26 Replies Latest reply on Dec 27, 2014 7:07 AM by Steve Werner

    InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export

    nmfarrugia

      I have an ebook due in a couple of days and I've hit a brick wall. I am working on a 300-page InDesign document that is internally linked up (not  cross-references). There are some external http links too. The text was supplied to me in Microsoft Word doc format. I found that InDesign didn't like the links generated by Word and crashed upon epub export. I took me a while to figure that one out. So I had no choice but to manually strip  all 1600 links and re-link them, then tested a few pages. Success. This took me 10 days.

       

      Now that I'm ready to export,  InDesign is crashing and this time I don't know why.  I've removed all styles, all links and all hyperlinked text -- still crashes. I suspect InDesign doesn't like TOC in large documents. The problem is, once you have styled your TOC, you can't delete it! So I've tried copy + pasting a few pages  into my old test docs that I know used to export without problems -- and they don't have a TOC. These exported fine, even with new styling and links intact. No crashing. But my original 300-page document is still crashing whenever I attempt to export to EPUB.

       

      So one solution -- albeit a cumbersome one -- is I can move all my content page by page into a fresh document -- with styles and links intact -- and it won't crash. I started testing this with 5 pages, but InDesign does some weird stuff like flowing the text on  even or odd pages only and not always letting the content flow onto new blank pages.

       

      I've included a link below to a zip file that contains the working indd and the crashing indd. At this point I suspect the TOC is causing the crashes, but I'm not entirely certain.

       

      http://cl.ly/402G2M410l182D1R1J1v

       

      Things I have tried:

      exporting with NO links and NO styles (in case it was a https or & issue) = still crashes

      exporting as IDML and then exporting as EPUB = still crashes

       

      I only have a couple of days left, so any help figuring this out would be greatly appreciated!

       

      Nathan

        • 1. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
          John Hawkinson Level 5

          Hi, Nathan!

           

            First of all, thanks for posting your files. Most people with problems like yours don't do that, and it makes it much harder to help them.

          The first observation is that you're not using the latest patch release of InDesign, 7.5.2. You're using 7.5.0, the initial release. A lot of bugs were fixed, so please update:

           

          Most recent Save on Macintosh 10.72 in app version 7.5.0.142 (FS InDesign Roman) build 142 on Sun, Jan 15, 2012 at 9:12 AM

           

          Unfortunately, I can confirm that 7.5.2 does indeed still crash trying to export your NOTWORKING file.

          You should upgrade as soon as is reasonable (maybe not in the middle of this deadlne-oriented project, but definitely right after).

           

          Here's the top of the stack from my crash report:

          Thread 0 Crashed:: Dispatch queue: com.apple.main-thread

          0   com.adobe.InDesign.Hyperlinks     0x0c7da8b6 GetPlugIn + 252646

          1   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x169e6dfe 0x169ad000 + 237054

          2   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x169e742c 0x169ad000 + 238636

          3   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x169e791c 0x169ad000 + 239900

          4   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x169ea6ff 0x169ad000 + 251647

          5   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x169eab2b 0x169ad000 + 252715

          6   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x16a3f3af GetPlugIn + 132543

          7   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x169b2e4f 0x169ad000 + 24143

          So, it looks like there is a hyperlink in there that is affected the ebook export. (Of course, InDesign may be considering a TOC entry a "hyperlink" for purposes of how the module's functions are named, so don't read too-too much into it.)

           

          So one solution -- albeit a cumbersome one -- is I can move all my content page by page into a fresh document -- with styles and links intact -- and it won't crash. I started testing this with 5 pages, but InDesign does some weird stuff like flowing the text on  even or odd pages only and not always letting the content flow onto new blank pages.

          There's an easy solution that's too hard to find!

          Pages (panel menu) > Move Pages will let you move all pages en masse from one document to another document. So open your new document and then go back to the old one and move the pages. If you have any master page overrides, go back and check them because they may get duplicated, but this is really the thing to do.

           

          I should also point out, if it took you 10 days to fix up the links, that's the kind of thing we could have done easily with scripting in a few minutes. (It would have taken you a few hours, maybe a few days, to get replies here or on the scripting forum and get the scripts nailed down to do what you need, but that's still a lot faster).

