When you “package” CS5 or 5.5 for deployment, you use a “packager“. If you accidentally turn off the updating features for CS5 in this packaging application, then you’ll spend your morning (like I just did) trying to find out what to do to REenable it.
The symptom: After you’ve deployed CS5 or 5.5 that you’ve bundled with your serial number and pre-defined settings, you launch any major app in that suite and you find that the Updates item is disabled in the Help menu. You’re now left to figure out how to get it back.
In my case, even the uninstall of the packaged CS and reinstall with the unpackaged installer didn’t fix it…something was being retained, even after deinstalling the entire bloody suite. In my experience, Adobe products are notorious in their “incomplete uninstalls”…they leave all sorts of shit behind (usually benign). Apparently…in my case…it left behind whatever file has the settings to disable updates. Bless their messy, undisciplined hearts.
To cut to the chase, I fixed it by deleting the following prefs file for the updater (32-bit installs):
C:\Program files (x86)\common files\adobe\AAMUpdaterInventory\1.0\AdobeUpdaterAdminPrefs.dat
For 64-bit installs the path is:
C:\Program files\common files\adobe\AAMUpdaterInventory\1.0\AdobeUpdaterAdminPrefs.dat
Restart Photoshop or InDesign or whatever and voila!
The Adobe support page that clued me into finding this is here.