26 Replies Latest reply on Jun 3, 2011 10:16 AM by omauntie

    Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x

    Thomas Helzle Level 1

      I posted this in the Wacom forum as well, but they seem to think it's an Adobe issue, so I thought it best to post here as well:



      I am unable to work in Lightroom 3.2 for more than ~10 minutes doing trivial tasks like looking at different images, set some values in the develop module etc. before the tablet freezes completely.



      Win 7 Pro 64 Bit with latest updates, GeForce 8800GT with latest drivers, Intuos 4 with latest Wacom Driver (but I tried other versions as well...), Dual Quadcore Xeon machine, 14Gig of Ram...


      CPU use of the wacom tablet is VERY high when I just move the pen back and forth fast enough with the pointer on top of Lightrooms interface - I can max out one core completely! (like in the win 3.1/95 days with my serial A4 ;-) ).


      Funny thing is, after the wacom dies (it never comes back BTW.) the mouse is also starting to act up and hangs every now and then for some seconds. As if the whole pointer-moving-subsystem is getting borked by the wacom crash.


      The worst thing is, I found no way to revitalize the tablet other than rebooting - which is impossible 4 to 5 times an hour. I would be much more willing to restart some service or driver every now and then but not the machine.


      If I disconnect and reconnect the tablet, even the LCD screens of the wacom buttons stay dark, only the wheel LED is alive. If I connect the USB to another USB port, the tablet works for about 1 second, the pointer moves one millimetre before it's dead again.


      I tried all the suggestions in the wacom forum regarding USB ports, energy saving settings etc., disabled the Wacom virtual HID driver (as somebody suggested in the Lightroom forum), tried different USB connections (the tablet is connected directly to the computer, not to a hub), tried all settings in the Wacom Driver...
      The Windows 7 Pen stuff is uninstalled, so that shouldn't be it neither.
      Mouse flicks and all that jazz are off as well.


      But now I'm pretty lost.


      On the wacom forum there are a lot of users with this problem and I found several threads here as well.

      Wouldn't it be possible for Adobe to directly work with Wacom on this? Users can only do so much about this issue...


      Pretty please ;-)


      This happens only in Lightroom 3.x for me, not in Photoshop CS4 or any other software I use (quite a lot actually).


      And if anybody should have found a solution, I'm all ears :-)


      Thank you!!!



        • 1. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
          Jasonized Level 3

          Last thing I heard (it has been a couple of months), the "fix" for this is to roll back to an earlier driver version from Wacom.  It appears that the latest version doesn't like LR, but an earlier version did.


          Give that a try!


          • 2. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
            john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP


            You can get it running properly again by going into Control Panel, System and Security, Admin tools, Services, and look for TabletServiceWacom. Double click it, stop the service, then restart it. The tablet should be working again.


            Of course, you'll need a separate non-Wacom mouse, or have to learn to navigate with the keyboard (tip Ctrl:PageDown/Up take you through tabs).



            Hopefully a longer term fix is in the same dialog box. On the Recovery tab, set first failure to Restart service, and you can do the same with second and subsequent failures. Now I don't know for certain if this works - I've not lost the Wacom since I changed the setting, and I've not looked into it deeply enough to be sure I am doing the right thing.



            • 3. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
              Thomas Helzle Level 1

              Thanks guys!


              ATM I'm back to driver version 6.11.3 which was solving some problems  I had before with Autodesk Softimage in combination with Photoshop and the latest drivers (completely different problem, Softimage crashed when Photoshop was opened and a newer, win7 compatible  wacom driver was present on the system (which actually IS win7 ;-) )).

              But I tried that one before on the Lightroom-freeze without success...


              John: I tried to restart that service before without getting the tablet back to live, but next time I get a hang I'll do it again and see if it helps.


              I'll give those ideas a try and report back if one of them works.


              Cheers and big thanks!


              Thomas Helzle

              • 4. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                Thomas Helzle Level 1

                Just to report back:


                I don't know what solved it, but for some time it's working relatively stable again.

                Still using Wacom Driver 6.11.





                • 5. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                  Pete Marshall Level 4

                  You should still follow the advice of John Beardey given above about setting the service to automatically restart after a failure. I had this problem a lot, it was then seemingly fixed with the latest drivers 6.1.5-7 (or at least so claimed Wacom) and did indeed work well for a while. Then suddenly, in the middle of editing a load of pics, the service just stopped. I was then forced to root around the backs of draws for an old usb mouse in order to manually restart the service and get my mouse back...a real pain. Once you have done what John suggests at least if the service suddenly stops it will automatically restart without any messing.

