When Your Flash File Won’t Open…

Friday, March 7th, 2008

Categories: Adobe Flash, Troubleshooting

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This has happened to me, I’ve slaved days over a single .FLA file, regularly saving back-ups. One day, the worst possible scenario… I can’t open the FLA file. (I was using Adobe Flash CS3)

What eventually happened is that I could open another file, and it was only then that I was able to open up the FLA. Unfortunately, when it came to exporting the file as an SWF, it crashed.

I tried determining logically what it is that could have happened. For the life of me I couldn’t figure it out. That was 4 months ago.

Flash forward to today, I figured it out.

Even though resources are stored in the FLA (which explains it’s often-bloated filesize), it seems to still rely on the original location of the files. This is not a problem if you work on one computer, however, it turns out that the reason my Flash file wasn’t crashing was because get this:

Flash CS3 was looking for resources (that are supposed to be stored in the file). When these resources were stored on a network, and the FLA was on my desktop. It was crashing, and vice versa (resources on computer, fla on network).


Keep all your files and work entirely on your desktop. Re-reference files in your FLA that are not on the same hard drive as the FLA. Delete files in your library that are not in use.

Hopefully that saves someone hours of anguish.

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