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Can't open .indd file suddenly!

Community Beginner ,
Jan 25, 2010 Jan 25, 2010

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I have a large file that has been opening just fine for weeks. It's 300 pages and an .indd file. I have tried to open back-ups of this file and none with the same file name will open. I tried opening the file on another computer and it still would not open. 

I have opened other earlier versions of the file (different file  name) and other unrelated files with no problem. I opened larger files with no problem. I'm  thinking some how this file is corrupted.  i get a message when i try to open it that says: indesign can't open ***.indd." I just did some revisions that will take a huge amount of time to redo so I'd like to get this file opened somehow. I have a recent .pdf, possibly I could import that?  If not is there anyway to at least print a copy without actually opening it.

This all happened when i decided to create a Book file into which I would bring this file and then add a TOC, other front pages Glossary and index. I've been avoiding this step but thought it would facilitate bringing in everything together without creating one huge file.

Before taking the following step I  saved a copy of the original file on another hard drive.  Then I set up the Book and when I tried to bring my original file into the book it failed. After that I could not open any of my saved recent back-ups with the same name on other hard drives. I have three.

What if I try changing the name of the file before opening it, because I'm thinking it all has something to do with trying to bring it into the book file? Possibly try changing the file designation to .indd to .indb?

One odd thing, When I look at the file that won't open on the hard drive, it seems to have recorded the last time i tried to open the file as if I had actually opened it even though indesign gave me the "can't open" message.

Any  suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Jim

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Adobe Community Professional , Jan 28, 2010 Jan 28, 2010
Basically, you got lucky.The lock file is generated automatically by InDesign and cannot be bypassed or deleted while the file is open. It's there to prevent two users from having the same file open at the same time. Under normal circumsstances it is automatically deleted when the associated file is closed.I once saw this same error with a file stored on a network sahre and was able to recover it the same way. Basically, your original is probably in some way corrupt and now useless. It's possibl...

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New Here ,
Mar 22, 2021 Mar 22, 2021

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Oh my God!! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!! My document was unopenable and seemed to be damaged. I used your suggestion by going to InDesign and clicking "Open" then I clicked the "Open Copy" option and it popped up as an unnamed document. I renamed it with a different name and am back to work. It is working fine. I am so grateful for your follow up. Again, thank you.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 25, 2010 Jan 25, 2010

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I agree. Probably not trying  to set up the Book function. I tried it awhile back  with CS3 I think, didn't get very far with trying to move individual chapters into the book.

I mentioned before that I can see the file is fine because I tried "placing" it into a new document. I can actually do the Place it but it seems like it's a picture of the page rather then text and pictures.

Until I hear back about the recovery, I'll start working on the last best saved version and use a recent print out or "placed" chapters to start. I have a deadline that I though was in the bag.

Thanks again, I appreciate the feedback. I think it's something really simple that we're not seeing.

Jim

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New Here ,
Oct 29, 2017 Oct 29, 2017

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Hello, sorry for having to ask this from you. my friend sent me a 2018 indesign file and i am supposued to submit the assignemnet tonight.  I was wondering if you or anyone could export the file as an IDML file so that I can open it on indesign 2017 as that is all that I have. You would be helping me out tremendously!! Please anyone let me know if this could be done

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New Here ,
Jan 29, 2010 Jan 29, 2010

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I cannot open anything in InDesign CS4. Made a mistake by somehow highlighting about 50 documents, then double clicking them open. Could not stop the process. Waited for computer to stop humming then clicked out of each document. Some were Photoshop, some were Word, some were PowerPoint. Screen eventually froze. Restarted computer. Screen said I needed to update Adobe Acrobat. Did so. Then tried to open InDesign. It started opening three documents, I had been working on in a book of 200 pages, which I did not click on, then froze. Tried to open a one-page document. It flashed open, then froze. Tried to open InDesign and reset preferences. Box opened asking to reset preferences. I clicked yes, it crashed. I have two .idlk files in my folder. I have called tech support and did everything suggested. No success. PhotoShop CS4, and Bridge CS4 seem to work OK.

Help.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 29, 2010 Jan 29, 2010

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Move the contents of the recovery folder somewhere else to be sure ID isn't trying to recover a bunch of open files from the crash and remove the .idlk files, then try again.

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New Here ,
Jan 29, 2010 Jan 29, 2010

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After changing preferences, I restarted the computer. Clicked on an InDesign file I knew had not been affected. It opened. Clicked on bad files. They opened, also. Original files seem to be OK.

Now, however, I have a new .idlk file. Each of the documents that were incorporated into the book file have .idlk files. Should I delete them? What are they?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 29, 2010 Jan 29, 2010

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.idlk files are "lock" files to prevent editing by more than one user at a time and are created when a file is open, in the same folder as the open file. They are normal and necessary while a file is open, but should be automatically deleted when the file is closed. Sometimes they get left behind, typically on a bad shutdown, and prevent the file from opening again. You would only be able (and would only want) to delete these files when ID is closed and not using them.

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New Here ,
Jan 29, 2010 Jan 29, 2010

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Thank you. This clears up my problem.

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New Here ,
Feb 03, 2016 Feb 03, 2016

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Its now 2016 and I believe I'm having a similar problem. My .indd file is not a book, just page/spread and whenever I try to open it, Adobe Indesign CC 2015 crashes. I have tried so many things to fix the problem: deleting the locked file, reseting my preferences, uninstalling and re-installing indesign, reset my computer. Still, nothing!

Does anybody have any ideas?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 03, 2016 Feb 03, 2016

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Are you able to open other files?

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New Here ,
Feb 03, 2016 Feb 03, 2016

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Hi Peter,

Yes I can open other .indd files just fine. Just the one corrupted locked file I can't seem to access.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 04, 2016 Feb 04, 2016

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File is probably corrupt,, but you may be able to recover it.

Things to try:

Open as a Copy.

The blind Export script at Adobe Community: InDesign 6 is crashing when attempting to open a particular document. All others ar...

For Windows, the recovery tool at INDDRecovery — a program for restoring corrupted InDesign documents

For Mac the free trial of the recovery tool at Repair corrupt InDesign Adobe files on Mac OS X

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