                  • 6. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                    Thomas Helzle Level 1

                    Thanks Pete, but when I tried that it didn't help, the tablet didn't recover.





                    • 7. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                      Pete Marshall Level 4

                      That's not good news...I just assume that my drivers haven't crashed since the last restart when I followed John's advice. I will have to remember to keep an alternative mouse handy!

                      I am still using a now ancient Intuos 2. It has never had any problems until the last few months, the drivers are the same for all versions of the Intuos tablet and pens. This has been reported all over the place, both Adobe and Wacom seem well aware that there are problems with this. I can't imagine any Wacom user doesn't use one Adobe product or another, so why it still isn't fixed.......

                      • 8. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                        Pete Marshall Level 4

                        Anybody tried the latest drivers, 6.16-7?

                        Strangly shown as an RC on the European Wacom site and as a finished product on the USA site although the descriptions are the same.

                        • 9. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                          jsc909 Level 1

                          Yes - still crashing here :-(

                          • 10. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x

                            I have the same issue on my Toshiba laptop running Win 7 Professional  using a Intuos 3. I found an event log that I will try to pass along to  Wacom that shows the Wacom application had several errors. Frustrating  that the problem still exists I have tried everything mentioned here in  this thread with the exception of rolling the Wacom driver back to an  earlier release.

                            • 11. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x

                              Locked up 3 times in the last week.  At the time, all I was doing was going to a different folder.


                              Windows 7 Pro 64-bit

                              Intuos4 6.1.6-7 driver

                              • 12. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                Adobe are aware of the problem but it's a tricky one. It is known that LR is triggering a problem in the Wacom driver - ie the bug's a bit Lightroom, a bit Wacom, and it's not clear where the solution lies (but they are talking).


                                Both I and a colleague have experienced the problem over a period but we have been unable to identify any pattern, other than it being limited to Windows 7 64 bit. I've not noticed it in connection with moving to different folders, but it would be helpful if others also report what they were doing at the point of the lockup.



                                • 13. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                  jsc909 Level 1

                                  For me, it happens only at the moment of clicking with the pen - but it seems it can happen when clicking on pretty much any menu item or any control. Win7 x 64 here

                                  • 14. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                    adw1 Level 1

                                    I am using a Intuos 3 so my symptoms maybe a bit different than for the Intuos 4. I notice it mostly when using the Develop module especially if using the adjustment brush. The program seems to get sluggish almost to the point of hanging but then it recovers somewhat if I exit the brush tool. Then when switching back to the library module that is when it will usually happen. I have had it happen while making selects in the library module as well. I can usually only work for about 20-30mins before the problem occurs. I have tried re-installing the newest version of the driver 6.1.6-7 using the msconfig diagnostic startup mode with no preferences loaded. That worked for about a half hour I then loaded my backed up preference file and 20 mins later it locked up. Since lastnight I have installed the older Wacom Intuos 3 driver version 6.1.2-5 following Wacom's suggestion of doing the install from the msconfig diagnostic startup mode. I was able to work with no issues for about 2-3 hrs, I redefined some of the keys but did not re-import the prefs file and it continued to work ok.

                                    • 15. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                      Thomas Helzle Level 1

                                      Sometimes it is enough to just move the pen over the Lightroom Interface and you can already "feel" some kind of sluggishness, some verbally-non-explainable tendency to hang sooner or later. As if LR/the Wacom driver is working a lot even if you don't actually do anything. Then as soon as you do something, be it drag a slider or anything else containing continuous movement - bang, driver is gone.


                                      The LR interface is very mouse-active, maybe it simply is too much for the poor old wacom driver?


                                      Way back with the old drivers in Win31/Win95 and my back then serial Wacom UD1212 you were able to grind the machine to almost a halt by just moving the pen. But it was snappy as hell as far as the wacom pointer was concerned. Later drivers under NT started to become much more sluggish and never got back to that kind of feeling where the pen was absolute top priority with never any delay - the pointer felt like "welded" to the pen.

                                      I understand that nowadays you can no longer develop such a selfish driver, but there are times when I would love to have that feeling back.

                                      The wacom in combination with LR is the opposite, although you don't actually use the pen (so no pressure, tilt or other data needs to be transferred) something seems very busy and pen interaction feels weird/strained.

