How to activate Elements 2020 on macOS

Activate your Elements products to validate your software license and associate them with the computers on which you use those products. Activation is a mandatory process that requires the software to connect to Adobe servers via the Internet. Activation helps protect your computers and environment from malicious code by verifying that you have genuine Adobe software.

Before you begin, ensure that you have already installed the Elements product on your device. For instructions on how to install Elements products, see:

Follow these steps to activate a purchased Elements 2020 product for macOS:

  1. Select the Elements product that you want to activate from the screen below.

    Install Photo or Video editor
  2. Sign in using your Adobe ID and password.

    Sign-in screen
  3. Click Activate now in the Welcome screen.

    Activate Elements 2020 on macOS
    Activate Elements 2020 on macOS
  4. Enter the serial number in the next screen and click Next.

    Enter serial number screen

    Your Elements 2020 product launches successfully.

    Note:

    Can't find your serial number? See Find the serial number of your Elements product to know more.

    Received a redemption code? Use your redemption code to get your serial number. See Help with redemption codes to know more.

How to start free trial after installation

You get a free trial period of 30 days to try Elements products. Follow these steps to start a trial after you've installed an Elements 2020 product:

  1. In the given screen, select the Elements product for which you want to start a trial.

    Install Photo or Video editor
  2. Sign in using your Adobe ID and password.

    Sign-in screen
  3. Click Try now in the Welcome screen.

    Try Elements products
  4. Click Start free trial to confirm the trial.

    Start free trial

    The Elements product is launched successfully.

How to convert a trial into a purchased version

When you launch an Elements product, a screen shows the number of days remaining for the trial to expire. On this screen, click Buy now  and then follow onscreen instructions to covert your trial to a full version.

Convert trial to a purchased product

Use the serial number you have received to convert the trial version to a full version. The serial number starts with the number 1057 or 1143. You receive the serial number depending on the type of purchase: 

  • From Adobe website: When you purchase Photoshop Elements, you receive the serial number in an email from Adobe. Look for the subject line "Your Serial Number" or "Your Serial Numbers" in your mailbox.
  • DVD: You can locate the serial number on the back of the DVD case. If you have an envelope for your software, the serial number can be on the envelope instead. 

Note:

A serial number has 24 digits, and is different from a redemption code which is alphanumeric. You can use your redemption code to get your serial number

How to fix common activation errors

Learn how to resolve some common serial number error issues while trying to activate your Elements product.

Invalid serial key error

Adobe blocks serial numbers that have not been issued by Adobe, or have been used fraudulently by unauthorized sellers to produce counterfeit software. Unfortunately, you may only know the serial number has been blocked for this reason when re-activating or reinstalling Adobe software. 

Invalid serial key

Follow these steps if you receive the "invalid serial number" message:

  1. Check that you are using the correct serial number for your product installation. A serial number has only 24 numbers.

    For more information, see Find the serial number of your Elements product

  2. If the serial number associated with the software is blocked, find information on this page to quickly resolve the issue.

Redemption code error

A serial number and a redemption code both have 24 elements. However, a serial number has 24 digits, while a redemption code has 24 alphanumeric digits. If you are entering a redemption code instead of a serial number, you get the following error message:

Redemption code for a serial key

To resolve this error, ensure that you are not entering the redemption code in place of the serial number. Follow these steps to retrieve the serial number required to install your software:

  1. Sign in or create an Adobe ID.

  2. Enter the redemption code, and then click Redeem.

  3. Make a note of the displayed serial number.

  4. Enter the serial number when prompted during installation.

  5. Save the redemption code for future access to your serial number in case you require to reinstall the software.

Revoked serial key

Adobe blocks serial numbers that have not been issued by Adobe, or have been used fraudulently by unauthorized sellers to produce counterfeit software. Unfortunately, you may only know the serial number has been blocked for this reason when re-activating or reinstalling Adobe software. 

Revoked serial key error

Follow these steps if you receive the "revoked serial number" message:

  1. Check that you are using the correct serial number for your product installation. A serial number has only 24 numbers.

    For more information, see Find the serial number of your Elements product

  2. If the serial number associated with the software is blocked, find information on this page to quickly resolve the issue.

Expired serial key

You are getting this message beacuse you're using an expired serial number to activate your Elements product. This occurs because the software build you were using has expired or the serial number used to license the application had exhausted its validity. In both these cases, you need to buy a new Elements product.

Expired serial number

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