Little more than a week after its global launch, Adobe's Creative Suite 4 has shown up on popular BitTorrent tracking sites in large numbers.
The software represents updates to Adobe's flagship Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, Acrobat and InDesign products, among others, with the full Master Collection edition, which includes the entire range, selling for an estimated price in Australia of $4,499.
However, several casual searches conducted this morning revealed what appeared to be copies of CS4 and its various included products littered across most of the popular BitTorrent tracking sites, although ZDNet.com.au did not download any of the files to verify if they were genuine.
For example, on The Pirate Bay, hundreds of people were downloading the Mac OS X version of Photoshop (a 1GB file), while others were splashing out for the 7.2GB Master Collection edition, which appeared to be a leaked pre-lease version of the software. A number of beta versions of the software were also popular, as were illicit serial numbers.
The downloading frenzy even spread to the training field, with videos from educational site Lynda.com (which charges for its content on a subscription model) explaining CS4's new features available for BitTorrent download.
It was a similar case at Mininova, where several dozen people were downloading Photoshop CS4, although Flash CS4 was also generating interest.
In a curious phenomenon, despite the availability of Photoshop CS4, the previous version, CS3, which was released in early 2007, was still much more popular than the latest version.
On the Pirate Bay, literally thousands of people were downloading or hosting downloads of Photoshop CS3 and the complete CS3 Master Collection. It was a similar situation on Mininova, but on a smaller scale. Lynda's CS3 training suites were also extremely popular, as were ebooks, or scanned copies of real books, that dealt with CS3 training.
Adobe Australia declined to comment on the pirating effort.
Creative Suite is Adobe's software aimed at content professionals; the company also sells an "Elements" line at a substantially cheaper price that offers a reduced feature set to consumers.
Last week, Adobe's country manager for the Pacific region Peter McAlpine, defended CS4's "estimated" local retail price, which could see Australians paying hundreds of dollars more in real terms than US residents for the same software products.