Many users have reported difficulties running Illustrator version 12 (CS2) and prior on Windows Vista. Try this:
Go to the Illustrator install folder in Windows Explorer. Right-click on the Illustrator EXE file, choose properties, click the compatibility tab, and then select...
Disable Visual Themes
Disable Desktop Composition
Disable display scaling on high DPI settings
You might additionally have to select and set compatibility mode for Windows XP.
Thanks for the reply.
I wil try that, but would you recommend upgrading to a newer version to run more smootly on windows vista?
I'm not qualified to answer that. I expect others here with AI 13/14-Vista experience will jump in any moment now.
It's a compatibility issue, but a sporadic one at that. Sometimes legacy apps go looking for specific versions of DLLs that long have been surpassed by newer ones and then they can't find the correct memory address offsets. As to why it happens is unclear and seems to depend on what updates and specific extra components are on the system. If the issue cannot be resolved with compatibility mode, you may try hunting for the Microsoft Visual C redistributable packages (MSVC70 and up) and .NET runtime 1.1. Just download the full standalone installers and run them. if all of the components are already on your system, nothing will happen, if not, some bits and pieces should be installed. This may possibly fix the problems you experience...