How to get a Sample Process or Spindump - macOS

A freeze (sometimes referred to as a "freeze," "freezing", "hang", "spinning cursor", or "rainbow wheel") occurs when an application is waiting for a response from the OS or another process.

If an Adobe application becomes unresponsive, support or engineering may request Sample Process or Spindump to help determine the cause.

  • Sample Process: Creates a report on a selected process over three seconds.
  • SpindumpCreates a report for unresponsive apps terminated using force quit.

Use Activity Monitor to get a Sample Process or Spindump

  1. Launch Adobe Photoshop Elements Editor

  2. Launch Activity Monitor which can be found in the Utilities folder located inside the main Applications folder.

  3. Activity Monitor, make sure that CPU is selected and select "Adobe Photoshop Elements <version> Editor" from the list under Process Name:

    Activity Monitor


    You can use the search field in the upper right of the Activity Monitor dialog to search for the name "Adobe Photoshop Elements" if you have a long list of processes.

  4. Switch back to Adobe Photoshop Elements Editor and repeat your steps until the freeze occurs. While the freeze is happening in Adobe Photoshop Elements Editor, go back to Activity Monitor, click on the gear icon and select Sample Process or Spindump:

    Activity Monitor


    You may need to enter your admin username and password.

  5. After the process is complete, a new window displays the diagnostic. Click the "Save..." button in the upper right and save the file to your desktop.


Report a Problem

To share a Sample Process or Spindump to troubleshoot an issue, reach out for support at and attach these documents, along with a brief description of the workflow wherein you’re experiencing a hang.

Sample Process or Spindump privacy

The only personal information in these diagnostics is the path to the application being sampled.

See Apple's documentation for Run system diagnostics in Activity Monitor on Mac for further information.