Help - Adobe Illustrator CS 5.1 won't launch

Posted:
in Mac Software edited November 2014
Given the confluence of a 30% off sale and the new upgrade policy Adobe has rolled out, I decided to dive in and upgrade to Adobe CS 5.5, from CS 4. I'm using the Design Standard package. Everything downloaded and installed fine -- but for some reason Illustrator won't launch. I double click the icon in the Finder, and it appears in my Dock, bounces a couple of times, and then vanishes.



I've uninstalled CS 5.5 and CS 4, and used Adobe's Creative Suite Cleaner to scrub all traces (including preferences) of pretty much all Adobe software from my Mac, and reinstalled CS 5.5, but the problem persists. I called Adobe's tech support, but they were unhelpful (and very hard to understand). They kept insisting that I reinstall the app (already have) and that I try creating a new user account and see if it will launch from that account (I did, but it won't).



Eventually, my cell phone died, so that ended that route for finding help.



I was wondering if anyone else had encountered this issue. Every other app in the installation is working perfectly, but Illustrator won't budge.



Any ideas?
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Check /Applications/utilities/console to see if anything gets logged when you are launching Illustrator.



    You can also run it from the terminal by opening /Applications/utilities/terminal, right-click Illustrator > show package contents and drag the file Adobe Illustrator from the Contents/MacOS folder into the terminal window and hit return.
  • Reply 2 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    Check /Applications/utilities/console to see if anything gets logged when you are launching Illustrator.



    You can also run it from the terminal by opening /Applications/utilities/terminal, right-click Illustrator > show package contents and drag the file Adobe Illustrator from the Contents/MacOS folder into the terminal window and hit return.



    Fascinating... that actually launched the program! But it also recorded a bunch of errors into Terminal that are sorta gibberish to me. Can anyone make sense of this?



    2011-12-01 11:51:30.019 Adobe Illustrator[23744:4303] CFURLCreateWithString was passed this invalid URL string: '/System/Library/Frameworks/' (a file system path instead of an URL string). The URL created will not work with most file URL functions. CFURLCreateWithFileSystemPath or CFURLCreateWithFileSystemPathRelativeToBase should be used instead.

    2011-12-01 11:51:37.743 Adobe Illustrator[23744:4303] CFURLCreateWithBytes was passed these invalid URLBytes: '/Applications/Adobe Illustrator CS5.1/Adobe Illustrator.app/Contents/Frameworks' (a file system path instead of an URL string). The URL created will not work with most file URL functions. CFURLCreateFromFileSystemRepresentation should be used instead.

    2011-12-01 11:51:37.839 Adobe Illustrator[23744:4303] CFURLCreateWithBytes was passed these invalid URLBytes: '/Applications/Adobe Illustrator CS5.1/Adobe Illustrator.app/Contents/Frameworks' (a file system path instead of an URL string). The URL created will not work with most file URL functions. CFURLCreateFromFileSystemRepresentation should be used instead.





    I was able to open files, use menus... it seemed like Ai was functioning properly.



    I quit the app and tried to launch it again normally, but the bounce-then-vanish problem reappeared.



    Could it be that the installer I downloaded from Adobe.com had an error in it, and I should uninstall Ai, redownload the CS5.5 installer and reinstall it?
  • Reply 3 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    Fascinating... that actually launched the program! But it also recorded a bunch of errors into Terminal that are sorta gibberish to me. Can anyone make sense of this?



    2011-12-01 11:51:30.019 Adobe Illustrator[23744:4303] CFURLCreateWithString was passed this invalid URL string: '/System/Library/Frameworks/' (a file system path instead of an URL string). The URL created will not work with most file URL functions. CFURLCreateWithFileSystemPath or CFURLCreateWithFileSystemPathRelativeToBase should be used instead.

    2011-12-01 11:51:37.743 Adobe Illustrator[23744:4303] CFURLCreateWithBytes was passed these invalid URLBytes: '/Applications/Adobe Illustrator CS5.1/Adobe Illustrator.app/Contents/Frameworks' (a file system path instead of an URL string). The URL created will not work with most file URL functions. CFURLCreateFromFileSystemRepresentation should be used instead.

