Installing Photoshop CS3 on Windows 7 x64   October 8th, 2009

According to the system requirements, the x64 version of Windows 7 is not supported in CS3 but as always, there is a work around!

  1. Run cmd.exe with administrator privileges (Start > type ‘cmd’ then right click on cmd.exe and select Run as Administrator, then click Continue when prompted by the elevation consent dialogue box).  This will open a command prompt in c:windowssystem32
  2. Type cd..SysWOW64
  3. Type regsvr32 jscript.dll
  4. Type regsvr32 vbscript.dll

That should work; you can now run the installer.

The problem is that the Photoshop installer is a 32-bit program, which means that it needs access to all 32-bit DLL’s and COM registrations.  Strangely, the 64-bit DLLs on x64 Windows are in the system32 directory and the 32-bit DLLs are in the SysWOW64 directory.

WoW64 means ‘Windows on 64-bit Windows’ and it contains all the 32-bit binary files required for compatibility.

Let me know if this helps anybody.

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    45 Responses

    November 7th, 2009 at 11:19 pm
    Mairi Maxwell Says:

    Hello Mike,
    Your information was forwarded to me following my question on the David Rowley Forum.
    I have a new 64 bit computer. I installed CS3, the error message is “photoshop has stopped working, Windows will close the programme”
    Strangely Bridge works OK.
    I tried to follow your instructions.


    2 After I type cd..SysWOW64

    The message is System cannot find the path specified.
    I know the typed message should be exact. I tried it with one and two dots. I tried it using cmd instead of cd.
    But still no luck.
    If I manage to carry out your instructions does this copy the .dll files to the correct directory.
    Thanks for taking the time to post this info, I am going crazy trying to install this programme.
    Mairi Maxwell

    November 8th, 2009 at 1:27 pm
    Mike Says:

    Hi Mairi,

    A couple of things, firstly you don’t mention which OS you are using, only that it is 64-bit. This could have a bearing.

    Generally speaking, the problem most people are having is during the installation stage, i.e. in so much as the installer for CS3 products – including Photoshop – is a 32-bit application so will not run on a 64-bit system without having the corresponding 32-bit dll’s registered, registering the dll’s as above is the answer here.

    The error I would expect to see is ‘Setup has encountered an error and cannot continue. Contact Adobe Customer Support for assistance. Internal Error 2739.‘ Obviously you are experiencing a different error so I’m not sure these steps will necessarily help.

    By the sounds of it you have somehow managed to install the application and are having an issue when executing Photoshop itself. At what stage do you get the error message? Does Photoshop load or fail trying?

    When you first open the command prompt, you’ll need to navigate back to root or c: before trying to navigate to c:windowssystemsyswow64. Usually you’ll start at c:users$username so in this instance you’d need to issue the cd.. command twice. I’m sure you had done this but just trying to cover all bases. I am not sure why your system says it cannot find the SysWOW64 folder; it should be there if it’s a 64-bit environment. Have you checked all of the various error logs to see if the system has any more specific information on the error? This would be my first port of call.

    If you still cannot rework through the steps and make progress, it may be worth completely uninstalling CS3 and ensuring all remnants of it are gone and then reinstalling afresh using the above method.

    Let me know how you get on, I do not have a 64-bit Windows system running at the moment on my test machine but if you continue to have problems I’ll see if I can replicate the issue for you.


    November 8th, 2009 at 2:45 pm
    Mairi Maxwell Says:

    Hello Mike,
    I really appreciate you taking the time to provide all of this info.
    My 4 year old computer died and I was forced to replace it.
    My local computer dealer was forced out of business by the big guys, So I purchased from Future Shop [Canada] HP P6153 Intel Core 2 Quad 8GB Ram ! Terabyte. Windows 7 OS.
    I will print out the instructions and try to finally open CS3 a programme I have used for almost 2 years.
    The installation completed successfully I can open Bridge. When I try to Open PSCS3 immediately the error message appears “Photoshop has stopped working”
    I did find the SysWOW64 folder when I did a search, it was right next to the SyS32 folder. So you are correct, it is a mystery why it could not be found.
    I will keep you advised of my progress.
    We are 8 hours behind the UK. This is now day 4 trying to solve this problem.
    Thanks again.

