Why won't BFD 3 open correctly?

As you are probably aware, BFD is an incredibly complex and comprehensive drum software with many moving parts and a rich history. Many of our users owned BFD from BFD 1, BFD 2, and any versions in between including BFD expansion packs, and third-party expansion packs. Sometimes, those users have accrued many GB's of high-quality samples which can, overtime become disorganized and contain third-party data that may not be necessary and can cause complications. 

  • The issue we see with many users is that they have a voluminous library of drum samples, that over many years may have grown and possibly even developed corrupt files, or unlicensed files which, in some cases can cause BFD to crash on startup, or have trouble finding your content.

  • Other times, users may have downloaded installers to the same location that they have chosen to store their installed content. This has also been seen to cause issues at times. 

Users are entitled to all of the expansions that they have purchased over the years, but we may want to look at this as an opportunity to do some "spring cleaning" and reorganizing of our sample/ groove libraries to allow BFD to scan all of that content more efficiently. 

If you are having trouble with BFD starting or scanning your content, or you are receiving yellow caution triangles, we recommend that first, you ensure that you are in fact using the current version of BFD, then if you are still having issues that you clear your content locations and install only the products listed in the BFD License Manager then, point BFD to look at that new folder only. This is to ensure that only currently licensed BFD content is being scanned by the program. 


Clearing Content Locations and Creating New Ones

If you are able to open BFD great! Choose Tools > Setup Content Locations. (If not, please see What if I am unable to open BFD to get to the Set Up Content Locations Page?)

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On the next screen, we see our file paths (outlined in red below). If they are all over your computer and filled with unneeded files they can cause issues, so we want to reorganize these. Click Remove All Content Paths (as seen in green below).

Remove selected paths.png

Great! We have successfully removed your current content paths. 


Re-install the Content

The next step is to install only the content from your BFD License Manager into a single folder. The goal is to have all of your BFD audio content in one place and separated from audio content from other software to help optimize the scanning process. If you're not familiar with this process, follow the guide below to create a new BFD Audio Content folder where your BFD Library and Expansion Packs can be stored: 

Note: Be sure that the default download location of the License Manager is not the same location you are installing your content to. Setting a default download location is covered in the guide above. 

Then, once you have installed all of your content from the BFD License Manager, you can go ahead and delete the old file paths. Some users may opt to back up these files, just in case. We recommend if you are going to do so, to back up on a separate drive so that BFD does not automatically scan the problematic content locations the next time it starts. 

Now that all of the content from the BFD License Manager is installed into one nice neat folder, we will want to return to BFD.

Open the BFD Content locations page again: Tools> Set up Content Locations

It should look like this:

Search Folder.png

We now want to click the search folder button (outlined in green above) and find the new 'BFD Audio Content' folder we just created.

Note: If BFD scans on start it may pull in some unwanted folders from your old content if you did not delete it. Please first choose remove all content paths again before performing the next step. 

Next, we will use your OS's file browser to find the folder you created above (outlined in green), and choose this as the folder we are scanning by clicking select folder (outlined in red below). 

open folder.png

Now BFD will scan only the folder that has all of our current and licensed content neatly installed into it. And, no more crashing, or yellow triangles! 


What if I am unable to open BFD to get to the Set Up Content Locations Page?

Great question! This means there is some sort of corrupt file in your content, or BFD is scanning too much. The same fix applies, we just need to go about it in a different way,

In these cases, we recommend first making sure you are on the most recent version of BFD. This can be done by opening the BFD License Manager, being sure you are logged in and clicking on BFD3 in your list of products (outlined in red below). Then, in the bottom pane look under status (outlined in green below), does it read up to date for the BFD3 Software installer?

up to date

If you are up to date that is great. We will next want to go through and delete all of the BFD content you find on your computer, grooves, and drum expansions.  Go to the locations that you have installed your content to in the past using your computer's file browser and delete it all. Some users may wish to back these files up just in case. That is fine. Back up on a separate piece of removable storage though, so that we are not continually scanning the same drives and finding the same issues, 

You may want to use any search features available to your OS to find what may be hiding. 

Next, we will attempt to open up BFD 3 with no content on the computer. Does it open correctly? if yes, great follow the directions above to reinstall your content! 



Producing a Diagnostic Report

If you continue to have troubles there may be something deeper wrong with your system. Please produce a Diagnostic Report so that we can best assist you, it's easy!

Open up BFD 3 and choose Tools > Preferences and then navigate to the Health tab (seen in green below). Once there, choose Produce Diagnostic Report (outlined in Red below).


BFD will then provide a location where the .zip file containing your Diagnostic reports lives. 

Once you have the diagnostic report, please reach out to BFD support at and attach it to the email from the location provided.