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Cannot add data to "unknown document"

May 22, 2008 1:35 PM

This has happened to two files over the last week. When I try and open a previously saved file I get the error:

Cannot add data to "unknown document"

I can find no way to recover this file. I find it very odd because ID has been so amazing at NOT losing data or changes even if I do something stupid and crash the machine !

ID CS2 - Win XP
 
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 22, 2008 2:04 PM   in reply to (oldstumpy)
    Have you tried exporting the file to .inx?

    And if it is happening that frequently (twice in a week), I think you have something wrong. Start by replacing your preferences. If it continues to be a problem, I'd seriously consider reinstalling.

    Have you added any new fonts or changed any drivers recently? How about drive space -- are you running low, and have you run a memory test?

    Peter
     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 22, 2008 3:05 PM   in reply to (oldstumpy)
    The problem could be network related if everything is stored on the NAS. A glitch in a save operation over the network is far more likely than on a local save.

    Your expanded description makes me think that prefs won't help, but you can find the information for replacing them here:
    http://livedocs.adobe.com/en_US/InDesign/5.0/help.html?content=WSa285f ff53dea4f8617383751001ea8cb3f-6d1e.html

    Read the comments for directions on how to save your old ones in case you want them back.

    The drive space reference was really aimed at the local hard drive -- insufficient space for temp files can cause errors while ID is working.

    One thing you might try is to see if you can select the file, then open as a copy. Try copying it to the local hard drive, too, and see if that makes any difference. Eliminating the network from the equation could make diagnosing easier.

    Peter

    Peter
     
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    May 22, 2008 5:22 PM   in reply to (oldstumpy)
    See post 46 in this thread:
    http://www.adobeforums.com/webx/.3c034787/45
     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 8, 2012 10:30 AM   in reply to Peter Spier

    im having this exact problem in CS6, can somebody help me please

    (that link dosent work anymore, im assuming due to the website being changed)

     

    everything was fine until earlier today, i was even working on the document this morning. when i went to open it earlier, i get the 'cannot add data to unknown document'. please help this is a large portfolio for a university project

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 8, 2012 11:44 AM   in reply to tomtownsend93

    Try opening as a copy. If that doesn't work, your best bet may be Markzware's recovery service (or a backup if you have one -- you do back up your work, right?). Not sure which link you meant. The link for repalcing prefs is now at Replace Your Preferences and I don't know what the other link was to, but I suspect the page at Markzware, so that's Bad InDesign or Quark File Recovery Submission Form

     
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    Dec 8, 2012 1:36 PM   in reply to Peter Spier

    i tried opening as copy, refreshing the preferences, and all other advice.

    im a student man, i cant afford to do the markzware method, its not even guaranteed. is there any way you could have a look for me?

     
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    Dec 8, 2012 1:42 PM   in reply to tomtownsend93

    I'm happy to look, but the odds of success here are microscopic. I'll send an upload link...

     
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    Dec 8, 2012 1:52 PM   in reply to Peter Spier

    thanks for taking the time, i hope you can help

    uploading now

     
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    Dec 8, 2012 2:02 PM   in reply to tomtownsend93

    So I'm guessing there are no backups of any sort? Where was this file stored? Removeable media? I know a lot of students work from flash drives, and the unfortunate truth is that it's risky. If you have to keep the file on a flash drive, keep backup copies, and always copy the files to the hard drive of the machine before editing, then copy back to the flash drive after, and be darn sure the drive copy operation is finished before removing the drive.

     

    If you have a folder on the school server where you keep your work, there's a reasonable chance the IT department backs them up daily and they may be able to get you a copy from a few days ago.

     
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    Dec 8, 2012 2:38 PM   in reply to Peter Spier

    The file is definitely corrupt. It finally gave me an error code 4 message. The only way I know to recover that is using the Markzware method, but there's a slim chance that Jongware may have some other ideas -- the file does open in Wordpad, so there's a chance he might be able to spot the problem if it's in the header (he's done a lot more with looking at documents in a text or hex editor). I'll send him the link if it's OK with you.

     

    In the meantime, what else can you tell us about the file? It came through after unzipping at almost 76 mb. That's really large for an ID file and makes me think that there are a lot of pasted or embedded images, or lots of complex vectors. It's highly recommended that you Place graphical content rather than pasting (we see problems with files that have large amounts of pasted graphical content A LOT). The other thing that can contribute to file bloat is lots of editing and only using Save, never Save As. Save As removes the old change information from a file that cannot be accessed after the file is closed.

