Photoshop/Lightroom: Loss of internet connection and license

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  • Problem
  • Updated 3 months ago
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  • (Edited)
Before I first purchased CC I asked on a forum the question, "will it still run if my internet is down", and I was informed yes.

I have moved to a small volcanic (desert) island where the internet isn't always good.  So far I have been luck in that it has been off when I have not needed to be at my computer.  This morning was the first time, but I thought it would allow me to catch up with photo processing and art work. Until I got the message that Adobe can't check my subscription!!!   So for most of the morning I might as well have gone back to bed!

Now we are hoping to move further inland, where connection problems are more than likely to increase.  I wasn't bothered until this morning, as I thought I would still be able to use Photoshop and Lightroom. :'(

So, have finally got internet back on I opened up Photoshop and Lightroom ok.  When it went down again they did stay open so I see that I must just have a connection in order to open them.

So I have to ask, is there ANY way that I can open Lightroom and Photoshop when my internet connection goes down? 
Photo of Jill Terry

Jill Terry

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Posted 10 months ago

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Photo of Jeffrey Tranberry

Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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Official Response
Hi Jill,

Sorry you're having trouble.

Two things which can lead to being unlicensed:

1) If you have the CC Photography plan, you will need an internet connection at least every 90 days to update the licensing token. Details here: https://helpx.adobe.com/creative-cloud/kb/internet-connection-creative-cloud-apps.html

2) If the clock on your computer is changed, this can also revoke the license. Two things can cause this:

   a) Your computer's clock CMOS battery/capacitor is bad and your laptop battery or desktop computer completely loses power causing the computer to lose its time. If this is the case, replace the CMOS battery. 

   b) You have your computer set to use network time automatically. If you're remote and tethered to a cell phone which may be talking to towers in different timezones, this can change the clock setting multiple times. If this is the case, set your clock to manual: https://helpx.adobe.com/download-install/kb/cannot-verify-subscription-offline-mode.html
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Adobe Dan, Chief Architect

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Official Response
Hi Lukáš and David,

Thanks much for your thoughtful replies.  I believe we are actually in complete agreement about almost everything :).  Here's some follow-up information and answers to some of the issues you raise:

1. We agree that the current design is too brittle.  In fact, we have already made changes in our design to avoid this problem (one, as Lukáš suggested, is to be more permissive of time jiggles) and product updates that incorporate those changes will likely become available starting in February or March of 2019.

2. This "network time jiggle effect" is very rare, so much so that we didn't see this scenario in extensive real-world testing (including feedback from literally millions of machines in use by actual customers).  If we had seen it before we shipped, we would, of course, have fixed it before we shipped.  We feel terrible that we have put customers like Jill in the position of having to use a workaround like turning off network time syncing, and we are well aware that network time syncing is turned on by default by all OS manufacturers (with good reason - SSL connections depend on an accurate machine clock).

3. The point about this really hurting users who are using, for example, corporate-controlled machines, are well taken.  Clearly such a user would have to ask for an exception from his administrators, and those can be hard to come by.  The feedback we are getting from the field, luckily, is that essentially no corporate network environments have this issue, and that most users who encounter this issue in the field are photographers who maintain their own machines independent of corporate standards.

4.  It has been suggested that this change in our licensing software was motivated by marketing concerns and ignored real-world experience.  This is the exact opposite of the truth.  Our in-app licensing software has, for years, been one of our biggest customer support problems, and this revamp was intended to address all of the issues we knew about.  On the whole the revamp has been successful at meeting that goal: based on every measure we have available, this revamped licensing software is causing problems for way, way fewer customers than its predecessor (by one if not two orders of magnitude), including those customers who work offline.  Unfortunately, whenever you change software you introduce bugs, and clearly this is a bug that we introduced that we were unable to detect before it bit people.  We feel terrible about that, and are doing the best we can to keep them running until we can get them a fix.

Hope this helps put things in context.  We are doing our very best to meet all of our customer's needs, and we are very sorry that we don't always succeed.