    November 8th, 2009 at 4:10 pm
    Mike Says:

    Hi Mairi,

    Certainly if you have been able to locate the SysWOW64 folder then that confirms that you are using Windows 7 64-bit.

    Hopefully by navigating from c: to that folder, you should be able to register the 32-bit dll’s in a clean install and have more success.

    Hope to hear good news soon :- )

    November 8th, 2009 at 11:38 pm
    Mairi Maxwell Says:

    Hello Mike,
    I have had no success with the cmd prompt. I navigated back to the C:> [unable to backspace and remove > ]
    Message reads– “Windows system wow64 not recognized as internal or external command, operable program or batch file.”
    The SysWOW64 folder is in ComputerHPCWindowsSysWOW64
    I created a System Restore in case I fouled things up.
    I copied the jscript.dll from Sys 32 folder and pasted to Wow 64 folder. It indicated the file was already there, so I canceled the process.
    I am afraid to uninstall CS3 once more, seems others have not even been able to complete the install.


    November 9th, 2009 at 12:01 am
    Mike Says:

    Hi Mairi,

    When you are at the c: prompt, type cd hpcwindowssyswow64 which based on the syntax above for your system should take you to the correct folder, but, it also seems from what you have said that the correct dll’s are already in the folder so that may well be pointless. Next thing to do would be to check they are registered properly.

    My concern it that this will still not resolve your issue, as like I mentioned above these steps are to be able to install CS3 products in an x64 environment, which you have already done; your problem being in running Photoshop itself seems to be a different issue. Another question to throw in the air; as your system is running a non standard file hierarchy i.e. c:hpcwindows which I would assume is from a standard HP image, I wonder if anything else is non-standard i.e. customised for HP. This could even explain why you were able to install CS3 initially and/or why the application is failing. Obviously the file structure itself is not a problem at all, it’s perfectly ‘normal’ to install windows this way but it is a good indicator that the base build has been customised. It’s just one more thing to rule out.

    Did you manage to check for any more details in the application error logs?


    November 9th, 2009 at 4:01 am
    Mairi Maxwell Says:

    “Did you manage to check for any more details in the application error logs?

    I don’t know how to check error logs.

    “your system is running a non standard file hierarchy i.e. c:hpcwindows ”

    When I searched this is the exact file location
    ‘Computer HP[C:]windows SysWOW64′
    At the CD prompt I typed ComputerHP[C:]windowsSysWOW64
    I tried numerous variations still can’t find the SysWOW64 folder.
    Do you think I should return to the store where they installed Windows 7 when I purchased the computer?

    November 14th, 2009 at 6:20 pm
    Mairi Maxwell Says:

    Hello Mike,
    I installed WN 7 Professional , that solved the problem.
    thanks for your help.

    November 16th, 2009 at 3:32 pm
    Mike Says:

    Hi Mairi,

    Thanks for the update; sorry for the slow response have been ill for the past few days.

    I’m pleased that you have finally been able to get Photoshop working, just a shame that you had to purchase another copy of Windows 7 in order to do it. I’m not a fan of Home editions generally of Windows operating systems, they lack certain core features which – more often in networking – can cause headaches. At least now having the Professional Edition you can be sure that you have a decent OS that will last and do everything you need, both currently and in the future.

    It would have been good to have been able to pull off your error logs so that I could have tried to replicate your problem to see if we could have found a solution, as I mentioned before the steps above are more targeted towards actually installing CS3 in the x64 environment, which of course you had already done; the error was whilst executing Photoshop.

    Just out of interest, did you go for Windows 7 Professional x86 or x64?

