InDesign and macOS Catalina (10.15)

ExtendScript Toolkit does not open


With macOS 10.14 or previous versions, when you edit a JavaScript using the Scripts panel in InDesign (Window > Utilities > Scripts), the ExtendScript Toolkit is displayed. This toolkit is a 32-bit application. However, with macOS 10.15 (Catalina), which supports only 64-bit applications, the ExtendScript Toolkit does not open.


The ExtendScript Toolkit has been replaced by ExtendScript Debugger 1.1.0.

To edit and debug JavaScripts in macOS 10.15 or higher versions:

  • Download and install Visual Studio Code in /Applications folder.
  • Install the ExtendScript Extension (ESTK) available under Extensions in the Visual Studio Code application.

Plug-ins not found or cannot be verified

In macOS 10.15, quarantined plug-ins will return one of the following errors:

  • InDesign: File not found error 
  • OS: Plug-in can't be opened because the developer cannot be verified

This happens with plug-ins that are not notarized that are downloaded from the web or installed by other methods such as drag & drop.

  • Customers that have plug-ins already installed and then update to macOS 10.15 should not see this issue.
  • Customers that upgrade to macOS 10.15 and then try to download and install a plug-in may see failures.


Obtain updated plug-ins from third-party developers that are notarized for macOS 10.15. InDesign will load plug-ins that have been notarized by Apple.



For older plug-ins that are not notarized, customers with Admin user privileges can remove the quarantine flag by using the following command if the plug-in is installed in the InDesign application plug-ins folder:

sudo xattr -r -d /Applications/Adobe\ Indesign\ 2019/Plug-ins/<plug-in-name> 


Determining whether a plug-in is quarantined

Customers can determine whether or not a plug-in is quarantined by using the Terminal.

Example if plug-in is in the Indesign application plug-ins folder:

% ls -l@ /Applications/Adobe\ Indesign\ 2019/Plug-ins/<plug-in-name>/

 Note: replace <plug-in-name> with the actual name of the plug-in you need to correct

Which returns the following result:

total 0 
drwxr-xr-x@ 6 <username> wheel 192 Sep 26 15:11 Contents 22 

" 22" means that the plug-in is quarantined.

For third-party plug-in developers

Development and debugging of third-party plugins are not supported on macOS 10.15 (Catalina). To develop plugins with macOS, you should meet the following system requirements:

  • Xcode 9.2
  • macOS 10.13 or 10.14


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