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There was a recent patch released for FW CS4, but only for the Mac. I've been using CS5 on Mac (mostly) and PC (occasionally) and it's behaving far far better than CS4 on both platforms. A lot of the development time in the new version was spent of fixing issues, as well as adding some nice features.
At one of the colleges where I teach, I'm using CS4 on XP 64 bit systems and I get oddball behavior from both Fireworks and Dreamweaver. Not enough for me to throw in the towel (although LAST week I came close lol), but it is frustrating.
See if you can get the IT department to install this little AIR app. It's an auto backup for Fireworks and works quite well:
It won't stop the crashing, but may save a lot of frustration.
Thank you, Jim, for the quick response. The system requirements for the AIR app you recommended state "Use with Adobe Fireworks CS5". But you are recommending this for CS4, too, correct? (BTW, my students always have access to your latest book(s) and links to your tutorials. We appreciate you.)
The fortunate thing for my students is that they ARE buying CS5, and all of them this semester still have Windows XP or Mac. The unfortunate thing is that even at the wonderful academic pricing, these programs are an investment for students. My support for the Adobe suites is causing my credibility to take quite a hit, as they do not have the 11 years of experience I do with the software, and their expectations based upon the price are quite high.
Am still interested in any other suggestions for how people are working with CS4 and Win7 (or even VISTA, as it apparently has some of the same issues.)
Yes it works with both. I believe it was recently updated to be compatible with CS5. The utitlity has been around for more than a year.
I'm so happy to hear you and your students find my work helpful in class! Thank you!
My main use of CS5 has been with Fireworks, and it's a huge step up from CS4. I use Dreamweaver and Photoshop as well. Other than finding Dreamweaver a little sluggish at times, I haven't had any other issues with it. But I don't use it nearly as much as I use Fireworks.
Adobe products are a main stream, industry standard set of products. Are there problems? Sure. Any software has issues IMO. But these products are the ones that employers tend to ask for/expect in terms of employee experience. If your students are freelancing, clients don't care what they use to get the job done, so long as it DOES get done and meets the expectations of the client. But full time employers will want to know they are comfortable with the software used by that company, and in many cases, that means Adobe products.
You didn't write the software, so your credibility should not be affected, and if your students are acting that way, shame on them.
Perhaps talk with your IT department and get them to do some testing - see where/when the failures occur. It might not just be Adobe software at fault - it could be drivers, hardware, even other software. There's an excellent chance that doing some testing could improve stability.
The only other answer (not necessarily a bad one depending on student finances) is to look for individual products that do the required job. There are lots of web page editors out there, many graphics apps. They may (or may not) have the same feature set as the Adobe product line, but they may be a more affordable alternative at least in the beginning. But as I said, employers tend to have an expectation that employees will be comfortable with main stream products.
Good luck. :-)