All of a sudden, my most important preferences disappeared! I did not deliberately update. However, I recently gave permission for some updates; this may have been included. Would an update have wiped out my preferences? Or did I do something to wipe them out?
I have CS5 12.1 for Mac. I'm running Lion 10.6.8
Do Help - About Photoshop from the Photoshop menus. If you have 126.96.36.199 still you haven't received any updates.
Photoshop updates don't normally wipe out preferences anyway.
Not sure why your preferences would be lost; that's never happened to me though another member of the forum here (Hudechrome) recently reported a similar occurrence with Photoshop CS6 just last week.