How to Trash the Prefs in Pro Tools

by Lars Tramilton ; Updated September 22, 2017

Items you will need

  • Pro Tools software

  • Pro Tools hardware

  • computer

In this article you will learn how to trash your preferences in Pro Tools. This is commonly referred to by Pro Tools enthusiasts as "trashing the prefs." As great as Pro Tools is, once in a while it's going to crash. It happens to everybody. So, what do you do when this happens? The first thing will almost always be to trash the prefs. Get used to it. If you call Digidesign's (the company who publishes Pro Tools) tech support, they will undoubtedly ask you to trash the prefs when they troubleshoot any software problems you may have. By learning to do it yourself you can save some unnecessary tech support charges.

Quit Pro Tools. Make sure Pro Tools is NOT running when you trash the prefs.

Open a new finder window. The shortcut for this is Command + N.

Click on the home icon.

Go to Library - Preferences. Here you will find the Digidesign prefs. You will track down and delete all of the possible culprits.

Locate the following files - DAE Prefs, DigiSetup OS X Prefs, and Pro Tools Prefs. Note, they will not necessarily be listed together in the folder.

Drag DAE Prefs, DigiSetup OS X Prefs, and Pro Tools Prefs to the trash

Empty the trashcan.

Restart Pro Tools. If your problem was simply a corrupt pref file, then Pro Tools should start right back up. That's it! You now know how to trash the prefs in Pro Tools!


  • 9 out of 10 times trashing the prefs will fix common Pro Tools software problems. If you still experience difficulty starting Pro Tools after trashing the prefs, your problem may be more serious or it may not be Pro Tools that is the problem. The problem may be your actual computer. If this is the case call the Digidesign tech support number listed in your user manual.

About the Author

Lars Tramilton has been writing professionally since 2007. His work has appeared in a variety of online publications, including CareerWorkstation. Tramilton received a bachelor's degree with a focus on elementary education from Kean University.