If you have installed VEGAS Pro but it won't start, troubleshoot by trying these steps.
1. INSTALL THE LATEST UPDATE
Make sure you are running the latest update of the version of VEGAS Pro that you wish to use, unless there is a specific reason you need to use an earlier update. See "Where can I download VEGAS Pro?"
2. DISABLE PLUGINS
Try disabling 3rd-party plugins, especially old ones, by renaming the folders they reside in, or moving them to a location where VEGAS won't find them, or by uninstalling them. If you have an error message it may help you identify which type of plugin is causing the problem. In particular, consider these:
OFX plugins which may be in these example locations:
- C:\Program Files\Common Files\OFX
- C:\Program Files\VEGAS\VEGAS Pro 18.0\OFX Video Plug-Ins
- C:\Program Files\VEGAS\VEGAS Pro 17.0\OFX Video Plug-Ins
- C:\Program Files\VEGAS\VEGAS Pro 16.0\OFX Video Plug-Ins
- C:\Program Files\Sony\Vegas Pro 13.0\OFX Video Plug-Ins
Application extensions which may be in these example locations:
- C:\ProgramData\VEGAS Pro\Application Extensions
- ...Documents\Vegas Application Extensions
VST audio plugins which may be in these example locations:
- C:\Program Files (x86)\Vstplugins
- C:\Program Files\Vstplugins
- C:\Program Files (x86)\Steinberg\Vstplugins
- C:\Program Files\Steinberg\VstPlugins
If this solves the problem, then re-enable the plugins one by one until you find the culprit.
3. SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS
Check that your computer meets the system requirements. For the latest version of VEGAS Pro, the system requirements are here. Note that VEGAS Pro is only officially supported if it's installed on the same drive as your operating system.
4. SOFTWARE NOT ACTIVATED YET
If you get the message "Error code: -59... An error occurred starting VEGAS Pro. There is no license to use this software.", the software has not been activated. You need to be connected to the internet to activate VEGAS Pro 13.0 build 543 and later (more details here). The error can also be triggered by a change in hardware or a BIOS update/reset. In such a case, go to your MAGIX account > My Products > Show More Details > Deactivate, then deactivate the existing device. The next time you start VEGAS Pro, it should accept and remember your new activation. Note that you can use VEGAS Pro (14.0 and later) simultaneously on 2 devices.
5. WINDOWS UPDATE
Search for Windows Update on your system. This can be done in the Windows Start menu or by pressing the WINDOWS+Q keys on Windows 8.1 and 10. Let Windows check for updates for the system and install any that are available. Restart your machine to finish the process.
Follow any prompts to reboot, and be patient with the update process, which can take a long time. If you have problems, consult the Windows Update FAQ. For Windows 10 you can use this Windows Update Troubleshooter.
6. DISABLE ANTI-VIRUS SOFTWARE
If you run anti-virus software, or some other utility that scans for adware/spyware, try temporarily disabling the software. You may also add the program executable file (e.g. C:\Program Files\VEGAS\VEGAS Pro 15.0\vegas150.exe) to the exception list for the anti-virus software.
7. CLEAN BOOT
Try a clean boot of your system so Windows will start with a minimal set of drivers and startup programs. See How to perform a clean boot in Windows. If it doesn't help, re-enable all start-up tasks that you disabled and reboot again.
8. REMOVE PERIPHERAL HARDWARE
Try disconnecting USB devices, dongles and other peripherals from the system. If that solves your problem, replace them one by one while testing VEGAS until you find the one that causes the problem. Then try updating or rolling back its driver.
9. UPDATE HARDWARE DRIVERS
Update your system's drivers and firmware from the manufacturer's website(s). Drivers installed by Windows Update can cause problems. In particular, try updating or rolling back your graphics card driver from the manufacturer's website or from the NVIDIA or AMD website. Display Driver Uninstaller can help with a clean uninstall. (more about graphics cards here). Also look for updates to your motherboard's BIOS, chipset software and drivers for your sound card, DVD drive, network adapter and peripherals.
10. COMPATIBILITY MODE
Try running the software in Windows Compatibility Mode. Right click on the program's icon and choose "Properties" > "Compatibility". Check "Run this program in compatibility mode for:" and choose progressively older operating systems.