           

          Anyhow, is Move Pages enough to get you going?

          • 2. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
            nmfarrugia Level 1

            Hi John,

             

            Fantastic advice, and thanks for testing out the documents for me.

             

            Moving the pages en masse works a treat, but exporting to epub crashes. I've tried with just 3 pages, all links, linked text and destinations removed. Unfortunately I have the same crash report as you:

             

            Thread 0 Crashed:: Dispatch queue: com.apple.main-thread

            0   com.adobe.InDesign.Hyperlinks     0x0b2f68b6 GetPlugIn + 252646

            1   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x15584f4e 0x1554b000 + 237390

            2   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x1558557c 0x1554b000 + 238972

            3   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x15585a6c 0x1554b000 + 240236

            4   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x1558884f 0x1554b000 + 251983

            5   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x15588c7b 0x1554b000 + 253051

            6   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x155dd4ff GetPlugIn + 132543

            7   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x1555110f 0x1554b000 + 24847

            There is still something hyperlinky hanging around, although I don't know what it could be. Remnants of TOC perhaps. Any ideas?

             

            Here is the file I'm testing with:

             

            http://cl.ly/0m1t362t3z201w3o0b27

             

            I might have to copy and paste page by page -- this seems to leave the cause of the crash behind.

             

            Thanks again for your help, John.

            • 3. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
              John Hawkinson Level 5

              Nathan:

                I probably should have looked a little more closely at your crashing document last time. This time I looked...very closely.

               

              The crash is not about the pages, it's about the story. Despite only having 3 pages there, you've got hundreds of pages of threaded story there.

              I spent a while trying to track it down -- export your story to InDesign Tagged Text, cut it in half, reimport it.

              On my 13th cut, I found that going from a 1299 line file to a 1300-line file caused the EPUB export to crash. But there's nothing suspicious about line 1300 at all. It's totally bland:

               

              <ParaStyle:Heading 1>

               

              So, there's something more subtle wrong here.

               

              I did find that if I took your story and exported it to RTF, deleted the story, and imported the RTF, then the problem went away.

              Of course, RTF does not preserve all of the InDesign formatting (which is undoubtedly why this step works) -- in particular it loses

              your page breaks. That may not be so bad to add back in. (It does preserve your paragraph styles and tables.

               

              So, I'm afraid that's the best solution I can offer you at this point. It's not a great one, for sure. Hopefully you can do a search-and-replace for something to re-insert your page breaks, if in fact that is all that is missing. I don't know, and of course you should really look closely.

              1 person found this helpful
              • 4. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                nmfarrugia Level 1

                Hi John,

                 

                Thank you for looking so thoroughly in my test document. That's a very interesting find.

                 

                I'm prepared to do whatever it takes to fix this, so inserting page breaks by hand afterwards is no problem, I'll do that.

                 

                Can you talk me through your RTF solution? I'm not quite clear on the steps to do this. If I export the document to RTF and then Place from the RTF, everything looks formatted differently (that's fine, can be fixed in CSS afterwards) but there are no styles or links whatsoever.

                 

                Also, I'm having problems flowing text. I hold SHIFT and create the text frame, but it doesn't flow.

                 

                Thanks again for taking the time to help me out.

                • 5. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                  John Hawkinson Level 5

                  Can you talk me through your RTF solution? I'm not quite clear on the steps to do this. If I export the document to RTF and then Place from the RTF, everything looks formatted differently (that's fine, can be fixed in CSS afterwards) but there are no styles or links whatsoever.

                   

                  Sure.  I'm not sure where you're going wrong though.

                  Try checking Show Import Options when you import the RTF and ensure that Preserve Styles is checked?

                   

                  Also, I'm having problems flowing text. I hold SHIFT and create the text frame, but it doesn't flow.

                  What happens instead? Do you get the down-up-down arrow cursor? If not, well, just place it in one frame, then

                  click the overset + at the end of the frame to get the place cursor. Then cmd-click the existing frame and hit delete. Then hold down shift to get the atoflow cursor and click to autoflow through the doc.

                   

                  I guess you might need to ensure that Preferences> Type: Smart Text Reflow is enabled?

