Beachballing - what do you need to know?

Is something not working like it should? Let us know.
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2018-04-15 17:51:10

(Pixelmator Pro 1.0.9 on macOS 10.13.4 on MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2015))

Hi all.

Since the release of 1.0.9 I've had a few instances of Pixelmator Pro becoming unresponsive with a spinning beachball. At least two of these have been while editing a node on a shape (but that may be simply because I've spent a lot of time working with shapes).

As there's no crash, I have no crash report to send you*. What information do you need to help you troubleshoot this sort of behaviour?

Thanks in advance,

- Stef.

*Edit: Oh, wait. There is a report generated on a force quit. I'll send that to
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2018-04-16 07:56:27

Random beachballs can be a little tricky to diagnose and fix if there aren't any steps that we can use to reproduce them at least semi-consistently. The hang reports usually don't pinpoint critical errors like crash reports do, but they do still help a little, so it's great that you've emailed it to us. If this does happen again, it would also be useful if you could email us the file you were working and let us know what exactly you did to make Pixelmator Pro stop responding (e.g. you edited the node of a shape).
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2018-05-02 16:25:43

I've just had a beach ball, while drawing the outline of a shape with the pen tool. Straight lines, just click, click, click, click. I'll send the file (as last saved) and the report to the support email. No laughing at the image file, though.

(edit: the file is about 40MB. Is there a way I can get it to you other than email?)
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2018-05-02 18:39:27

I promise we'll do our best to keep a straight face, whatever the contents of the file. You can upload it to, then copy/paste the link you get after uploading in your email.
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2018-05-02 18:45:09

Thanks. Will do.
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2018-06-02 12:58:08

(Pixelmator Pro 1.1 Monsoon on macOS 10.13.4 High Sierra on MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2015))

I had a beach-ball while drawing with 1.1 Monsoon (again, while adding a node with the Pen tool). This isn't surprising as, as far as I know the bug that is causig this hasn't been identified yet.

While the app was non-responsive, Activity Monitor gave me the option to 'Sample Process'. I didn't do this (or save the report), but wondered if a Sample Process might tell you anything useful should this occur in future.
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2018-06-04 09:37:04

Yeah, we haven't managed to pin down the source of the bug you're seeing, but we've fixed a hang with the gradient overlay (which you could potentially get if you were drawing a path with the Pen tool and then completed the path to create a shape with a gradient). The fix for that will be added in 1.1.1. Obviously, if you were adding points without completing the shape, this isn't the same issue. The most helpful thing, always, is any specific steps that make this happen. Not necessarily reproducible steps, we'd just need to know the specific things you did so we could test those steps over and over to see if we can make anything happen.
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2018-06-04 10:21:21

Yeah, we haven't managed to pin down the source of the bug you're seeing...
I'm not surprised. It's a pesky little thing that happens pretty rarely. The last one happened on the cube file that I've just uploaded.

The conditions are usually fairly similar. It's usually a complex image with lots of shapes. I've had a beachball when editing a node once, but while creating a node five or six times.

The conditions are as follows:
Low-spec hardware (three year old 12" MacBook)
Sometimes I'll be listening to music, or playing a show on netflix (using Friendly for Netflix) in the corner of the screen.
I'll probably have been working on the image for more than 30 mins.
Draw a shape using the Draw tools and straight lines only: click-click-click with no drag.

I was thinking that it might be an issue with creating a node while the last one was still rendering but I just created an image with about 20 effects applied to a group and drew a shape in that group (just to see what would happen). No crash. So that's not it. I'll post more if anything comes to mind or if there's anything that I can do to increase the likelihood of a beachball.
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2018-06-11 08:48:51

I have the spinning 'beachball' EVERY time I open Pixelmator Pro and it lasts for over a minute (I've never counted but it could be as long as 3 minutes) and because of this I can no longer work with Pixelmator just takes too long to start working and I hate sitting around waiting....the time all adds up

Here is a link to my dropbox. I just took a screenvid. I must say at the point where I decided to start recording the screen the ball had been spinning for over 30 seconds already. ...

In that respect, I have a question. I have reverted to working with Pixelmator again for the last few months, which works fine (and has the functions I need - soft proofing, noise, etc, etc, the list goes on), but i have some files from the days when I started using Pixelmator Pro which are un-openable in Pixelmator (like the one in the video which I wanted to update to the most current release on my record label).

Is there a way I can convert these files to make them useable in Pixelmator? Or do I need to start from scratch?
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2018-06-11 09:34:12

That sounds awful (and completely different to what I'm experiencing). You have my sympathies. But what you're experiencing isn't normal. Ergo, it should be possible to fix it. If you're still interested in using Pixelmator Pro, and you haven't tried this yet, I'd recommend a removal followed by a re-install. The Pixelmator team may have some idea if there are some files you need to delete in between the removal and re-install. Plus, make sure your OS is up-to-date.

As far as converting, I tried cutting and pasting layers from Pixelmator Pro to Pixelmator. They came across as pixel layers with effects etc flattened and losing position information. Depending on the image, that may or may not be useful to you.

(edit): Also both Pix and Pix Pro can import and export photoshop files so that might be a way of getting an image across with layer information intact.

Hope things get better.

- Stef.
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2018-06-11 15:31:28

Hi, Gordon. Could you email us about this at with a few more details about your Mac and the Pixelmator Pro version you're currently using? And, if possible, could you also include the file you're working on in that video? Thanks!
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2018-06-12 08:56:10

Hi Stef,
Thanks a lot for the response.
Yes, I usually export as .psd files as I ALWAYS design for print, so need to add some final touches in Photoshop, mostly in relation to CMYK conversion and then some colour adjustments to tweak the results.
But as well as the 'missing' functions that I need, it's a combination of this and the beachball that's put me of Pixemlator Pro.

Hi Aurelija
Yes, I'll email you just now with some details.....there is a place I can upload files to somewhere isn't there? Or should I just wetransfer the pixelmator file?
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2018-07-13 13:23:09

We think we've managed to pin down the cause of this shape editing/beachballing issue, so if anyone bumps into it, we can share a beta version of Pixelmator Pro that includes it. To get it, email us at

Stef, if you've had this problem recently, drop us an email at the support address and we'll share the beta with you.
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2018-07-15 15:14:48

I've got some work coming up that will involve a lot of shape drawing so I'll do that. Thanks.