Compressor 3.5: Troubleshooting basics

If Compressor isn't starting up properly or performing normally, try these basic troubleshooting steps to remedy the situation. These steps are basic things to try that are most effective in getting Compressor into good working order.

This is the right place to start if you are attempting to submit a batch and you see the following message:

"Unable to submit to queue. Please restart your computer or verify your Compressor installation is correct."


This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Confirm versions

  1. Update to the latest software versions.
    Choose Software Update from the Apple () menu and make sure that you have the most recent updates for your versions of Compressor, Apple QMaster, QuickTime, and other important system files. Installing the latest updates ensures that your software has the latest improvements and enhancements.
  2. Check compatibility and driver versions for third-party devices.
    If you're using a third-party capture card, storage system, input device, or something else, check the support area on the manufacturer's website to be sure that you're using the latest version of the relevant driver or other software for your device.

Confirm your computer's name in Sharing

A Computer Name and a Local Hostname must be populated in the Sharing pane in System Preferences (even if sharing is not enabled for any services).

  1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple () menu.
  2. Click Sharing.
  3. If the Computer Name field is blank, enter a name.
  4. Click Edit.
  5. If there is not a name in the Local Hostname field, enter a name.

Delete the User Preferences

You can resolve many issues by restoring Compressor back to its original settings. This will not impact your project files. To reset your Compressor user preference settings to their original state:

  1. In the Finder, go to ~/Library/Preferences (where the tilde (~) represents your Home folder).
  2. Remove the following files from the Preferences folder:

Note: This will not delete any custom settings that you may have created. Custom settings are stored in ~/Library/Application Support/Compressor.

Clear the Apple QMaster cache

You can sometimes resolve issues with batch processing by clearing the Apple QMaster cache.

  1. Quit Compressor and Batch Monitor.
  2. In the Finder choose Go > Go to Folder.
  3. In the dialog that appears, type the following path: /var/spool/qmaster/
  4. Click Go.
  5. Drag the contents of /var/spool/qmaster/ to the trash.
  6. Restart your computer.

Repair File Permissions

  1. Close all the files and applications that you have open.
  2. Open Disk Utility (located in the Utilities folder in Applications) and select your startup disk in the list on the left.
  3. Click First Aid.
  4. Click the Repair Disk Permissions button.

Remove and reinstall Compressor

To reinstall Compressor effectively, you need to remove the application, its receipts and associated files, then install Compressor and use Software Update to install additional updates. Follow the steps below to completely reinstall a fresh copy of Compressor.

Note: Make sure that you have the installation discs for the application that Compressor was bundled with and the serial number handy before starting this.

Use Finder to remove the following items:

  • /Applications/Apple
  • /Applications/Apple
  • /Applications/
  • /Applications/Utilities/Batch
  • /Library/Application Support/Apple Qmaster (the folder)
  • /Library/Frameworks/AECore.framework
  • /Library/Frameworks/Compressor.framework
  • /Library/Frameworks/MediaServerAPI.framework
  • /Library/Frameworks/Qmaster.framework
  • /Library/Logs/Qmaster (the folder)
  • /Library/PreferencePanes/Apple Qmaster.prefPane
  1. In Finder, choose Go > Go to Folder.
  2. Type the following path:
  3. Click Go.
  4. Locate the following items from that Finder folder, and drag them to the Trash:
    • qmasterca
    • qmasterd
    • qmasterprefs
    • qmasterqd
  5. In Finder, choose Go > Go to Folder.
  6. Type the following path: /var/spool/qmaster/
  7. Click the Go button.
  8. If there are any folders inside the qmaster directory, drag them to the Trash.

For Mac OS X 10.6:
Open the Terminal application and enter the following commands (case sensitive) and an administrator password when prompted:

  • sudo pkgutil --forget
  • sudo pkgutil --forget
  • sudo pkgutil --forget

For Mac OS X 10.5.8 and earlier:
Use Finder to remove the following items:

  • /Library/Receipts/Compressor.pkg
  • /Library/Receipts/ProMediaIO.pkg
  • /Library/Receipts/Qmaster.pkg
  • /Library/Receipts/Qmaster_Frameworks.pkg

For Compressor 3.0.5 and earlier:
Use Finder to remove:

  • /Library/StartupItems/Qmaster (the folder)

If you have Motion installed, drag it from the Applications folder to the Trash.

For Compressor 3.5 and later:
Use Finder to remove:

  • /Library/LaunchDaemons/


From your install disc, reinstall Compressor and Apple Qmaster (and Motion, if applicable). When finished, shoose Software Update from the Apple () menu to update your software to the latest version.

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