                  • 6. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                    nmfarrugia Level 1

                    Hi John, how are you exporting the InDesign document to RTF? I see no option in Export for RTF. I think this is where I'm going wrong. Thanks!

                    • 7. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                      John Hawkinson Level 5

                      You must export the Story to RTF, not the document. So click in the story and hit Cmd-A (Select All). Then when you choose Export, you will have additional options that make sense for stories, such as RTF.

                      • 8. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                        nmfarrugia Level 1

                        Styles and tables imported successfully!

                         

                        InDesign doesn't autoflow as promised, but that's OK, I'll just do it manually page by page.

                         

                        The only links that come in are the external ones. So it looks Iike I will have to create the 300 or so  destinations (anchors) and the 1600 links to go with it. You mentioned earlier that a script might be able to help with that, but I don't see how a script could automate the linking because only I would know what the text should link to. Although most of the links match word for word  the anchor names so it could be worth my posting in the script section.

                         

                        Thank you very much for your help, John, I really appreciate it. I placed the RTF with styles into a new document and tried exporting to EPUB - and it worked!

                        • 9. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                          John Hawkinson Level 5

                          InDesign doesn't autoflow as promised, but that's OK, I'll just do it manually page by page.

                          I guess it's not too bad, but what goes wrong? Do you get the up-down-up cursor when you hold down shift? What happens?

                           

                          The only links that come in are the external ones. So it looks Iike I will have to create the 300 or so  destinations (anchors) and the 1600 links to go with it. You mentioned earlier that a script might be able to help with that, but I don't see how a script could automate the linking because only I would know what the text should link to. Although most of the links match word for word  the anchor names so it could be worth my posting in the script section.

                          Well, I was thinking you would replace the links with a placeholder beforehand, import then, and then replace the placeholder with the real link. I suppose it all depends on how you have it structured.

                           

                          I think part of the point of the RTF was to get rid of your links indescriminately, because some of them were the problem.

                          Though I'm a bit confused since I don't see any of them in the Hyperlinks panel, though I did see them in the Story editor.

                          Not sure quite what's up with that [I don't do a lot of work with hyperlinks. Nor with epubs, for that matter, so... ]

                          • 10. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                            nmfarrugia Level 1

                            I guess it's not too bad, but what goes wrong? Do you get the up-down-up cursor when you hold down shift? What happens?

                             

                            Nope, I get the snaky arrow as I should get. But then it only flows onto the existing page and no further. I did some googling earlier and it could be related to master pages. No big deal though, it's just half an hour's work.

                             

                            I think I could copy and paste the links in from the old document. As long as I test rigorously with epub exports as I progress. In case I hit a snag. Good idea, thank you!

                            • 11. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                              John Hawkinson Level 5

                              Again, do you have Smart Text Reflow enabled?

                              • 12. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                nmfarrugia Level 1

                                Yes, but I looked again and unchecked the box "Limit to Master Pages". When I tried autoflowing again, it worked like a charm. Thanks for this, John.

                                • 13. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                  nmfarrugia Level 1

                                  I've reached the point where I've managed to salvage one quarter of the existing formatting before InDesign became too unstable. I've tried testing to see if the culprit is the tables (which were destroyed by the RTF round-trip) or the links (which were removed by the RTF round-trip), but neither of these are solely responsible for InDesign crashing. It seems to just be the formatting in general. And the more of this bad formatting I cram in there, the more InDesign cannot take it. By 1/4 of the way into the document, it was crashing more often than exporting and then eventually reached the point where it would not export at all and only crash.

                                  0   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x15584f4e 0x1554b000 + 237390

                                  1   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x1558557c 0x1554b000 + 238972

                                  2   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x15585a6c 0x1554b000 + 240236

                                  3   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x1558884f 0x1554b000 + 251983

                                  4   com.adobe.InDesign.EBookExport    0x15588c7b 0x1554b000 + 253051

                                   

                                  No one link or table or paragraph seems to trigger it. InDesign seems to just reach a tolerance point. My original document was placed in from a Microsoft Word document, and it seems InDesign does not play nice with formatting that survives from Word documents.

