Well we’ve had a bit of trouble at the office when one of PCs decided to pack up a leave this earthly plain.   Naturally we had to buy a new PC which came with Windows 7 64bit.    Now I like Windows 7 it’s a lot less chatty than Vista and seems to ‘just work’, basically it seems people don’t notice that they’re using a new operating system which is very good for me as I also provide IT support for our small office!

Anyway the task to reinstall everything we had on the old machine falls to me, which has gone quite smoothly really, except for the installation of Adobe CS2 which is not supported for Windows 7.  Apparently we should keep on the upgrade treadmill, but it’s difficult and expensive so we hold out for ‘must have’ features in new releases rather than upgrading for the sake of it… How many in our line of work for instance are still runnnig AutoCAD R14?!

Anyway back to Adobe CS2, when you install it with the default settings inWindows 7 64bit the software won’t accept for some reason your Serial number.   I did some searching and found this thread that gave us the solution we were looking for: http://bit.ly/dklqfc

Please read the forum as well for additional information (not everyone’s problems are the same), and I shall also quote directly from the forum user Cinti, the only thing I would say about this solution is that for us the “/” should have been “\”: (this post was dated 13th February 2010)

Are you using Windows 7 64 (probably will have the same problem in any Windows 64 OS)?

If so, you must uninstall CS2 completely (not just PhotoShop) and specify that the preferences are to be removed as well. When you re-install, the installer will give the default install location as something like “C:/Program File (x86)/Adobe” but, when you click “OK” install will respond that the location is not valid.  DO NOT RESPECIFY AS  “C:/Program File/Adobe”, that’s the location for 64-bit apps and CS2 is 32-bit and needs to be in the (x86) folder to work properly.  Replace “C:/Program File (x86)/Adobe” with “C:/Program~2/Adobe”.  The installer may not “light” the OK button.  If so, click the browse button then the cancel button and “OK” should activate.  That’s it, CS2 will install.  If, after the install completes, you get the message that the app may not have installed properly, you probably did something wrong (i.e., when it’s in the 32-bit program folder you won’t get this message).

Remember, this fix ONLY APPLIES TO Windows 64-BIT OSs. There are other causes for the message “Your adobe photoshop user name, organization, or serial number is missing or invalid.  The application cannot continue and must now exit.”. 

I spent an hour and fifteen minutes waiting on hold for a Adobe technician for help only to be advised that CS2 is no longer supported by Adobe.  Don’t waste your time trying to get help from Adobe or getting upset with them for not being helpful (what’s the point, they’re holding all the cards and want you to drop another bundle for their latest release).

So what’s the lesson from this?  Always check the internet for solutions to your software problems!


  1. Excellent info.However I just created an adobe file under the no x86 program folder and it worked great! Thanks

  2. Thanks for the kind words and the extra information, if anyone else has anything to add please don't hesitate to post!

  3. it took me forever the first 2 times…and yes, i was getting the serial number issue too after complete install. After a ton of internet search this worked. use path C:\progra~2\adobe

    It has something to do with how 64bit processes ascii codes etc… but anywho this fix works!

  4. Well I tried to install my CS2. I input the location, “C:/Program~2/Adobe” but when I hit “next” I got an error message that there were certain charcters in the location that were not supported.

  5. will this procedure work with Adobe CS(1)? I have to upgrade my Windows XP OS (32-bit) to Windows 7 64-bit OS. All my Adobe CS (photoshop, illustrator, indesign, etc.) files are in 32bit format. Or should I try and find an upgraded version of Adobe CS (3, 4, or 5). I really don’t want to go onto Adobe CC if I don’t have to.

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