14 Replies Latest reply: Aug 17, 2015 5:02 AM by visut_p
Jcoupe Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

im making a short film, it working fine yesterday, when i tried to edit it this morning it froze repeatedly when trying to edit clips and taking forever to drag and move things about. I haven't added anything new since yesterday... what happened overnight?! HELP. Many thanks, Jess

  • Klaus1 Level 8 Level 8 (46,955 points)

    We cannot work in the dark.


    What Mac and what versions of OS X and iMovie are you using?


    What kind of movie?


    How much free space on your hard drive, and how much RAM do you have?

  • Jcoupe Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    erm sorry im not very technical


    its a macbook pro, bought this year, OS X version 10.7.2 processor 2.4 Ghz 1.5 intel


    398 GB free of 499


    iMovie 11 version 9.4.0


    movie wise, there are LOTS of video clips recorded from my camera, quick time movie clips,  but it could handle it fine the night before. I closed all runnning programmes, and made sure i had enough space.


    Any advice? Many thanks

  • fredodido Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hey Jcoupe, did ya find a solution to your slow i movie?  i ve got the same issue here with a bran new mac book pro... working on a 25 min. project... all HD ! with around 40 min. of events... did cut a lot of the unwanted event sections and it did help a lot but it stil very slow. to slow for the price and capability of this machine !!! i was working with a 600 $ toshiba of 2 years and the movie editing was faster with it... much faster... I do like my machine but have to say my come back to mac as left me cold and wet for now... please let me know if you find a remedy to the problems.




  • Bengt Wärleby Level 6 Level 6 (19,450 points)



    Several things can do this


    • HD-material takes much more power to be processed

    • if Hard Disk is filling up

    • lot's of icons on DeskTop (YES strange but reported to matters)

    • other processes running in back-ground - energy savers, frame savers, spotligt search, TIME MACHINE, File Vault, etc - I turn all OFF



    • Minimum of 25Gb free space on Start-Up hard disk

    • No other programs running in BackGround e.g. Energy-Saver

    • Don’t let HD spin down or be turned off (in Energy-Save)

    • Move hard disks that are not to be used to Trash - To be disconnected/turned off

    • Goto Spotlight and set the rest of them under Integrity (not to be scanned)

    • Set screen-saver to a folder without any photo - then make an active corner (up right for me) and set pointer to this - turns on screen saver - to show that it has nothing to show

    • And let Mac run on Mains - not just on battery


    AND - Creating a New User-Account - Log into this - and run iMovie - made my iMovie fast as New and for a specific project with a deadline - then this can help a lot.


    Yours Bengt W

  • mfaasse Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I would suggest closing iMovie, then deleting the Preferences file, which can be found in your Users folder > [username] > Library > Preferences.  move the com.apple.iMovie.plist file to the Trash, and delete it, then try opening iMovie again.

  • lori1130 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you mfaasse!  I think that worked!  So easy, I hope it lasts...

  • mfaasse Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Unfortunately for me, this was not a durable fix.  In the end, I upgraded my System Software to OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion) and iMovie '11 (version 9.0.8), and things have worked great since then.  I was previously running OS X 10.6, and my computer (2008 MacBook Pro) was crashing a lot.  The entire system is much more stable now.


    Good luck.

  • lori1130 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I had already upgraded my system to OS X 10.8 and imovie 11.  That's when things started to go slow for me.  My whole computer used to be lighting fast booting up and closing down too, but not any more.  It slowed my whole computer down.  I am wondering if that means I need more RAM.  I don't know much of anything about computers.  I have a OS X 10.8.3,  2.3 GHZ Intel Core i5 processor and 4GB memory.  It's an early 2011 MacBook Pro.

  • Bengt Wärleby Level 6 Level 6 (19,450 points)



    • Free Space on - Start-up (Mac OS) Hard Disk - How Much ?


    Yours Bengt W

  • mfaasse Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)


    I've never regretted max'ing out the RAM on my computers.  Please keep us posted on whether deleting the preference files provides a more durable solution for you than it did for me.

  • lori1130 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Bengt I am not sure this is answering your question... My Capacity is 319.21 GB  Available 101.81 GB.

    Used 217.4 GB on disk

  • Jandro13 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Once I finally figured out how to locate the dang file, doing what mfasse said worked (so far) for me.




    here's how to find the file:



  • CHIPEv Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I can't find the iMovie preferences file. I can go into the preferences folder ~/Library/Preferences but there is no com.apple.iMovie.plist file; the closest thing is come.apple.iMovieApp.plist

  • visut_p Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I got the same problem and I finally found the solution. The cause of the problem might be that I created only one project file. Then I created a video clip and export the clip. After the job is done, I deleted all the raw data files and create a new video clip again and again. Over and over. Even though I have deleted all the raw data files but it seems like iMovie still keep it and never really delete it from the database.


    The solution is to create a new project file and delete all the old project files. That's all that I did to fix this problem. If this doesn't work, then go to "movies" folder. You will see the project file (the one that has "film" icon). Delete it. Back to iMovie and create a new project again.


    I hope this comment can fix your problem.