Stop Adobe Update Manager from launching

Jun 21, 2010 - 41 Comments

stop adobe update manager mac
As you’ll soon be able to tell, I am annoyed with Adobe Update Manager, and thankfully I found a way to disable it completely. In case you didn’t know, Adobe Update Manager starts itself automatically on system launch and takes over your Mac while it sorts out whatever it does that I don’t want it to do, it’s the very definition of annoying.

Unfortunately, Adobe doesn’t make this easy for the novice user, but bear with me and follow the steps exactly and you’ll disable the update manager from launching on it’s own.

Disable Adobe Update Manager

You need to create a file called com.adobe.AdobeUpdater.Admin.plist in your ~/Library/Preferences/ which can be done in two different ways, through the Terminal with a defaults write command, or by manually creating the file with a text editor.

Here’s how to do it through the command line:

* Launch Terminal (located in /Applications/Utilities/)
* At the command prompt, paste this command exactly

defaults write com.adobe.AdobeUpdater.Admin Disable.Update -bool yes
* Hit return to execute the command and create the plist file

You can double-check that the file has been created by looking in ~/Library/Preferences/ for the file. Now, theoretically at least, Adobe Update Manager will not launch on Mac user login and system boot.

There is also the option of manually creating the plist file, either though a plist editor or if you’re familiar with plists just by using a text editor.

Again you need to create a file located at /Library/Preferences with the name com.adobe.AdobeUpdater.Admin.plist with a boolean set true to “Disable.Update”, as you can see in the screenshot below:

stop adobe update manager launch mac

Now you should be able to reboot your Mac, logout of a user, and anything as usual, without the annoyance of Adobe Update Manager barging in on your computing session. Stopped in it’s tracks!

I love Photoshop and Illustrator and use both frequently, but I’m really not a fan of some of the stuff that Adobe is piling into the installs nowadays. Remember when you would just have one folder that contained Photoshop? What happened to that? Now you have forty app folders spread out in fifteen directories buried here there and everywhere, Adobe is treating Mac OS X like it’s a Windows filesystem maze. One of my biggest peeves of this app gluttony is the independently launched Adobe Update Manager, it rears its annoying head often on System boot and there is no obvious way to disable it through the preferences. Guess what Adobe, when I want to update my independently installed 3rd party software I will do it myself! Don’t launch some program right after boot and have it take over my Mac!

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in How to, Mac OS X, Tips & Tricks

41 Comments

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  1. RanarionSangius says:

    Unfortunatly this does not work with CS5. :/

  2. David Drucker says:

    I copied the text string into terminal and ran the command. Alas, the file does not appear to have been created. I’m running CS4. Bummer.

  3. David Drucker says:

    Very odd: I tried it again, and this time it worked fine. Go figure!

  4. Carl Johnson says:

    This creates a preferences file in the User’s library, not the general system library, which may confuse some people if they don’t know where to look.

    Thanks for this; the updater is doubly annoying since if I DO try to run it, it tells me it can’t be run, and that I need to totally reinstall Acrobat. No thanks!

  5. Fatty says:

    Thanks for this tip — it is incredibly stupid that Adobe do this. Clowns.

    • Urs Meier says:

      Especially since I emailed Adobe asking how to stop this happening and get a reply saying if I didn’t like it I could uninstall the program. Not my favorite company…

  6. [...] one application, and you’d only get one application. Adobe has become a repeat offender with installing random nonsense along with their products lately and it’s quite frustrating, I hope they adjust this policy [...]

  7. Phil says:

    Great tip. Works with CS5 30-day trial on Snow Leopard.

    The trial ran out forever-ago (I didn’t buy), but I couldn’t get rid of the stupid updaters. Then for no apparent reason there was TWO of them. Grrrr. :(

    All gone now. Thx :)

  8. nobody says:

    Just wanted to report that this *does* work with CS5. After making the change, reboot, and it should be gone.

    Since it seems to be run on login, you can *probably* get away with simply logging out and then back in again, but I dod not test this.

  9. nobody says:

    Ok, scratch that last comment. Several hours later I noticed that Adobe Updater returned — and with a vengeance! This time, there were *two* updaters in the menu bar, and one of them was beachballed.

    [expletive deleted] [expletive deleted] [expletive deleted] Adobe! [expletive deleted] [expletive deleted]

  10. nobody says:

    Ok, a little system hunting reveals the following files:

    /LaunchAgents/com.adobe.AAM.Updater-1.0.plist
    /LaunchAgents/com.adobe.CS5ServiceManager.plist
    /LaunchDaemons/com.adobe.SwitchBoard.plist

    Chances are that you don’t need any of these services, so just move these files to some other directory. So far, this does prevent the update manager from starting, and does not seem to break anything. Fingers crossed this will do the trick….

  11. nobody says:

    Motherfaacker. It’s back again.

    It’s shit like this, Adobe….

  12. nobody says:

    But wait! There’s more!

    Found another one… In your home directory:

    $HOME/Library/LaunchAgents/com.adobe.AAM.Updater-1.0.plist

    Will this make it go away for good? Stay tuned to find out….

  13. nobody says:

    Yes. Finally I am AAM Updater free.

  14. Minikrob says:

    Dude you actually make me feel good !
    This bloody AAM is so annoying and i was looking for a solution since a while now.
    This works great, thanks a lot for your tip !!

