How to Fix If Adobe InDesign Not Working or Opening on Mac

Can’t get your work done because Adobe InDesign is not working or opening on your Mac? Well, it’s not only you. There are a bunch of similar reports where Mac users can’t launch Adobe InDesign. As soon as they launch the software, it crashes in seconds. Some say the issue has started to surface after updating Adobe InDesign. In this guide, we’ll walk you through several effective solutions to fix the Adobe InDesign not working or opening on Mac issue.

How to Fix If Adobe InDesign Not Working or Opening on Mac

Before you fix software or a tech product, it is critical to understand what could be causing the problem. Understanding the problem helps in troubleshooting it more effectively. So, let’s now look at the potential reasons, and then we’ll quickly move on to the solutions.

Reasons Why Adobe InDesign is Not Working or Opening on Your Mac

  • Insufficient memory: If your Mac is already running lots of applications, the amount of available RAM might be no enough to run Adobe InDesign smoothly. When the available RAM is not enough, a new app might fail to launch. You need to remove unnecessary background software to make room for Adobe InDesign.
  • Plugins or extension conflict: Although plugins and extensions make our work easy and add new features, they can sometimes conflict with Adobe InDesign and bring many issues. A plugin or extension conflict is probably preventing the launch of Adobe InDesign.
  • Outdated software: Whether you are facing any issues or not, you should always keep the software up-to-date. Generally, the latest software update includes improvements and bug fixing. You should therefore update the software to check if it can fix the issues.
  • Corrupted fonts: Fonts are an integral part of Adobe InDesign. However, they can sometimes get corrupted and might cause issues like Adobe InDesign not working, not launching, etc.
  • System glitches: Your Mac may be running into minor system glitches causing issues with the app launch. Fixing glitches is as simple as restarting the device.
  • Corrupted preferences file: When Adobe InDesign gets updated, its important settings and preferences from the previous installation. It can negatively impact the software’s performance and cause problems. You can delete the preference file to check if it was the source of the problem.
  • Problem with InDesign Installation: There might be an issue with the Adobe InDesign installation. Perhaps, some files are corrupted or no longer available. This might cause issues while launching the software.

Now that we have some got idea of why Adobe InDesign is not working or opening on Mac, it’s time to troubleshoot the problem.

Fix: Adobe InDesign Not Working or Opening on Mac

In this section, we have shared a curated list of effective solutions to fix the issues with Adobe InDesign. You do not have to go through all of them. Simply work your way down until you find the one that works for you. So, let’s begin our troubleshooting.

1. Check Minimum Requirements for Adobe InDesign

Before making any changes to your Mac, you’d want to make sure that the machine meets the minimum requirements in order to run Adobe InDesign.

If your Mac has the required configurations, go ahead and apply the fix we’ve mentioned in this article. However, if your computer does not meet the minimum requirements, either the software won’t run or it may run but the performance won’t be great.

  • Processor:
    • Multicore Intel processor or Apple silicon/M1
    • SSE4.2 or higher SIMD engine
  • Operating System:
    • macOS version 12.0 (Monterey)
    • macOS version 11 (Big Sur)
    • macOS version 10.15 (Catalina)
  • RAM:
  • Minimum 8 GB of RAM (16 GB recommended)
  • Hard disk:
    • 4.5 GB of available hard-disk space for installation.
  • Monitor resolution:
    • 1024 x 768 display (1920 x 1080 recommended), Retina display support
    • Scalable UI: Minimum monitor resolution required is 1920 x 1080.
  • Supported Video Adapter:
    • 32-bit Video Card
  • GPU:
    • For optimum GPU Performance, your Intel-based Mac should have a minimum of 1024 MB of VRAM (2 GB recommended), and your computer must support Metal.
    • Metal GPU feature is supported on:
      • iMac 4K
      • iMac 5K
      • MacBook Pro Retina
      • Mac Pro connected to a HiDPI monitor
      • Mac mini connected to a HiDPI monitor

2. Restart Your Mac

Often minor system glitches result in failure in app launch. Perhaps, something similar is playing out with your Mac. To fix minor system glitches, you can simply restart your Mac.

