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Photoshop 2020, how to fix all the problems, find missing things in the update


Photoshop 2020 update trouble shooting guide

I’ve read the comments. Some people having missing tools and they are saying, “Where are the presets, what happened to my plugins? Why does Photoshop crash when I add a gradient?”

I created this video to address all the concerns and fix every issues that I have hear about. Relax, it’s usually just something simple 🙂

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Photoshop 2020 Problems and Solutions

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Great see you here at the CAFE

Colin

 

 


117 responses to “Photoshop 2020, how to fix all the problems, find missing things in the update”

  1. OK, so based on your recommendation I installed 21.0.1 (I had already installed 21.0 twice and uninstalled it twice). I see that there is one thing they definitely have not fixed: the darn thing is so slow to load, I fully expect to celebrate another birthday (just had one) before this thing opens!

    This is NOT workable. It should not take this long to open a program that is supposed to be “the best in the world.”

    Ugh. Not going to uninstall it yet, but I certainly have no plans to use it…..IF indeed it will ever open (and I have a high-end system, too.) Boo, hiss.

    But I do appreciate your tutorial. That did help me a bit – IF it will ever open.

  2. Something I encountered: It seems that the multiple layer selection feature isn’t working as before. Before to select multiple layers in the layer panel, I’d press either shift or ctrl, select the layers to group or whatever. But, with PS2020, this feature isn’t working. Has the method for selecting multiple layers in the layers panel changed? Might be able to select a couple layers, but then the layers style panel pops open and layers already selected are no longer selected. Ugh!! Suggestions?

  3. When I updated to 2020, I decided not to keep 2019. Now 2020 is freezing up dozens of times a day and all I want to do is get my older version back. Does PS have a way for us to do this ? I haven’t found it if they do.
    Also, I open an image and I want to have the original fade to transparent so an underlying image appears. I can’t seem to do that in 2020 either.

  4. If we want to retain Ps CC 2019 (I can’t afford to lose my plugins…) how do we ensure that our current setup for Ps CC 2019 won’t go away? Is there a setting or something we have to explicitly do? Or does a question come up asking if we want to retain our older version when we hit “update” for Ps CC 2020?

  5. I updated the 2020 version, Lightroom, ACR and Photoshop but it still shows 2019 and none of the 2020 is installed. I check for updates and it says latest version installed.

  6. Hello Colin, In my new Photoshop 2020 I can’t see any words like File, Edit…. and the names of the panels like Layers , Gradients….I also can’t see x to close something. I can see the black bar but there are no words or signes on it.
    In fact, I can not work with this Photoshop.
    Many greetings
    Chris

  7. Colin, I noticed you have some impressive rings on your hand. Are you a service academy grad.(?), a national champion in football/basketball(?), member of super bowl winner(?) or just a collector? My curiosity is overwhelming!

  8. Colin, apologies! I had just gotten an email from another site that had a commentator with multiple rings and thought that I was asking him the above question. But also had you on in the background and message went to you. I was a Trump wiki moment. Whoops

  9. When I selected “Edit Toolbar” to add the missing Object Select tool, I found that it already existed in the left-hand pane even though it could not be seen elsewhere. I moved it from the left pane to the right, then back to the left pane and selected “Done”, at which point the tool became available.

  10. Hi Colin , a problem I’ve had for a while now, when I open Liquify everything comes onto the screen but I
    it will not allow any of the features to work ie eyes lips nose ,the little tabs wont move off of zero ,but the brushes section works . I get a message informing me the graphic processor needs to be clicked for advanced ,and it is but still no movement. 6 months ago all was working well then it just suddenly stopped , I haven’t made any changes to my system and run Photoshop cc2019, any advice would be most welcome.

  11. Hello Colin

    Suddenly my Wacom tablet is not resizing the brushes with click-and-drag, but is only bringing up the eyedropper tool. Is there a fix for this? Am I the only one experiencing this?

  12. Two problems – select and mask are grayed out at the top, even though I have checked activated object selection tool. The other problem is, along the top, the selection is set to ‘square’ but when I draw around the subject, it is a weird shape and doesn’t grab the subject like the instructions for the tool says it will.

