Fix the Photoshop CS4 layer-dragging crash bug in Mac OS 10.8 Mountain Lion

This has been plaguing me for a while since I updated to Mac OS 10.8. Dragging layers in the layers palette of Photoshop CS4 would cause an immediate crash to desktop. Finally found a solution in this thread which worked.

Solution: turn off the OS power-saving graphics switching.

It's the checkbox at the top of the Energy Saving preference pane:

Mac OS 10.8 Energy Saving preference pane

You'll need to ensure that it's unchecked and probably restart after that.

Now I can drag layers all day long.


  1. Sebtantesept says:

    Thank you so much!
    At last a short, clear and efficient answer!

    1. Cai says:

      Glad it helped you out!

  2. evan says:

    this little trick worked for me. wish i seen it before deleting and reinstalling everything to no avail. thanks for posting it.

    1. Cai says:

      No problem at all.

  3. thanks for posting; you saved me :-)

    1. Cai says:

      Excellent :)

  4. rachel says:

    Finally, relief after SO MANY HOURS of tearing out my hair - thank you for posting this!!!

    1. Cai says:

      You're very welcome, glad it helped you out.

  5. markw says:

    I need to search this topic once a year when I upgrade my OS. Yours came up first this time. Thanks! I believe there's a second symptom and fix for this problem. A dynamically switching video card may also make PS unstable. I have to remember to set my card to Discrete Only with the gfxCardStatus app as well. Maybe there's a more permanent workaround that I'm not aware of.

    1. Cai says:

      Glad it helped you out. I'm going to check out that app you mentioned, too.

  6. Ivy says:

    Thank you for this post! It works!!!!

    1. Cai says:

      Great, I'm glad to hear it!

  7. Mel says:

    OMG THANK YOU!! I assumed this couldn't be fixed, then finally TODAY I thought I'd google to see if there were solutions! I can't believe it was this simple! Problem solved!! THANK YOU!

    - And thank you for titling this perfectly so it was easy to find in a google search!

      1. Mel says:

        *salutes back!*
        - I've been dragging layers and folders around all day :)
        Thank you again!

  8. Taren says:

    Quick, efficient fix - thank you!!!

    1. Cai says:

      You're welcome, glad I could help!

  9. Mel says:

    Had this problem again, and I knew there was a solution I'd found online before, but couldn't remember what it was. Googled and found your post. Looks like this is where I found the solution a few years ago too, because I see my previous comments to you! Thank you again!

    1. Cai says:

      Haha, glad to be of service! :)

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