Fix crash issues with InDesign

Learn how to troubleshoot and fix crash issues when you launch InDesign.

Does this sound familiar?

Crash on launch issue

"I installed InDesign on my system and it keeps crashing on launch. All of a sudden, I am no longer able to open InDesign from Start menu or by double-clicking on InDesign file". 

A quick check after crash

When InDesign crashes unexpectedly or becomes unresponsive, you can troubleshoot some of the common issues yourself. 

 Disk maintenance


Product version



Run the disk repair utility tool.


Update Your App

Update to the latest version if the crash-causing issues are fixed.

If you are still unable to launch InDesign, you can troubleshoot using the following methods.


InDesign system messages help you determine the cause of the crash by providing a list of problem-causing scenarios. Here are some of the scenarios and their solutions.

DLL errors on launch

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 3 mins. 

 This issue has been found only on Windows 10 Operating Systems with standard user rights. 


  1. Open Windows Event Viewer logs from C:\WINDOWS\system32\config\folder.
  2. Check the logs for a faulty module path for InDesign
    %programfiles%\Adobe\Adobe InDesign[version] \PMRuntime.dll.
  3. Run the app as administrator.
  4. Right-click InDesign in the Start menu and select Run as Administrator.

Preferences folder permissions

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 4 mins.

 Ensure to back up your folders as resetting preferences removes all the custom settings and InDesign launches with default settings. 

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Follow the steps outlined at Unable to launch InDesign due to insufficient permissions to set read/write permissions for the preferences folder. 

Damaged fonts

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 5 mins.

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  1. Remove or disable fonts with special characters in their names, such as Ithornët.
  2. Before you test your fonts, remove or update any third-party font plug-ins
  3. Clear the system font cache.  
  4. Identify, isolate, and troubleshoot the font causing the problem. 

App freeze/crash on launch

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 3 mins.

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  1. Uninstall InDesign. 
  2. Delete the following InDesign application folder to remove corrupt preferences, and reinstall InDesign. 

Windows 10:

  • InDesign_Cache=%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Local\Adobe\InDesign\
  • InDesign_Preferences=%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\InDesign\


  • InDesign_Cache=~/Library/Caches/Adobe InDesign\
  • InDesign_Preferences=~/Library/Preferences/Adobe InDesign\

Antivirus settings

It is possible that antivirus software settings on your computer cause InDesign to crash on launch. Follow these steps to troubleshoot some of the antivirus issues:

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 2 mins.

1. Open the GDATA antivirus software and navigate to Settings Advanced Mode.

2. Change the Mode to Only check read access. 

3. Click OK and launch InDesign. 

For any clarification on GDATA antivirus software, contact the support team of the GDATA antivirus maker.

 This issue is fixed in GDATA antivirus software version and above.

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 2 mins.

  • Upgrade the AVG antivirus to its latest version.
  • Follow these steps to add the dvatemporalxmp.dll file to the exception list for AVG:
    • In the AVG UI console, choose Settings > General option > Exception list
    • In the exception list, add the dvatemporalxmp.dll file, which is available in the installation directory of InDesign 15.0. 

 AVG antivirus types such as AVG Zen or Business Security have different UI consoles and follow a different procedure to add the DLL file in the exception list. For any clarification on AVG antivirus software, contact the support team of the AVG antivirus maker. 

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 2 mins.

When you launch an Adobe application on systems running macOS 10.12 and above with Cylance antivirus, the application crashes and returns the following error: Adobe application cannot be opened because of a problem

Contact your IT administrator to whitelist Adobe Crash Reporter Client from the Cylance web-based management console.  Share the following paths to whitelist Adobe Crash Reporter Client with your IT administrator:

 Replace <Adobe application> with the name and version of the application installed on your system. For example, if you have the latest release of Adobe InDesign installed on your system, replace <Adobe application> with Adobe InDesign 2020.

  • /Applications/<Adobe application>/<Adobe application>.app/Contents/Frameworks/AdobeCrashReporter.framework/Versions/A/AdobeCrashReporter
  • /Applications/<Adobe application>/<Adobe application>.app/Contents/Frameworks/AdobeCrashReporter.framework/Versions/Current/AdobeCrashReporter
  • /Users/<username>.Trash/AdobeCrashReporter.framework/Versions/Current/AdobeCrashReporter

Miscellaneous issues

Follow these steps to troubleshoot unexpected errors like library files issues on a network, OS-specific issues, or naming issues for UXP and CEP folders:

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 3 mins. 

