There are probably some files in your Library folders that need to be deleted. There should be an Adobe Installers folder in your Utilities folder. Use the installer for the CS4 and CS3 files to uninstall all of the Adobe products. Be sure to deactivate the products BEFORE you uninstall them. After you uninstall, look in the Library folder at the root level of your startup drive. In there you should find a folder titled Application Support. In that folder there may be a folder titled Adobe. You can delete that file. Next, look in your Users folder for the folder that you use. It will have your login name. In that folder will be another Library folder. In that Library folder will be another Application Support folder with another Adobe folder. You can also delete that folder.
The Installer DVD should now let you install the files that you want.
*I did not deactivate the product.* My mistake. I thought I only needed to deactivate if I was going to be putting it on another computer. Flash is the ONLY program in the suite I'm having a problem with.
I have deleted everything remotely related to Adobe. Still no.
Perhaps if I hadn't had the crashing, crashing, crashing issues with Fireworks in the first place, this would all be a nonissue.
I'll have to call Adobe this monring.
Adobe technical support told me I did not need to deactivate. I removed all the files in my library folder. No go on Flash (and Acrobat).
Tech support said customer service could give me links to standalone versions of Flash and Acrobat, and I could just use my serial number for my suite. They transferred me to customer service, who said no, that information was incorrect, that they'd have to give me a link to the whole suite. Then the representative checked the download link for the suite and said that link no longer worked, that they'd have to shoot this up to the next rung of support, and someone would get back with me within 24-48 hours.
I don't have 24-48 hours. I have work to do. If I don't work, I can't afford to buy their outrageously priced, outrageously buggy software. This is unbelievably unacceptable, and it is not support.
I had a scratched disk.
I did two things: I bought a disk repair contraption at Best Buy. Worked awesomely. Then I copied the file onto my hard drive and ran it from there.
This was NOT a seamless process, and I can't even remember everything I did to make it work (oh, and I had copied and pasted Fireworks CS4 to my desktop from my install CD, too, because it stopped recognizing my brand new license, and Flash CS3 required this FW CS4 file to be in the same location from which I installed it in order to make Flash CS3 install), but I FINALLY got it to work, after working on it for 6 hours, going to bed at 3am, getting up at 7:30am, and working on it for another 11 hours, including two phone calls for a total of two hours to Adobe's stellar support in Pah-kee-stahn, wherein I was given the wrong information from 3 technicians who, granted, *really* tried to help, but who couldn't even agree with each other on the fix - "Customer service will give you a link to stand-alone versions of Acrobat 8 and Flash CS3 that you can activate with your serial number," "No we can't. We'll have to send you a link to the whole suite." Except the link to the download wouldn't work when they checked it on their end, so they couldn't send it to me, and they would have someone call me back in 24-48 hours, then 2-3 hours (after I pitched a fit because I have to work - no work, no pay) - they didn't call me back. It's been over 24 hours, it's been over 2-3 hours.
And even so, it won't reinstall Acrobat because it says it's already been installed, even though I can't find it anywhere on my system - not in my applications folder, not in my emptied trash, not my various folders in the user library, not in the root library, not in the system library - nowhere. But it's there. In a ghost area of my system, apparently. So I had to buy Acrobat 9 just so I could work. Academic Superstore. Academic discount - NEVER stop learning! Even if you're 51.
I feel incredibly hostile toward Adobe. But their software is my bread-and-butter. I use almost all of it on a daily basis. It's going to be a long, long time before I trust Adobe with my money. CS4 Master Collection, that I was salivating over, that I was planning to save up for? I don't think so. CS5? Unlikely, until I have no other choice.
I would rather wait longer and get software that doesn't eat into my productivity with bugs and crashes.
That's okay. I've been venting away about this on Twitter and Facebook and LinkedIn and a web development group I'm on. I can warn others. Funny thing is, I'm getting so many responses from people going through nightmares of their own with CS4. Only a handful of people respond with, "I don't know what you're talking about! My CS4 has run flawlessly!" Only a handful. So sad.