18 Replies Latest reply on Apr 10, 2009 12:21 PM by M K B

    Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?

    M K B

      Hello,

      Captivate exe file sizes are huge compared to comparable exe files produced by competitor software. I set my slide quality to Low, set swf conversion to 16 bit instead of 32 bit, set swf Size And Quality to 50%, and the .exe files are still huge. In fact, changing these settings made no difference to the file size.

       

      Anyone have any tips on reducing the file size of the Captivate Exes, or do you know of any utility that can make .exe files smaller?

       

      Thanks,

      Mike

        • 1. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
          Steve Howard, ACP Level 3

          Huge is usually in the eye of the holder. How big are your files? How small do you want them to be? What's the pixel-size of your project?

           

          If you use captions, text, and native Captivate features, the file should be pretty lean. Ony time I see the Captivate files get huge is when you add audio. You can change the audio compresion used, but you have to trade off file size and audio quality. Changing audio quality will usually have a bigger effect than changing image compression settings.

           

          Steve

          • 2. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
            M K B Level 1

            Hi Steve,

            Thanks for replying.

            The tutorial is 33 slides, with captions and text only. No audio. I can't get it below 5.14 MB. That's about 2 mb more than tutorial  .exe files of the same scope that I create in my multimedia authoring program, Opus Pro, and 3 mb more than those created in another tutorial software I own, Demo Builder.

            Mike

            • 3. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
              Steve Howard, ACP Level 3

              5 Mb? Are the slides made up of images you imported yourself? Or out of screen captures?

               

              And again I ask - what is the pixel dimension of your lesson? The higher the pixel count, the bigger the file.

               

              The Captivate exe contains the Flash player which adds around 1 Mb to the published file size. But 4 Mb still seems quite large for screen captures only, unless you have a large screen size - 1024x768 or larger.

               

              Steve

              • 5. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                M K B Level 1

                Steve

                 

                I'm sorry, I forgot to tell you the dimensions - 720x540.

                 

                All the slides were captured using Captivate.

                 

                Mike

                • 6. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                  M K B Level 1

                  Hi Rick, thanks for that link, that contains the answer:

                   

                  "Adobe responded saying that .exe files produced by Cp4 include Flash version 10. Cp3 used ver 7. This creates about 5M of overhead."

                   

                  Darn, I was hoping it was a bug. Man, that's crummy. I can't imagine why Adobe is satisfied with that.

                   

                  I have one client for whom I have created and update close to 200 tutorials. The extra 2 to 3 mb per tutorial just isn't going to be acceptable to my client.

                   

                  I wish I would have thought to look at the file size while testing Captivate out, rather than after I bought it. But I'm glad I at least found out now, after only one tutorial done in Captivate.

                   

                  Thanks Rick, for all the help you've given me over the last few days. Adobe's lucky to have users like you who are so knowledgable and can help out.

                   

                  Mike

                  • 7. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                    Steve Howard, ACP Level 3

                    Have you considered other options? You could make a standalone player for you lessons using Flash or AIR, or anything other tool that can make an exe, like Authorware or Director or VB...

                     

                    Or you could not package as exe and deliver on CD with an html-page launcher.

                     

                    Probably a thousand other ways you could deliver without the overhead of packaging every lesson as exe.

                     

                    Steve

                    • 8. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                      M K B Level 1

                      Hi Steve,

                      I had considered some other options.

                       

                      The html and swf options are out for two reasons:

                       

                      (1) The right-click functionality is only working for .exes, not for .swf. 98% of my tutorials feature right-click triggers.

                       

                      (2) My client's clients are police officers, many of whom are not given internet browsers in their squad cars.

                       

                      I tried packing up the html file and swf into a couple of those programs that compile html into ebook .exes. Other .swf files work with those programs, but not the Captivate .swf files.

                       

                      As for Air and Director, I don't have those programs. I don't know how to use Visual Basic Studio.

                       

                      I have Flash MX 2004, but never learned how to use it. Would it be simple to learn how to do it in that? Would I have to create a different player for every lesson, or could i make one that would play them all?

                       

                      Or maybe I can wrap the captivate .swfs in my multimedia authoring program called opus Pro.


                      I began my tutorials career with RoboDemo 5 back in the day, but it was such a hunk of junk I switched to doing them in Opus Pro. Opus Pro takes about twice as long to make a tutorial, because nothing's automated, as it wasn't really built for making simulation tutorials. But it's got some powerful features, and most importantly, right-click functionality. But then I found out that Captivate 4 has right-click functionality, I read more about it and discovered other features I liked, time-saving features like automatic captions and click boxes and time defaults and all that good stuff. So, I downloaded the trial, but never paid attention to the file size, until it was too late and I had bought Captivate.

