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Adobe Illustrator CS6 can’t open .ai file

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Luca Phillips
Adobe Illustrator CS6 can’t open .ai file
on Oct 21, 2018 at 1:12:51 pm

On Windows 8.1 I had installed Adobe CS6 Master Collection and updated all Adobe products to latest versions within CS6. I had created a business card using Adobe Illustrator. All went fine and I had printed the business card.

Just a week ago I had done a fresh install of Windows 10 and re-installed Adobe CS6 Master Collection including all updates to latest version with CS6.

Now when I try to open the same business card, I get the following error:

"The file xxxxxxxxx was generated by a newer version of Illustrator. Would you like to import this file. Some data loss may occur"

When I click YES, I get a blank shape of the business card but no content.

Unusual thing is that I had created multiple versions of the business card as I was enhancing and modifying. Previous old versions of the business card opens just fine on Windows 10 with CS6. It's just that the latest and final version of the business card is failing to open and giving me the error message.

I am stumped. I only have xxxxxx.ai version and xxxxxxx.png version of the file. But obviously I am not able to modify anything in png version. So what solution do I have? I definitely don't want to edit previous version because I had modified tremendously and I would have no idea on the dimensions or other elements that I need to modify in the business card.

How do I repair ai file and why am I getting this error message. Nothing has changed except for the fact that I went from Windows 8.1 to fresh install of Windows 10. I do not have EPS versions or any other format except for AI and PNG.

Thanks for your help in advance.

Life is too important to be taken seriously


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Kalleheikki Kannisto
Re: Adobe Illustrator CS6 can’t open .ai file
on Oct 22, 2018 at 8:04:39 pm

Probably simplest if you ask someone with a later version of Illustrator to see if they can open it save it as an even earlier version than CS6.

Kalleheikki Kannisto
Senior Graphic Designer


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Alex Krenvalk
Re: Adobe Illustrator CS6 can’t open .ai file
on Oct 28, 2018 at 4:19:32 pm

You may apply some easy steps…
1) Open the preferences file and look for the entry named "enableContentRecovery", change the value from 0 to 1. This turns on the feature.
2) Launch Illustrator and choose "File>Open". Select the file from which you wish to recover the roundtrip information.
3) Click "OK" while holding down the command, shift and option keys (control, shift and alt on Windows).
Following this procedure will result in a new empty document in Illustrator. This you should just close without saving. In addition the roundtrip information from the file is extracted to a new file in the same directory as the original. The new file is given the same name as the original preceded by an underscore character.
Once the roundtrip information has been extracted it can be viewed in an editor and any problems corrected. The corrected file can then be opened in Illustrator. Note that images in the file are saved as binary. Therefore the editor used to modify the file must be able to preserve binary data.
I found an interesting method that could help from blog of one enthusiast, if steps below don't work then look at Illustrator Repair Kit, it works with all the types of .ai files on https://www.illustrator.repair/ moreover you can choose various methods to solve your issue, the advantage this solution over others in its functionality.

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