    Happy Photoshopping :- )

    November 16th, 2009 at 5:38 pm
    Mairi Maxwell Says:

    Hello Mike,
    Glad you are feeling better.
    I bought WN 7 Prof. 64 bit
    It does not say X64
    What is X86 version?

    November 16th, 2009 at 7:39 pm
    Mike Says:

    Hi Mairi,

    x86 is the technical term for 32-bit architecture and x64 is 64-bit. It’d have been easier if they simply referred to 32-bit as x32 :- )

    Glad everything is working OK for you now.

    November 18th, 2009 at 1:52 am
    Mairi Maxwell Says:

    Your are right. I did find an X86 folder and wondered what is was.
    So far I like Wn7.

    November 20th, 2009 at 2:03 pm
    SysAdmn2 Says:

    I was running CS4 Master Suite on my Windows 7 32-Bit installation and decided to start over with a 64-Bit install. I wiped my machine and loaded Windows 7 64-Bit Enterprise. When I tried to install CS4, I kept receiving the same message “setup has encountered an error and cannot continue. contact adobe customer support for assistance”. I could not find any help on the web but I did find a lot of other people experiencing the same issue. Finally, I turned off the “User Account Control Settings”, rebooted the PC and CS4 installed without issue.

    December 17th, 2009 at 2:08 am
    Jim Says:

    Hi Mike,
    I have this problem for 3 days now.
    Finally found this article and did everything you suggested.
    Everything went fine with cmd – no errors. But Photoshop still doesn’t install.
    Same thing – I’m running installation from DVD – it’s running for 5 minutes – then gives me Summary:
    Photoshop CS3 – Component install failed.

    I just purchased this new laptop “emachines” – Windows 7 Home Premium – 64-bit, 3 GB RAM.
    Do you have any ideas what could cause this problem?
    From earlier comments (by Mairi) I see he solved this issue only by upgrading OS to Professional – do you think that is the only way?

    Any thoughts would be very appreciated.

    January 27th, 2010 at 6:18 am
    Andre Says:

    I’ve been running Windows 7 Ultimate x64 for about a month now, and for the most part I haven’t had any trouble installing my applications, but Photoshop CS3 is still giving me uphill. When running the setup from the DVD, I get the same scenario as Jim; the setup runs through and apears to be working properly, but right at the end it says ‘Component install failed’.

    Checking Start menu shortcuts and Program Files folder, it’s just Photoshop that didn’t install, Bridge is there and runs fine, and the app data is added to the ‘Remove Programs’ list.

    I have managed to get around it by using ‘XP Mode’ (available on the MS website), but even though it runs, it’s not exactly optimal…

    Would registering the x86 DLLs help with my issue (the setup itself is actually running)? Also, would I need to re-register the x64 DLLs afterwards or does this process not replace the 64-bit files?


    March 15th, 2010 at 10:21 pm
    Arthur Rone Says:

    Your fix for error 2739 when installing CS3 worked perfectly. I went through all of the ADOBE online help to no avail and was in an Adobe telephone que for 45 minuites when I stumbled upon your fix. I implemented your fix before they answered

    Thanks very much

    May 17th, 2010 at 11:14 am
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    May 25th, 2010 at 7:27 am
    Cheyenne Says:

    The commands worked, I just have to try the installation. :) — Just wanted to clarify to some of the people trying out the commands… that after you type the “regsvr32″ part, you have to press the space bar, then type the “jscript.dll” part. Hope that helps. Now I am off to try the installations. Fingers crossed. Thank you.

    May 30th, 2010 at 3:19 pm
    Antwon Says:

    i tryed to install photoshop cs3 on my new computer from my old computer. it transfer but on the new computer the program dont work. the program opens but closes right back up with a error tellin me to reinstall and i dont have the cd.

    May 31st, 2010 at 9:17 am
    Tony Says:

    I’m still getting Component Installation failed for all the CS3 programs. The only thing it has been able to install is Acrobat 8 and shared components. Any ideas?

    October 2nd, 2010 at 8:21 pm
    Ashley Dale Says:

    It has worked.