  13. Hi Colin,
    I use Bridge all the time to make contact sheets in Photoshop. I select the images then select TOOLS>PHOTOSHOP>CONTACT SHEET and all my options appear. Where it says SOURCE IMAGES it would give the number of images I selected (i Photoshop 2019) Now it does all that (in 2020) except it says IMAGES SELECTED 0. I’ve Googled for an hour trying to find out how to fix this but to no avail. Hopefully, you have the answer. Thanks

  14. The first upgrade to 2020 was incredible. The second one, not so much. I use the content aware fill feature constantly – nearly everyday for the different sizes of art I have to produce. Sometimes I fill a selected area and sometimes I fill an empty area. I am unable to fill an empty area across the side or top of a photo!! Arghhhhh! I’ve been reading and watching tuts now for 90 minutes and can’t find a fix. Any ideas?

  15. Hello Colin. Thanks for all the information you give. I’m following your’ turning a photo to a watercolor youtube closely at the moment. I am fairly new to Photoshop, but I’m stuck on something that should be really easy and that is grouping layers. I actually did it earlier, following your ctrl G tip, but then went back to do other edits and now I can’t make any of the ways to group layers.
    As a last resort, I saved my work and opened my file in a different photoshop 2020, only to find that it had indeed grouped behind the scenes, but had made my 4 files into 2 separate groups. If you have any idea as to how I can unravel the problem, I would love to hear it. I hesitate to move onto adding a layer mask, when I haven’t completed the step before.

  16. Hi Colin, great videos. I am a beginner and have 2020 but when I input the ctrl t, then perspective to a service to make a wall, the squares in the corners move together when they did not another version. can you help me?

  17. Hello Colin:
    Thank you for your great tutorials. I just upgraded/installed Photoshop CC 2020 and Lightroom. In Lightroom the options to edit in photoshop are grayed out. Can you help?

  18. Any idea at all why 2020 is so buggy, slow and freezes? searched many forums including adobe and can’t find the answer. Rest preferences, purged cache etc but still no joy. Great updates and software but for now I can’t use them due to these issues. Any help appreciated before I reinstall 2019

  19. As of Decebmer 1, 2019 – version 2020 runs like absolute dog sh!t… I mean it is completely unusable utter garbage. Running a 2016 Macbook Pro 15 touchbar with 16GB and about a TB of free drive space. File saves takes 4-5 minutes or more – works instantly in 2018, Crop tool freezes, masks freeze, raw filter freezes, nearly everything I attempt to do in 2020 creates the pinwheel of death for 2-5 minutes or more. DONE. I opened the same file in 2018 and everything works flawlessly and instantly. Saves take a couple seconds. No tool causes hang for more than a few seconds. Not sure what they “improved” but 2020 is total trash as far as I can tell. Until they get this POS working I’ll stick with 2018.

  20. I open up Photoshop 2020. And when I get to the page that shows all the images I have recently worked on the tool bar is all ready there. The one that contains brush, eraser, etc. Why is it showing in advance of the rest of the workspace. Oh and how do I merge down/up. In 2019, it was always right click when selecting the layer. Colin, only you will have these answers. Thanks in advance.

  21. I copy + paste quite a bit of vector images into Photoshop, and since upgrading to 2020 the images are very pixelated & rough around the edges. It doesn’t matter if I bring them in as pixels or smart objects, it is ruined all the same. Any thoughts?

    • I saw this too, I figured out a workaround – I opened the images in Illustrator, then cut and pated them into Photoshop and they were nice an smooth. A new update came out today, let me know if it fixes the issue.

  22. When will they EVER fix the ‘crash on printing’ bug???

    Printing always worked fine for me from CS5 to cc2019, but 2020 is terrible. It works for a while then bombs out at random times whenever I try to open the Print dialogue. It also does not remember document Print preferences.

    The ‘best solution,’ according to some nutter on the Adobe forums, is to Reset Preferences every time it happens. WTF?! Every time you reset Preferences you have to re-enter all of your personalised settings and reload all presets. You also lose the entire list of recently opened documents. This is not a **FIX** at all.

    No wonder Affinity is gaining so much populariry.

