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Learn to activate and deactivate Adobe applications.
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    Activate an app

    Activation connects an app to a valid user license.

    Activation—connecting an app to a license—is automatic for most apps. In some cases, you need to activate your app manually before you can use it. Find your product to learn how to activate it.

    Creative Cloud, Acrobat DC

    With Adobe Creative Cloud, Acrobat Pro DC, or Acrobat Standard DC, simply sign in to activate your software.

    1. Make sure your computer is connected to the Internet.

    2. Launch the app.

    3. Choose Help > Sign In. (If this option is dimmed, you are already signed in and don’t need to activate your software.)

    4. Log in with your Adobe ID and password to activate your product.

      If you don’t have an Adobe ID, you see an option to create one. Follow the onscreen instructions.

      Tip:

      For more detailed instructions on activating Creative Cloud apps and services, see Sign in and sign out to activate Creative Cloud apps.

      Running into a problem? See Activation and deactivation troubleshooting.

    Acrobat XI, X

    Adobe Acrobat XI and X are automatically activated as soon as the software detects an Internet connection.

    If you need to activate your software manually (for instance, if you deactivated it on one computer so you could activate it on a different computer), follow the steps in the Creative Suite section, below.

    Creative Suite 6 and earlier

    CS6: Sign in with your Adobe ID and password to activate your software within the first seven days of use. To do so, follow the steps below.

    CS5.5, CS5, CS4, CS3, and earlier: Activation happens automatically as soon as the software detects an Internet connection, or the software prompts you to activate it during installation. To activate your software manually, follow the steps below.

    To activate your software manually:
    1. Make sure your computer is connected to the Internet.

    2. Launch the app.

    3. Choose Help > Activate. (If this option is dimmed, you have already activated your software.)

    4. Sign in with your Adobe ID and password to activate your software.

      If you don’t have an Adobe ID, you see an option to create one. Follow the onscreen instructions.

    Tip:

    Running into a problem? See Activation and deactivation troubleshooting.

    Flash Player, Acrobat Reader, and Shockwave Player

    You don’t need to activate these products. If you need help with these products, visit the following sites:


    Deactivate an app

    Deactivation disconnects an app from a valid user license. 

    Once deactivated, you can reactivate an app at any time, if you choose. You do not need to uninstall an app from your computer to deactivate it. Uninstalling an app does not deactivate its license.

    A single license for Adobe software lets you install an app on two computers—for example, at home and in the office. If you want to install the app on a third computer, first you must deactivate one installation of the app. Here’s how.

    Creative Cloud, Acrobat DC

    1. Make sure your computer is connected to the Internet.

    2. Launch the app.

    3. Choose Help > Sign Out.

    4. Click Sign Out.

    Tip:

    For more detailed instructions on activating Creative Cloud apps and services, see Sign in and sign out to activate Creative Cloud apps.

    Running into a problem? See Activation and deactivation troubleshooting.

    Acrobat XI/X, Creative Suite 6 and earlier

    1. Make sure your computer is connected to the Internet.

    2. Launch the app.

    3. Choose Help > Deactivate.

    4. Choose one of the following options:

      • Deactivate or Suspend Activation: These options deactivate the software but retain licensing information on your computer. Choose one of these options if you want to deactivate the software temporarily, and you are planning to activate it on this computer again.
      • Deactivate permanently: This option deactivates the software and removes the licensing information from your computer. If you want to use the software on this computer again, reenter the serial number.

       

    Tip:

    Running into a problem? See Activation and deactivation troubleshooting.


     
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    FAQ

    What is activation?

    Activation is the process by which Adobe validates your software license to detect and prevent fraud and abuse of Adobe products and services. Activation involves the sending of information to Adobe at various times, such as at download, installation, uninstallation, serialization, launch, and during update checks for Adobe software. Adobe may also use this information, alone or in conjunction with other information Adobe may have, to (i) provide you with appropriate license renewal options, and (ii) to help understand Adobe software usage so we may engage and retain our customers.

    What information is sent to Adobe during activation?

    The following types of information may be sent to Adobe during activation:

    Identifiers (IDs)
    • Unique IDs (generated by Adobe) specific to your machine and to the license you have purchased for the software. These IDs cannot be used to locate your machine or identify you personally.
    • Your Adobe ID, if you have logged in to Adobe as part of the installation, update, or use of the Adobe software. The Adobe ID personally identifies you, and links to all information that you have provided to Adobe while creating or using your Adobe account. If you or your company uses an administrator or other authorized party for the foregoing, Adobe may also receive the Adobe ID of that party.
    Installed Adobe product information
    • Serial numbers associated with the installed product licenses
    • Product name and version number; license type purchased
    • Version of End-User License Agreement associated with the software
    • The number of times you have launched an Adobe application since the last activation, for each application that is associated with the product license
    Operating system information
    • Operating system type and version
    • Locale (language dialect and writing system) in use
    • Local machine time (including time zone)
    • Machine name
    • MAC address
    IP address

    The IP address assigned to you by your Internet service provider is received by Adobe as part of the process of sending the activation data to Adobe.