11. HANGING ON DIRECTX PLUG-INS?
If VEGAS Pro hangs when it says "Initializing DirectX plug-ins" at the lower left of the splash screen, try the following:
1. Right-click on the launch icon.
2. Select "Properties", then the "Shortcut" tab.
3. Add the following command line argument outside of the quotes in the "Target" field: /NODXGROVEL (Be sure to include a space between the last quote and the forward slash) An example for VEGAS Pro 15.0 would typically look like this:
"C:\Program Files\VEGAS\VEGAS Pro 15.0\vegas150.exe" /NODXGROVEL
4. Select "Apply" then "OK"
5. If it doesn't help then change it back when you have finally got VEGAS Pro to start reliably.
12. RUN AS ADMINISTRATOR
VEGAS Pro must run by an account with Windows administrator rights in order to start and function correctly. Visit the Windows "Control Panel" > "User Accounts" to check if your account has administrator rights.
To run VEGAS Pro one time with administrator rights, right-click the launch icon and select "Run as administrator" from the menu. You may need to enable the hidden administrator account first.
If that enables VEGAS Pro to start correctly, then you can make a permanent admin shortcut as described here.
However note that this may have some undesired effects. For example you may no longer be able to drag and drop files into VEGAS Pro from an external file manager such as Windows Explorer.
13. VEGAS SAMPLE PROJECT
A new installation of VEGAS Pro 15 and later will open a sample project. The sample project supplied in VEGAS Pro 15 uses the Defocus FX which is known to cause problems with some AMD GPUs and drivers. Try deleting the project from C:\ProgramData\VEGAS\VEGAS Pro\15.0\SampleProject\SampleProject.veg, especially if you have an AMD GPU with driver 16.12 or later. You can ignore any message that the sample project is missing.
14. START FROM A DIFFERENT PROJECT
If Automatically open last project on startup was checked in the VEGAS Pro General Preferences, something in that project might be preventing VEGAS Pro from starting. Try opening VEGAS Pro by double-clicking another project.
15. UPDATE SEMW EXTENSIONS
If you have SeMW Extensions version 1.0.8 or earlier installed, VEGAS Pro 15 will not start. Update to version 1.0.9 or later.
16. FORCE VEGAS PRO TO USE DISCRETE GPU
If VEGAS Pro hangs while the splash screen displays "Initializing GPU-accelerated video processing", try forcing it to run using your discrete graphics card as explained here (and here and here). This worked in this case.
17. AMD CATALYST SDK
If VEGAS Pro crashes while the splash screen displays "Initializing GPU-accelerated video processing" and you have an AMD GPU, try uninstalling the SDK within AMD Catalyst if you have it. Instructions in this comment.
18. RESET VEGAS PRO TO DEFAULT SETTINGS
Reset VEGAS Pro to default settings by pressing CTRL+SHIFT on your keyboard while double-clicking the program's icon to launch it. More information here. Be sure to place a checkmark next to "Delete all cached application data". Note that you may not be able to get as far as the reset function if VEGAS is not starting.
19. REINSTALL VEGAS PRO
If VEGAS Pro still won't start, uninstall it using "Control Panel" > "Programs and Features", reboot your computer, reinstall it, and see if it will start. See Where can I download VEGAS Pro? to find the correct installer.
When VEGAS Pro is uninstalled, some folders and Windows registry entries are left behind. You may have a better chance of success if you do a clean uninstall and reinstall, which will remove these (along with your settings).
For (MAGIX) VEGAS Pro 13 build 543 or later, follow these instructions.
Cleaning your registry (see below) between uninstalling and reinstalling can help clean up remaining redundant entries that could cause problems.
If you have problems uninstalling/reinstalling, troubleshoot with the suggestions in this post.
20. REGISTRY CLEANING
If you have tried all the above steps, you could try cleaning your Windows registry. For this purpose I regularly use Ccleaner free version. Cleaning your registry carries significant risk. It is recommended to take an image-based backup of your system drive first, for example using AOMEI Backupper or Macrium Reflect Free or Acronis True Image. You can also make an image or create a system restore point in Windows. When Ccleaner asks if you want to backup your registry before cleaning, you should! I usually fix all detected issues and then scan for issues again. Further issues are often found the 2nd time. Reboot afterwards.
21. IF YOU STILL NEED HELP
If the above steps do not help you get VEGAS Pro started, make a forum post and/or support request, including the following information:
- Your system specifications (with reference to step #3, above)
- Exactly which version and build number you are attempting to run
- The exact point at which startup fails, and the exact contents of any error messages
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