18 Replies Latest reply on Nov 16, 2010 8:56 AM by Colin Brougham

    Excessive pef, cfa files

    luisVnunez

      Every time I import a video  to Premiere CS5, it creates these pef and CFA files.  I don't have a problem with them but after a while there are practically Thousands of these files to the point that you can't even find your original video or even AF file.   My question is, is there a way to have Premiere place these files in a separate folder so it does not trash your folders?  Should these files be kept or after a while trashed?  What is recommended?

       

      L

        • 1. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
          Colin Brougham Level 6

          ... is there a way to have Premiere place these files in a separate folder so it does not trash your folders?

           

          Check (or rather, uncheck) the setting "Save Media Cache files next to originals when possible" in Edit > Preferences > Media. You can specify a destination there after unchecking that option.

           

          Should these files be kept or after a while trashed?  What is recommended?

           

          You can trash them, but Premiere will recreate them on the next launch, as they are necessary for audio operations. The CFA files are conformed audio files, which usually are the result of compressed audio (MP3, for example), and the PEK files are waveform peak graphs. So basically, just learn to ignore them--that's what we all do

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
            luisVnunez Level 1

            Awesome.  So will it be okay to trash some of them.  On this one project I kept all the After Effects files in one folder.  Right now there are a total of 3900 of these files and I was afraid to trash them, since I had problems before the release of 5.0.2.  So it's okay to trash them?

            • 3. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
              Colin Brougham Level 6

              Sure, it's OK to trash them, but Premiere will recreate them when you reopen your project. Annoying as it is, they're essential to working with certain types of media in Premiere, so you can't avoid creating them.

               

              Now, that said, if you're getting new CFA/PEK files created every time you launch a project (for example, you're getting the same files recreated with _1, _2, _3, etc. in the file name), there's something else going on. Is this what you're seeing, or do you just have a lot of files in your project and therefore a lot of CFA/PEK files?

              • 4. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                the_wine_snob Level 9

                I think that Colin has solved the issue, but for a little background, this ARTICLE goes into a bit more detail on those files.

                 

                Good luck,

                 

                Hunt

                • 5. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                  the_wine_snob Level 9

                  Yes, some users have experienced the multiple recreation of the CFA and PEK files, which should not happen. There are several threads on that behavior, but cannot recall a resolution to it. Think that both Todd and Jeremy responded in some, so there should be resolution.

                   

                  Good luck to the OP,

                   

                  Hunt

                  • 6. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                    Todd_Kopriva Level 8

                    There are instructions for moving and cleaning the media cache database here.

                     

                    Regarding the perpetual reconforming/reindexing: The solution to the common cause of this problem is to turn the Write XMP ID To Files On Import preference off. If you care to know why, just ask. It's a long enough answer that I'd prefer to not type it out unless someone cares.

                    • 7. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                      Todd_Kopriva Level 8

                      I've just been informed that the "fix" of turning off the XMP preference to prevent re-conforming of files is not necessary with the Premiere Pro CS5 (5.0.2) update. So, make sure that you have that update installed.

                      • 8. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                        the_wine_snob Level 9

                        Todd,

                         

                        Thank you for that info update.

                         

                        Much appreciated,

                         

                        Hunt

                        • 9. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                          Jim_Simon Level 8

                          My own habit is to largely ignore them.  Then every once in a while, I'll delete them all to recover some serious disk space.  Since Premiere will recreate the one's it needs when it needs them, there is no harm done to current projects, and old files are gotten rid of.

                          1 person found this helpful
                          • 10. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                            luisVnunez Level 1

                            I just did that today and deleted 20 Gigs of files.  Also I followed the recommendation to move them to a directory and everything seem to work quite well.  No crashes, or the program spinning.  These are great suggestions.  What I do not understand is why does the program keep making new files and yet not deleting the old ones?

                             

                            Luis

                            • 11. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                              the_wine_snob Level 9

                              Luis,

                               

                              That should not be happening, as long as PrPro can "find" the original CFA & PEK files.

                               

                              Todd did address a situation, that can cause the program to "loose" the links to the files, so my question would be, have you updated to CS5.2?

                               

                              Good luck,

                               

                              Hunt

                              • 12. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                                luisVnunez Level 1

                                Yes, I did upgrade to 5.2.  However, I did not delete these files created by the previous version.  But since, more of these files have continued to be created.

                                 

                                To what degree.  I do not know. 