  23. Hi Colin,
    thanks for your great videos – been following you for many years now!
    So I have done as you recommended: reset preferences and allowed for legacy compositing.
    am on version 21.0.1. PS crashes when using lightning effects via smart filters.
    But the main problem is the EXTRAORDINARY file sizes when saved. It’s blowing my hard disk!
    looked up on photoshop forum and it seems am not the only one with this issue.
    Have y come across it? Any solution?
    Thanks

  24. when I got to “save as” a file and select photoshop pdf – it now defaults to “as a copy”. I have to un-check it every time – it didnt do that before – is there anyway to fix that and permanently un-check it?

  25. My “Command R” keyboard command does not bring up my Rulers anymore, instead, Siri starts reciting percentages. How can I restore “Command R” so that my rulers show up.

  26. I run windows 7. My welcome screen does not show any pics or the Home, Lr Photos, Create New and Open buttons etc.
    Other items do not always work like the properties select tool,

  27. When I open photoshop 2020 my screen is blank. No anything. No home screen. When I go to new, nothing happens. Just blank screen. The only way I can work on it is to bridge my image from Lightroom and edit in photoshop and even then, if the file size is too big it freezes when I save.

  28. Hi

    I have been try ing to get my lighting effects filter to work.. I have the latest updated version of photoshop 2020…
    Adobe can’t seem to help.. they just keep saying i need a new graphics card.. I have Radeon Pro 580X 8 GB on my hard drive and i was told this is one of the top of the line cards for graphics…Do you have any suggestions how i might fix this? Adobe changed my preferences to the default and it still didn’t work. Thanks for your video.. It was great.. norm

  29. Hey Colin,
    I have left comments on 2 of your lens blur tutorials photoshop 2020. I can not get passed the step after making my background copy. I have taken a picture but do not know how or where to send it to you so you can see that the preview area in the filter shows only the checkers of the transparent background. As I was watching this video I went back into 2019 with the saved tif from 2020 and the filter works magnificently. This is of course Very inconvenient having to switch between the 2 versions. I did everything you said to do for all the other issues you touched on just in case it may work for my issue. didn’t work. Can you please help?

    • Its a known bug, which means that a fix will be on the way but… Go to preferences and choose Legacy Compositing, if that doesn’t work, go to preferences>performance and turn off GPU (advanced)

  30. Hello everyone,
    I am Photoshop CC 2020 user, and when i use my crop tools I don’t see any more content aware, it just vanished. how can i fix it?
    Thank´s

  31. I downloaded Creative Cloud for Windows 10 64 bit, but every time I try to install Photoshop, it stalls. It gets stuck at different percentages each time. Tried this on laptop and desktop computers and it’s the same thing. It can sit for an hour and never move beyond the percentage it was at before. Thanks!

  32. Something that does not seem to be addressed… Some, including myself and MANY others, have been experiencing…
    Unable to print in PS. When we go to print, PS says that a printer has not been selected. Well, that’s BS. Printing works Fine in all the other Adobe, MS, et al, applications. Just not PS. My situation is on Win10 1909, PSCC 2020. Attempting to print to HP, EPSON, and other printers.
    Everything worked fine until PSCC 2019, thereabouts.
    In Googling the issue, there has been a plethora of suggestions; Delete settings PSP file, Modify the registry to include MAX memory, holding Spacebar on Print, updating/verifying a current printer driver, changing default printer, uninstalling Windows updates, etc…
    Some of those seem to fix some folks, but there are many others, like myself, where none of those “fixes” do anything other than take up your valuable time jerking around with.
    Have you heard of this issue, and/or have there been any other suggestions to FIX the issue?
    Right now my only work around is to save the file to a PDF or high res JPG and print from another app. PITA!
    HELP, if you can.

    • I was about to suggest sending to PDF and printing, but I see you are doing that already, I’d prob do that till they come out with a fix.

  33. Hi Colin, i have had this problem for a while now, when i use lighting effects it does not work properly. It is kind of hard to explain but i will give it a go, when i go into lighting effects nothing happens except if i use the ambience slider it darkens the image, there is no directional light when you move the various effects away, my drivers are up to date and i have not been able to find a fix, some guidance will be much appreciated. 🙂

  34. Hey Colin, thanks for the tips. I really like the new shapes and the way to uncover the new gradients. I have a problem that I would like your help with. i noticed when I upgraded to 2020 that whenever I try to use the guide lines by dragging from the ruler, the guide line is black and it disappears over the image I am working on. After I release the mouse, it does appear as it always did, in the color cyan. I don’t know if I did something, or not to make it this way, but it is frustrating. Can you help?

