When I open lightroom I have to run it as an administrator before the actual program opens. How can I fix this?
Also, whenever I restart my laptop and open lightroom, all of my downloaded presets are gone as well as my photos. Any way I can prevent that from happening again?
I'm assuming you're on Windows, and it's very possible that Lightroom was installed under the Administrator account originally (so that's why it can't find all of its presets in the "normal" user account).
I'd try backing up your catalogs, uninstalling (from the admin account), and then reinstalling (from the "not-admin" account). Then restore your catalogs, try updating your preferences...log out and back in. See if it sticks.
We have this same problem a lot at work with a different application - we have to update it using an Admin account (so it can access the internet), then we forget why it wants our license key again at the end -- because the license was installed under the weaker account. Once we remember this (every freakin' time!), we quit the just-updated Admin version, restart it under the "normal" account, and it's updated AND finds the license key.
it sounds very familiar so that's why I think it might be a question of "which account was Lightroom installed under." Try it and let us know.
I hope this helps!