Did you wipe your drive when you reinstalled your OS?
How and where did you back up your data, media and project files?
Have you ensured you have all of the current updates for Windows 7, including non-critical updates that don't install automatically?
Thanks for your reply. Yes wiped the drive and reinstalled. I've updated Windows 7 with all the updates (running into a hundred +). Everything is working fine other than this problem. The data, media and project files were all saved after they were originally created on a totally separate hard disk in my PC, which has not been altered in any way by the system hard disk rebuild. So basically the problem must be to do with Premiere Elements 7 not recognising the files as valid even though they are. I don't know much about the catalogue system in PE7 but presumably on installing PE7 again it has initialised the catalogue, which would now have no projects in it. Therefore maybe all the old projects are unknown to it. I have read that in PE8 onwards there is a catalogue system shared across Premiere and Photoshop which is obviously therefore external to Premiere.
I do have an old backup of the system disk so if I can get nowhere understanding the problem, I can go back to as it was before the rebuild. Obviously I'd like to try to solve the problem though if possible.
The catalog would be generated by the Organizer, not Premiere Elements.
So Premiere Elements doesn't care where a project file used to be. If you selected File/Open and browsed to the file on a separate drive, it should open it.
The only thing that would affect this is if a) the project was created by another version of the program (which you say it wasn't) or b) Premiere Elements 7 had some incremental updates that you've not yet installed. I don't remember there were any but, if you go to the Help menu and select Check for Updates, does it find any?
Also, if you move a .prel file (or a copy of it) to your C drive, can you open it then?
Hi again Steve. Sorry about this but the feeling of relief at least trumps my embarrassment. I reinstated the previous OS and apps and found that I had PE10 installed. So what I've done is installed an old copy of PE7 on to the new set up. Of course this won't read the later projects created with PE10. Found the PE10 disks at the back of a drawer. I can only blame increasing age (and not throwing out the old disks!). Sorry to have wasted your time and thanks for putting your thoughts to the problem.
I'm just glad you found the solution, John. Please mark this question as answered. Happy moviemaking!