This guide will take you through the process of downloading and installing your plugin(s) with the old unified installer installation method. This was the method for installation until June of 2019 when we released the new Astute Manager. We are illustrating this process with Mac OS screenshots – Windows users will see similar options.

For quicker installation, you do have the option to install with our new Astute Manager which allows you to download, install, activate and manage all plugins in a few quick and easy steps. If you would prefer to install with the old method or if you're installing previous generation plugins with a legacy installer, please continue with this installation guide.

Here we will use the installation of DynamicSketch as an example, although the process for installing all plug-ins is the same.

Please note: License key numbers are not necessary when you trial our plug-ins. When you are presented with the window asking you to enter a license number, please click on OK to close the page.

In the trial installation process, you can use the tick options to select only the plug-ins you wish to trial, incase you cannot use them all in the 14 day period. This gives you the option of having a 2 week trial for each plug-in.

DirectPrefs does not require any license key or product activation. When you run the latest installer, DirectPrefs will be one of the default plug-in installation options. Due to the lack of licensing for this plug-in, it will not be listed on your account page or the Astute Graphics Licensing Summary window (Help > Astute Graphics > Licensing Summary). 


To begin, login to your Customer Account.



Once on the My Account page, select the Downloads option.





Here you will be able to download and run the latest installer from the links provided (as shown below).





Within your account (under My Plug-ins and Keys) you will find details of the license key number(s) associated with your purchase(s). You will need these keys later on in the installation process.



After you download and run the installer you will see the 'Astute Graphics Unified Installer' program. Double click on Run the Installer.





MacOS users only: MacOS users may be presented with this warning. Click on Open to continue.



On the first installer page (as shown below) click Next.



After ensuring that you have quit illustrator, click Next again…



After reading through the terms and conditions, tick the box to confirm that you accept them and click on Next again…



The installer should automatically detect the version(s) of illustrator that you have on your computer. These will be automatically ticked (Note that you have the option to manually set or alter the destination of each version set by ticking/unticking each type, then clicking on the associated […] buttons. If unsure, retain the suggested settings and click Next) 



You can then select the plug-in(s) to be installed…



When installing to upgrade please note:

The Astute Graphics Unified Installer underwent some changes in the last release (July 2017) to ensure that customers didn’t upgrade to paid-upgrade versions unwittingly.

Accordingly, on the installer step that lists all the plug-ins available to install, you will now need to tick the box next to DynamicSketch (circled in red below) before you see mention of version 2. Ticking this box will confirm that you are upgrading to v2 (as circled in green below)


WARNING! Users of Previous Generation Plug-ins (ColliderScribe v1 / DynamicSketch v1 / VectorScribe v2 / WidthScribe v1 / Phantasm v2 please scroll to the bottom of this page before continuing).

The installer will notify you that it is performing the set up and finalizing the installation…

and as the installation process makes changes you will be prompted to enter your computer password.


Click Finish to complete the installation…



Once completed you are free to delete the installer from your desktop if you wish. We do not recommend keeping the installer downloads for future use, as we update our installers from time to time and with each update the previous installer becomes obsolete.




Now re-load Illustrator…

 Please note: When you install one of our plug-ins or if using our plug-ins in trial mode, you will see the pop up boxes for our free plug-ins when you open illustrator. 

  • The Autosaviour pop up window is asking for your license key, if you put a key in it will only show 3 times and you will see a note in very small text on the pop up that tells you how many more times you will see it (unless you reset your preferences). If you're trialling it on the Free 14 Day trial it acts as Autosaviour Pro for 14 days and then switches to Autosaviour Free after that time.
  • DirectPrefs doesn’t require a license key, when you run the installer you will see it as one of the default plug-in installation options. On opening Illustrator you can simply close the pop-up window.

If you have purchased Autosaviour Pro v2 then you won’t see the Autosaviour pop up at all when you open illustrator.

Autosaviour Free and DirectPrefs are all free bonus plug-ins advertised here to ensure that customers are aware that they are available. Autosaviour is used by our customers as a safety net, to automatically save their work at regular intervals. However, once these free plug-ins are installed, there are no settings that result in an obligation to use them. 



Now open your Licensing Summary by going to Help > Astute Graphics > Licensing Summary



The Licensing Summary will show you which plug-ins you have already installed and which are not currently licensed.

In the case of this screenshot, you can see that all plug-ins are licensed apart from DynamicSketch. Whether you are wishing to install for the first time, or reactivate a previously installed plug-in, you must click on the Activate button (highlighted here in red)…



You will then be prompted to enter the license key number. Copy your license key from your email or from your account and then paste it into this box…



Click on OK…



You will be prompted to enter your computer password…



The plug-in is now installed and activated, Click OK to accept and then quit and restart Illustrator to complete the process. (Note: If activating multiple products, you only need to restart illustrator once)



The licensing summary will now show the plug-in as Licensed.



You are now free to use your plug-in(s) and explore all the great features. We offer a range of Tutorial Videos for each of our plug-ins and these can be accessed in a number of ways:

  • You can also access the videos from our website. Simply go to the software page for each plug-in and select Videos.




  • When in Illustrator, look at the colored bar at the top of each plug-in panel, here you will find a menu option on the right hand side and Tutorial Video is the third option down.



  • You can also find them in Illustrator by going to Help > Astute Graphics > Product name> Tutorial videos.



  • Or Help > Astute Graphics > Licensing Summary > Learn to Use.



In addition to these Video Tutorials, we regularly publish Blog Tutorials and host live Webinar Tutorials, typically with room for a maximum of 100 people (join early to ensure your seat!)
If you’re not already following us on social media ( Facebook / Twitter / Instagram ), you can do so in order to receive updates and early notification of these Tutorials, Blogs and Webinars.

You can also subscribe to our mailing list for updates.


Deactivating or Uninstalling

You may at some point wish to either Deactivate or Uninstall, depending on whether you want to remove the plug-in temporarily or more permanently.

For a guide to doing either, please refer to this blog post 

 Important note for users of Previous Generation Plug-ins:

  • ColliderScribe v1
  • DynamicSketch v1
  • VectorScribe v2
  • WidthScribe v1
  • Phantasm v2

Previous generation version customers who do not yet wish to upgrade to the current versions of the above plug-ins can still run the latest installer to update all other current plug-ins. However, you will need to untick your previous generation plug-ins on the installer (as shown below) to ensure that these older versions remain installed on older versions of Illustrator present on your system.

It is possible to maintain an older version of Illustrator (suggested CS6 or CC2015.3) in parallel with the latest Cloud-based version. Please refer to Adobe's documentation on how to do this. 

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