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Adobe Photoshop CC 2020 Rainbow-Beachballs and Goes Zombie-Process, macOS Catalina Goes Non-Functional Requiring Hard Reboot

Numerous bugs remain in macOS Crapalina. Nearly all of them will lurk around forever now that Catalina is a maintenance release. Soon we will savor an odiferous dumpster of new “features” shot-through with yet more bugs: macOS Big Sneer.

A fixed calendar date drives the release of macOS; quality control has zero to do with it. Year after year, a botched macOS Frankenstein drops like a cowpie. Frequent panicked updates follow, to fix what should have never been shipped to customers, and these updates are themselves poorly tested, causing yet more problems and bricking some machines.

Sloppy engineering, irresponsible and negligent quality control practices, and disdain for the needs of working pros are now the hallmark of Apple software.

Advice: professionals with working systems should stick with what works, never updating to a major new release without some essential benefit— for the past 3 releases, my work at least has only been degraded, with not a single benefit.

Apple or Adobe at fault? Demolishing productivity with failing software

Update Oct 5: I’ve had perhaps a dozen more hard crashes. Each time it disrupts my day for a good 15 minutes. I’ve reported it again to Adobe, but so far no fix and minimal response has occured. I am not a happy camper.


No hardware changes, only latest macOS update and the latest Photoshop update about two weeks ago or whenever it was. I cannot know which to blame, and perhaps it’s only a macOS bug for which PS gets the blame, BUT these lockups happen ONLY when running Photoshop.

Ever since the latest Photoshop and macOS updates, my 2019 Mac Pro system has become unstable. EVERY DAY I have to hard-reboot it when Photoshop rainbow-beachballs.

Update Sept 20: the problem remains, but fortunately it is down to every 3-4 days.

It goes like this:

  1. Out of the blue, Photoshop CC 2020 (latest) rainbow-beachballs. Its windows and palettes now cover all other apps and that alone makes the machine unusable. But it’s worse.
  2. Force-killing Photoshop results in Photoshop reappearing as some kind of zombie process. Kill it again, and it’s still there. I am not sure if it is a new launch or Apple’s buggy software failing to kill it. I cannot be sure, because around this point, it become impossible to launch Activity Monitor to check and/or Terminal.
  3. For a short while, other apps work if already launched, but after a minute or so, everything locks up and becomes unusable; attempting to launch any app hangs and it never happens.

It acts like the I/O system is locked up, which implicates macOS (a normal app should not be able to lock up the system). So that suggests that Photoshop might not be at fault. And yet this problem ONLY occurs when running Photoshop.

The only solution is to pull the power plug and hard reboot, or to do "sudo reboot -q" (if Terminal is already open or can be opened).

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