Broken Plug-in


Today’s Question: When I recently updated Adobe Bridge and Photoshop, my Nik Collection was broken. Can you advise how to get it back please?

Tim’s Quick Answer: To get plug-ins (such as the Nik Collection) working after installing a major update to the host application (such as Photoshop), you’ll need to re-install the plug-in. That will ensure all of the files are in the right place, and that the plug-in is activated for the host application.

More Detail: By definition, a software plug-in requires a host application, such as Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Lightroom Classic in the case of the Nik Collection by DxO (

In many cases, when you install a minor update to a host application, the plug-ins you have already installed will continue to operate normally. It is a good idea to check for a new update to the plug-in software after a new software update for the host application is released, but such an update is generally not necessary for the plug-in to continue to work properly.

In the case of Adobe applications (such as Photoshop), when you “upgrade” to a new major release you are actually installing a completely new application, not simply updating an existing application. In that case, you will need to re-install your plug-ins so they will be available for the new application you’ve installed. Note that if you don’t uninstall the previous version of the host application, the plug-ins would continue to operate normally there.

So, with the recent major release of the various applications in the Adobe Creative Cloud, you’ll need to install your plug-ins again. In the case of the Nik Collection, just be sure you are installing the correct version. The Nik Collection was originally developed by Nik Software. It was then acquired by Google, and more recently acquired by DxO. Also note that the last time I tested this, installing the trial version of the Nik Collection from DxO renders the prior free version of the Nik Collection from Google as unusable, so your only option would be to buy the full version of the Nik Collection from DxO.