Installation, Updating, and Troubleshooting

Supported Platforms

The PixelSquid plug-in for Photoshop is designed to work with Adobe Photoshop CC 2014 and higher for both Mac and Windows. If you are on a previous version of Photoshop, or not using Photoshop, you can still download transparent PNGs and layered PSDs from our site to be used in your compositions.


Upgrading for Photoshop 2021

We have redesigned the plugin to take advantage of new features available only within Photoshop 2021. Both the old and new plugins can run side-by-side. You will find the old plugin in the Windows | Extensions (Legacy) | PixelSquid menu in Photoshop 2021. To upgrade, follow the Installation Quick Start directions below.

Important: While the plugins can run side-by-side, it is not recommended to use both of them in the same composition. The new plugin can read the layers created in the old plugin, but you cannot go backward – the old plugin cannot read the layers created in the new plugin.

Installation Quick Start

Make sure you have the latest Creative Cloud Desktop app installed

  1. Click the link to the new plugin:
  2. Click Open in Creative Cloud Desktop app if prompted
  3. Click the Install button and agree to the installation
  4. Go to Photoshop and select the Plugins | PixelSquid | PixelSquid menu item

You should be up and running! If an error occurs, or you do not see the plug-in after restarting Photoshop, see the Troubleshooting section.


Photoshop CC2018 – CC2020 Installation

NOTE:  The Adobe Create Cloud installation method is available only for CC2018 and later versions. Adobe provides a way of installing Add-Ons using their website and the Creative Cloud desktop app. It can take some time to get everything setup correctly, but once it is, it can be an easy way to install add-ons. The following instructions outline our best understanding of what is needed to set up their installer, and will do everything we can to help if you get stuck, but we may direct you to Adobe support if the problem appears to be happening on their end.

  1. Make sure Photoshop is closed
  2. Make sure you have the Creative Cloud desktop app running. On Mac you can use finder to search for “Creative Cloud” in your applications (make sure you select just “Creative Cloud” and not the installer file “Creative Cloud Installer”). On Windows you can use the Start Menu to search for “Adobe Creative Cloud”.
  3. Once it is running, make sure you are logged in using your Adobe Creative Cloud account. Select the gear menu in the upper right, and select “Preferences…”. Under the “General” tab, It should list your Adobe ID, or give you the option to login if you are not currently signed in.
  4. Also make sure that you have enabled file-sync by selecting the “Creative Cloud” tab under preferences, and then selecting “Files”. You should see the “On” radio button selected under SYNC ON/OFF.
  5. Go to and select “SIGN IN” in the upper right if you are not currently logged in. Make sure to login with your same credentials you used for the creative cloud desktop app. If you are already signed in verify that the name in the upper right is the same as the one on the Creative Cloud desktop app.
  6. You should see a blue “Install” button under the name of the PixelSquid Plug-in. Click this button, and it should give you a message “Add-on acquired”. At this point the Add-On is not yet installed, it has just communicated to the Creative Cloud desktop app that it should install the plug-in.
  7. Go back to the Creative Cloud desktop app and click on the Home tab (if you are in preferences from step 2, click the arrow in the upper left, and then click Home. You should see a message in the “Activity Stream” section when the plug-in has installed.
  8. If your setup requires escalated privileges, you may receive notification messages like “click here to continue installation”. When you click those it will prompt you for your password. If you do not click these then the “Activity Stream” will report a failure message. If you get a failure message, you can try the installation again by going to, finding the PixelSquid Plug-in in the list and clicking “Remove”, then following step 5 through 8 again.

If you get the message that “PixelSquid Plug-in was installed successfully” in the “Activity Stream” then you can open Photoshop and activate the plug-in by selecting the Window → Extensions → PixelSquid menu

Installation for Photoshop CC2017 and earlier

CC2017 and earlier versions of Photoshop require a special version of the PixelSquid plug-in. This version is NOT available through the Adobe Creative Cloud installation and must be installed manually. If you upgrade your version of Photoshop at a later time, this version of the plug-in will still work with your upgraded Photoshop.

  1. Make sure Photoshop is closed
  2. Download the plug-in installer:
  3. After installation completes, re-open Photoshop
  4. Restart Photoshop, and activate the plugin by navigating to Window → Extensions → PixelSquid.

If an error occurs, or you do not see the plug-in after restarting Photoshop, see the Troubleshooting section.

Having Issues Installing?
Check Adobe’s Troubleshooting Adobe Add-ons page for add-on installation help from Adobe.
If you are having trouble installing through the Adobe Creative Cloud Add-on Marketplace, see our manual installation instructions.

Requirements: The plug-in requires Photoshop CC 2014 or higher.Photoshop CS6 and older versions are not supported by the plug-in, but you can still open PixelSquid PNG and PSDs in Photoshop by downloading these files directly from the site and opening in your version of Photoshop.


