For quite some time I have been using HDR Efex Pro for Lightroom (HEPL) as a standalone application on Windows 7. Today, I purchased the HDR Efex Pro 2 for lightroom (HEPL2) upgrade using my existing product key and installed it. During installation, the installer asked me to specify a host application. Since I don't intend to run the program as a plugin, I did not specify a host. The resulting executable, when double-clicked, starts a process, but does not launch application window.
I know that Nik says they no longer support a standalone mode for their plugins, but I have heard repeated claims by users that they have gotten HEPL2 to work as one. If someone knows the trick for Windows 7, please do tell!
Neither HDR Efex Pro nor HDR Efex Pro 2 was designed as a stand alone product, but both work as one. As was already mentioned, it's the Lightroom module that works this way. I just ran five tiffs through HDR Efex Pro 2 in stand alone mode, and it worked fine.
Hi Rick, I'd like to know how your setup differs from mine.
I am also using "the Lightroom version" of HDR Efex Pro 2, which I obtained by checking the Lightroom checkbox on the download page. Lightroom itself is not part of my workflow.
Installing creates two executables under C:\Program Files\Nik Software: a 32- and a 64-bit. I could not get either of these to launch om "stand alone mode."
Specifically, I tried (1) double-clicking the .exe (2) right-clicking the .exe -> Open (3) dragging a tiff onto the .exe. All three methods start a new Windows process, but do not open an application window.
I'd really love to get this program working, and would be grateful for any help you can give me.
I use Macs, so that's a fairly major difference, but I have a Windows 7 64-bit Parallels partition on my MacBook Pro. I just downloaded the Lightroom module of HDR Efex Pro 2 from their website and installed it into that Windows partition. Under the Program Files\Nik Software directory there are two sub-directories that contain the 32-bit and 64-bit application files respectively , along with other supporting files. I ran both the 32-bit and 64-bit versions and both worked fine - just like on the Mac OS. I simply double-clicked those application files and it ran. Any chance you're trying to run the 8BF plug-in files rather than the application files? They have the same names so it can be confusing at first glance. Beyond that, I'm not sure what to tell you except I and others (I've taught people to use it in workshops) can get it to work on both Macs and Windows 7 in standalone mode.
Nik has chosen to be conservative on their support stance, but it's not because the programs don't run. They simply lack some of the niceties that they would have received had they decided to go the full distance.
I'm definitely double clicking the 64-bit executable. The resource monitor shows a 64-bit process that spawns 25 threads, uses 40MB of physical memory, and consumes a steady 25% of a CPU. But no application window appears, even after five minutes.
The process writes a log file (attached)
C:\Users\John\AppData\Local\Nik Software\HDR Efex Pro 2\log.html
I don't see anything particularly alarming in the log file.
The weird thing is that it's Mac users who are reporting that they are able to launch HEP2 in standalone mode. Makes me wonder if there's a problem in Nik's 64-bit Windows version.
Just for fun, I downloaded and installed a trial copy of Lightroom 4.3. I selected a bracketed series of nefs and did File -> Export -> Nik -> HDR Efex Pro 2. Lightroom does the Nef -> tiff conversion, then hangs at 67% complete. In the task manager, I see that a HEP2 process is running, but again, NO APPLICATION WINDOW APPEARS!
If I export using File -> Export -> Nik -> HEP1, it works just fine.
Sat 29-Dec-12 11:50 PM | edited Sat 29-Dec-12 11:51 PM by walkerr
Keep in mind that the tests I ran yesterday were on Windows 7 64-bit rather than the Mac OS. Given that other Windows users can run in standalone mode, and you're having trouble getting HEP2 to work even in conjunction with LR4, it sounds like something else is going on. Maybe a graphics card incompatibility?
Here's what I would do: call back Nik and have them help debug your Lightroom configuration problem while you have the trial version. Doing so may enable you to run the program in standalone mode.