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Windows XP Explorer Crashes with PhotoShop

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  • Windows XP Explorer Crashes with PhotoShop

    Windows XP SP-2 Explorer.exe Crashes with PhotoShop6, and in any directory containing files created in Photoshop.

    PhotoShop6 is installed on the same drive and partition as Windows XP. A warning pops up during installation advising against it, and suggesting a different partition or, even better, a different drive for PhotoShop. I do not have either.

    Question: Has anyone else encountered this problem configured similarly? If so, how solved?

    I have reinstalled Windows XP from scratch (total drive re-format), and PhotoShop from scratch. The problem persists. Many sites on the web say explorer crashes indicate a hardware issue.

    I will purchase a second hard drive (cheaper than Partition-Magic) if that will do the trick. Fear is that it is a deeper problem like mo-bo or CPU, though diagnostics come up clean, not a need for the extra drive. Memory (512K) is rock solid.

    Any help will be appreciated, as will suggestions for economical sources of PC replacement parts.

  • #2
    if you want to make a 2nd partition off of your c: drive, i believe you can do that from windows xp itself. if you right click on 'my computer', one of your options in the menu that comes up is 'manage'. click on that and follow the file tree down to where it says something like 'manage disks'. this shld allow you to make new partitions and resize your current ones. it functions much the same as partition magic. the only thing i'm a little unsure of is if it can work on the c: drive while windows is up and running. i would think it can providing you only take the free space on c: and make a new partition of some portion of that. also remember to leave some free space on c: for the swap file(s) that windows uses.

    as for why explorer crashes, that could be any number of things, such as viruses, a drive going back, you had a really bad crash or crashes that messed up windows a bit, or that you're almost out of free space on the c: drive. could probably even be other things but those are what come quickly to mind.

    also, make sure you're talking about windows explorer as opposed to explorer and internet explorer. these are three different things. windows explorer is the built in file manager. explorer is more to do with your desktop and internet explorer is the browser. (microsoft just has no imagination).

    you say your ram is ok, but have to tested it specifically with something like memtest?

    also, run dxdiag and do all the tests there.

    and if you have a program like Sandra 2000 (or whatever version they are up to now) or Everest, these programs can often find things wrong that windows itself doesnt see.

    is your drive formatted under FAT32 or NTFS?

    i'm a bit surprised that photoshop even gives you this message. probably has to do with sharing swap files or something.

    generally, when posting this type of trouble it's also best to give too much information than too little. the folks looking at your post cant really see over your shoulder or run your diagnostics, so more is better.



    • #3
      If you suspect that one of your system files has been corrupted (explorer.exe) try the following.

      Click Start > Run type sfc /scannow then click OK (note: space between c and /)

      This will start the inbuilt system file checker in windows. It will scan your system files and tell you if they're OK. If it finds any faults, it will prompt you to load your Windows CD (must be Genuine Windows disc, OEM versions will not work).

      OEM = Original Equipment Manufacturer (eg Sony, Dell, etc.).

      Question: How big is your hard drive, and how much free space is there on it?

      I run PS7 on an unpartitioned drive with all my other programmes, no problems whatsoever.
      Last edited by Gary Richardson; 08-17-2006, 02:00 PM.


      • #4
        Past all that...

        When all this started 3-4 weeks ago, I tried everything simple before going to the more complex/destructive. Restore points, scannow, memtest86 (3 hours), MS memory tester, and more. Disk scanned and defragged. Ran PC Doctor, and all components passed. Finally gave up, backed up my files, and started over on the drive reinstalling to the original factory-installed configuration (reformat). HP partitions the drive into a large C NTFS, and small D FAT32 partition containing the recovery files.

        I am using a 160GB drive, clean XP install, downloaded all XP updates & all HP updates, PhotoShop6 is newly installed, and every virus, spam, malware, and lurkware detector known to man has been run. I ran Acronis Security to remove errant traces acording to instructions, and securely wiped all empty space on the drive. It is clean, clean, clean, and very empty!

        If I copy over MY DOCUMENTS with files to the pristine environment, and try to move around in PhotoShop data folders using Windows Explorer, I get the message: Explorer.exe encountered a problem and needs to close. Sometimes it drops me to the Desktop icons, but others it goes to Blue Screen of Death... must reboot. Takes only about four doubleclicks to happen.

        It is helpful to know that others run PhotoShop under XP on the same drive and partition without incident. Thank you also for the tip about formatting another partition under XP - did not know it was possible. I don't know what dxdiag is but will implement as suggested.

        That said, if anyone else has encountered similar issues, especially under PS6 with XP, please reply.

        If anyone has any ideas/suggestions after reading the above, I will be most grateful.


        • #5
          hi lucile,

          new, pristine install on a new, pristine formatted drive and you copy my documents over and start looking at files and crash says to me that the folder you moved over is either corrupted itself or has corrupted files in it or, there's some sort of registry weirdness going on here.

          all new installs of windows xp have a folder called my documents as part of the new install. if you're moving another folder over from another drive somewhere or a cd i dont know if this would conflict with the current windows install or not. it really shldnt, but then windows is fussy about some things at times. as a check you might just copy some of the files over without copying the whole 'my documents' folder over and put those files in a new folder named something else. if it still crashes then the files are bad. if it doesnt crash then there's something goofy with that folder or other files in that folder.... at least in theory.

          if windows is running fine and ps6 is running fine and all functions of both work ok before you copy any folders or files over to your new install, then the problem is not with the system but with the folders/files being copied over or, possibly some errant setting in ps 6 or, ps6 cant read those files and just throws up its hands and dies.

          when i first read your post and saw 'ps6' i went, hmmm in the back of my mind. ps6 is pretty old and i really dont know anyone that still uses it. i think ps7 is considered any more to be the minimum acceptable useable version and i would guess that it just cant read some of the new file formats, possibly not even the newer .psd files. but i'm certainly no expert on photoshop either. but, if you're copying files over from another source and everything works fine before you copy those over, then the problem is either with reading file formats or with corrupted files (or folders) being copied onto the system or some setting in ps 6 that is doing all this.

          so, it's not likely it's your system at all.

          oh, and dxdiag is the diagnostic tool for checking direct x (the program that handles all your sight and sound stuff for windows).



          • #6
            You can't just copy across My Documents, you should however be able to copy across the contents of My Documents. Easiest way would be to create a folder inside the "My Documents" you wish to move, and move all your files and folders into it, THEN migrate that folder to its new location.

            My Documents is not a "real" folder as such that you can drag and drop etc. It is a virtual folder created by the system, and is tied to it in many complex ways. Which is why you can't just copy it across to your new drive.


            • #7
              I followed your suggestions, bringing files over one at a time, and testing. The Windows and PS6 software remained remarkably stable.

              BUT a clue emerged from the effort. I realized that some of my files of necessity are enormous relative to the processing power of the PC. In one instance a PS file is 711,000kb, almost 800mb. I only have 512mb ram installed. Duh! Off shopping for more memory.

              PS can address 2gb of memory, and files sizes up to 2gb.

              Also, I believe the Adobe warning now not to use the same hard drive for Windows XP swap files and PhotoShop scratch disks. It is likely what corrupted the Windows installation when PS crashed. Next, I will look into a second hard drive in order to keep them on separate drives.

              Thank you for the excellent thinking and clear advice.


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