When I upload a GIF in Photoshop CS4, a window pops up that says "This is an animated GIF. You can only view one frame. Saving over this file will result in a loss of information." I clicked "OK", but then saw that the layer was named as "Index" and that the layer was locked. And, it only had one layer.

I've read in another question here that I should click on Image > Mode > RGB Color. I did, and the layer was successfully unlocked, yet the GIF still only had one layer, which is the first layer of the GIF.

Is there a way where I can get/unlock all of the layers in the GIF instead of just unlocking the first layer? If yes, how?

2 Answers 2


Photoshop CS4 can not load frames of a gif animation. This is what the warning states.

In order to load all the frames of an animated gif you must use either Photoshop CS2 or older, or Photoshop CS5 or newer. Adobe crippled animated gif support in Photoshop CS3 and CS4. There is no real workaround for it.

The only thing which might possibly work is the choose File > Open video Frames as layers from the menu in Photoshop CS4 and select your animated gif. This will load all the frames of an animated gif, however you will also lose all transparency with this method.


One workaround, if you have Quicktime Pro...

  1. Open the GIF in Quicktime Pro..
  2. Choose File -> Export
  3. Choose Export: Movie to Quicktime Movie
  4. Click Options
  5. Uncheck Sound and Prepare for Internet Streaming
  6. Click Settings
  7. Choose: Compression Type: Animation, Framerate: Current, Key Frames: All, Depth: Millions of Colors, Quality: Best
  8. Click OK
  9. Click Size
  10. Choose Dimensions: Current
  11. Click OK, OK & Save
  12. In Photoshop, select File -> Open Video Frames as Layers, and select the file you just exported.
  13. Make your edits and then export using File -> Save for Web & Devices
  • Thanks for the contribution and welcome to GraphicDesign! If you have any questions please let us know Mar 4, 2015 at 2:18

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