Adobe has a whole set of procedures to troubleshoot Lightroom. One of their recommendations is:

  • Update the video card driver.

The video driver is the most common source of the Operating System problems, including OSX, XP and Vista. Whenever there is a crash in Windows XP and Vista, your Windows sends a summary to Microsoft of what caused the crash. Microsoft claims that 73% of all the crashes in Vista/Windows 7 are related to the NVIDIA video drivers. Apple does not release this information. But… since they added NVIDIA to some of their computers… ATI and NVIDIA represent 95% of all the graphic cards used. Many other companies have licensed their technologies and chips.

I have encountered many problems with the NVIDIA video drivers. There are many more video problems on Windows than on OSX. This is due to the fact that Windows has to run on a very large variety of hardware, while Apple controls the hardware platform. As far as I know, OSX only has to run on 5 video cards, while Windows has to run on hundreds of video cards and has to rely on the manufacturer to write a “good” video driver.

  1. Before changing any of your screen resolution, color depth… Write them down, so you can go back to the original settings with the new updated drivers.
  2. To set you computer back to the original settings, do it in the reverse order, so first step 2 then step 1.

OSX

Just update the video driver if you have any problem with your computer. The video driver problems are not only related to Lightroom, but to all the other software running on that computer. The ATI OSX drivers are located at: ATI video drivers

Windows XP

The current NVIDIA Windows drivers are located at: NVIDIA video drivers. The ATI Windows drivers are located at: ATI video drivers

  1. Lower the screen resolution: Right click on the desktop > Properties > Settings > Lower the color quality from drop down box also lower your Screen resolution > Apply > OK. Restart your computer and Lightroom. If that fix your problem, then the problem is with the video driver. Update it and reset the settings to it’s original values.
  2. Disable the hardware acceleration: Right click on the desktop > Properties > Settings > Advanced button > Troubleshoot tab > Move the Hardware Acceleration slider to None > Apply > OK. Restart your computer and Lightroom. If that fix your problem, then the problem is with the video driver. Update it and reset the settings to it’s original values.

Windows Vista

  1. The current NVIDIA Windows drivers are located at: NVIDIA video drivers. The ATI Windows drivers are located at: ATI video drivers
  2. Disable Windows Aero. Aero is the hardware-based graphical user interface in Windows Vista. It’s made to look nice and spiffy. It needs an advanced video card with hardware acceleration for the transparencies and animations. It’s designed to compete with Aqua, the user interface of OSX, and Compiz on Linux: Start > Control Panel > Personalization > Windows Color And Appearance > Classic Appearance > More Color Options and select any Color Scheme other than the Windows Aero and click OK. If that fix your problem, them the problem is with the video driver. Update it and reset the settings to it’s original values.

Windows 7

  1. The current NVIDIA Windows drivers are located at: NVIDIA video drivers. The ATI Windows drivers are located at: ATI video drivers
  2. Disable Windows Aero. Aero is the hardware-based graphical user interface in Windows Vista. It’s made to look nice and spiffy. It needs an advanced video card with hardware acceleration for the transparencies and animations. It’s designed to compete with Aqua, the user interface of OSX, and Compiz on Linux: Start > Control Panel > Personalization > Windows Color And Appearance > Classic Appearance > More Color Options and select any Color Scheme other than the Windows Aero and click OK. If that fix your problem, them the problem is with the video driver. Update it and reset the settings to it’s original values.