Apr 112014
 

If you have ever wondered why Adobe chose red for the color of its logo it was to hide the blushes of embarrassment.

Yesterday, the automatic Adobe updater informed me that I needed to install two updates for Photoshop CS6. One was Camera Raw 8.4 and, since I planned to take some shots with a Fujifilm XT-1 in the afternoon, it seemed a good idea to get it installed right away.

The installation was straightforward. They usually are. It was only when I opened up Adobe Bridge that the scale of the catastrophe I had unwittingly unleashed became apparent.

First, the thumbnail dng files had lost their orientation. Second, when I clicked on a thumbnail, it remained a thumbnail in the Preview panel. When I double clicked on the thumbnail to open it up Camera Raw in Photoshop rather than the preferred Adobe Bridge.

My first reaction — Aaaaaarrrrrggggh!!!!!

Obeying the instruction to update had rendered my workflow of the past seven years redundant.

What followed was even worse. I spent three hours searching Google to see if anyone else had been affected by this update and whether a quick fix existed.

Oh I came across plenty of similar Photoshop problems regarding the display of thumbnails but they all related to earlier versions. I could find nothing relating to Photoshop CS6.

I even tried Google News to see if this Adobe-created cock-up had gone viral. Not a mention anywhere.

I kept trying different permutations of my Google searches – Camera Raw will not open in Bridge; unable to access Camera Raw preferences; I can only preview thumbnails in Adobe Bridge; thumbnails will not open in Adobe Bridge.

Each of these questions threw up links to Adobe forums but no answer to my problem was to be found.

Eventually, like I said three hours later, I stumbled across the Bridge General Discussion forum and a thread entitled: Camera Raw stops functioning in Bridge CS6 after software update. I was relieved to find other people had suffered a similar fate after installing the Camera Raw 8.4 update. Somehow a trouble shared is a trouble halved.

Scrolling down the posts it appeared quite a few people had suffered a similar fate to mine. I was not alone.

The first poster – Vexed — posted the problem on April 8, 2014, at 8.53am. In a subsequent post he detailed similar problems to those I was experiencing:

He didn’t see the ACR adjusted icon in Bridge;

He didn’t see changes made to photos in ACR in Bridge Preview;

He didn’t have the right-click option to open ACR from Bridge;

He was unable to rotate RAW files in Bridge – the commands were grayed out.

Another poster posted at 9.42am that he had contacted Adobe and engineers were aware of the situation.

A poster by the name of Ducks Design used Time Machine to replace the 8.4 plug-in with the 8.2 plug-in as a workaround and was good to go.

Some people obviously had deadlines to meet.

The last post on April 8, at 8.27pm, stated:

Is there a Red Adobe Help Box somewhere, where we can break the glass and press the red HELP button?

No posts occurred on April 9.

At 1.21 am on April 10, an Adobe staff member posted a link to fix the problem. It involved downloading the Camera Raw 8.4 plug-in and moving it into the File Formats folder.

I followed the instructions and Camera Raw functioned how it did before. I let out a sigh of relief or was it exasperation? I had spent three frustrating hours trying to sort the problem out.

My feelings were shared by another poster who stated:

If this was a known error, why should paying users spend over an hour (as I did) researching the problem?… Adobe should at least have sent out an email to users experiencing the ACR problem and giving details of the fix.

In fairness to Adobe, emails to all users is a bit over the top but the company could certainly have posted a message outlining the problem, and the fix, in a prominent position on its website.

So I was good to go to head to Wilkinson Cameras, in Southport, who kindly allowed me try out the camera everyone is talking about – the Fujifilm XT-1. My thoughts on the XT-1 will appear in another article but below is a photograph handled in Camera Raw 8.4 and subsequently processed in Viveza 2 and Silver Efex Pro 2.

Girl walking Pug dog on Eastbank Street, Southport.

Fujifilm 18-55mm f/2.8-4 and Fujifilm XT-1, courtesy of Wilkinson Cameras. ©Calvin Palmer 2014. All Rights Reserved.

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