InDesign 2020 crashes on launch due to faulty Windows update corrupting the VCRuntime dlls. Before you begin performing the steps below, close all the applications in your system. 

Crash issue dialog
Crash dialog

  1. Go to Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features.

  2. Right-click Microsoft Visual C++ 2015-2019 (x64)/ 2017-2019 (x64).

  3. Click Change > Repair. 

    Follow the instructions to repair the Microsoft Visuall C++ application. 

    Change VC 2015-2020 application settings
    Click Change.

    Repair the VC runtime
    Click repair and follow the instructions.

  4. Restart the system and launch InDesign.

If the issue is still not resolved, download the latest VCRuntime from Microsoft support site and repeat the steps 1-4. 

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 3 mins. 

InDesign can crash when working with InDesign Libraries stored on a network or shared location. Follow the steps below to fix the issue on Windows or macOS operating systems. 


  1. Open the Library folder, which is hidden by default. See Show hidden files to display hidden files and folders.

  2. Navigate to C:\Users\{user}\AppData\Local\Adobe\InDesign\{Version #}\{language}\. {user} is the user name with which you are logged in, {Version #} is the version of InDesign, and {language} is the language of InDesign application installed on your computer.

    For example, if you are logged in with user ID as john doe, the version of InDesign is 11.0, and the language is en_US, the path will be C:\Users\johndoe\AppData\Local\Adobe\InDesign\Version 11.0\en_US\

    Navigate to InDesign application installation path
    Navigate to InDesign application installation path

  3. Rename the Caches folder to Caches_old.

  4. Launch InDesign.


  1. Open the Library folder, which is hidden by default. To open the Library folder, click the desktop to make sure you are in the Finder, hold down the Option key, then choose Go > Library.

  2. Navigate to Hard Drive/Users/{user}/Library/Caches/Adobe InDesign/{Version #}/{user} is the user name with which you are logged in and {Version #} is the version of InDesign.

    For example, if you are logged in as john doe and the version of InDesign is 11.0, the path will be Macintosh HD/Users/johndoe/Library/Caches/Adobe InDesign/Version 11.0

  3. Rename the folder indicating the language of InDesign application that is installed on your system. For example, rename the en_US folder to en_US_old.

  4. Launch InDesign.

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 3 mins. 

Try out the following troubleshooting steps to fix the issue. 

  1. Add the InDesign executable as an exception in the Symantec DLP Security Suite:

    1. Open the Symantec Security Suite Enforce Console and navigate to System > Agent > Application Monitoring and add InDesign as an Exception.
    2. Deselect all the detection channels under ApplicationMonitoring Configuration.
    3. Click Save. Restart the system and then launch InDesign.
    Symantec DLP_Settings
    Symantec settings to add InDesign as an exception.

  2. Launch and run InDesign from the Creative Cloud desktop.

     This workaround is not applicable if the app panel is disabled.

  3. Run the InDesign executable from the installation directory or from Start menu shortcut as an administrator. 

    1. Right-click and choose Run as Administrator.
  4. Run the application in compatibility mode for Windows 7.

    Right-click the executable and choose Properties. In the Compatibility tab, select Run this program in compatibility mode for and select Windows 7 from the drop-down list.

    Change Compatibility Mode
    Run compatibility mode for Windows 7.

  5. Roll back the Windows installation to Windows 7.

 Approximate troubleshooting time: 2 mins. 

Rename CEP folder as CEP.old and UXP folder as UXP.old in the following paths and relaunch InDesign. 




CEP folders

  • C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\CEP
  • C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Adobe\CEP

  • /Library/Application Support/Adobe/CEP/
  • ~/Library/Application Support/Adobe/CEP/


Navigate to C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\UXP

Navigate to Macintosh HD/Library/Application Support/Adobe/UXP

Advanced troubleshooting tips

If none of the troubleshooting solutions work, you can try the advanced troubleshooting procedures

We're here to help!

we are here to help

If you're unable to fix the issue and need help, you can share more information about your crash issue and crash log to help Adobe resolve the issue for you. 


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