                                      I personally would love to have a priority setting in the Wacom driver and I guess I would set it to the highest available value...


                                      Funny thing is, ATM with the latest driver it is mostly stable, although it feels sluggish in LR. I have no idea what combination of changes or other stuff did the trick - I tried so many and none of them actually worked back when I posted this (yes I restarted/reinstalled between tries...).

                                      Some weeks later I got back to LR to try again and now it seems to work most of the time (knock on wood).


                                      If I should find out anything more, I'll report back.


                                      Win 7 Pro 64 Bit SP1, LR 3.3 64 Bit, Latest Nvidia Drivers, GeForce 8800GT.





                                      • 16. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                        Pete Marshall Level 4

                                        I still have the occasional crash of the Wacom driver. I don't think it matters which Intuos tablet is being used as there is one drive from the Intuos 2 through to 4. I use an old 2 at home and a 4 elsewhere and the problem has occurred with both.


                                        I noticed today that the windows update thing reported an important update for the Wacom mouse driver. Unusually for me I tried to instal this from windows update. It wouldn't install and gave the usual unhelpful Microsoft message...so I hid the update. I checked the wacom Europe and USA site to see if they had updated the drivers and they hadn't. Anyone know if this windows update is relevant or the usual rubbish from Microsoft?

                                        • 17. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x

                                          I just purchased my new Intuos 4 Medium about a month ago or so, and haven't been able to get it to work for more than a few minutes at a time in Lightroom 3 (also purchased only about a 6 weeks ago), even after following the suggestions I received from the help at Wacom.


                                          I have been using my old Bamboo tablet (also by Wacom), and it has been crashing occasionally, as well - although not nearly as frequently or as hard as the Intuos 4. Funny, I decided to get the Intuos becuase my Bamboo was acting strange and sluggish, think the fault was with the tablet.


                                          I find this very upsetting, since I specifically purchased the tablet to work on photos. It only crashes in Lightroom.


                                          I really wish there were a quick fix for this.


                                          My operating system is Windows Vista, 64 bit.







                                          • 18. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                            Pete Marshall Level 4

                                            You will find that there remain problems with the Wacom drivers. Freezing and dropping of the drivers is a common problem for many people on windows systems, particularly when maxing the RAM out. You may have only experienced this in LR, but you will find it also occurs in other apps that make serious use of resources such as Premier and After Effects. I don't think it is a specific LR problem, but rather a problem with Wacoms drivers.

                                            I am on W7 rather than Vista and am pretty sure the problem is less with W 7 64 bit than it would be on Vista 64 bit because the memory management has been improved with the newer OS, but it remains a problem.


                                            Some of the solutions offered in previous posts may help you improve things, certainly make the tablet and pen usable, but it will still drop the driver now and again. If you rely on the Wacom mouse have a spare usb mouse around and when it drops the the driver you can either quickly reinstall which usually corrects, start the drivers up manually, which doesn't always work or just restart the whole system.

                                            Wacom seem to like to blame the apps people use the tablet with, which is silly as obviously the tablet is pretty useless unless they build drivers that work with RAM hungry applications that are the sort of thing it is useful for. If all it works with is PS it becomes a real waste of time.

                                            • 19. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                              Thomas Helzle Level 1

                                              omauntie: Wow, that sounds painfull :-(


                                              Pete, I have to say I have a very different experience from what you write:


                                              I have more than 100 apps installed on my main working machine, from light to heavy, from audio to 3D to imaging, compositing to whatnot, so I think I'm a rather "heavy user" and Lightroom is the only software to crash the wacom that "reliably" just by moving the pointer around.

                                              Before I started to use Lightroom last year, I hardly ever had crashing wacom drivers.

                                              There are smaller annoyances in some apps, which I would be willing to blame on the specific software, but otherwise, I only had the odd hang maybe once a month, never anything like the problems with Lightroom or repeatable.


                                              I also doubt it has anything to do with memory. I have 14 Gig of RAM installed and usually max it out only with 3D rendering - I'd never had the wacom freeze in those situations though. If something freezes it's windows, and in those situations the mouse doesn't react as well and you can't even do much with the keyboard.

                                              And Lightroom isn't very memory hungry for me anyway.


                                              I also can't follow what you say about Vista 64 vs. Win7:

                                              I used Vista 64 Pro since the beginning of 2008 until Win7 Pro came out and there were no such problems with the wacom (I didn't use Lightroom back then). Win7 is smoother than Vista was, true, but Vista was much better than it's reputation in my personal experience.


