4 Replies Latest reply on Apr 6, 2011 4:09 AM by djmulryan

    Strange After Effects Bug(?) - Cannot hide layers


      I am experiencing the strangest problem in After Effects and hours of google searching has led me believe I'm the only one in the world who has it.


      Something is occurring that makes it so I cannot click on any of the options in the "A/V Features" column in the comp / layers window (Hide, Solo, Lock, etc).  Another interesting artifact of this 'problem' is that the "#" column not only disappears, but ceases to be an option when I right-click the column headers and open the 'Columns' contextual menu.  (See images below.  One is before the 'problem' and one is after.)


      Screen shot 2011-03-23 at 12.39.55 PM.pngScreen shot 2011-03-23 at 12.41.50 PM.png


      Again, to be clear, once the 'problem' starts, clicking on the hide, solo, or lock buttons has no effect (for example with the 'hide' button, the eyeball icon does not appear / disappear when clicked, and the layer does not hide).


      This 'problem' seems to have a ripple effect on all new compositions and projects.  To explain: Once any project becomes 'infected' (I use this word becuase I don't know what else to say), all subsequent new comps or projects exhibit the same 'problem'.  And to answer what may be an obvious question at this point, I don't know how the infection begins.  It certainly is nothing I'm doing consciously.


      Specific examples:


      1 - Once the problem has started, I can open up an old project that was saved prior to 'infection' and it will behave normally.  However, if I then create a new comp within that project, the new comp is 'infected'.


      2 - If, once the problem starts, I pre-comp a layer in an old, re-opened, and otherwise healthy project, the new comp is 'infected'.  (So at this point I would have two comps within the same project; one that works normally and one that doesn't.)


      3 - If, once the problem has reared its ugly head, I start AE anew, create a project and a new comp within it and use nothing other than a new text layer, it will continue to be 'infected'.


      This problem persists through a reboot.  If, after AE becomes 'infected', I delete the preferences file, the problem partly goes away.  I can then create a new project and new comps without them being infected.  However, if I open a project that was saved while being 'infected', the whole process starts over again and I'm back to square one.


      I am using CS5 on a Mac with Snow Leopard.  I have downloaded all available updates to both OSX and my Adobe Creative Suite.


      And I don't have any hair left because I've pulled it all out.

      Thank you, in advance, for any insight into this problem.  Please let me be the first to say there's a good possibility that I've simply inadvertantly hit a keyboard shortcut that 'locks' the "A / V Features" column, and simply pressing it again will solve my problem.  Or something equally inane.  But no amount of searching forums, help topics, or anything else has turned up an answer.



        • 1. Re: Strange After Effects Bug(?) - Cannot hide layers
          Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

          Do other panels break down in AE or any other Adobe apps? What is your screen resolution? What input devices do you use? I get the impression that this is some issue with registering the mouse position correctly and/or AE is miscalculating placemnht of soem elements. Can you provide one of these files for inspection on another system?



          • 2. Re: Strange After Effects Bug(?) - Cannot hide layers
            QuasiPseudo Level 1

            I appreciate your answer, but I feel I can safely rule out mouse-misalignment because the rest of AE's UI functions exactly as you'd expect it to.  Furthermore, if I share a corrupted file to another machine, the other user will experience the same 'lockup' of the A/V Features column.  Which leads me to believe that, if it's not a bug, it's some setting that is getting changed in the project's settings / preferences.


            All of us in my production department are at our wit's end.  :-(

            • 3. Re: Strange After Effects Bug(?) - Cannot hide layers
              Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

              I still would suggest you provide the file to aebugs @ adobe . com along with a reference to this thread and additional info. The engineers can open the file in their debugging tools or a sandboxed testing environment and check for internal structure problems without messing up a working environment... Naturally this doesn't provide a solution, but missing or extraneous bytes or repetitive patterns could offer some clue as to what kind of thing is happening...



              • 4. Re: Strange After Effects Bug(?) - Cannot hide layers

                Hi Robin,

                Did you discover a solution to this problem? I am working on AE CS4 and have just come up against a similar issue - specifically the "shy" menu button not working. Function dropped half-way through a project and now I have a bunch of layers that I am unable to access!

                Any help would be hugely appreciated!!