Mine the Harvest

Adobe CS3 Trials Unavailable

by on Oct.18, 2008, under College Stuff, IT Adventures

Recently Adobe removed the trials for their CS3 line of products. While trials for the new CS4 versions are planned to be released mid November, this leaves you a bit high and dry for now.

(CS4 trials are now available, but often for classes you need a bit more that 30 days, and it is really inconvenient to have the trial run out mid class. Following the steps below will allow you to bide some time so you can finish your class and eventually buy the Adobe products you need.)

As I am taking a college class for Dreamweaver during this surprise moratorium, I found this most annoying. So if you are in a similar boat, your options are:

Download the beta version of the CS4 product at here :

Update2 – OSX CS4: Since originally posting this I had to later repeat these step with Photoshop CS4 for Mac. The step are essentially identical — using a key to allow the install to complete and then simply redirecting network connections which attempt to connect to the Adobe licensing server by adding one line to your /etc/hosts file in OSX:       activate.adobe.com

I used the keygen provided by soadfreak2005 in a torrent I found here. This torrent includes screen shots and a detailed guide and has two keygens, one of which provides valid keys for both Windows and OSX.

Also, unlike the CS3 windows version – do NOT remove the Adobe PCD\cache directory or it contents, or change permissions on that folder. This will result in Photoshop failing to start with a message to reboot and contact Adobe support. You can simply leave those files alone, use the keygen and redirect network connections to Adobe as above, this is all that is required.

Update: What a pain in the ass man. I verified you can install this. However, you must remove this file before you run it and then enter the key below. So download it, install it and then before running it remove this file:

C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Adobe PCD\cache

Then run the program, it will ask you for a key. Use this key:


Now . . that still likely is not enough. The file you removed gets recreated. CS4 has a nifty registration program that looks for an active internet connection and them randomly launces the registration tool and checks your key. If your key is found to be invalid you have to delete the cache file again as above and re-enter the key. You will continue to have this problem.

I think that possibly, if you delete the following file it will prevent Dreamweaver from connecting to the registration server – in which case the program should run without hinderence.

C:\Program Files\Common Files\Macrovision Shared\FLEXnet Publisher\FNPLicensingService.exe

Adobe uses FlexNet to control it’s licensing, so you have to remove this so it does not run or block Dreamwever from accessing the licensing server using your firewall or add it to the hosts file to deny it. As I don’t have a firewall installed and have not run wireshark yet I can’t tell exactly what this is trying to connect to. If someone find out please post a comment. Another option is to make C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Adobe PCD\cache read-only so it can’t recreate the cache file. Or perhaps add the server it tries to connect to to C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc\hosts with an entry like registration.server.adobe – that would work if we knew what server it tries to connect to.

Thanks Adobe for making your free trial so very accessible. Way to go.

This video was somewhat helpful, but lacks any of the above information on blocking the registration process.

End update

Or . .

Use your favorite Bit Torrent client and download the previous CS3 Trial copy. As this was released by Adobe as a trial, it would be pushing it to say this is illegal as if you actually download the trial version and do not crack it, it is still in fact a trial. You can search torrent sites for Dreamweaver CS3 Trial, or if you like here are two links for you to try:

Here is a torrent site that has the trial version.

And here is the actual torrent link itself.

Here is the full story . . .

(What I discovered and the full details . . .)

Oops. In a big kind of way.

The trial edition of Dreamweaver CS3 is no longer being offered by Adobe. Of course this leave those who do not already own this rather high and dry. Worry, worry – what to do?

The Story:

The link provided in the course text book – www.adobe.com/go/dreamweaver – just redirects to a CS4 product release page – there are no trial versions of CS4 products available there.

Also, If you try this link it is also a dead end:


If you click on the earlier versions drop box at the bottom of this page, it does not show any earlier versions of Dreamweaver Trial available.

Okay – this is is a bit of a snag in the course.

Attempting to locate an authorized trial version of CS3 on line have not been successful. If you Google you will find many links all pointing back to Adobe. You will also find discussions on how the trial versions are now longer available:


This page also confirms official CS4 trial versions will not be available until mid November:


When will Creative Suite 4 trials be available?

“Trials for all products except those in Japanese should be available by mid-November 2008. Japanese-language trials are expected to be available by early December 2008. To be notified about trial availability, you may sign up to be contacted via the product notification form.”

The Solution:

Option A:

After googling around I found you can get a trial beta version of Dreamweaver CS4 at:


Note: Beta software is pre-release versions which are under development. Eventually this will be released as the official trial version – but for now it is still in testing. This means there may be bugs, or some features may be missing, etc. However, for the purposes of our class I am willing to bet this will work. Also, it most likely will not have the 30 day expiry, but will be replaced mid November by the official release trial, which you possibly might then download for an additional 30 days (time will tell)

Go to the link above, register (it is free) and download your Beta version for Mac or PC. If you have trouble downloading, send me a message and I can assist you as I have downloaded both versions and can point you to them if needed.

Option B:

Please see this site for an alternative solution if the above Beta version does not work for you.

(redirect to this blog page)

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