                                • 13. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                                  Colin Brougham Level 6

                                  Just so someone doesn't pop in here and start clamoring for the Premiere Pro CS5 5.2 update (which does not exist,), it's actually 5.0.2...

                                   

                                  What sort of source material are you working with? Some sort of MPEG files?

                                  • 14. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                                    the_wine_snob Level 9

                                    Oops, I mis-typed. Heck, it was barely "wine-thirty."

                                     

                                    Thanks for the correction,

                                     

                                    Hunt

                                    • 15. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                                      luisVnunez Level 1

                                      [quote] What sort of source material are you working with? Some sort of MPEG files?[/quote]

                                       

                                      Yes, you are right, it's the 5.0.2 version.  And it did make a big difference.  However, the creation of all these secondary files do not happen when I import, let's say, a photoshop file.  It happens when I import video, or even a After Effects file.   But still, the files are not created once, but over and over again, even with this new version.  Since now redirecting them to their own directory, and that is what, since two days ago, it has created 132 of these files in one directory and in Media cache created 101 of these files.  Now, if I delete them, will it cause it to take longer to render final versions?  Or will it not affect that outcome?

                                      • 16. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                                        Colin Brougham Level 6

                                        However, the creation of all these secondary files do not happen when I import, let's say, a photoshop file.  It happens when I import video, or even a After Effects file.

                                         

                                        They won't be created when you import a graphic file--these files that are created are ConFormed Audio and waveform PEaK files, and since graphics don't have audio, these files are not necessary.

                                         

                                        All video files that contain audio will create PEK files--that's the waveform graph you see when you twirl down an audio track. Some video files that contain audio will also create CFA files, depending on the format of the audio. Typically, the CFA files are created when the audio is compressed using a codec like MP3, AAC, or AC3; Premiere creates an uncompressed 32-bit version of the audio to work with, which supposedly creates less overhead as the program works with the audio.

                                         

                                        Dynamically Linked After Effects comps--even if they don't contain audio--will recreate CFA files everytime you tab back and forth between Pr and AE. This MIGHT be what you're seeing; it's a really annoying quirk of Dynamic Link, as far as I'm concerned. Anytime you make a little tweak to your AE comp and tab back to Pr, the CFA files are regenerated because, as far as Premiere is concerned, you've reimported the AE comp. This is one of the less desirable side effects of Dynamic Link. You should be able to tell what the CFA files are associated with by looking at their names; if they're named the same as your AE comps, that's the reason.

                                         

                                        But still, the files are not created once, but over and over again, even with this new version.

                                         

                                        See above rationale; if they belong to the AE comps, there's no avoiding this recreation. If they belong to the imported video files, something else is amiss.

                                         

                                        Now, if I delete them, will it cause it to take longer to render final versions?  Or will it not affect that outcome?

                                         

                                        As mentioned previously, you can delete these files at your whim; however, since they are required for Premiere to operate with certain media formats, they'll be automatically recreated whenever you reopen a project. Managing them through manual deletion is fine, but they come back like a bad habit

                                         

                                        Hope that helps clarify things...

                                        • 17. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                                          luisVnunez Level 1

                                          Now it does make sense.  Yes I have dynamically linked a bunch of animations as well as Green Screen files between the two programs.  And you can go back and forth between the two application 5 or even 10 times until you get the animation working right. 

                                           

                                          It is good to know that if you delete them, no harm is done.  In the Original version of 5, I had some files moved, renamed, and it cause the whole thing to crash.  Or should I say, for that little circle to spend endlessly.  That was resolved with the 5.0.2 version, but it still had some issues that required deliting all the render files and then a complete reboot of the computer. 

                                          • 18. Re: Excessive pef, cfa files
                                            Colin Brougham Level 6

                                            Now it does make sense.  Yes I have dynamically linked a bunch of animations as well as Green Screen files between the two programs.  And you can go back and forth between the two application 5 or even 10 times until you get the animation working right.

                                             

                                            There you go... knew it was something like that

                                             

                                            That was resolved with the 5.0.2 version, but it still had some issues that required deliting all the render files and then a complete reboot of the computer. 

                                             

                                            Whenever doing any sort of file manipulation from the system level--deleting render files, for example--always be sure to close out Premiere and any other linked application like AE before proceeding. This should seem obvious, but sometimes it's easy to forget and really make Pr cranky if you try to take away something it's using.