  35. Hi Colin, I’ve seen this problem isn’t issued as much for others but I’ve had this problem since I first updated to Photoshop 2020 which has made the current version of the program completely unusable. The top application bar is completely invisible and i cannot see what i am selecting, the layer tabs are completely gone, whenever i open a new project the menu is visible in the background and the color picker and several key points to Photoshop are gone. I have tried changing my graphic processor and it still didn’t fix the issue, so I’m completely confused as to what to do as I’m not the best with technology. Sorry if this is an annoyance to you.

  36. Here is an easy peasy one for you. Since the 2020 update my font sizes are displayed in pixels not points. I would very much like them back in points. I imagine there is a setting somewhere but I cannot find it. I have tried the Reset Tool option with no success. Can you help

  37. Hi, since updating to 2020 I have lost the Date File Created element in my metadata. It only shows the time created now, so I have no way of knowing when I took the image. Can anyone help?

  38. Hi, I’ve been having a problem with the custom shape tool in PS 2020. I did download legacy shapes, as the new ones seemed mostly useless to me. Then I tried one of the tree shapes, packaged with 2020: the dead pine. PS froze or was super slow and I was unable to quit or force quit PS. Is there a workaround? Is this a known issue-I couldn’t find it mentioned anywhere.

  39. Hello Colin,

    I’m experiencing something weird with Photoshop CC2020 Ver 21.1.0. I am unable to paste into Photoshop any vector object no-matter how simple it is, it would not give me that pop-up option if I wanted to import vector as a smart object or shape, etc. when copying from Illustrator CC2020 Ver 24.0.2. Copying from Illustrator to Indesign works just fine though.

  40. Hi Colin,

    I just updated to 21.1.0 and I noticed that my mask tool at the bottom of my layers palette is pressed down as if I’m using it, but it won’t allow me access to it. If I restart PS it seems to be okay, but then at some point it looks like it gets pressed down permanently again, even if I hadn’t used it. Do you know what’s causing this?

    Thanks,
    Keith

  41. @52 (Keith):
    I just stumbled across the same issue, right as you described it. I have a fresh install on a new MacBook, running for about 10 days now. The problem with the mask option greyed out/mask button pressed down started yesterday. As you mentioned, restarting Photoshop fixes the problem only for a while.
    …At least I’m not the only one.

  42. Same here about the Mask option as ‘greyed on’ thing. Duh. Adobe – I am now having to copy masks from other documents as a workaround.

  43. Hello,
    I am having an issue when saving out a file from Photoshop to another file format like JPG or PNG. I can see the file from the program but when I go to the folder that I have saved it to I cannot see the actual JPG or PNG. It seems it can only be viewed from the program and not on its own. What could be causing this issue? Thanks.

  44. I’ve just downloaded Photoshop 2020 and notice my actions palette does not have the record button, trash icon, etc. Do you know how I can restore this? thank you

  45. Hi Colin, I have a problem with the Gradient Map. I’ll open a image in Photoshop then click on the Adjustment Layer Icon then go to Gradient Map. When it adds the layer I click on the Black to White Gradient and it changes the image to Black and White. But when I move the Black and White Stops on the sliders the image is not altered. I can add stops to the sliders and the image changes until I put in a correct Brightness Value but moving the sliders has no effect on the image. How can I fix this? Thanks

  46. Photoshop can no longer open 3d pdf file without having a Parse Error. I have to use an old version to open the 3D PDF, then move the file to my computer with Photoshop 2020. BIG speed bump to my workflow.

  47. Hello, Colin
    I can not open a New Document. “Create” is not working. Could you help me?
    Thank you very much
    Peter

  48. Hi Colin
    I am having a problem with hue/saturation adjustment layers, when i choose a colour under master and then use the eyedropper to select a colour it closes the dialogue box. Driving me mad so any suggestions welcome! Only seems to do it on my iMac not on my MacBook, both running latest versions of photoshop. Have tried tool reset.
    Many thanks
    Russell

  49. Just upgraded to Photoshop 2020. My Text tool is messed up. When I start typing , I have to increase my font to 400pt or even 1000pt to get a decent size text even when the resolution of my document is only 72ppi. Any help you can suggest is greatly appreciated. Thanks so much.

