Photoshop freezes at launch

Issue

When you launch Photoshop, it freezes either at the splash screen displaying 'Loading Halide Bottlenecks...' or freezes/crashes during startup. This can be caused by the following:

  • Corrupt color profiles or really large preset files
  • Changed permissions after user account migration

Solutions

First, update Photoshop to the latest version. See Keep Photoshop up to date.

Next, if you're using macOS BigSur, update to macOS BigSur 11.2.1. For additional details, see Photoshop, Apple Silicon, and Big Sur | macOS 11

Finally, if the above updates don't solve the problem, remove any large custom preset files:

  1. Close Photoshop.

  2. In the Finder, hold down the Option key and select Library in the Go menu. Navigate to: Preferences/Adobe Photoshop <version year> Settings/

  3. In the Settings folder, look for the preset files having large file size. Move such preset files from the Settings folder to a temporary location (for example, a new folder on your desktop).

  4. Launch Photoshop and see if the problem persists.

  5. Do one of the following:

    • If the problem recurs, repeat steps 1 through 4.
    • If the problem does not recur, the preset that you last removed is causing the problem.

    Re-enable any non-problematic presets that you removed or disabled.

  6. You can manually load the problematic preset file after you launch Photoshop through the Preset Manager. Try removing any presets from the preset file to try and make the preset file smaller and resave it with a different name. If after resaving a smaller version of the preset  the problem persists, completely remove the preset file.

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