Photoshop Engine Instability

Hi all,

We’ve set up a pipeline for 2D Animation design that relies heavily on Photoshop and (in my own testing as well) the Photoshop integration is unstable, and seems to be worse, the longer photoshop has been open. This can have various symptoms:

  • Flow Adobe Panel buttons completely unresponsive
  • tk-photoshopcc engine completely crashing with no log messages

Our instructions to our Artists have been to restart and relaunch photoshop, and we’ve even found that force-quitting the python 3.x process allows for a quick restart of the engine without closing Photoshop entirely. This doesn’t always work.

After some time, certain artists have no choice but to completely sign out of Shotgun/Flow Desktop and sign back in… and everything works okay, usually, for some time.

Have other people experienced this and found a way around it?

Is there a place I can go looking for log files coming from the Photoshop/JavaScript side of things?

Asking for my studio and its brave Artists using Flow and Photoshop.


Hi all,

Since no one has responded to this I’m beginning to think I’m crazy or have set something up wrong, OR everyone in the community has just accepted that this integration doesn’t work and takes that fact for granted-- end of discussion?

Does anyone have any past experience/insight how to fix this or best practices?

We’re on MacOS (Intel mostly, not sure of the exact MacOS versions studio wide yet), using Photoshop 23 (24.x.x), and SG Desktop v1.8.0.

And the number of complaints grows.

Personally I dont know anyone using it that heavily so not sure about what you are experiencing.
Perhaps a support ticket would help you more?

Hey Dash!

We are heavily Photoshop-centric. While we’re just re-launching our TK integrations, I can say I haven’t seen specifically issues with responsiveness of the PS engine. But we have run across a couple of other issues:

  • Context getting lost when opening files in other tabs and switching back to the original document. Usually the Task gets lost in this situation.
  • Orphaned python process running after Photoshop is quit. This is the Adobe framework which doesn’t get properly shut down.

In general, I’ve found leaving Desktop open for a bit (like hours not days), causes it to hang and slow down tremendously in general as I posted here: Desktop freeze and spinner on MacOS

Once we get going, I’ll be able to give more feedback around this in general. Let’s stay connected!


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Hi KP,

Hope you’re well! I realized we were on an older release of the adobe framework from when I forked tk-config-default2, so I started by bumping tk-framework-adobe and tk-photoshopcc to the latest versions this week. Hopefully this will come with improvements! :crossed_fingers:

We’ve also run into the same issues.

The task context getting lost (in our case) was because there was no token in the file naming convention that pointed to a specific Task, just the Pipeline Step. So when toolkit tries to get the context from a path, it can grab the Pipeline Step, but doesn’t go any further for getting a Task.

I’ve solved this for us by tweaking the publish hooks to lookup the Task based on the Pipeline Step if it’s not present in the context, which is good enough for us since Publishing is really the only important integration we’re relying on that requires a Task in the context.

Toolkit leaving behinds “Zombie” pythons is also something we see consistently, but they don’t appear to do any harm other than clog up the MacOS Dock :wink:

Cool. We’re on the latest versions of both the framework and engine but still seeing all this behavior.

For the task getting lost from the context, it’s an issue with how it stores the context cache to keep track of the context for all of the files that are open. There’s a thorough thread around it here: Shotgun PhotoshopCC context loss with multiple active files


Hi all!

I have a tentative resolution to this post.

We were still using tk-framework-adobe_v1.1.8 which was over a year out of date, and I bumped it to v1.2.2. The feedback I’ve gotten from Artists is that it’s much more stable and actually snappier overall.

Here’s to software updates that improve things. I wish I’d updated that app store descriptor sooner.