    October 6th, 2010 at 3:42 am
    Dave Says:

    I get an error message when trying to install Photoshop CS3 on Win 7 Ultimate x64. After using the commands above and starting the installer, I get an error:

    Setup Error
    Setup has encountered an error and cannot continue. Contact Adobe Customer Support for assistance.

    Error 1324.The path My Documents contains an invalid character.

    I have “My documents” redirected to a Windows Server so that might have something to do with it. I can’t figure out how to solve this. Any ideas?

    October 14th, 2010 at 11:38 pm
    Holly Griebenaw Says:

    I just want to say thank you sooo much for your clear and successful instructions on how to make Adobe CS3 work with Windows 7 64-bit. I had a really hard time finding a solution that wasn’t for Vista, and was about ready to throw my computer. Your solution worked perfectly. Thanks SO much!

    December 3rd, 2010 at 2:18 pm
    Thea Says:

    The problem I’m having is that the CS3 won’t open in my PC having windows 7. But then it has been successfully installed in my computer, but can’t be opened. Why?

    December 9th, 2010 at 1:59 am
    melba Says:

    this helped so much.
    thank you!
    i was starting to get so irritated that i couldnt use my ps on windows 7.
    THANKS x100000000

    December 10th, 2010 at 9:13 am
    Gene Says:

    I had the same problem where CS3 would fail to start up under Windows 7 64-bit. It put up the splash screen, then halted and Windows displayed the message that Adobe CS3 has stopped working…

    The solution turned out to be removing the Nik Color Efex Pro 2 plug-in folder. Apparently something with the plug-in selective filter won’t run. The location is c:Program Files (x86)Adobe Photoshop CS3Plug-insnik Color Efex Pro 2.0 GE. Simply delete the “nik Color Efex Pro 2.0 GE” folder and all is well. I moved it to a temp location. Later I put it back and of course CS3 failed to run. The culprit is the file “ColorEfex2Selective.8li”. Unfortunately, this is needed for any of the effect filters, so I just deleted the whole folder.

    January 6th, 2011 at 4:51 am
    Chris Lewis Says:

    Great jobs. It only worked for me when I first uninstalled the software from my computer. Then I ran your code and re-installed the
    software. Leave it to microsoft to screw Adobe over with a flawed installation setup.

    January 26th, 2011 at 5:54 am
    JoinaSmash Says:

    i followed the steps & BENGGA!

    it works 100%,. but too bad,.
    i havent tried installing it normally,.

    wahahaha . . .

    January 26th, 2011 at 5:55 am
    JoinaSmash Says:

    u will know if it works bcoz:

    after doing step 3 and step 4,.
    there will be a prompt on successfull action,.

    January 26th, 2011 at 6:13 am
    JoinaSmash Says:


    hey buddy,. your steps worked,.
    but i know there were some things that changed
    on the registry after this process & might affect
    the performance of our PCs in the future,. is there
    a way to undo those changes or CS3 needs those changes
    to keep up running well?? coz im a bit worried of the changes,.

    February 26th, 2011 at 4:14 am
    Lyle Says:

    Called Adobe because I can’t even get CS3 to even start to dwonload from the DVD. On the phone for an hour and a half, I kept track of time, all I got was “We don’t support CS3″ the end. We just bought an Acer 64 bit with Windows 7 Premium and I get ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to come up. Really don’t want to but CS5, too expensive.

    April 23rd, 2011 at 11:22 am
    Aras Says:

    İ have a Win 7 Ultimate X64 and i try cmd method, and this isnt work. I tryd twice, restart my computer but it didnt any change.

    June 13th, 2011 at 10:12 pm
    Azalee Schwartz Says:

    Hey, I totally enjoy reading your web page and I was curious in respect of if there is also a way I will subscribe to ensure that I end up receiving a contact everytime generate a fresh post. I don’t spot an RSS button or a communication form, however it could be that I just missed it. Anyway, keep up the useful posts.

