After a recent update, Kies started to throw the exception "PDLR has stopped working".
If you are looking how to solve that issue, I did google on that too and found a radical solution.
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A solution often mentioned on the web is to remove the following line from the config file (or to completely delete the file) :
This config file is located in "%programfiles%\Samsung\Kies\External\FirmwareUpdate\KiesPDLR.exe.config" (on x64 platform: "%programfiles% (x86)").
This fix didn't work for me. But another one did the trick: I did an "advanced" uninstall of Kies using the free "Revo Uninstaller" and did next a fresh re-install.