Is CS5 updated?
Any other apps running while exporting? (Antivirus/malware/spyware)
What is the nature of your project? Lots of video? Audio? Embedded fonts (a killer)?
What hardware specs (cpu/ram)?
Is the project under NDA or will you accept help from someone else trying to export your project to see if they can export it?
Windows 8 with 32GB RAM
nothing running in the background usually, but that changes
No audio, updated cs5, one video but not huge, mostly images with some very minor Tweens, not a lot of heavy key frame animation or code.
Honestly the piece is a trumped up slideshow but nonlinear, the one video loops but other than that there aren't many huge files.
Sorry I'm not in front of it right now.
I had considered that, but haven't looked into it. But I was also having the issue using Win7.
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Careful with personal info on the forums. Spiders will steal it and you'll end up in a database somewhere you don't want to be.
With 32GB RAM you can safely ignore the question about running too many apps at once (within reason). Have you tried something simple like right-clicking the application icon to "Run as Administrator" to see if it can write your file? That's getting more into OS-level permission issues (not having permission to write the SWF or generate temp files required to do so).
You mention this only starts to happen over a certain file size. Each upgrade of Flash tends to add more useful structuring, metadata and other enhancements to file formats. I've found saving the file into a new file set down to a lower version of flash sometimes helps things (CS3 or CS4). Save down, close your file, re-open the new file and see if that exports.
What is the nature of the file? Does it have a lot of embedded fonts, images, video or audio? If you have a lot of images are they all set for JPEG compression on export, and what did you set the quality of that compression to?
In the SWF publish settings try unchecking the "Compress" checkbox to see if you can export it without compression.
The idea here is to narrow down which part of the process is failing, between file permissions, asset compression or corrupt FLAs.
The file has a lot of embedded images and 1 video which is about 23MB. Saving the file down as a CS4 actually gave me a file size of only about 65MB (but then changed to 95 after changing some settings) which is a suprising difference, but when I try to publish either file uncompressed Flash will think for a while and then crash.
I've tried turning playing with the settings 'include hidden layers' and 'include XMP data' but to no avail.
Right now the JPEG quality is set to 80
As a new development, I went back to my original file, after the others kept crashing. Left the default Flash publish settings then Enabled JPEG deblocking and turned of hidden layers and XMP metadata.
That worked...for some reason. Now while I'd like to think is a solution, it's not because I don't know why this worked when it wouldn't minutes ago. And since the file isn't complete yet, I can't assume this will be a continuous fix once I've gone in to make adjustments.
BTW, I appreciate all of the attention and guidance thus far.
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The extra data each newer version of the software adds (XMP, smart objects, etc etc) is the file size that's added. The save-down technique removes that which sometimes simplfiies the file and solves the issue. So those added on abilities didn't affect it, narrowing down the problem.
The lead you generated is turning off XMP and hidden layers. I don't feel XMP is the issue because it's really so simple but you do have media files that can utilize it so I can't rule it out. Try exporting with only no hidden layers (what I suspect allowed it to export) and then once only with XMP data unchecked, see which allows you to export.
If it's XMP then there's some issue encoding the XMP data for your media files and unless you're using XMP data you can feel safe about disabling that.
If it's no hidden layers, which it probably is, this can really mess up your export. Any layers you have hidden are not exported and a lot of those layers are typically vital (masks are one example). Just hiding a layer so you can edit a different layer, but then forgetting to unhide the layer, will cause that layer not to be discarded (thus no mask and a bad SWF output). So look at what is contained on your hidden layers. Something on one of those is causing the issue. It could be a mask Flash doesn't like or any layer you've turned off for any good reason, but fully intend to export. Turn on hidden layers you find one by one until you crash. If you consistently crash when enabling that layer, you've narrowed down your problem.
Corrupted bitmaps do happen time to time. Chances are you'll find a media asset on a hidden layer that crashes when you enable it. The fix is usually just re-importing that graphic. (right-click on the image in the library, hit properties, hit import, locate the bitmap and select it, hit ok, click update and finally click OK and the bitmap will be re-imported). If that doesn't work, just re-save that bitmap (open Photoshop or your image editing app and simply re-save the bitmap over itself). Same process if it's audio or video.
I don't have any XMP data. I went back through and checked for hidden layers, and I didn't have any (just outlined). So I re-published with a different name but turned back on 'Include hidden layers' and (leaving deblocking on and XMP off) and it worked again, so I don't think it's the hidden layers.
I then swapped the XMP and Hidden toggles and it worked again.
I then went back to my initial settings XMP and Hidden on and Deblocking off, and now it's working from this too.
I have literally no idea why it's deciding to work or not, I've ruled out all of my options and haven't actually changed anything in the document itself.
It's happened a million times to me too. Of course, always around deadline time.. Now you have some general issue narrowing techniques incase it happens again. Glad it's working for you! If you're all set please mark any helpful/correct so we can filter unanswered questions. Good luck!