  50. Hi there Colin, Thanks for video. I’ve installed PS 2020 and now when I edit text the text disappears and won’t appear again til I hit enter. Problem only seems to happen with text that has effects (drop shadow etc), ‘plain’ text seems to be ok and I can view & edit. Any clues? Cheers Brenda

  51. I’ve figured out that it is the outline/stroke of the text that disappears when you edit (this did not happen in previous versions of PS), I have black text on a black background with a white outline. So as a workaround I can highlight text (which disappears), change text colour to white, edit text (which I can now see) then change text colour back to black (and reappears as black text with white stroke/outline). If there’s an easier solution I would love to know – I have a lot of text to edit 🙁

  52. I am quite new to Photoshop Elements 2020–day 2. I can not find the file path for saved, edited photos. Where do they go?

  53. Photoshop got a nice new icon with its June update. But inside: screen is constantly freezing, when working with smart objects. Only switching off and on the affected layers will solve the problem for me. Happens on different machines. I downgraded to the previous version, which killed all my preferences. What shall I say, it‘s not what I expect for my money.

  54. I just downloaded v.21.2.0

    When I clicked save as I normally do, this popped up:

    “Could not complete the Save As command because the document is currently being saved in the background. Please try the operation again after the save has been completed.”

    Saving download is still at 0% and I am worried I will loose everything. My automatic saving is still on, 10 mins, but I donʻt know (if I force quit psd if it has saved)

    Please help!

  55. Adobe’s quality control has become abysmal. We are literally beta testing their software for them. I have so many issues with this new 2020 update I had to revert to the last version. The most annoying one is when I switch to another app my Photoshop document screen turns blank and doesn’t show anything until I go back to PS and scroll within the document window. Ridiculous.

  56. I’ve been having all kinds of issues with PS 2020, it keeps freezing up, crashing, then booting me out of my account. However, when I installed PS 2020, I did not have the option to keep 2019 version, it read “Update” in the start up button, I clicked on it, and PS 2020 installed without giving me an option to keep 2019. I know how to get PS 2019 back, and when I try to reinstall it, I get a message telling me, the current version will be uninstalled, so I really have no idea what you’re talking about, in regards to being able to have both versions running at the same time!

  57. Hi Colin – I was hoping you could help please – I updated to the new PS 21.2.0 yesterday and when I click select subject or use the quick selection tool, and then add or subtract from the selection that PS has made, it copies the selection and pastes it into another section of the image – I now have two subjects in my image! I am a beginner so I could have something pressed I shouldn’t, but I have been using the select subject tool with the previous version of PS with no problems. I hope that makes sense. Thank you so much!

  58. I drastically lose image quality when importing raw files into photoshop 2020. The image is fine is camera raw but as soon as I import it from there into photoshop it drastically loses image quality. How do I fix this?

  59. Using Elements on a new Mac – created several color options, each on its own layer, saving along the way, now suddenly they are MIA. I have my Layers window up, but only showing 2 most recently created

  60. Hi Colin, you are so good at making things so simple to understand 🙂 I’m having an issue with the 2020 PS too. My problem is solid colour in layers. When I select a colour, say orange- then go to soft light or in fact any of those options the screen becomes solid lime green and you can’t see the image at all and in fact you have to delete the layer to get the image back. has anyone else had this issue? I also have an action that use all the time and i can’t get that to work either yet both work beautifully in the 2019 version.

  61. ‘The most annoying one is when I switch to another app my Photoshop document screen turns blank and doesn’t show anything until I go back to PS and scroll within the document window’ Argh!! I have exactly the same problem and have spent ages trying to fix it! I thought it was just me as couldn’t find any fixes for this. Drives me mad, esp when you need to look at two image side by side – one in PS and one on an email for example.

  62. Hey…
    My Save As option and Save option does not work. Nothing happens when I click on them! Is this version like this for everyone?

