Nikon RAW Codec Updated Again. Still No Vista x64 Support

The MS PIX folks have listed the features and fixes.

The folks at Nikon have earned my complete disdain for their unwillingness to support Vista x64.

This entry was posted in Digital Photography, Uncategorized, Vista. Bookmark the permalink.

35 Responses to Nikon RAW Codec Updated Again. Still No Vista x64 Support

  1. Hutch says:

    Yep… stupid thing is that it was Vista Gallery that sent me to the Nikon site telling me that there was a RAW viewer available.

  2. Damian says:

    Me too.

    Multiple emails exchanges between Nikon and I have confirmed that Nikon has no intention whatsoever of supporting Vista 64 bit systems at all. They informed me that less than 2% of users had Windows XP 64 bit and so based on that experience Nikon will not be supporting Vista 64 bit !!! I am so disappointed.

    Microsoft also boast on their Vista 64 website that Vista 64 bit is great for Pro photographers – see

    “In the consumer market, Windows Vista 64-bit editions are for serious gamers, high-quality media creators, and enthusiasts who demand the most from digital media and are running computer systems with 64-bit processors.”

    Photographers using RAW = high-quality media creators in my book. However, this is all rubbish ! Microsoft has not bothered to reply to my emails re: Vista 64 bit support and I have found nothing on their website to indicate that they will offer 64 bit RAW compatibility.

    I have thousands of Nikon RAW images on my external harddrive and cannot view them on my new $3300 HP Pavilion 9205TX notebook ! HP arent interested in helping me either- try explaining the problem to an Indian call centre worker- they suggested I buy another computer (!) or contact Nikon. If only HP had disclosed that Vista 64 bit was installed when I bought it.

    I have not been able to find any software anywhere that supports Vista 64 bit and RAW image processing. Even RAW viewing is nigh on impossible. Google’s Picassa sort of works- you can view RAW images but Picassa insists that the RAW images are 700kb in size when in reality they are 5mb each. As a result, in Picassa there is no perceived or actual quality difference between a RAW image and JPEG- what a shame.

    I’ve installed Adobe Photoshop CS2 and that doesnt work either- I tried their RAW plugin from version 3 to 3.9 and none of them work !

    I’m out of ideas – anyone else find a solution ?

    Shame Nikon, shame Microsoft, shame HP. Buyers beware – DO NOT get Vista 64 bit !

  3. Barb Bowman says:

    I am able to use Photoshop Elements 5.0 with the RAW Adobe plugin on Ultimate x64. I remember hearing that CS2 needs some tweaking under Vista for path names and plugins path.

  4. Adam says:

    I submitted a complaint to Nikon I suggest everyone do the same. It is the only they will listen.

  5. Will Foster says:

    This is ridiculous! Do we have a free alternate way to take care of this? the only alternate options that I have seen are all $50 or more. Picasa SORTA works, but it works TERRIBLY with RAW/NEF files and creates a lot of GRAIN. Horrible, horrible, horrible. GET IT TOGETHER NIKON! I might have to delay purchasing a Nikon D300 if this isn’t RESOLVED, since I will need to buy software just to use my camera (Yes, I shoot all photo shoots RAW, unless it is an event or something that isn’t depending on the quality). Blah, this makes me sad.

  6. David Blake says:

    What level of support are people looking for?
    I’ve written a codec for DNG for Vista (32 and 64). It might be possible to take the work I have done and extend it to NEF. This would likely be read-only access to thumbnails, previews, and (some or all) metadata. Would that be enough?

  7. Barb Bowman says:

    David, This might help! I think the community would like to see the same level of support that is present in the Nikon codec in terms of integration with Vista.

  8. David Blake says:

    I don’t know if I could deliver everything that’s in the Nikon x32 version. Nikon encrypts the white balance data in the NEF file. They have a special SDK for getting the info out, but I don’t know what the terms and price would be. If it’s reasonable, then it’s something we could do.

  9. Barb Bowman says:

    It is worth checking into. I don’t know, however, if you can mae any real money off this codec. There is always Photoshop or even Elements which works fine under 64 bit windows. But for quick perusal, it sure would be good to have “native” support.

