Dorico 4.3 Process launches but no window appears and app doesn’t start

Basically, I’m having a bad time after upgrading to Dorico 4.3 today.
I sat down to work (on a tight deadline of course), and was notified of the possible upgrade. I ran it because Steinberg’s stuff has always been stable and great. But apparently not this time(?)…
Anyway, I can see Dorico running as a background process in the Task Manager, but it won’t actually launch the application. When I try to run Steinberg Activation Manager manually, it just hangs on “Loading, please wait.”, and then stops responding.

All I can find in the logs (attached) that seems like it’s possibly relevant is that “License engine isn’t running,” but I can’t find the License Engine to run it manually. According @dspreadbury in other threads, the Licensing Engine should be in the AppData\Roaming\Steinberg\Activation Manager folder, but the contents of the c:\Users[my username]\AppData\Roaming\Steinberg\Activation Manager are:


  • Data
  • Logs


  • config.dat
  • settings.json

… And nothing else. I’ve uninstalled and reinstalled Dorico, the Download Assistant, the Activation Manager, and the Library Manager (rebooting in between), with no change.

… Help? I’m on a tight deadline, and I REALLY need the software to work on this machine.

Here’s the machine info:
|Device name|DESKTOP-JB7LLVE|
|Processor|AMD Ryzen 9 5900X 12-Core Processor 3.70 GHz|
|Installed RAM|128 GB (128 GB usable)|
|Device ID|BD07292B-971E-4FA0-AF99-576BEB632380|
|Product ID|00326-00875-27667-AAOEM|
|System type|64-bit operating system, x64-based processor|

Here’s the Windows Version info:
|Edition|Windows 11 Home|
|Installed on|‎12/‎15/‎2021|
|OS build|22000.1219|
|Experience|Windows Feature Experience Pack 1000.22000.1219.0|

Attached are the logs from the Activation Manger

Activation Manager (17.1 KB)

… and from Dorico itself…

Dorico (12.6 KB)

%appdata%\Steinberg\Activation Manager doesn’t contain the the licence engine itself - just your personal licence data. The Licence Engine is in %commonprogramfiles%\Steinberg\Activation Manager.

Anyway, I suspect the licence engine is present but it from the logs it looks like it is having problems writing to one of your directories, e.g. it says “[2022-11-15 13:40:44 -06:00] [error] Failed writing current consumed licenses. ERROR: permission denied”. This suggests it’s trying to write out its licence data and failing for some reason.

Can you run the Steinberg Activation Manager on its own? If so can you try:

  • running SAM
  • signing out of SAM
  • deleting (or renaming) the %appdata%\Steinberg\Activation Manager directory
  • running SAM again
  • signing back in again

Steinberg activation manager hangs on launch, even by itself…
I had to leave the house, but I left a permission reset utility script running on that AppData folder to try and fix the permissions issue…

Repairing the permissions in the AppData folder (detailed here: (running icalcs in a terminal with Administrator privileges) and then renaming the Activation Manager folder in C:\Users[Username]\AppData\Roaming\Steinberg made everything work again. Thank you, @Richard_Lanyon !

Great! Glad to hear it.