                                              But anyway: the problems with Lightroom are in a completely different ballpark. ATM I have it running, but when I did not, it was simply unusable.



                                              On a sidenote:

                                              On Wednesday I got the most funny email from Wacom:


                                              "Wacom Newsflash
                                              April 2011
                                              Sichern Sie sich jetzt die „Killer-Kombination“ aus Intuos4 und Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® 3."


                                              Which translates to:


                                              ""Wacom Newsflash
                                              April 2011
                                              Get the „Killer-Combination“ with Intuos4 and Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® 3."


                                              It's a bundle they offer.

                                              I wrote back, that this has to be an unintended joke, given that the combination actually DOES kill the driver...


                                              Well, I still hope Adobe and Wacom get this solved and especially Wacom should work much harder on those drivers.

                                              They could be so much better for such an expensive tool.





                                              • 20. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                                jsc909 Level 1

                                                On my system, this problem was introduced by LR3. Killer combination indeed!


                                                LR2 did not exhibit this. And I also do not experience any problem

                                                with PS CS4/5 or a host of other applications.


                                                I do have a problem with the Wacom mouse not working on the audio

                                                application 'Wavelab' - but that's another story!



                                                • 21. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                                  zeetoe25 Level 1

                                                  I'm having the same problem.  No matter what Wacom driver I use after working in LR3.3 for a while weird things start happening.  When I go to move a slider in the develop module, the program pauses for a few seconds to load the preview picture again.  I'll wait a few seconds and move the slider again and the same thing happens.  When it pauses to load, I can't use anything.  I have to shut down and restart LR3.3 to get back to working normal.  In some cases, it will just shut down the tablet and I'm done!  Have to restart windows to load driver again.  I'm using Win 7 64 bit with 8 GB or memory and ATI HD 5400 color card.  Updating color card driver does not help.  I don't have this problem with CS5.  I can work all day on a bunch of photos and nothing happens.  I've actually stopped using LR3.3 for this reason.  It's a waste of time and money at this point.  I have traced it down to using any program that is a plug in for LR 3.3.  When I use Noise Ninja and Nik software to do edits, then everything starts going crazy.  If I don't use a plug in, then all I have to do is move the wacom pen too fast or go to the menu bar and the tablet crashes.  Again, a waist of time a money!  My tablet works perfectly with all other programs I have.  It's definitley a LR 3.3 problem.



                                                  • 22. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x

                                                    I've had my Intuos 4 for well over a year, and used it with Vista 32-bit Intuos 2 quad CPU with 4 GB of RAM.  I have no issues with any program except LR 3.  It worked flawlessly in LR 2 and all other Adobe programs I normally use.  Usually occurs in Develop Module, even with very slight adjustments using the Adjustment Brush.  I totally lose the driver.  I have been in contact with both Adobe and Wacom, tried all recommended work arounds, to no avail.  I have to re-install the driver every time.  I finally gave up and simply have to make any adjustments in Photoshop CS5, if I don't want to disrupt my workflow any more than it is.  I sure hope there is a solution on the horizon!

                                                    • 23. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                                      omauntie Level 1

                                                      I just wanted to mention here that I downloaded the Lightroom 3.4 update, and

                                                      much to my delight and surprise, my Intuos 4 now works perfectly with the program.


                                                      I am very grateful that Adobe finally figured out how to make this program work with one

                                                      of the best tools available on the market.


                                                      Way to go Adobe!!! Thank you for the fix!!!





                                                      • 24. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                                        jsc909 Level 1

                                                        Thanks for the heads-up, I can't wait to try this out now. Fingers crossed!



                                                        • 25. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                                          Geoff Wise

                                                          I too have the same freeze problem.. Wacom works fine on all applications, until I load lightroom.. works ok for a little while and then only allows the cursor to mover in the top left corner of the screen.


                                                          I use Win 7 64.. I have a twin monitor setup, the latest lightroom and CS5 photoshop.


                                                          I stop using lightroom and the Wacom tablet works fine..


                                                          Most annoying..

                                                          • 26. Re: Wacom Intuos 4 freezes in lightroom 3.x
                                                            omauntie Level 1

                                                            Seriously - since I installed the Update to Lightroom, I have not had a single problem with my Intuos 4.


                                                            THANK YOU ADOBE for fixing this!!!