                       

                      Thanks,

                       

                      Mike

                      • 9. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                        Steve Howard, ACP Level 3

                        Because you need the right-click functionality, you are probably limited to what you are already doing with the exe.

                         

                        Steve

                        • 10. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                          M K B Level 1

                          Hi Steve,

                          Yeah, I think you're right. Last night, I successfully included a swf in Opus Pro, but the right-click didn't work.

                           

                          For now, I'm going to keep doing my tutorials in Opus Pro. If they fix the "right-click not working in swf" bug, I'll find a way to make it all work.

                           

                          Thanks for yall our help, as well. It's nice to know that fellow users care enough to use their own valuable time to help others.

                          Mike

                          • 11. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                            Steve Howard, ACP Level 3

                            For now, I'm going to keep doing my tutorials in Opus Pro. If they fix the "right-click not working in swf" bug, I'll find a way to make it all work.

                             

                            It's not really a bug. It's the way Flash works. Now, it might change, but don't hold your breath.

                             

                            Steve

                            • 12. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                              M K B Level 1

                              Steve, Adobe says that it's supposed to work. It doesn't work, for me or others. That's a bug.

                               

                              I'ev got a case submitted to tech support. They wrote back, with a suggestion of clearing my preferences file. It didn't work.

                               

                              If it wasn't supposed to work in a .swf file, they would have told me "it only works in executables".

                              • 13. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                                Steve Howard, ACP Level 3

                                OK somewhere I got mixed up here.

                                 

                                So far as I know, this blig post from the Adobe Captivate Blog explains what is meant to work

                                 

                                http://blogs.adobe.com/captivate/2009/01/adding_rightclick_in_captivate.html

                                 

                                Check the list at the bottom of the page:-

                                 

                                1. Security Setting:   Ensure that the SWF you published is  in Flash Player's trusted path. If you are publishing to default folder (%My Document%\My Adobe Captivate Project) then you do not need worry about security settings as captivate automatically adds that path into trusted path of flash player.
                                                               2. Disable accessibility: In order  to make Right-click work you will need to disable Accessibility from                                Adobe Captivate 4-> Preferences->Project->Publish settings->Enable Accessibility
                                                               3. Right-Click will not work in  stand-alone SWF file.
                                                               4. PDF and AVI publish: Right-Click  doesn’t work in PDF and AVI publish.
                                                               5. EXE publish: Right-Click work for  AS2 EXE publish but not for AS3 EXE publish
                                                               6. Preview (F4/F8/F10):  Right-Click work for AS2 movies but not for  AS3  movies
                                                               7. Preview (F12, in Web Browser):  Right-Click works for both AS2 & AS3.
                                                               8. SWF Publish (the standard one) : Works for both AS2 and AS3.
                                                               9. Flash Player Version: Right Click  Doesn’t work for movie published Flash Player versions                            earlier than 8.0

                                If you are complying with the suggestions here (AS 2 EXE?) then right-click is supposed to work. But I have a feeling I've missed something in what you've said ... or you said it in another post which I've not read.

                                 

                                Steve

                                • 14. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                                  M K B Level 1

                                  Steve, this is what the Captivate 4 help file says:

                                   

                                  Right-click boxes are not supported in the following cases and act as left-click boxes after you publish the Adobe Captivate project.

                                   

                                  • Publishing a project for Flash Player versions earlier than 8.0.
                                  • Publishing a project using ActionScript 3.0.
                                  • Publishing a project with 508 compliance enabled.
                                  • Publishing a project to a PDF file.
                                  • In Adobe Captivate projects published as EXE files, right-click works only if the project is published as AS2.

                                   

                                  According to that, if I publish to a swf file for Flash Player 8 or higher in as2 with 508 compliance disabled, the right-click functionality should work. Or is there something I'm not understanding?

                                  • 15. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                                    M K B Level 1

                                    Okay, I have found something that works.

                                     

                                    Reading the Blog that Steve quoted, I decided to try publishing to the default folder, "My Adobe Captivate Tutorials". Publishing for Flash Player 8 does not work, as the Help file says it should, but publishing for Flash Player 9 does work. However, if I then put the files in a different location, the right-click does not work.

                                     

                                    Mike

                                    • 16. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                                      M K B Level 1

                                      Update: I have updated the "right-click not working" thread with teh solution that works for me:

                                       

                                      http://forums.adobe.com/thread/208246?tstart=0

                                       

                                      Now, I'm going to bug Adobe Tech Support about the 5 mb that the executable adds, to see of there's any way around that.

                                      • 17. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                                        Steve Howard, ACP Level 3

                                        You should report this as a bug, with clarification on how you got it to work.

                                         

                                        Steve

                                        • 18. Re: Have Tips On reducing .EXE File Size?
                                          M K B Level 1

                                          Steve, thanks for the idea. I will report it using the bug-reporting feature.

                                          Mike