. This will allow users to keep open their browsers for the vast majority of time consumed in deploying. Silent deployments will, of course, not have such a warning dialog and so will need the browsers to be down during the entirety of the deployment.
This all applies to future Adobe Creative Suite retail releases. CS3 and CS4 installation will not receive the changes mentioned above and will still need browsers to quit.

Deployment Tips


  • By John C. Welch - 11:52 AM on January 8, 2010   Reply

    Eric, caching is okay, but on a silent install, forcing browsers to be down will end up being a non-starter, especially since the idea is the user isn’t bothered by the install at all. The locked file thing is a pain, but could be taken care of on a restart/login. Requiring a browser to quit to update a plugin is kind of silly, since the worst consequence might be that a site doesn’t work right, which would then be fixed by a voluntary browser restart on the user’s part.
    Until browsers get better about dynamically reloading plugins, there’s no perfect answer, but the “your browser must be down for the entire install”, especially considering how long that can take is really a bad idea.

  • By senocular - 1:24 PM on January 8, 2010   Reply

    Plugin installation should be optional. Flash Pro users, for example, usually already have the correct debugger plugin already installed.

    • By Phool - 12:51 PM on September 5, 2011   Reply

      Adobe Flash player not working in firefox and showing encountered error after half installing what is this problem plz guide me

  • By Ölbaum - 1:53 PM on January 8, 2010   Reply

    And why exactly did it take you so long to come up with such a simple solution?

  • By Kai Howells - 10:11 PM on January 8, 2010   Reply

    I can see you’ve really put some thought into this, and what you are planning to do (cache files and replace right at the end of the install process) seems to be a very good compromise. I can understand needing a browser to be quit for a critical part of the installation, but what I’ve seen happen (and what I do myself) is quit the browser when I need to and then as soon as the installation has begun, launch the browser and get back to doing whatever it was I was doing…

  • By MagerValp - 12:53 AM on January 9, 2010   Reply

    > When installing plugins for various browsers we need those browsers to quit
    Why exactly is that? Firefox and Safari pick up newly installed plug-ins while running, and they don’t block the plug-in folder blocking the install.

  • By Eric Wilde - 12:37 PM on January 9, 2010   Reply

    The Player installation is done by a different team. Let me check for the details before providing a substantive answer.

  • By Eric Wilde - 12:43 PM on January 9, 2010   Reply

    Well, there’s a couple of different responses to this question. First, there are plenty of people who don’t like this particular solution. For example, in a few direct interactions with users they’ve mentioned that they’d rather have the previous solution because then they can go have lunch and come back with a complete finished installation. In this solution, there’ll still be a little left to do after they’ve come back from lunch.
    Then there’s the fact that we have an awful lot of things to improve and this wasn’t the top item on the list.
    Then there’s the fact that we actually made this change last year; but, it can’t roll out until the next product ship.
    So there’s lots of small reasons that add up to the change coming out with our next product ship.

  • By Eric Wilde - 12:46 PM on January 9, 2010   Reply

    Yes, I agree. Its part of the Flash Pro payload and according to the Flash Pro team’s discussion with their own customers the player payloads should be a required dependency. So really they have to go with the solution that best addresses their customer base. I’ll forward this comment to them, though.

  • By Eric Wilde - 12:53 PM on January 9, 2010   Reply

    Actually, if you’ve gone through the upcoming Enterprise Deployment Toolkit and output an MSI/PKG then you should be able to go ahead and deploy even though the browser is up. It will cause some wonkiness in the current browser; but, a reboot will fix that.
    I’ve not actually tested that this is true. Let me investigate a bit and get back to you.

  • By Eric Wilde - 12:47 PM on January 11, 2010   Reply

    John, I’ve confirmed that if you turn off the check for conflicting processes in the EDT then we don’t check for browsers running at all during the deployment.

  • By Thomas - 2:22 PM on January 11, 2010   Reply

    >> Off Topic

  • By Eric Wilde - 5:12 PM on January 11, 2010   Reply

    After checking with the Flash Player team:
    On Windows:
    – For first time installs, the Player Plug-in may not always be recognized by the browser until browser restart.
    – For upgrade installs, if the existing Player is in use the installation of the new Plug-in will fail because it cannot overwrite the existing Plug-in. A restart of the browser or system will not fix this issue. If the plugin is locked and the install occurs, the new plugin will not be installed.
    On Mac:
    – For first time installs, the Player Plug-in may not always be recognized by the browser until browser restart.
    – For upgrade installs, if the existing Player is in use the new Plug-in will only be used by browser instances that are launched _after_ installation. A restart of the browser should then provide you with the newly installed plugin.

  • By Thomas - 7:52 AM on January 12, 2010   Reply

    Really don’t know what this discussion is all about!??
    If I’m about to install Creative Suite on my machine at that very moment i’m not forcing myself to run any browser anyway until installation is completed. In shoert: where’s the problem beeing without a browser whilst installing CS?
    Ok, the only thing that really should be achieved is Flash Player Browser-Plugin updates without quit or restart the browser.

  • By MagerValp - 9:35 AM on January 12, 2010   Reply

    Thank you, that explains the decision, though it sounds like at least the Mac install could simply mention that the browser needs to be restarted to use the new plugin.

  • By Eric Wilde - 1:05 PM on January 12, 2010   Reply

    The point is that many users want to keep using the browser while running an install. The Suite takes so bloody long to install that people want to at least use the browser to surf or do other work. If you don’t have a browser running while the Suite is installing you should be good.

  • By John C. Welch - 1:30 PM on January 19, 2010   Reply

    Excellent Eric, that’s great news. I can deal with telling people “hey, your browser might get weird while this is going on, if it does, just restart the browser, and you should be fine”
    Now, if someone on your team could have a chat with the Acrobat people about making critical security patches available in a single, cumulative patch that lets IT administrators quickly roll it out on their network…sigh.

  • By Eric Wilde - 1:50 PM on January 19, 2010   Reply

    wrt Acrobat patches, I’ve been hammering on them a while now. They agree its the right thing to do and are just trying to fit it into their schedule. Don’t even get me started about how we should be one company to the customer….

  • By Anonymous - 10:53 PM on March 22, 2010   Reply

    How does one quit the browser Firefox before installing Flash Player?

  • By Eric Wilde - 10:58 PM on March 22, 2010   Reply

    I’m not sure I understand the question. The straightforward way is to choose Quit Firefox from the Firefox menu item.

  • By disL - 3:44 PM on May 31, 2010   Reply

    But is it really necessary that every single creative suite installation requires certain processes to be closed? The way I see it is that you people haven’t really payed attention to which installation needs the lock to be open and which installation does not. So why did you put this to every installation?

  • By Eric Wilde - 12:02 AM on June 1, 2010   Reply

    Each product and subcomponent (each payload) has its own list of conflicting processes. Its hard to say if some of the payloads list more conflicting processes than needed; but, we do try to cull the list regularly. I do know that the Resource Synchronizer is erroneously listed for some video products; but, otherwise we should be pretty close to the correct list of conflicting processes.

  • By fred smith - 6:36 AM on June 2, 2014   Reply


    Where is that? I can’t find Quit FF in the menu upper right corner.
    I have windows/tabs open and don’t want to lose them.
    If I am in FF trying to download Flash, shutting down FF wipes out the Flash download attempt.

    I just wanted to listen to a short piece on NPR, which I have been doing for years. Today I was told I need Adobe Flash. That was over an hour ago.
    yours , fred
    XP Pro on Dell D630

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