    2011-12-01 11:51:37.839 Adobe Illustrator[23744:4303] CFURLCreateWithBytes was passed these invalid URLBytes: '/Applications/Adobe Illustrator CS5.1/Adobe Illustrator.app/Contents/Frameworks' (a file system path instead of an URL string). The URL created will not work with most file URL functions. CFURLCreateFromFileSystemRepresentation should be used instead.



    I was able to open files, use menus... it seemed like Ai was functioning properly.



    I quit the app and tried to launch it again normally, but the bounce-then-vanish problem reappeared.



    Could it be that the installer I downloaded from Adobe.com had an error in it, and I should uninstall Ai, redownload the CS5.5 installer and reinstall it?



    Those warnings are normal, they would have prevented the command-line executable from running if they had been causing the main app to not load. I suspect it's just a permissions problem. When you double-click an app, it uses the info.plist file to tell how to run the app.



    Open the terminal again and do the show package contents on Illustrator and type chmod 775 then drag info.plist from the show package contents folder into the window and hit return. The command should look like:



    chmod 775 /Application/Adobe\\ Illustrator\\ CS5/Adobe\\ Illustrator\\ CS5.app/Contents/info.plist



    Try running the app after that. If that doesn't work, try running repair permissions from Disk Utility and lastly, do a reinstall of the app.
  • Reply 4 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    Those warnings are normal, they would have prevented the command-line executable from running if they had been causing the main app to not load. I suspect it's just a permissions problem. When you double-click an app, it uses the info.plist file to tell how to run the app.



    Open the terminal again and do the show package contents on Illustrator and type chmod 775 then drag info.plist from the show package contents folder into the window and hit return. The command should look like:



    chmod 775 /Application/Adobe\\ Illustrator\\ CS5/Adobe\\ Illustrator\\ CS5.app/Contents/info.plist



    Try running the app after that. If that doesn't work, try running repair permissions from Disk Utility and lastly, do a reinstall of the app.



    Tried running the app after chmod, no go.



    Ran a verify and then a repair on Disk Permissions. Then tried to run app, no go.



    Uninstalled and reinstalled, then double-clicked icon. No go.



    But if I show package contents and double-click the Adobe Illustrator icon in Mac OS in Contents, it launches.



    So the app will run, but for some reason the Adobe Illustrator.app icon won't work. Very strange.
  • Reply 5 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    Tried running the app after chmod, no go.



    Try doing that for the whole application by adding the recursive parameter. Drag the app in instead of typing the path to be safe:



    chmod -R 775 /Applications/Adobe\\ Illustrator\\ CS5/Adobe\\ Illustrator.app



    If that has no effect, try creating another user account and launching Illustrator there.
  • Reply 6 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    Try doing that for the whole application by adding the recursive parameter. Drag the app in instead of typing the path to be safe:



    chmod -R 775 /Applications/Adobe\\ Illustrator\\ CS5/Adobe\\ Illustrator.app



    If that has no effect, try creating another user account and launching Illustrator there.



    Did this. Error message:



    chmod: Unable to change file mode on /Applications/Adobe Illustrator CS5.1/Adobe Illustrator.app: Operation not permitted

    chmod: Unable to change file mode on /Applications/Adobe Illustrator CS5.1/Adobe Illustrator.app/Contents/MacOS/Adobe Illustrator: Operation not permitted



    So then I did a "sudo" and the chmod -R command, which did not return any message, so I presume it worked?



    In any case, the icon still wouldn't open Illustrator.



    I then created a new user account, with full Admin powers, and logged into it. Illustrator will not launch on this account, either.



    I'm baffled. But I do appreciate all your help.
  • Reply 7 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    So then I did a "sudo" and the chmod -R command, which did not return any message, so I presume it worked?



