I suggest that perhaps a Windows Update delivered a bum display driver. The WHQL quality approval process is kind of a joke.
Better to get display drivers directly from the web site of the maker of your video card. Check there to see if they have a release that's newer than what you are running now. Also, usually it's not necessary but it's often a good idea to completely remove a display driver that's already installed before installing a new one. Display driver installers are not known to be bulletproof.
As you point out, many updates can render the video driver obsolete. For many programs, that goes unnoticed, but recent versions of PS rely more heavily on the video driver for many functions. Stopping by the mfgr's. Web site, and a quick look at the most recent video driver would be my first course of action.
Regarding Windows updates: I have always had those set to Notify Me only, so that I can do two things:
- Create a new System Restore Point (often done automatically, but I want to know that I have one). Now, not all updates (such as some SP's) can be rolled-back with a System Restore Point, but most can.
- Alert me that when I download and install the update/hot-fix, I can watch for issues, like with some Adobe programs and the video driver.
Good luck to the OP,
Good point and excellent advice, Bill. It mirrors what I've written in my book.
Microsoft wants Windows Updates to be completely automatic, probably because they figure most end users will just put them off indefinitely otherwise. But anyone who wants to be better in charge of what happens when with their computing environment will definitely want to configure to the "Download updates but let me choose whether to install them" setting.
Yes. I put them off, until I have some time to troubleshoot things, if all is not perfect. I might need to get a Project off the computer, and delivered, or just need a couple of spare hours to dink around.
I am big on updating, but on MY terms.
I have every program, that I can think of, set about the same way. Two biggest crashes that I have ever had were when Java updated, during a PS Save operation, and when Logitech's SetPoint updated during a program install. In both cases, I had just missed setting those programs' auto update, and the second one was truly catastrophic, and even my Norton Ghost could not save my bacon - took about 3 days, with a low-level reformat to get everything fixed. I mean it was a simple mouse driver update, for gosh sakes!
I do not want anything going on in the background, unless I direct it to do so, and I also search every program's options, when installed, to set updates to manual.
I have several issues with some of Windows' default settings, but know most pretty well, and know all that I must adjust, when installing a new OS. Some, like display of file extensions, are such second-nature for me, that in the forums, I forget that not everyone will have changed that, and some other settings.
Can't wait to see what Windows 8 will bring me...