Controlling Automatic Updates Adobe Creative Suite CS5
by Jeffrey Sward

With Creative Suite CS5, Adobe has completely redone automatic updating. The automatic update program is now called "Adobe Application Manager." The Adobe Application Manager can be launched from any of the CS5 applications using => Help => updates. Or the Adobe Application Manager can be launched directly from C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\OOBE\PDApp\core\PDapp.exe.

There are quite a few differences in the CS5 Updater compared to the CS4 Updater:

  1. In CS4 and before, the best update approach was downloading the patches directly from This is no longer true. The best results are now obtained from running the Adobe Application Manager client.
  2. Using the Adobe Application Manager results in related updates being downloaded as well as the base product updates, which does not happen when downloading the patches manually.
  3. Installing the patches manually flat out often does not work. This very entertaining problem illustrates the things which can go wrong when applying updates manually.
  4. It may be helpful to create a desktop shortcut directly to the Adobe Application Manager located at C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\OOBE\PDApp\core\PDapp.exe. Since this is now a separate application, if it is launched from one of the products, such as Photoshop, the actual product application (Photoshop) will need to be closed anyway before the updates can be applied.
  5. The "Preferences" link within the Adobe Application Manager allows selection by product of which applications are checked for updates. If you do not want to be annoyed by update announcements, be sure to uncheck "notify me of new updates in the menu bar."
  6. The entire update process has been considerably dumbed down. The current release installed (such as 12.0.4) no longer shows in the => help => about menu item. Also the results of the installs which previously showed in detail, now show only in summary.
  7. Within Adobe Application Manager, after setting preferences to turn on a particular application, the application install options are presented in the main screen, in Windows updater fashion.
  8. Unchecking all applications when leaving the Adobe Application Manager will cause no notifications of any kind to be sent. Running the Adobe Application Manager manually and selectively checking those applications for updates of interest can be done in subsequent executions.

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