    Yeah, that means it worked when it just goes through.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    I then created a new user account, with full Admin powers, and logged into it. Illustrator will not launch on this account, either.



    Given that it launches fine via the command-line, I think it has to be something to do with the way the application bundle is being installed. If you download the following app:



    http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/17002/pref-setter



    that will let you open and edit the info.plist file to check that the contents aren't messed up.



    Check the executable file is set as Adobe Illustrator, the bundle identifier is com.adobe.illustrator, the bundle name is Illustrator and the Bundle OS Type Code is APPL.
  • Reply 8 of 31
    Launched this tool. Under "System Preferences" there's a com.adobe.Illustrator.15.1.0, and in there is only one listing:



    HelpcfgName -string Illustrator_15.1



    There are no other items in the list presented that include the word Illustrator. Under "User Preferences" there's all sorts of Adobe items listed:



    com.Adobe.Acrobat.Pro, com.Adobe.Bridge4.1, com.Adobe.InDesign, etc. But no com.Adobe.Illustrator of any sort.



    Strange?
  • Reply 9 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    that will let you open and edit the info.plist file to check that the contents aren't messed up.



    Check the executable file is set as Adobe Illustrator, the bundle identifier is com.adobe.illustrator, the bundle name is Illustrator and the Bundle OS Type Code is APPL.



    I was able to find the info.plist file in the Contents folder inside the application package. All of the tags you mention here are set as you specify. It doesn't mention OS Type anywhere, but APPL is the setting for CFBundlePackageType.
  • Reply 10 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    I was able to find the info.plist file in the Contents folder inside the application package. All of the tags you mention here are set as you specify. It doesn't mention OS Type anywhere, but APPL is the setting for CFBundlePackageType.



    Yeah, that should all be ok.



    You can try tracing the application loading to see where it is failing using XCode. It's a big install but is free from the Mac App Store. It installs an application called Instruments in /Developer/Applications.



    If you open Instruments and click library, drag over File Activity into the Instruments panel. Enable all the views at the top. Then set the target drop down to 'choose target' and locate the Illustrator app. Once you hit record, it will start loading Illustrator and records all the files it reads. At the point it shuts down, it will let you know where it has loaded up to and that will help narrow down which file it's having a problem with.



    In the mean-time, you can make a shortcut to the file in Contents/MacOS so that you can open Illustrator quickly. I think you can only drag these into the right-hand part of the Dock though.
  • Reply 11 of 31
    I actually already had Xcode installed, so that was easy to do. When I set up Instruments as you suggested, and selected Illustrator CS5.1 and hit "record," the program actually launched properly!



    However, when I quit Illustrator, and went and tried to launch it from the Finder, it still doesn't work.



    Going back into Instruments allowed me to launch it again.
  • Reply 12 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    I actually already had Xcode installed, so that was easy to do. When I set up Instruments as you suggested, and selected Illustrator CS5.1 and hit "record," the program actually launched properly!



    However, when I quit Illustrator, and went and tried to launch it from the Finder, it still doesn't work.



    Going back into Instruments allowed me to launch it again.



    It must just be launching the binary directly like the command-line mode. Check the extended attributes on the Illustrator app; in the command-line, type:



    xattr -l <drag Illustrator in>



    It should have a com.apple.FinderInfo attribute. I suspect they use this to check if the app has been moved but see if there's anything odd in that listing.



    Another thing to try would be renaming info.plist to info2.plist. This should cause all methods of launching to crash but with an error report. If it does this with the double-click method, Illustrator is at least reading the file so it must be failing after reading the file.



    Has it just been opening and closing again without actually crashing? If so, maybe it's having some trouble linking up with the licensing part of the app when run outside of a command-line. Try checking the CS5 Service log in your home folder ~/Library/Application Support/Adobe/CS5ServiceManager/logs/CS5ServiceManager_native.log



    Another thing you can do is to use Instruments to track all filesystem activity. Just set the target to all processes and put File Activity in again. Then hit record and double-click Illustrator. It logs activity by process name so check the last file Illustrator accessed.
  • Reply 13 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    It must just be launching the binary directly like the command-line mode. Check the extended attributes on the Illustrator app; in the command-line, type:



    xattr -l <drag Illustrator in>



    It should have a com.apple.FinderInfo attribute. I suspect they use this to check if the app has been moved but see if there's anything odd in that listing.



