Just very general comments that may or may not pertain or help…
When I find a version that works I stick with it and something really has to “make” me go to a newer version. Seems that everytime I download new version I have problems. I am now running on a beta (Version 7.4.1 (18692b) and it is rock solid for me. I used to have lots of crashes, but with this version I have none.
I had lot’s of troubles when letting RW install new stacks and plugins. I now quit RW, drop the item in the add-ons folder, and then restart RW myself. Doing so has eliminated problems also.
I have never used the RW Preview after publishing. I use a Chrome extension which clears the cache on every load (I turn it off when not using RW) and I simply navigate to the page. I have Chrome shortcuts to my frequently changed pages to get there quick. I also use Keyboard Maestro (macro/text expander) to enter frequently used urls with “shortcut” phrases.
Use the “Publish Single Page” as much as possible (right click the page in the left page panel and Publish Page (with or without child pages.)
Many people have problems when “updating” new releases. They report better results by downloading the whole new RW release.
You do not have to re-install stacks or plugins if you re-install RW. However, remember that the problem may be a stack or plugin.
If you continue to have problems I would try a New/Different release of RW and if you have continued problems troubleshoot your stacks and plugins by creating simple test projects without any add-ons, and then adding them one at a time but only after you run fine for a while.
I know it can be frustrating. When RW7 first came out I was crashing more than working. But I kept at it trying different versions, installing addons manually, etc (as explained above) and now I literally can’t tell you the last time I had a crash or problem. I use RW7 every day and it is now a pleasure to use. But I also publish every page singly as I do them.
Note also that one version of RW would run fine on my MBP and awful on my iMac and a different version just the opposite. I don’t know if it was related to hardware or OSX add-ons etc.
When I have global publishing to do (like menu changes/ footer changes/etc) I output to local folder and upload with ftp (Yummy FTP which I love - along with Yummy FTP watcher and FTP Alias) - With Yummy Alias you can have a droplet on your desktop (say of your images folder) and you can just drop your file on the droplet icon and it uploads to the designated folder. (I warehouse images to keep projects small.)
If you have a large site you can break it up into multiple projects (yes, it is possible). I have around 1500 pages and I broke my site down into six different Project files. (“Reports” “Store” etc)
Best of Luck…