When you restart your Mac, the device kills all running applications and clears the temporary cache. It will create more free RAM. So, if Adobe InDesign was failing to launch or work because of limited free RAM, the problem should get fixed after restarting the device.

You can simply restart your Mac by selecting the “Restart” option from the Apple menu.

3. Delete Your InDesign Preferences

Your InDesign preferences may get corrupted and cause issues with the software. Plus, as we mentioned earlier, your preferences may get imported to the latest version of InDesign, which could again bring many problems. A simple fix to this problem is to delete the preferences file.

You’d be glad to know that this solution has worked for many people. Hopefully, you are the next. Here are more details on how to delete preferences files shared by an Adobe community expert:

The User Library folder in which InDesign’s preferences are stored is hidden by default on most Macintoshes. To access it make sure that InDesign is closed and click on the desktop to launch a Finder Window (Command-N). With this window in column view follow the path User>Home folder (it’s the folder with an icon that looks like a house—it may have the user’s name rather than “Home”) and click on the Home folder. With the Option Key pressed choose Library from the Finder Go Menu. “Library” will now appear within the Home folder. Within the Library folder find the folder called Preferences and within it find the folder called “Adobe InDesign” and the file called “com.adobe.InDesign.plist” and delete both that folder and that file. When InDesign is next launched it will create new preference files and the program will be restored to its defaults.”

After you have followed these instructions, restart your Mac, and try launching Adobe InDesign to see if the problem is fixed.

4. Remove InDesign Plugins

InDesign plugins might be conflicting with the launch of Adobe InDesign. Although they are helpful, they are found to be guilty in many cases. To check if a plugin is conflicting with Adobe InDesign,  you can disable or remove all plugins.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Close Adobe InDesign and all other Adobe software.
  2. Go to the “Plug-Ins” folder. It is usually located at “/Applications/Adobe InDesign [version]/Plug-Ins/”.
  3. Delete all the files or move them to a different location. Do not move them to any Adobe folder.

Once done, try launching Adobe InDesign again and you should be able to use it just like before. If it does not work, you can move back all the plugin files to the same folder if you want to keep them.

5. Delete Corrupted Fonts

One can’t imagine Adobe InDesign without fonts. They are used in creating literally everything on this software. However, sometimes, fonts get corrupted which can result in various issues. So, if your Mac has a corrupted font, you need to fix it to get the software back up and running again.

Unfortunately, Mac won’t tell you if there’s a corrupted font. However, you can use a font management tool to get this done. If you have recently installed a font, delete it and check if the problem is fixed.

6. Reinstall Adobe InDesign

If the above solutions did not fix the Adobe InDesign not working or opening issue on your Mac, try uninstalling and reinstalling Adobe InDesign. It should fix all sorts of issues with Adobe InDesign such as software bugs, corrupted installation, missing or corrupted files, etc. It’s one of the most effective ways of fixing issues with InDesign, however, this process may take some time.

Here’s how to uninstall Adobe InDesign on Mac:

  1. Launch Adobe Creative Cloud on your machine.
  2. Go to the “Apps” tab.
  3. Tap on “INSTALLED APPS”.
  4. Click the downward arrow next to “InDesign CC” and select “Uninstall”.

After removing InDesign CC from your Mac, restart the device and then install the software again using Adobe Creative Cloud. This should fix the problem.

Wrapping It Up

Adobe InDesign is a powerful tool for designers, publishers, and professionals to create magazines, posters, newspapers, books, and much more. So, if you work the whole day on Adobe InDesign, it could be frustrating when the app does not launch. Thankfully, there exist several solutions which we talked about in this troubleshooting guide. We hope one of the solutions did the job for you.

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