    The command "xattr -l /Applications/Adobe\\ Illustrator\\ CS5.1/Adobe\\ Illustrator.app" just returns me to the command line, no output at all is presented.
  • Reply 14 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    The command "xattr -l /Applications/Adobe\\ Illustrator\\ CS5.1/Adobe\\ Illustrator.app" just returns me to the command line, no output at all is presented.



    That should be ok but check if your other working Adobe apps have xattr attributes. If they are the same, it's no big deal. Apps should be able to launch without them but there may have been attributes preventing launch in which case they could be cleared.



    I think running the Instruments app while launching via double-click will help trace what the application is doing just before it closes out.
  • Reply 15 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    That should be ok but check if your other working Adobe apps have xattr attributes. If they are the same, it's no big deal. Apps should be able to launch without them but there may have been attributes preventing launch in which case they could be cleared.



    I think running the Instruments app while launching via double-click will help trace what the application is doing just before it closes out.



    The last entry of activity from Adobe Illustrator is this:



    Code:


    #CallerFunctionExecutableFDPath

    7920x8fefb501stat64Adobe Illustrat/System/Library/Frameworks/GSS.framework/GSS









    And then it crashes, producing almost 3,000 of lines of activity from ReportCrash, starting with:



    Code:


    #CallerFunctionExecutableFDPath

    819-[NSFileManager fileExistsAtPath:isDirectory:]lstat64ReportCrash/Applications/Adobe Illustrator CS5.1/Adobe Illustrator.app/Contents/MacOS/Adobe Illustrator







    I saved out the report, if that's useful in any way.
  • Reply 16 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    The last entry of activity from Adobe Illustrator is this:



    Code:


    #CallerFunctionExecutableFDPath

    7920x8fefb501stat64Adobe Illustrat/System/Library/Frameworks/GSS.framework/GSS







    The next file it should try to access after that is a file in /Library/Managed Preferences/<username>. Check if that folder exists and if it does, move Managed Preferences out of the /Library folder.
  • Reply 17 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    The next file it should try to access after that is a file in /Library/Managed Preferences/<username>. Check if that folder exists and if it does, move Managed Preferences out of the /Library folder.



    While /Library/Managed Preferences exists, there is nothing in it.
  • Reply 18 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    While /Library/Managed Preferences exists, there is nothing in it.



    Does it have any effect removing that folder from /Library? There could be a permissions issue with it for example that prevents Illustrator reading it or writing to it. It will recreate it if it needs to.
  • Reply 19 of 31
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    Does it have any effect removing that folder from /Library? There could be a permissions issue with it for example that prevents Illustrator reading it or writing to it. It will recreate it if it needs to.



    Nope, Illustrator still won't launch. And it didn't recreate the folder, either.
  • Reply 20 of 31
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,218moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Fireball1244 View Post


    Nope, Illustrator still won't launch. And it didn't recreate the folder, either.



    It looks like it logs crashes in /Users/<name>/Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports. Check if Illustrator is dumping log files there and if so, check what they say. Generally the content surrounding the line "Thread 0 crashed" is the most useful.



    Given that it crashes regardless of user, I wouldn't expect there's a problem in your home folder. The permissions on the app itself should be fine as well as the directory layout otherwise it wouldn't launch via the command-line. I suspect it might be an issue in the /Library folder but those issues should affect the command-line too.



    There is a preference file for Illustrator in /Library located at /Library/Preferences/com.adobe.illustrator.plist that gets accessed not long after the GSS file so remove that from the folder and try launching.



    If that still doesn't fix it, try booting your machine in safe mode by holding down shift at and see if Illustrator launches in safe mode. It creates boot/font caches that safe mode will remove.
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