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Memory parasite, not saving work, freeze, crashing - unusable Raw 2020 program



  • Brian Lawson Community moderator

    Hi Duane,

    The first thing you should know is that you are not talking to the company here. These forums are for user-to-user support and you are talking to other users.

    You mentioned having a catalog. Has the cataloging process finished running? During that process the system does consume as much memory as it can. Once the cataloging has finished memory and processor usage drops to normal levels and performance will improve. Another thing you can do to improve performance is add an SSD dedicated to ON1's Scratch space. I've also move the PerfectBrowseCache there to remove its space requirements from my small boot drive. You want the SSD to have its own direct connection to the system. Do not attach it to a hub or daisy chain it with other drives. You want it to have its own I/O channel that isn't shared with anything else.

    No, the program does not save work during editing very often. It gets saved when you return to the browser. I make it a habit to return there periodically as I work. Whenever I've gotten to a point where I've made enough changes (it's a judgement call) I will return to the browser to force a save then back into the editor to continue my work. One time I always do this is when I've done a lot of masking I don't want to loose if something should happen. Fortunately problems like that are rare on my system.

    It's hard to help with the masking issue without seeing what you are looking at and that's hard for you to produce when the program has crashed so you are unable to take a screenshot to show us. If you can show an example of the problems you're having it might help us help you.

    I've never figured out how to use the refine brushes myself. Have you watched any of the tutorials on their use? If you are a Plus member Dylan Kotecki has a course on masking at Mastering The Mask that you might find helpful. What I use is the Perfect Brush to manage the edges of my masks. It takes a bit of practice to understand how to set the controls for Color Threshold & Transition but once you get the hang of it it works very well. I use the regular brush for most of the mask then turn on the Perfect Brush for getting to the edges of the mask. Luminosity masks and color range masks are also very valuable tools in creating masks. Dylan covers all of that in his course.

  • Duane Lawson

    Thanks Brian for your effort to help me. 

    I have the latest video driver for my Quadro video card and it surpasses all of the requirements listed on the website. It is configured to be solely used by On1.

    My feeling is because I am making many individual edits to an extraction mask, the program is keeping a copy of each of the individual image states/stroke. I think they must be gobbling up my ram, till I am at 99% memory utilization and the program crashes, after progressively slowing down.  Photoshop also keeps a history but, it manages the history file much better, by keeping most of it out of RAM, so, it doesn’t slow down or crash. When I first work on an image, things are fine/fast. Creating these masks with their many brush strokes, is the killer. I have to edit the masks in fine detail, for what I am doing - pulling out sculptures.

    See the screen shots of crash messages and RAM usage at start and near crash state, below. The program starts at about 1.2GB and then over time with an image, it balloons up to 12, 13GB+ till my RAM is consumed. This even if I limit the ram to the program at 60%. If I close the program and reopen, it releases the RAM. Obviously this is not a tenable way to work. I will try and go back and forth to browse and edit, but, you should be able to just hit ctrl s, and keep steaming ahead. Or, quickly save multiple versions of an image. How about batch processing exports of different image sizes and types using presets? I keep finding simple things Photoshop can do that Photo Raw can't: e.g., content aware fill to expand backgrounds, insert a new completely blank layer into stack with user determined size, etc.

    I watch videos and read the manual on using features such as refine brush. Is AI brush the same as Perfect Brush? I think the AI mask brush is sampling continuously as you drag across keep and drop colors. I use the chisel brush with varying success. I will try luminosity and color range masks. But, if my RAM is swallowed up, it leaves me in the same situation. 

    I am upgrading my OS to Win 8.1, but, I don’t expect this to help much all by itself. I work with Lightroom and Photoshop, with multiple images open, and do not get any slowing down, except when processing very large panoramas with 7,8+ 30MB frames.


  • Don Maclean

    I see you mention that you are "upgrading" your system toWin 8.1, I would recommend Win 10 as memory management is so much better.  That is, unless you have a requirement for Win 8.1 to use with legacy applications. 

    As a long time windows user I haven't come across the issues you are facing with memory issues. 

  • Brian Lawson Community moderator

    Duane, you didn't answer my questions about the cataloging process having been completed or is it still creating the catalog and whether or not you are using an SSD for the program's scratch space.

    The cataloging process does eat as much memory as it can get while it is working on creating the catalog. I don't know if the VRAM usage setting has any impact on the cataloging process or if that only affects what is needed during editing.

    The use of a dedicated SSD impacts performance.

  • Tim Mayer

    I would second what Don said, and recommend moving to Windows 10. 

    Your version OS (version 6.1.7601.2.1.256) is 8+ years old at this point.  I would highly doubt that ON1 spends significant time testing with legacy OSes also.

    I do find my system slows down occasionally for some unknown reason, but have never had a crash after multiple extensive edits spanning hours running the latest release with Windows 10.

  • David Kick

    Duane, I would also suggest Win 10  You can still upgrade from 7 to 10 for free.

    Just google for some articles on it. Here's one for you.

  • Duane Lawson

    So, the only thing I have done is go to a folder with a couple dozen photos and work on one photo. I have not initiated any cataloging process. The folder I am in is just one of many other folders, under the root "Photos" folder, with images in it. PhotoRaw has been open multiple times for at least 10 hours at a time-barring the crashes. I don’t believe it was or is doing any cataloging. I did update/reinstall to the latest version on the notes page. Interesting, I did initiate PhotoRaw to check for updates and it said it was current, though the version showing was not the same as notes page.

    I am using a 250GB SSD as the scratch space. It is almost 100% free.  I just created another mask for the same image and the RAM utilization for PR is 7.7GB up from 1.2GB. Even after going to browse to save and get out of the image, the memory utilization did not change. So, memory utilization is still a big problem, slowing down the program as it creeps up to where I need to close the program.  Why should the program latch onto so much memory and not release it?  I have a high end Quadro video card with 2GB of DRAM dedicated to PR, so the system doesn't need to help.

    I have done a lot of research on Win 8.1 vs 10 and it appears 8.1 is more stable, virtually as fast, a start screen/menu from 3rd party app that makes it look and function similar to Win 7's start button and program list....and it has less spying going on by Microsoft...that is after configuring this manually, than Win 10 will let you do.   See: and So, I may try 10 on one machine and 8.1 on another.  I should have this done by next week and will see if it makes a difference. I also have an old scanner I need to maintain compatibility with.

  • Brian Lawson Community moderator

    Thanks Duane, that helps me understand better where you are at. Unfortunately I've reached the end of what I can offer. I'm more of a Mac guy. I know Windows pretty well but I've only got it running in a VM so that wouldn't be a fair test of anything. Maybe Rick can chime in, he's a Windows user.

    About the version thing, technically it is the same version just a different build so the updating system doesn't recognize it as an update. That build fixes a bug in one of the non-English language versions and has no affect on anything else according to the company. Good to keep up to date all the same, right? :)

    I can't speak to why the program does what it does. I've seen my memory climb too. I often get up to 14GB+ on my 16GB Mac but things don't slow down unless it climbs higher than that.

    I also have no recommendations on which version of Widows you should run. Comparing 8.1 vs 10 sounds like a good idea to me.

    Have you contacted technical support? If not, use the Submit a request link below and include the log files and system info requested at 

  • Rick Sammartino Community moderator

    Sorry, I've been following the thread but don't have any suggestions other than to send all of this to support as you've already mentioned.

    EDITED: One thing though, as others have suggested, the upgrade should be to Win 10. My 10 year old PC runs Win 10 fine and is stable. It also has more configuration options than 8.1. If you're worried about windows phoning home, just google that and turn it off.


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