It seems it’s now safe to upgrade to macOS 10.13 as Wacom tablets and Adobe Illustrator and InDesign are now supported – though you’ll need to be careful during upgrade and use a pre-release version of Illustrator.
When Apple first shipped macOS 10.13 – aka High Sierra – it was quickly discovered that there were issues that could prevent Illustrator and Wacom tablets working at all, and make InDesign unusable after a period of use. These didn’t affect everyone – but had the potential to prevent you from working (as once you upgrade you can’t go back).
Now updates from Apple, Adobe and Wacom seem to have largely fixed the problems. Here are the details.
Note: for any of Adobe’s Creative Cloud applications to run correctly, you need to select the default version of the new files system APFS (called Case Insensitive). If you change this to Case Sensitive, things will break.
Illustrator CC 2017 High Sierra compatibility
Illustrator CC 2017 will default to emulating the Illustrator 6.0 colour space. You can reset this in the application’s settings, but you’ll need to do this every time you launch the app.
The software can also corrupt EPS files that are on network drives.
Both of these can be avoided by downloading and installing a pre-release version of Illustrator (which was mentioned on Adobe’s support page for Illustrator yesterday, but references have since been removed – though it’s still there on the Wayback Machine). The licence agreement for pre-release software prevents us from revealing anything about it, so we can’t confirm if we’ve tested it or if it works.
Incompatibility with some graphics cards/chips will cause glitches to GPU-accelerated tools and effects such as Brushes, Live Corners and the like. You’ll need to turn these off.
Previously, Adobe noted that the new APFS file system on MacOS 10.13 may prevent Illustrator CC 2017 launching, throwing up an error message – and it could also stop it installing. This appears to be fixed.
Currently Adobe says that its engineers are working on fixes and will release them “in a future version of Illustrator” – but no time scale has been mentioned. Past behaviour by Adobe suggests would be in November this year, about a month or so after announcements at its Adobe Max conference – though last year the upgrades were released during the show.
Wacom High Sierra compatibility
Last night, Wacom released a new driver to add High Sierra support for all but its oldest products (which weren’t supported under 10.12 aka Sierra either).
Supported tablets include the Intuos 4, 5, Pro and the tablets just called ‘Intuos’ – and the Cintiq 12WX, 13HD, 21UX 2, 22HD, 24HD, 27QHD and Cintiq Pro tablet displays.
Previously, Wacom had a statement on its support site saying that “due to nature of the changes in High Sierra, the existing Wacom driver for 10.12 will not work.”
The company was “currently working on a new driver update to support the new operating system” saying that a “new Wacom driver will be ready by late October at the latest.”
InDesign CC 2017 High Sierra compatibility
When macOS 10.13 was released, InDesign CC 2017 suffered from an the issue that was simpler but equally disruptive. After a while of using InDesign, your cursor might turn into a “pixelated box”. This would make using InDesign somewhere between highly frustrating and impossible.
At the time, Adobe said that “Our engineering team is working with Apple to correct the root problem as soon as possible” – so a fix should hopefully appear soon.
And it has. Adobe reached out to us to let us know that a new Supplemental Update to High Sierra from Apple fixes the problem. More info here.
Photoshop CC 2017 High Sierra compatibility
Photoshop can’t use APFS disks as scratch disks.
Older Adobe apps and macOS High Sierra
Some users have also detected problems with Premiere Pro, and pre-CC 2017 versions of all of the Creative Cloud and Creative Suite tools aren’t supports and are likely to see problems on macOS 10.13.