Troubleshooting (CC2020 and Earlier)


If you do not see the plugin when you start Photoshop:


Verify that the plug-in files were installed by checking to make sure the plug-in directory exists

Mac: /Library/Application Support/Adobe/CEP/extensions/com.pixelsquid.heroplayer
Win:C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Adobe\CEP\extensions/com.pixelsquid.heroplayer

If the files do not exist:

Mac: Re-run the installer and verify that you select your hard drive in step 2, “Destination Select”
Win: Re-run the installer and verify that the correct version of Photoshop is selected and that the installation directory listed matches your Photoshop installation path
Win: Re-run the installer as administrator by right clicking on the icon and selecting “Run as Administrator”

If you are running multiple versions of Photoshop (for example CC 2014 and CC 2015)

The Windows installer allows you to select the version of Photoshop that you want to install to. Make sure that you selected the correct version, or check to see if it is correctly installed to the other version.


If an error occurs when starting Photoshop:


If a dialog says that the plug-in is incorrectly signed, or cannot validate the signature:

In some cases the Windows installer has problems installing on Windows 64-bit with Photoshop 15.5 (64-bit). If you get this error message, first clean out the old installation by deleting the following directory from your machine:

Mac: /Library/Application Support/Adobe/CEP/extensions/com.pixelsquid.heroplayer

Win: C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Adobe\CEP\extensions/com.pixelsquid.heroplayer

After deleting the directory follow the directions for the Adobe Add-On installation below.

If you get an empty plug-in view when you start the plugin:

If you are on CC2017 or earlier, you must use the version of the plug-in for those versions, which are found on the plugin download page.


If an error occurs while using the plugin:


If you get a message that you must verify your account, even though you have already verified:

In most cases this is caused by using two different email addresses, one for the website and one for the plug-in. This can happen if you use Facebook to login with one, and email/password to login to the other. Facebook may not have the correct email, and therefore a separate account is created.

The easiest way to resolve this is to logout of both the plug-in and the website. Then re-login to both using the same method – either Facebook or email/password. If the problem persists, contact from the email address that is causing problems and we can verify it for you.

If you get a `blank_600` layer after selecting an object from your lightbox in the plugin:

The first thing to try is to use the “Clear Cache” menu item in the plug-in to clear out any old files. After clearing the cache, try to perform the operation again. If the problem persists then this may be due to the plug-in not being able to communicate with our server to load the high resolution image because it is restricted by firewall or proxy settings.

In most cases, you can contact and we can change some settings on your account that will use a different method of accessing the site and will work with your firewall or proxy.

However, in some cases you or a network administrator may need to allow some specific hosts and ports. We can provide that information if you contact

If you get a red error message saying “Network Failure” or “File Exists”:

Select the menu item in the plug-in that says “Clear Cache.” Wait a few seconds and then try the operation again. If the problem persists try selecting the menu item, “Reload Plug-in”, the plug-in should refresh itself and then present the lightbox gallery again. Once it has completed, try the operation again. If the problem still persists please contact


If you are experiencing subscription related problems:


If you just subscribed and are still seeing watermarked images

If you have the latest version of the plugin, then after you subscribe you should just have to select a layer with a watermarked PixelSquid image and it should update automatically. If it doesn’t, or you don’t have the latest version, you can rotate the layer one frame and then back to the frame you want and the watermark should go away.

If the watermark persists

Select the “Clear Cache” menu item from the PixelSquid plug-in menu, and then select “Reload plug-in”. Once the plugin reloads, you can select a watermarked layer and the rotate one frame and then back and the watermark should go away.

If you add an object and you get a layer named “blank_600”

First delete the “blank_600” layer, then select the “Clear Cache” menu item from the PixelSquid menu. Then try adding the object again. If the problem persists contact

If you see an overlay saying that we are preventing updating this layer

If you used PixelSquid during our open beta, you would have had access to all of our objects without watermarks. If you are not currently a subscriber, any updates you make to that unwatermarked layer would cause it to be overwritten with a watermarked version. We prevent this from happening by not allowing you to manipulate that layer in the plugin (you can still manipulate it in Phototshop). If you don’t mind using the watermarked version, you can delete the layer and then add the object back using the plugin. If you want the unwatermarked version you can purchase a subscription, or buy the object individually on our website.

Updating the PixelSquid plugin (CC2020 and Earlier)

If you installed using our installer, you can just re-download the installer for your platform at and run it again.

If you installed the plug-in through the Adobe Add-On Installer, then when a new version is approved by Adobe it should be automatically updated on your system. You may need to go to the Creative Cloud desktop app and verify that the installation was successful and did not require elevated privileges. If it did fail because of privileges, then you can follow step 8 under the Adobe Add-On Installer section.

If you are not sure what method you used to install, you can always use our installer to update to the latest version.

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