Tech Support

Help for a Crashing iPhoto ’11

If you’ve seen this error message in iPhoto ’11 (v9.2), before you panic – like I did – here is the solution.


The application will no longer open, or consistently crashes while importing new photos.


  • Using Finder, click on the root Macintosh hard drive and navigate to the /Library/QuickTime folder.

  • DELETE this file: 3ivxvideocodec.component.
  • Problem solved!

This happened to me this morning, and I hope this fix saves all our Mac users out there some time and anxiety!


  1. Clay Nichols

    10/24/2011 at 6:48 pm

    Thanks for the help! Worked perfectly.

    1. Samantha

      10/24/2011 at 7:11 pm

      Glad it worked Clay. Cool site you have! I shared with my husband.

  2. Amy Suardi @ Frugal Mama

    10/25/2011 at 1:46 am

    That sounds gray-hair producing, Samantha! I’m so sorry you had to go through that, but it sounds like you managed to find an easy fix. Phew!

  3. Paula

    10/25/2011 at 1:52 am

    It didn’t work. I still have the same problem.

    1. Samantha

      10/26/2011 at 1:52 am

      Hi Paula – check your crash report. Does it specifically cite that filename? Mine did. Also, make sure to delete or remove that file from the directory (folder) – not just rename it. I tried that first, and it didn’t work. I hope you can get to the bottom of this!

  4. Bob Fleischer

    10/25/2011 at 3:13 am

    EXCELLENT! Worked for me too. Many thanks.

  5. Nancy Largent

    10/26/2011 at 1:47 am

    You are a genius! Works perfectly now!! Yea!

  6. Robert Friess

    10/27/2011 at 2:37 am

    Samantha – thanks for fix, been driving me crazy. But what did I just do? What was purpose of 3ivxvideocodec.component and what are implications of deleting beyond fixing my iPhoto problem??

    1. Samantha

      10/27/2011 at 3:45 am

      Robert, have you used a Flip video camera in the past? I did a little research and it seems the Flip’s software is responsible for installing this component. My Flip is loaded with videos that I can’t download (the device is “corrupted”) and the product is no longer supported. After removing the “3ivxvideocodec.component” file I also tested some QuickTime movies and they run just fine. So, at least for now, it seems like this fix is fairly safe. But if you use a Flip, I would test it out – try downloading some video to your computer and see what happens. Let us know the results too!

  7. Jean Christie

    10/30/2011 at 7:11 pm

    Thank you, Thank you. Just one question WHY did it work?


  8. Samantha

    11/12/2011 at 11:08 am

    FYI to all – the latest iPhoto update, v9.2.1, addresses the 3ivx crash: If you already deleted the “3ivxvideocodec.component” file, and you run into a video file that won’t play – I haven’t yet – you probably need to reinstall 3ivx. Find it here:

  9. Cathy

    12/04/2011 at 8:31 pm

    Thank you – this also solved my problem. And yes, I use a Flip camera. Very relieved as I’d been told I’d need to re-image my computer.

    1. Samantha

      12/04/2011 at 10:08 pm

      Glad it worked Cathy! Thanks for stopping by. If you’ve copied a DVD using Mac the Ripper, this could also explain the 3ivx component. Just reinstall it (link above) if you run into problems with this software. Avoid re-imaging when you can.

  10. Jerry P

    01/17/2012 at 10:28 am

    OK, I just upgraded to Lion (10.7.2) about 10 days ago, and then to iPhoto 9.2.1 4 days ago. iPhoto crashed the first time I tried opening my large library, but was successful converting it the second time. The issue I have is that it crashes when i try to activate preferences – every time. I have deleted iPhoto and redownloaded/installed it and, even with a clean, new library it will crash on preferences. Then I tried creating a new user on the computer and it works fine there. Obviously it’s got something in my active user that’s conflicting. I couldn’t find 3ivx on the computer, but saw your comment here about Mac the Ripper. Supposedly 9.2.1 fixed the 3ivx issue, but just to be sure, where would I find 3ivx for Mac the Ripper, and would it possibly be lingering somewhere with other rippers like Handbrake, etc? And OBTW, other suggestions were to remove Photostream, but I have not yet activated iCloud or Photostream. Any further ideas?

    1. Samantha

      01/18/2012 at 9:33 am

      Hi Jerry, sorry you’re having so much trouble! You can download 3ivx for Mac here: Although to me it sounds like an unrelated problem. A great clue was the new user test. Maybe it’s not the user but a photo or photos associated with the user? Check this out: “Specific photos cause crash in iPhoto” –

      Also, you could try this “The Answer to iPhoto Startup Woes and Crashes” – Make sure you have a backup before rebuilding the iPhoto database. Good luck and I hope this helps!

      1. Jerry P

        01/18/2012 at 1:53 pm

        Thanks for your response. I should reiterate that iPhoto does NOT crash when manipulating my current library, either in the prime user OR the test user. The crash DOES occur when I try to go into the preferences menu if I wish to make adjustments (prime user only). The crash DOES occur even in a fresh, new, empty library (prime user only). The crash DOES NOT occur when I open preferences in the test user, either current library OR fresh, new, empty library. I don’t think there’s any corruption in the library. I just need to keep searching for the conflicting culprit in my prime user (other than 3ivx or PhotoStream). I’ll come back and post a followup if and when I find the culprit.

Leave a Reply