After Effects giving you trouble? OK don't panic im here to help. by following this list i have solved just about every single problem after effects has given me.
Ok so a project is giving you problems what do you do?
1. Shut off all the plug ins you are using (click on the FX button next to any plug-in)
2.Enable caps lock to disable the preview finder.
3.Click on Edit>purge>all
4.Create a new folder and make a new save of the project there. Move (copy) ALL of your media assets to that folder.
5.Clear computer: Clean registry (Abaxo is free), Defragment HD
If you have: Windows XP, Me, or 2000 then you should download Dial-a-Fix, it's free and works wonders, there is a vista version in the works.
7.Run After Effects, Download all the latest updates.
8. Open the "new" Project you saved earlier, while holding down shift (This will force AE to Close the comp viewers)
9.Your Project should be working fine now
If your project isn't working here is the more complete list:
1a. Check to see if you just installed a new plug-in, if so remove it and check if it works now.
2b. If 1a didn't work check and make sure you have the latest:
Apple quick time player and other codecs, if you don't download FFDShow (google it) and VLC player.
3b. If you still have problems Slam you CD in the drive and re-install the software. This should solve about 99% of problems.
4b. If that still doesn't work download the CS3 or CS4 clean script from Adobe @ http://www.adobe.com/support/contact/cs3clean.html
Follow the instructions and remove your software and reinstall it again.
If all of this didn't work (which it should) either you have problems with driver issues and/or plug-ins (check your mediacore folder some times those plug-ins give you trouble), or your OS is screwy in which case a nice re-instaling of OS is in order. Or your hardware is failing (probably Ram or HD)
Failing all of this, if you did, then you have reached the limits of human potencial. The Gods of visual effects have frowned on you. The only thing left to do is leave the room quietly and later cry in the shower :p .. perhaps collecting stamps is more of your area?