    ( is it possible to edit or create a .plist file for any application and change its behaviour as you want ? )

  15. dan-d-boy says:

    Holy Minoli, THANK YOU for this!! This updater has been driving me nuts.

    Adobe, what are you thinking????

  16. BaliKiwi says:

    Thanks to all.

    I’ve been trying to update my InDesign CS5 and each time I tried to open the updater dmg, I’d get the message “you are already running Adobe Applications Manager, please quit… blah…blan”

    I’ve been trawling around the net and the only thing that worked was “nobody”s” suggestion to trash $HOME/Library/LaunchAgents/com.adobe.AAM.Updater-1.0.plist

    I did, and after restart was able to launch the updater.

  17. [...] http://osxdaily.com/2010/06/21/stop-adobe-update-manager-launching/ This entry was posted in Allgemein and tagged Adobe, OSX, Update Manager. Bookmark the permalink. ← Bed Intruder Meme [...]

  18. Vaishnavi says:

    Hi all

    Can any one please tell me how to disable the Adobe Device central CS5(Winodws 64) update to gray out or disable.

  19. chasnjim says:

    FYI finally found this on Adobe website. http://kb2.adobe.com/cps/850/cpsid_85016.html

    Basically you can find the file you need to change at /Users//Library/Application Support/Adobe/AAMUpdater/1.0/AdobeUpdaterPrefs.dat

    and overwrite the contents with this:

    3

    3

  20. Pete says:

    On the Mac, I compressed (zipped) the Adobe Updater application and trashed the uncompressed original. It’s been a couple weeks, so far so good. If i need it I’ll uncompress, use, and compress again.

  21. Mitch says:

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!

  22. rob says:

    I can’t find the adobe updater app in finder. Help please.

  23. greg says:

    it’s in here…

    /Library/Application Support/Adobe/OOBE/PDApp/UWA/

  24. Rit Man says:

    holy crap, it looks like adobe moved themselves right into my computer! that most certainly is annoying. im on a pc, if you want to get rid of this crap, go to start–>run, type msconfig and hit enter. go to the tab on the right that says startup and uncheck all the adobe and any other crap you dont want.

  25. Charles says:

    Dear Adobe: stay the F out of my OS.

  26. Marta says:

    Thanks so much! It worked perfectly !!!

  27. Maurice says:

    Very nice surprise but what ever I do all copied commands into Terminal do not create any plistfiles.
    So you tell me what the right commands are to disable Adobe’s ‘home caller’.
    I run CS5 on Lion 10.7.2

    Thx.

  28. Jayson says:

    Thank You^10. Finally decided to do something about it. BAM! OSXDaily has the answer.

  29. Chucky says:

    I compressed and deleted the following files:

    /Library/Application Support/Adobe/OOBE/PDApp/UWA/AAMUpdatesNotifier

    /Library/Application Support/Adobe/OOBE/PDApp/core/PDapp

    /Library/Application Support/Adobe/OOBE/PDApp/core/AdobeApplicationManager

    When I launch AcrobatPro I get the following error message:
    “Adobe Application Manager, required to start your trial, is missing or damaged.

    Please download a new copy of Adobe Application Manager from
    http://www.adobe.com/go/applicationmanager.”

    Please help, I’m on OS 10.7.2 Lion

  30. TutenKamen says:

    This will remove the app (warning: will possibly break things):

    click finder

    click go in menu bar

    paste: /Library/Application Support/Adobe/OOBE/PDApp/UWA/AAM Updates Notifier.app/

    delete file (may need to force quit it in activity monitor first)

  31. Mark says:

    Every morning, watching Adobe updater frenetically jump on my dock without special reasons is more than annoying… That’s what i call pain in the ass. Tanks for sharing this and for helping people get rid of this disgusting piece of software.

  32. Alex says:

    Thanks so much for this, it’s been using too many of my computer’s resources for too long! I’ve got a temp monitor, and while it’s running they hike around 20 degrees C before the fans catch up, which themselves are noisy. Why adobe would put such a resources heavy, non optional, piece of rubbish on everyone’s computer is beyond me.

  33. F says:

    Typical Adobe arrogance. They are without question the single-most stuck-up, arrogant developer around, and clearly believe in the ‘might is right’ mantra, apparently as a corporate directive. That “if you don’t like it uninstall it” is classic Adobe. Great software (minus these invasive, inappropriate annoyances). Attitude sucks. Adobe users should unite and fax (not email) the CEO. Make it an ‘occupy fax’ movement! It’s time customers make companies the servant, rather than the reverse. Just an opinion.

  34. Daniela says:

    hi, does anyone know what to do if any of this is working? I have the same problem as Chuck: if I compress and delete the Adobe Application Manager Files the programmes do not open anymore, as “Adobe Application Manager, required to start your trial, is missing or damaged.” I am on OS 10.7.3. Lion. Can anyone help?

  35. odiemor says:

    Thank you so much! Works like a charm in lion, CS5.

  36. Colin says:

    Little Snitch is a an easy fix to these annoyances. You can turn on and off at your pleasure and make it ask you first or go ahead and use certain ports etc….it creates great comfort for me to know that there is a whistle blower working full time to let me know the ‘comings’ and ‘goings’ of MY COMPUTER not ADOBE’s or APPLE’s or WHOEVER!

    FYI FWIW.
    Cheers to smart software working for us not against us.

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