  10. Mark Duff says:

    Hi there, I intalled ViewNX V1.0 today and it seems to be working fine with Vista 64 bit. Here is the link

  11. Stanislav says:

    A cheap ($20), but very powerful alternative is ExifPro:
    I’ve used on my 32-bit XP, and it also works like adream on a 64-bit Vista. It gives all the options a photographer might wish for for orgamising and viewing of a multitude of image files, including almost all RAW formats. It also gives some rudimentary editing options.

  12. Ly says:

    if anyone stills looks here give GIMP an try. It does the job very well for me and it’s free. I only lack a thumbnail viewer so it takes awhile to find the nef I want to use.

  13. Kule Kanain says:

    Look – apparently there is more than one – and more than 2% – of loyal Nikon customers running Vista 64 bit! The fact that ANY manufacture would flat out refuse to support an install base is rediculous.

    I have several thousands of dollars in Nikin equipment. Perhaps it is time I sell it all off and by myself a Cannon. After i sell everything off, I will make a point to advise everyone I refer equipment to, that perhaps Nikon is not he way to go – that is 1500-2000 ever year.

  14. Spinner says:

    Hammer away at their support, and maybe something will happen eventually….

    A very dissappointed Nikon-customer who bought a new computer with more than 3,3 GB Ram and so Vista 64-bit…

  15. Stanislav says:

    I’ve sent the following plea to Nikon on



    Vista 64-bit has been around for quite a long time. So have PCs with more that 3,5GB of memory. It means that more and more people upgrade to 64-bit technology to utilize their memory, especially photographers. It is therefore highly incomprehesible that Nikon chooses to remain in the PAST and become outflanked by compatitors in satisfying their customer base.

    Please provide 64-bit support for NEF codec. 64 bit is the future. Nikon tries to cling to the past!

    Nikon D80 photographer.

    Reference sites with people crying and begging for 64-bit codec. Eventually they’ll leave for Canon…!D38B786E8EA7A572!36874.entry

  16. I too have written them two time now. I have Vista Ultimate 64bit and my D300 files blue screen my system. My current work around (albiet clumbsy) is to put my files on a fat32 formatted partition. This to me is only a work around and truly needs to be addressed. I too for the first time am quite frustrated at Nikon for ignoring this issue. I was told 4 months ago that this was being worked on. I guarantee you it dosnt take 4 months to get this fixed. Nikon should have had this ironed out before launching the camera. It should be compatable with all expected popular Operating Systems the system will be expected to work with.


  17. Ian Houlding says:

    As with a previous entry, I use ExifPro as a thumbnail viewer on my Vista Ultimate system and it works great. I’ve also had a poke at Nikon who seem to understand cameras but have no idea about Operating Systems.
    Windows XP was basically a 32 bit OS and MS made a 64 bit version.
    Windows Vista is a 64 bit OS with a 32 bit version.
    How many 32 bit CPUs do Intel or AMD still manufacture?

  18. Aakash says:

    I just checked Canon’s site and it appears that they do not support Vista x64 either. So, dropping Nikon for Canon won’t help either. Here is the text from their site:

    This software can be used with the 32-bit version of Windows Vista (it is not compatible with the 64-bit version) or Windows XP SP2.

    It’s weird that neither Nikon nor Canon wants to support x64 considering that higher end computers are usually 64 bit nowadays.

  19. Hiran Perera says:


    i just downloaded the raw plugin for photoshop CS3, and i am now able to open up my nikon raw files on Vista 64bit!!! as well along with this i have just downloaded the 32bit codec for windows, from the nikon site, and can view my raw files in windows explorer.

    raw plugin for CS3

    and get the codec from nikons site!! all works with vista 64bit ultimate!!

  20. Lomax says:

    You are wrong, Hiran. Doesn’t work with Vista 64-bit. Please don’t spread FUD.

  21. David Blake says:

    Based on the feedback from our 64 bit DNG codec customers, we decided to do a 64 bit NEF codec.