     
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    Dec 8, 2012 5:41 PM   in reply to Peter Spier

    please do go ahead and send the link to whoever you think may be able to help.

    This is my project due after christmas break, so if possible i need whatever can be salvaged.

    from what i remember there werent many pasted images, but there are quite a few pages with lots of information on each, so that may be the cause.

     

    from now on i will always keep backups. this is an awful experience

     
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    Dec 9, 2012 4:28 PM   in reply to tomtownsend93

    Alas.

    My tests show that the file is entirely coherent and the internal database of objects show no errors at all.

     

    (To illustrate the depth of my test: your file consists of 20,975 data "pages", each 4 bytes short of 4KB. All of these blocks check out without an error.

     

    Your document was created with the same version of InDesign, a month ago, but crashed on occasion:

     

     

    Created on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Mon Nov  5 14:56:19 2012
    Save As on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Mon Nov  5 16:18:12 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Sat Nov 10 16:37:36 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Fri Nov 16 10:12:54 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Wed Nov 21 13:11:28 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Wed Nov 28 15:20:41 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Thu Nov 29 18:52:26 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Thu Nov 29 20:10:03 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Fri Nov 30 16:01:17 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Sat Dec  1 16:50:11 2012
    Recovered MiniSave on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Sun Dec  2 18:15:01 2012
    Most recent Save on Windows 6.1 in app version 8.0.0.370 (InDesign Roman) build 370 on Sat Dec  8 17:46:34 2012
    

     

    which, you might gather by now, was not a good sign ...

     

    Font families in use: Minion Pro, Myriad Pro, Kozuka Mincho Pro, Brush Script Std, and a Type 3 font called "Vijaya".

     

    You don't seem to be using any paragraph or character styles? Also, you seem to have a habit of breaking lines with a soft return (shift+Return), which is actually usually not necessary. A mere observation, as it has nothing to do with your file crashing on you. In this I'm with Peter, it's possible that embedding your images is the underlying cause of this, although I can find no evidence of a damaged 'embedded file'.

     

    In the plain text I spotted a few typos as well: "A cylinrical structure" and "Rem Koolhaus" (ouch! hey, I'm Dutch as well!). Plain text is clearly legible in a straight data dump; unfortunately, I cannot tell you what page they appear on.)

     
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    Dec 10, 2012 2:01 AM   in reply to [Jongware]

    [Jongware] wrote:

     

    My tests show that the file is entirely coherent and the internal database of objects show no errors at all.

     

    Actually there is one more thing I could try. The internal database contains checksums, and possibly one or more of these got calculated the wrong way. I can't check for that specifically since I don't know how to calculate the correct checksum in the first place. But what I can do is reset the checksums and see if that loosens things up.

     

    At work right now, but I will try it at home this evening (which is, local time frame, in about 8 hours from posting time).

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 10, 2012 3:08 PM   in reply to [Jongware]

    Alas again, that last idea didn't work out either. I got the very same error message again. Frustrating!

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 3, 2013 9:33 AM   in reply to [Jongware]

    In case this issue is still lingering, or, alternatively, you just want to check what your earlier work looked like: not the latest saved version (*), but I managed to retrieve One Save Earlier, as InDesign very carefully keeps a one-time backup of most salient data. This data is usually not accessible for your typical end user, but then again, I like to think of myself I'm not one of those.

     

    If you think this 1 month old file could still be useful, send me a P.M. with your e-mail address. It's rather a large file (36MB ZIP-compressed), so I could use YouSendIt or a similar service, or upload it onto my own site and send you a link.

     

    (*) The jury is still out on that, I'm unable to find a definitive error in the >75,000 lines of data dump that my checking tool delivers. Where "definitive" means nothing else than that I cannot find anything suspicious in the parts that I understand. No (obvious) errors found in: (1) physical file and database structure, (2) private and embedded XMP data, (3) font structure, (4) embedded and/or linked images (which were a prime suspect, actually), (5) path geometry, (6) plain text, (7) text and graphic objects formatting, and (8) a smattering of minor items (XML tags, layers, page adornments, text attribute strands, image attributes, language definitions, swatch lists etc.).

     

    The best thing, though, of being able to open a version of your document is that I now have reasonably similar documents, one "bad" and one "good", and so I just might be able to pin-point the exact erroneous item and subsequently report it to Adobe.

     
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