Photoshop CS2 under Linux

You can download and install PhotoShop CS2 on your Linux box.  This article explains how to do it.

Although I would always recommend using the GIMP for image manipulation on Linux (or on Windows or OS/X for that matter), some people seem wedded to PhotoShop – and those people might be your customers or college tutors or other people you can’t ignore.  So I’m going to swallow my principles and explain how to keep them happy.

The basic method for downloading and installing PhotoShop CS2, along with all the necessary caveats, can be found at Digital Trends (opens in a new window/tab).

The only thing that is different, at this stage, is that under Linux you do the installation using WINE:

$ wine PhSp_CS2_English.exe

You do this at the point in the article where you are instructed to, “Open the installation file”.

Note also that during installation you need to enter the serial number.  The best thing to do is to copy it from the Adobe download page, but just in case you forgot, here it is for you to copy:


The installation should proceed without problems and, when it’s finished, you should be able to run PhotoShop under WINE without any difficulty.  However, you will find that PhotoShop Bridge will not run.  If you try to run it, you will get an error message complaining that Bridge will only run if another Adobe product is installed.

The reason for this is that PhotoShop expects to find the file install.adb in the folder:

Program Files/Adobe/Adobe Photoshop CS2/

On an Ubuntu box, this would be at:

~/.wine/drive_c/Program files/Adobe/Adobe Photoshop CS2/

Under WINE, this file is missing for some reason.  It has been reported as a bug, but nothing seems to have been done about it.

The fix is to copy the file from a handy Windows installation.  If you don’t have such an installation, the following are the contents of install.adb that I copied from a virtual Windows install that I just happen to have.  NOTE that I cannot guarantee that copying these contents and putting them into a file called install.adb in the correct place will work for you:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?> 
<ProductName>Adobe Photoshop CS2</ProductName>
<SIFPath>C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CS2\Required\PS.sif</SIFPath>
<CSAPath>C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CS2\</CSAPath>
<InstallSourceDir>C:\PhSp_CS2_UE_Ret\Adobe(R) Photoshop(R) CS2\</InstallSourceDir>

All the carriage returns following <ProductName> in the file contents above have been added by me to try to get everything to fit on a reasonably sized display monitor.  You may have to remove them for things to work.

I’d be interested to know if copying the contents above works, so if anybody tries it I’d be grateful for a report as to the results.

Once you’ve created the file install.adb in the correct place and with the correct contents, you can restart PhotoShop, load a file, and do:

File > Close and go to Bridge

And that’s all there is to it.

I still think it’s better to use the GIMP, though!

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