Help! Paratext has stopped working

This document is intended to help you in the situation where Paratext has been installed and is working correctly when all of a sudden it refuses to start or crashes every time you try to do some important operation. Possible responses are listed in this document starting with the easiest/safest and continuing on to the most desperate/dangerous.   First of all, if the problem has just begun, try shutting down and restarting the computer. If it is still happening, continue with these steps. If you can get Paratext to start and stay open for a while, you could go ahead and submit a problem report (Help > Report a problem). Maybe the Paratext help staff or the developers have an idea what might be causing your problem.   For a video tutorial of the reset and the deleting applications folder, see below

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Reset Paratext

Paratext remembers a lot of choices you have made when restarting. Sadly sometimes there could be a bug that causes these remembered choices to crash Paratext. Ruling out this possibility should be your first response whenever Paratext starts to act strangely in situations where you never had trouble before. To reset Paratext to forget your previous choices:

  1. Hold down the shift key and KEEP holding it down until step 3 below
  2. Right click on the Paratext icon and select the “Open” command
  3. When the dialog comes up asking you if you want to reset Paratext release the shift key and then click OK.
  4. Paratext will ask what language to use, then open to a blank screen.
  5. You can restore a saved layout from the layout menu. 

This reset is a useful thing to try not just when Paratext refuses to start, but also if it starts behaving oddly in some way that it has not done before. The reset discards a number of user settings but does not affect any project data. 


New Install: Error message about missing MOZGlue.DLL 

Sometimes when Paratext is first installed, it may fail to start, instead show you a long error message that will include a statement that a DLL, mozglue.dll is missing.  This error results when Windows does not have a complete installation of the Microsoft Visual C++ x86 Redistributable package. If this is your situation, try this:

1) Click this link to download the Microsoft package. Microsoft C++ Runtime. Then install it and try Paratext again. 


Check your antivirus software

Sometimes antivirus software may remove Paratext.exe or some file it needs to run thinking it contains a virus. Most antivirus programs maintain a log showing the history of problems they have detected and actions they have taken. Often, the Paratext program or other file is not yet permanently deleted, but is somehow hidden by the antivirus software. Programs may call this quarantining the file, or putting it in the vault -- if you can see a list of such files, you may be able to restore the missing file so that Paratext will start working again. See the Temporarily Remove Protection section below for a more thorough way to check if your computer protection might be overly protective.

Log on as a different user

Because of the way Windows handles permissions about who is allowed to access what files it can make a critical difference what user ID you use to log on. If you have more than one user ID on a machine try them all and see if some work and some don't. It is quite possible that Paratext might work for user ID with administrative privileges and not work for an ID without user administrative privileges. If you discover that Paratext only works for some user IDs ask your computer support person to help you adjust access privileges to allow Paratext to work for all user logons.

Reinstall Paratext

  • Reinstall the released version of Paratext
  • This is available here: https://paratext.org/download/
  • Download the Paratext installation package and follow the installation instructions.

Run a virus and spyware check on your computer

Remove any viruses found.


Check your hardware

Ask a computer repair person to run a complete set of diagnostics on your machine. It would be particularly important to run a memory check for an extended period of time and to make sure that all your fans are working so that you are not experiencing overheating problems.


Suspect anything “odd” about your installation

Paratext really has only been tested with My Paratext Projects installed on a local drive. If you decide to install it on a shared network drive, especially one hosted under Linux, you are on your own.

Temporarily turn off all “protection”

Sometimes anti-virus and anti-spyware programs can become overly aggressive and shut Paratext down. In order to determine if this has happened do the following:

  1. Disconnect your computer from Internet, e.g. remove network cable
  2. Turn off (you may need to consult with an IT person to do this)
    1. Firewall
    2. Anti virus
    3. Anti spyware
    4. Restart Paratext

If this makes Paratext work, re-enable the protective programs one at a time until you discover which one is stopping Paratext from working. Ask your IT person how to configure the protection in a way that does not shut down Paratext One thing you should particularly guard against is having two different anti-virus packages installed and enabled at the same time. This can totally disable Paratext as the two anti-virus packages fight with each other.

Go to an earlier System Restore Point

Windows can be configured to save backups of your system in a way that allows you to go back to earlier working configurations. Hopefully your system is already configured to do this. If not you should definitely ask your computer support person how to do this. In order to go back to an earlier and hopefully working configuration do the following:

  1. Go to All programs > Accessories > System Tools > System restore. In Vista or Windows 7, you may be to do this by typing “restore” in the “search for programs and files” box, then selecting “System Restore”.
  2. Select “Restore my computer to an earlier time”
  3. Select the date point you want to restore. Click “Next” to confirm, and Windows will do the restore to the specified date. For additional information:
    1. Microsoft: Recovery Options in Windows


Reinstall .Net

Paratext uses a software framework by Microsoft called .NET. If this framework is corrupt or badly installed on your computer, reinstalling it may help Paratext work better. 

 Download and install .Net 4.5 from here: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=30653     

Upgrade your Operating System

If you have an old version of Windows (earlier than 7), and your computer is suitable to be upgraded to Win7, 8 or 10, there is a some chance that whatever is stopping Paratext from running might be fixed by the upgrade.

Desperate Measures

I am sorry to say it might come down to desperate measures — especially if you have no local IT support help. A really good IT person can probably poke around on your computer for a while and figure out why it is all of a sudden not running Paratext anymore and help you avoid these measures. Reformat hard drive and reinstall OS. Paratext almost always installs easily on a clean install of Windows. This will also likely speed up your computer if it has been several user since you have done this. Clearly you will need expert help to do this and the opportunity for data loss is great. Buy a new computer. Maybe now is a good time. Once again Paratext very rarely fails to install and work on a new computer system.

Contributors to this page: james_post and sewhite .
Page last modified on Wednesday January 18, 2023 18:33:49 GMT-0000 by james_post.


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