VST/AU plug-ins reset to default preset

  • Live Versions: All
  • Operating System: All

If a VST or AU plug-in preset fails to be recalled, or resets to a default preset when a live set is re-opened, there are two possible causes:

1. The plug-in is out of date

This may occur after an operating system update, where the version of the plug-in is not fully compatible with the new OS. 

The state of a plug-in is stored in a reserved binary data block in a Live set. This binary data block can only be read or written to by the plug-in itself. 

Usually re-installing the plug-in will resolve the issue.

  1. Make sure to download the most recent version from the manufacturer's website - copies installed from DVD or USB may be out of date.
  2. We recommend installing plug-ins to their default system locations using our guidelines on Windows and Mac.

2. AU plug-in cache is deleted by a cleanup utility (Mac only)

Mac cleaning utilities may be set to remove important User and System Cache files on macOS which are essential for the operation of your plugins in Live - this includes the state of the AU plug-in. If the Cache files were not backed up before running the clean up utility, then it's possible that you will not be able to recover your plugin settings for those projects.

If using CleanMyMac, we recommend the following settings:

Note: The Cache does not store AU settings on the project level, but the initial states of AU plugin which are scanned to Live's AU plugin directory. 

When the Cache is deleted or removed, the plugins need to be loaded again to create the initial plugin states in the Cache. Please make sure that you do not Save or overwrite any projects that contain missing plugin settings. 

Simply loading a project, closing the project, and re-opening once again should restore the initial states of those plugins. You can also add all of your AU plugins in a blank Live set to restore their initial states in the Cache. Then, configure your CleanMyMac settings as described above.

Ableton offers these in-depth help and learning resources: