Cubase 12 taking very long to load an to load a simpleproject

My Cubase 12.040 takes very long time to load the program and takes again a very long time to load a simple project with 3 audio chanels, a few midi tracks and one or two included VSTis (groove agent, halion etc). Any ideas, previous versions were much faster.

Too much to name…
Mandatory information is the OS and some specs about the system.

Bit of a long shot but C12 ran at a crawl for me after updating from previous version. I had to reselect my audio interface and it sorted it out. Took a while to stumble on that one tho.

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Windows 10 64 bit, i5, 16 Gb RAM,Gigabyte Z370P board, RME Fireface UC, Cubase 12.040 Pro

For me Windows defender was once the culprit, everytime scanning the project folders, another time it was some plugins (Slate Plugins) checking for their license.

Try to add the project folders and Steinberg folders to the Windows Defender whitelist.
Do you have the same issue when opening a project without plugins?