How to Download and Install Illustrator Actions

Illustrator Actions are recordings of steps that are used to complete tasks. Illustrator actions can be downloaded or recorded for use or to share. Illustrator Actions makes it easy to automate any repeated task.

Download and Install Illustrator Actions

Download and Install Illustrator Actions

Illustrator has default actions that can be found in the Actions panel. These default actions can be used for your tasks. However, you can download actions from the internet to use. It is important to make sure that you are downloading from a reputable source.

  1. Find and Download Action Files
  2. Ways to Install Action Files
  3. Load Action Files
  4. Backup Your Action Files

1] Find and Download Action Files

You can search online for Illustrator Actions to use in your projects. Be sure that the Illustrator action files are from a reputable source. Downloading files from shady sources may compromise your computer. The Action files are usually downloaded in a zip file so you will need to extract them. The file format for Illustrator Action File is .aia.

2] Ways to Install Action Files

After you have downloaded the action files, you need to be able to use them. The files are usually downloaded to your Downloads folder by default unless this was changed. The action files are usually in a zip folder so you will need to extract them. You can install them by placing them in the Actions folder. You can just find the Illustrator Action Folder by going to C:Program FilesAdobeAdobe Illustrator (your version) (64 Bit)PresetsActions or you may search for the folder. You can drag, cut or copy the downloaded Action files to the actions folder. This method may require that you restart Illustrator for the action to appear in the Actions list.


Another method to install the Action file is to open Illustrator and then go to the Actions Panel on the right. If the Actions Panel is not there, you can open It by going to Window and then Actions. You would press the Hamburger button and click Load.


You would then search for the folder that contains the action files to be loaded into Illustrator. Note that whenever you save the action files to your folder, you will need to restart Illustrator if it was opened, if you do not restart Illustrator you may not see the action files when you try to load them.

Depending on your permission settings, Illustrator will give a Destination Folder Access Denied error when you try to save or paste to the Default Actions Folder. You will have to press Continue so that you can paster or save to the folder. You can choose to create a folder in another location and then save and paste your actions there.

3] Backup Your Action Files

It is always good to backup your custom or downloaded action files for future use or to share. Your computer may crash or you may have to reinstall Illustrator and you want to use the action files again. Since the action files you downloaded or recorded are not default, they will be lost if your computer crashed or you reinstall Illustrator. Only the default action files will be found when you reinstall Illustrator.


To backup, the action files, go to the action panel and click on the set that contains the actions that you want to save. Click the Hamburger Menu and choose Save Actions.


You can choose to save in the default Action folder or you can choose a separate location. Illustrator may give you a Destination Folder Access Denied error when you try to save in the default actions folder. You can click continue and save there.


However it is best to backup in a separate location on an external drive and also to the cloud, this will safeguard the files if your computer should crash.

Now read: How to automate Tasks with Illustrator Actions

Can I share the Action Files that I recorded?

The action files that you recorded can be shared with anyone by saving them to the computer. You can do this by going to the action panel and clicking on the set that contains the actions that you want to save. Click the Hamburger Menu and choose Save Action, save to a folder of your choice. You can then share the action files by uploading them to your website, saving them to a USB, sending them via a cloud platform, or sending them over a network. The person who you share them with can then save them to their computer and use them.

Read: How to warp and convert Text to Shape in Illustrator

Can I download Illustrator Action Files from Any website?

Any file that is downloaded should be downloaded from reputable websites. Make sure that your anti-virus and anti-malware software is up to date. If you are in doubt about the safety of a file, do not download it or delete it before extracting it.


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