Fireworks is the best tool for web design, period. Photoshop cannot compete with the precision and user experience of it. PS may have more features and functions but it is not optimized for producing content to display on a screen at 72dpi. Not even Illustrator has the pixel accuracy and such a great bitmap/vector interaction.
The only turnaround of it is the amount of bugs it has and the discrimination it suffers from Adobe (since they bought it from Macromedia) as they consider it ‘the ugly brother’ in the Creative Suite and don’t give it proper attention and resources. This is why most users encounter themselves in the dark with frequent bugs awaiting for Adobe updates that take months to appear. Some of them have even rolled back to Macromedia Fireworks 8 to get rid of such stupid errors but that may seem like an extreme solution to some of us.
Through trial and error as well as user research and feedback, here’s a list of the most common errors you may find while working with Fireworks:
Fireworks ‘Not enough memory’ bug
Even though you may have 8GB of RAM and a brand new computer (that’s my case) you can still stumble with this error. This usually happens when working with several pages and a lot of elements in them, specially big images.
Solution: It seems that closing the Optimize panel (press F6 to toggle it on/off) can help fix this issue as reported by some users.
Fireworks mouse pointer becomes a hand
The cursor becomes a hand and you can’t select any other tool from the main toolbar. This issue is quite frustrating and there is no real solution to it. Even restarting the application won’t fix the problem.
Solution: In the post entitled Adobe Fireworks Hand pointer error you can find a quick fix.
Fireworks half pixel
Although Fireworks is a pixel based design software, when resizing shapes like rectangles the software may add anti-aliasing, also known as half-pixels, which adds a semi-transparent border.
Solution: Select the element and increase or decrease manually the X or Y position of it in the Properties toolbar. The element will move but it will remove the half-pixel it had and recover its real size smoothing the sides of it. Then you just need to place it again where you wanted it.
Fireworks ‘Internal Error’ when launching
Some users cannot start Fireworks any more when upgrading from a previous version of Fireworks or when installing the full software after testing the trial version or a Beta.
Solution: Not quick but effective. Uninstall everything through the script provided by Adobe: Adobe CS4 clean uninstaller and reinstall everything again.
Office photo by schnaars (CC BY-SA) modified by Xavi Esteve