Cubase 10.5; lost all preferences, won't load Native Instruments plugins etc

My audio PC (custom built beast, I9, 32g RAM, 3 hdd’s etc.) is almost never connected to the internet. When I powered up a few days ago, it had lost all of my Cubase preferences, won’t load recent files into that menu, and can’t find any of my NI Komplete plugins (vsts, vstis etc.). It’s also completely lost all of my saved workspaces and snapshots for my RME Fireface UFX II. I’m sure I’ll find other missing things as I go. I’ve run it in this configuration for nearly 3 years with no issues; this happened out of nowhere.
What could have possibly caused this and is there any way to get my PC back to where it was?

It’s really impossible to tell what caused this without access to your system (and even then it might not be easy). It could be memory/disk corruption (not that likely) or malware, of course, but that should affect other programs than Cubase, too.
You could check whether the “c:\users[yourusername]\AppData\Roaming\Steinberg\Cubase 10.5” (for Cubase) and “c:\users[yourusername]\AppData\Local\TotalMixFX” (for the RME) are still there and what the state of the files therein is (test whether you can open them e.g. with nodepad) , and your VST folder for the NI plugins.
You could try restoring the above folders from your backup and see if that helps.

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If it were me, I would start with doing a virus scan, then run chkdsk.
Then I would check your windows install by running

sfc /scannow

from Powershell (open with Admin privileges), followed by

DISM /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth

If things are still messed up, then loading a Restore Point is your best bet.

Have you by any chance been killing power to your computer when you shut it down before it finishes shutting down all the way?

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It is possible that I did accidentally shut it down prior to fully powering down; although I’m careful, I can’t rule out that I didn’t do that. Is that a likely explanation for what happened?

Yeah, I used to do that before I learned the hard way to be patient and let it finish. Since you have multiple programs being affected it sounds like something more systemic to me.
Have you had a chance yet to run the sfc and dism scans? If so, did either report anything?

I’m usually pretty patient, but it only takes one time. I do recall being in a rush when powering down so it is possible that this is what has happened.
I’ll see if I can squeeze in some time to run those scans. I’ll report back. Thanks a ton for the advice!

No luck with the restore points or anything else :slightly_frowning_face: Thanks for the help.

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