    October 1st, 2011 at 2:07 pm
    Mark Moriquendi Says:

    hi mike
    tried your steps in your first post, and after finally finding the SysWOW64 folder, I ran the commands you suggested. However, I still can’t install photoshop cs3. I get as far as the “Initializing Photoshop Installation” at the beginning, and when the progress bar reaches the end, the installation doesn’t continue. any ideas? I’m running a Compaq Presario CQ56 with Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit.

    November 17th, 2011 at 7:38 pm
    Andrew Says:

    I am trying to install CS3 in Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit. It has always installed all the way for me, and I am able to open the Adobe programs right after the install, but when I restart my computer I can never get into windows without it offering to do a windows repair, which always says it needs to go back to the previous restore point which removes CS3. Then my computer will restart just fine, but I don’t have CS3 installed anymore then. Would this fix that issue? Has anyone else experienced this?

    February 6th, 2012 at 1:03 pm
    ragavan Says:

    In my photoshop cs3 it was coming when opening the file .exe .This command only coming “This software cannot be installed because JScript is not properly registered.please repair JScript and then restart the installer” what do we do?

    May 17th, 2012 at 3:45 am
    Eroll Says:

    cd..SysWOW64 is not recognised by my system however the other two prompts are good thanks..

    May 18th, 2012 at 2:10 am
    Eroll Says:

    cd..SysWOW64 is not recognised by my system(The system cannot find the path specified) however the other two prompts are good thanks

    September 25th, 2012 at 1:05 pm
    Angrybear Says:

    tried it, it still asks for windows xp service pack 2 :(

    November 27th, 2012 at 10:46 pm
    Jayson V Says:

    (1) The mistake here was in the typing of the commands…
    heres the exact way””
    Run cmd.exe with administrator privileges (Start > type ‘cmd’ then right click on cmd.exe and select Run as Administrator, then click Continue when prompted by the elevation consent dialogue box). This will open a command prompt in c:windows\system32
    (2) Back out of the system32 folder by tyring: cd..
    your command prompt shoud now look like this: c:\windows
    (3) from c:\swindows you Type cd..SysWOW64 (because SysWOW64 is located in the windows folfer NOT system32 folder)
    (4) Type regsvr32 jscript.dll
    (5) Type regsvr32 vbscript.dll

    November 27th, 2012 at 11:26 pm
    Jayson V Says:

    Here is what mine looked like…

    C:\Windows\system32> cd..SysWOW64
    The system cannot find the path specified.

    C:\Windows\system32> cd..

    C:\Windows> cd..SysWOW64

    C:\Windows\SysWOW64> regsvr32 jscript.dll
    (window pop up)…”DllRegisterServer in jscript.dll succeeded” (click ok)

    C:\Windows\SysWOW64> regsvr32 vbscript.dll
    (window pop up)…”DllRegisterServer in vbscript.dll succeeded” (click ok)

    That DID work; you can now run the installer

    June 12th, 2013 at 8:30 am
    Jeff Tang Says:

    Thanks for the info. had done the registering of the DLLs & tried installing my CS 3 Master collection even if I’d just selected Fireworks,Dreamweaver & Photoshop:- Disc 1 was ok but when it comes to Disc 2, it stopped with an error message : “Adobe Setup has stopped Working……”. might have to work in a virtual machine on my desktop….

    September 17th, 2013 at 4:55 am
    David B Says:

    My CS installer runs for a while saying loading setup and then opens a window saying initializing and then closes with no messages.

    I ran your scripts successfully as suggested but there is no difference in the install.

    I installed CS2 with no problem.

    Win7, 64, ultimate.

    Thanks if you can help. Adobe chat was 0 (zero) help.

    September 11th, 2014 at 5:49 pm
    Lisa Says:

    I’m trying to install my licensed copy of CS3 on a windows 7 Enterprise edition laptop that is no longer genuine (I bought it not knowing this). Could this be causing the installation issues? Would upgrading my windows to a genuine version solve the issue?

    April 9th, 2015 at 12:15 pm
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