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My MacBookPro's screen recently started flickering. I read a few VERY lengthy threads in forums at and have concluded that the problem is either due to a hardware design flaw that Apple ignores or it is a software issue.

I'm hoping it is related to recent system updates or even better, perhaps it is caused by third party software that I installed. With that hope, I'm going wipe the drive, re-install the operating system, and then re-install all applications.

If I use SuperDuper to create a sandbox partition, I can install one app at a time over a stretch and rollback once I've identified the app that introduces the flickering.

One problem. On a Windows system, Adobe Creative Suite performs low level disc manipulation, writing activation information to the zero-sector of a hard drive.

On a Windows system, this made restoring drive images using programs like Acronis TruImage a nightmare because the software would de-activate. Afterwards, you'd have to spend hours on the phone with Adobe to manually re-activate. Once software associated with your serial number requires manual re-activation, you're stuck. You will always have to call Adobe to re-activate.

So, does anyone have experience using SuperDuper sandboxes with Adobe Creative Suite? Does it work or did swapping between your sandbox and your master cause the CS5 to de-activate?

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Hey, random. Thanks for the grammar edit. – Michael Prescott Aug 21 '10 at 21:10

Adobe CS offers the ability to "deactivate" an installation, which allows you to reactivate it later automatically without having to argue with an Adobe phone rep. The easiest approach would probably be for you to deactivate your installation before making the changes you've mentioned, then once everything's working smoothly again, reactivate it. This can be found under the Help menu.

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I'm know about deactivating. Adobe doesn't tell you, but there is a DEactivation limit. You can UNinstall their software x-number of times. Recall, the zero-sector is meant for disk manipulation software, like imaging and partitioning software not system applications. So, if backup your entire system using imaging software, CS5 will detect that the zero partition data was changed when you restore. So, it de-activates. This counts against the de-activation limit AND against the activation limit. I was told this by Adobe support every time I had to call to re-installed CS for over a year. – Michael Prescott Aug 21 '10 at 2:00

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