How Do I Find the Serial Numbers to My Adobe CS Programs?

Here's Help Finding the Serial Numbers for Your Adobe CS Software Programs

A screenshot of Autumn Leaves in Adobe Photoshop CS5
Adobe Photoshop CS5.

While you're hopefully not finding this out the hard way, you need a serial number if you plan on reinstalling your Adobe CS suite or component of that suite.

Adobe requires a unique product key during installation or the installation won't be able to continue. Depending on the version of Adobe CS we're talking about, you may get a 30 or 90 day trial, but that's certainly not what you paid for originally.

Luckily, so long as your Adobe CS program or suite of programs is still installed on your working computer, you may be in luck.

"How Do I Find the Serial Numbers to My Adobe CS Programs?"

A key finder program is the quickest, and overall the easiest, way to figure out what serial number was used to install your copy of Adobe CS or one of the member programs.

See my List of Free Key Finder Programs for a number of completely free tools that will do all the hard work for you, surfacing the Adobe CS serial number you need so you can reinstall your copy of Adobe CS6 Master Collection, or Adobe Photoshop CS5, etc., etc.

I highly recommend working your way from the top to the bottom in that list of recommended key finders. Unfortunately, considering the long history of Adobe CS programs, one of those key finder tools may find the serial for one CS version, while another may find a different.

Be sure to let me know what programs did or did not find your Adobe CS serial so I can keep this page updated.

"Will a Key Finder Tool Find the Serial Number for Any Adobe CS Program?"

Like I sort of mentioned just above - yes and no. One of my favorite serial number finder tools is Belarc Advisor and I rarely come across a program that it won't find the serial number or product key for.

I've had particular luck with it for digging up the serial numbers used for Adobe CS programs.

Specifically, I'd expect Belarc Advisor, and better keyfinder tools in my list, to find the serial numbers for both the suites and/or the individual programs for Adobe CS 6, Adobe CS5, Adobe CS4, and Adobe CS3.

That includes the serial numbers for Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Dreamweaver, Flash, Premiere Pro, After Effects, Audition, and all those other wonderful Adobe design and production tools.

"Are There Any Other Ways of Finding a Lost Adobe CS Serial Number?

There are other ways, but be sure to give the keyfinder method a try first. Some of those programs will find the serial number for your Adobe CS products without you even having to install the tool. Those are portable programs and I mention which are made that way in my reviews.

To your question, however, yes - Adobe stores their CS serial numbers in the Windows Registry, inside a particular registry key. Unfortunately, that key contains your Adobe CS serial number in an encrypted format, meaning it's useless without some complex decrypting.

If a keyfinder tool is just out of the question, I recommend contacting Adobe directly. Your best bet is to start with their Find Your Serial Number Quickly tutorial.

"What About Adobe CS Serial Number Generators?"

Honestly, you may be able to generate a working Adobe CS serial number using one of those serial number generators that are out there.

Unfortunately, these programs are often full of malware and the Adobe CS serials they create are not legal. Under no circumstances should you go this route!

See my Is a Key Generator a Good Way to Get a CD Key? for more on these types of tools.

The only legal method you have at your disposal, assuming you don't want to or can't use one of the find-it methods I've talked above above, is to buy a brand new copy of Adobe CS.

Buy Adobe CC & CS Products at Amazon

More From Us