Adobe’s Mac App update accidentally deletes users’ files, comes up with a fix

Adobe has pulled an update for its Creative Cloud desktop application for Mac computers, which accidentally deleted some users’ important files without any permission from the user or reason or warning.

The company pulled the update on Friday after cloud storage outfit Backblaze discovered an issue in Adobe’s Creative Cloud update. Here’s how Backblaze described the issue:

“…files from folders within your root directory could have been removed. We typically saw this occur to the user’s top-most (when alphabetically sorted) hidden folder, or to a folder that had a space at the front of its name (a semi-common practice to force a folder to always appear at the top of the list).”

Acknowledging the issue, a spokesperson said: “In a small number of cases, the updater may incorrectly remove some files from the system root directory with user writeable permissions.

“We have removed the update from distribution, and are in the process of deploying a new update which addresses the issue. When prompted for the update, Creative Cloud members should install it as normal.”

Adobe pushed out a new version of the desktop app, version 3.5.1.209, on Sunday. Adobe says, “When prompted for the update, Creative Cloud members should install it as normal.” If auto-update is turned on, Adobe’s fix should begin migrating from the cloud to the user’s machine and take effect shortly.

Backblaze, a cloud-based backup tool and service that allows users to backup their data to an offside data center, was the one to discover the bug and report on the matter. Backblaze users were particularly badly affected by the error, as the backup system is stored inside a folder called “.bzvol” at the top of each of its customer’s drives.

Later, Backblaze rolled out an additional dummy directory called “aBackblaze”, which Adobe updates could delete without causing any problems.

Some other users found that Adobe deleted a folder required for the functioning of Mac autosave and document versioning functions, while any folder that started with a space on the root directory would likely fall victim to the update’s deletions.

Yev Pusin, Head of social for Backblaze said: “It’s difficult to tell exactly which data may have been removed, but you can open the root directory on your Mac and try to look towards the top for any folders that are empty. This would have occurred to only one folder (that we know of) so the topmost hidden folder or the first folder with a space as the first character would have been affected.”

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