    The first beta version of our 64 bit NEF codec is now available.

  22. Damioan says:

    David, Sounds great-thanks for your work – but the link you give seems to be broken ???? Can you pls check the link. Thanks Damian

  23. uffe larsen says:


    Works great!

  24. moe says:

    Actually, Hiran is right. I have a D300, Vista x64 and I run the Nikon stuff (CNX, VNX, Xfer) as well as windows photo gallery and LR 2.0 without a problem. I had issues at first with my CF cards, but after full formats in Vista 64 everything is ok now.

  25. moby says:

    A lot of laptops that come with 4Gig RAM have Vista 64bit installed on them. That includes HP and Acer.

    So, Nikon will have to smarten up and develop the codec, or else…!!!

  26. luky says:

    Still no support for x64 version of vista. And will be like that till Canon comes out with their own solution.

    And to David Blake or whoever that guy is> this is not an advertising field so don’t spam and go with your codec advertising somewhere else, nobody wants to pay for a codec that is still in beta and that hasn’t come from Canon!

  27. David Blake says:

    I don’t think it’s spamming–my posting was directly related to the topic.

    We did not plan to sell our codecs until they were in final release form, but many, many people wrote to us begging us to sell them in their beta form–they did not want to wait until we thought we were done. Many companies, large and small, have pre-order programs like ours.

    I admit our codecs probably are a luxury for hobbyist photographers, but every day professional photographers buy our codecs for 64 bit Windows. Photography is a business and a profession for many people, and for them our codecs easily pay for themselves in a short amount of time since time is money. If you consider that the professional photography market supports products like Nikon D3 and Photoshop CS3, then we could probably charge more, but we wanted to keep the codecs within the reach of serious hobbyists.

  28. Sandman says:

    Everyone! Let Nikon know your not happy with lack of 64 bit Vista support. I just sent my response and I WILL switch to Canon or Sony if I don’t get support for Vista 64.

  29. Daryl says:

    You can use the standard Nikon Codec on Vista 64, you just have to make sure you run the 32bit photo gallery and not the 64bit. To do this, run it from the Program Files (x86) directory.

    Its the simple!

  30. Pete says:

    I’ve been told by Nikon Professional Support (I own 2 D3’s, a D2Xs, a D2X, and an olde D2H and a good 25,000USD worth of Nikon Lens Glass) that they will not support Windows Vista 64 Bit. Which makes my two new 16GB Quad Core Windows Vista 64 machines, rather expensive heaps of junk…

  31. Joe Hatfield says:

    Hey, Daryl is right. If you run C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Photo Gallery\WindowsPhotoGallery.exe the .NEF files are displayed with no problem.

    • Craig says:

      Just how do you run Windows Photo gallery from Program files (x86) when it is already in Program files?

  32. Melissa says:

    This works!

    Hey, Daryl is right. If you run C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Photo Gallery\WindowsPhotoGallery.exe the .NEF files are displayed with no problem.

  33. Damian says:

    And if you use Windows Photo Gallery 32 bit to import all your RAW photos – use the Add Folder to Gallery feature – thumbnails attach to the actual RAW photos. When you next use Windows Explorer you will see the the RAW photos as thumbails and you can browse through them (hopeflly-it worked for me).

    Note that I have the Nikon RAW codec installed as well. It installed OK on 64 bit but didnt generate thumbnails. The thumbnails only appeared after doing the import operation described above.



  34. Frank says:

    The easiest way to get around the issue is as mentioned before to run the explorer in 32 bit mode.
    First of all make sure you have downloaded and installed the NEF-codec:

    Next create a text file with the editor with the following line:

    %windir%\SysWOW64\explorer.exe /separate /e
    and save it on your Desktop as “NEF-Explorer.bat”.
    If you want to open your Photo directory at the same time replace above script by:
    %windir%\SysWOW64\explorer.exe /separate /e, /root,S:
    while S: stands for your preferred directory.

    Now you have a comfortable Start-link to view your NEF-Files (thumbnail and preview).

    Have fun

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