Contact support or Ask other Live users

Recommendations for using VST plug-ins on Windows

  • Live Versions: ALL
  • Operating System: WIN

Installation

A VST plug-in often has two separate installation locations. The stand-alone version usually gets installed into a subfolder of "Program Files". This subfolder is normally named after the plug-in developer. The second location is for the VST plug-in DLL.

We recommend to use the following folder as installation location for VST plug-in DLLs:

Windows

C:\Program Files\Steinberg\Vstplugins\

32-bit plug-ins on Windows 64-bit

C:\Program Files (x86)\Steinberg\Vstplugins\

Most plug-ins will install into the above mentioned folder by default, but in certain cases it might be necessary to manually point the installer to this location.

Note: the stand-alone version of a plug-in should not be installed into the VST plug-in DLL folder.

Note: VST plug-ins might stop working when the stand-alone application of the plug-in gets moved, renamed or uninstalled.

Setting up Live for VST plug-ins

  • Open Live's preferences by pressing [ctrl][,] on your keyboard.
  • Navigate to the File/Folder tab.
  • Under "Plug-In Sources" please select the folder, where the VST plug-in DLLs have been installed to (see above). Note: selecting a whole drive, a Windows system folder or the whole "Program Files" folder as plug-in location can cause Live to crash at launch.
  • Then switch "Use VST Plug-In Custom Folder" On.

Troubleshooting

  • It's generally recommended to always install the latest update of a plug-in.
  • If Live crashes at launch after installing a plug-in, you can press and hold the [alt] key while the splash screen is shown when Live is launching. This will skip the plug-in scanning process and temporarily disable 3rd party plug-in support.
  • Certain plug-ins require Live to run with admin rights. For example plug-ins which offer the possibility to drag MIDI clips from the plug-in into Live, like Toontrack's EZDrummer.
  • External knowledge base article on how to run an application on Windows 7 as administrator. We recommend using "Option Five" of the aforementioned knowledge base article.
  • External knowledge base article on how to run an application on Windows 8 as administrator. We recommend using "Option Five" of the aforementioned knowledge base article.

Related tags: plug-ins