  63. Just updated (7/15/2020) and now layers won’t refresh and I see the original image as I transform it under the transformed version. I can’t make a free transformation as I can’t see the layer below because of the untransformed/unrefreshed image still being there. I tried the online ‘turn off use graphics processor’ and restart to no avail. This was a fix from 2018 – never happened to me before. Didn’t work. Ideas?

  64. My copy and paste feature is suddenly going haywire. When I paste something, then try to move it, the intermediate image of it stays right where it is even as I am moving my pasted bit to a new location. The intermediate image is covering up the area I need to see for proper placement of the pasted piece. It won’t go away until I flatten the entire image. It’s driving me crazy.

  65. When I make a selection on a normal unlocked layer and add a mask I cannot get a transparent background but rather the background is white. Why is this not working?
    Rena

  66. I can no longer see the crop tool guide bars around my photo, & when I click on the crop tool , all I see is the symbol. This whole crop tool is really frustrating me. I’ve tried reset & nothing happens. Anyone have a suggestion.

  67. Hi. You’ve got a lot of great solutions. So far I have not been able to find a solution to a problem I am having. Photoshop works great except when I use the text tool. When I try to set specifics of font, size, color, etc. my screen jerks around. I’ve reinstalled Creative Cloud and Photoshop. I’ve tried different monitors, I’ve reinstalled Microsoft Visual C, updated my drivers, and other things but nothing helps. I am using Windows 10 64-bit. Everything is up to date. I don’t know what information you might need. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Website is listed but I am currently developing it.

  68. I am having issues saving to pdf in latest version. In one file I have a gray rectangle masked inside of a rectangle with rounded corners. When I made the pdf, the gray rectangle is gone. In trouble shooting, I first started with grouping the two layers and turning them into a smart object. That did not work. Secondly, I rasterized the rectangle with rounded corners. In the pdf, the gray box was still not there and the rounded corners were now square. Lastly, I rasterized only the gray box and left the rectangle with rounded corners live. For some reason, that worked.

    In my other file, I have a rectangle with rounded corners and a color stroke. In the pdf, the stroke is not present. I had to remove the stroke from the rectangle and go to the FX pallet and add the stroke there in order for it to work.

    Something is wrong with the latest version.

  69. Hello
    I’m working with PS 2020 V.21.2.3 on Mac Catalina, my problem is that PS automatically makes colored areas on the last layer and copies them into the layer…

    This copied color area can only be corrected by the copy stamp, which is not very helpful.

    I fixed the problem by restarting the Mac, it worked so far, but in the file I saved these patches still exist after restarting… and as soon as the Mac is shut down and started again the next day the same problem appears again. Ps is set as autostart program, lately this problem has occured a quite often and I don’t know how to help myself anymore.

    does anybody have the same problem or suggestions for solution?

  70. Hi Colin I have photo shop 21.2.3 trying to transfer multiple photos to edit in layer in photo shop and get a message saying Error reading machine specific preferences they will be set to defaults , but only 1 photo gets loaded can you help, tried googling to find how to fix no luck. thanks

  71. Hi! I’m having a problem with the eraser. After each move I make it shoots to the upper left corner erasing everything on its way. How do I make it stop please.

  72. Hi, colin I’m having problem with adobe photoshop I’m a beginner n practicing as newbie. I can move forward n stuck at postcards as when i click on postcards the create button is not clicking n I’m not getting a postcard image. Plz help.

  73. I love your tutorials- some are a little over my head but most are great for me.
    I have two “organizing and clean up ” questions:
    1) I have downloaded over the years a huge folder of brushes- but they are not described well. I need to import them into the brushes panel in order to see what they are. Is there a way of viewing them without going through the hassle of importing, viewing, and deleting?
    Also, I have over the years imported duplicates of brushes, shapes, styles, etc. Is there a way of filtering out the duplicates without deleting them one at a time?
    I’ve been wondering about these two questions for a loooong time thanks so much.
    for your help and for the great tutorials,
    Phyllis

  74. Hi Collin, great tutorial. I end on this page because after the latest update I cannot see the bounding boxes around the objects I select on Photoshop! So I have not control on how to enlarge or even when moving them it is really mind blogging! Help!!!

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