                                   

                                  I've exported what I could into a very messy wad of 700 html pages. The links - both re-linked and dead links - are all dead now. So I'm forced to re-link all 1300 links by hand in Dreamweaver, and re-create 250 tables by hand. This has been an absolute nightmare and the most frustrating part of this besides the fact InDesign shouldn't be crashing in he first place is not knowing specifically what the cause is.

                                  • 14. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                    John Hawkinson Level 5

                                    I wish I had better advice for you

                                     

                                    Your conclusion appears to agree with mine from Sunday, where it seemed like the difference between a crashing document and a non-crashing document was a small innocuous additional line.

                                     

                                    All I can offer is that this sort of problem isn't really normal for InDesign, but EPUBs are an area of rapid change and thus I'm afraid they are an area that is not as mature as the rest of InDesign, and clearly there are some serious problems.

                                     

                                    You can take it up with Adobe Support, of course, but I don't know that they will be able to get you a solution in a timely fashion. Maybe someone else who deals with EPUBs more than I do can weigh in with some more useful advice.

                                     

                                    I wonder if you can divide up your document into several smaller documents and make them a Book (INDB file), and then export that. It may allow you to avoid going over the limit that trips you up.

                                     

                                    Sorry I cannot be of more assistance, and I am especially sorry that I may have provided false hope that led you down the path of optimism while eating into your deadline. Let me know if there's anything I can do to help.

                                    • 15. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                      Marie_D Level 1

                                      I had a similar problem where InDesign kept crashing when I was exporting a file to epub. Thanks to reading this post, I managed to solve it by exporting all the text to .rtf and reimporting it. Although it doesn't help Nathan, it might help someone else.

                                       

                                      Marie

                                      • 16. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                        nmfarrugia Level 1

                                        John Hawkinson wrote:

                                         

                                        I wonder if you can divide up your document into several smaller documents and make them a Book (INDB file), and then export that. It may allow you to avoid going over the limit that trips you up.

                                        Actually John, this was the solution. I divided all 300 chapters up into individual documents. (I normally don't divide up the chapters until after export, using Sigil, because it's much quicker to do.) By splitting the chapters, this enabled me to see precisely upon export what chapter was causing the crash. Since there is a progress bar and InDesign shows you which document it is currently processing. Whatever it gets stuck on for 3-10 seconds and subsequently crashes from is the problematic chapter. I found 20 problematic chapters that I was able to fix in a matter of hours.

                                         

                                        I still had to re-link everything from the RTF round-trip, but the proper workflow for this would be to export from Word document to RTF, then to InDesign, and then re-link. This means you will only ever need to re-link everything once.

                                         

                                        There is a downside though. InDesign only allows a maximum of 150 documents in one INDB file to be exported to PDF or EPUB. It will still export the file, but will simply fail to add Documents 151 onwards. I had to combine all 330 chapters and then split them up again in Sigil. This is only a problem for ebooks that have more than 150 chapters, which wouldn't be too many.

                                         

                                        Thank you John!

                                        • 17. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                          John Hawkinson Level 5

                                          I'm glad you got it working, but it sounds like a bear.

                                          Why is relinking necessary? What is wrong with the links that come in

                                          from Word?

                                           

                                          Also, were you able to find any documentation on this 150 limit?

                                          It seems arbitrary, but also awfully low for an arbitrary limit.

                                          • 18. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                            nmfarrugia Level 1

                                            Word's linking doesn't seem to carry over into InDesign at all. I'm not sure why. Linking should not be done until the document has been brought into InDesign.

                                             

                                            I never found any documentation on the 150 document limit, only that several people on forums have run into the same problem. I tested and found that 150 documents exported successfully while 151 documents resulted in all but the last document being exported.

                                            • 19. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                              John Hawkinson Level 5

                                              Sorry for the delay, Nathan.

                                              Word's linking doesn't seem to carry over into InDesign at all. I'm not sure why. Linking should not be done until the document has been brought into InDesign.

                                              Huh, yeah.

                                              Ugh. It doesn't work with .doc, .docx, or .rtf. File a feature request (http://adobe.com/go/wish)?

                                               

                                              If I were doing this, I would export the Word doc to Word XML and parse the hyerplinks out of the Word XML file with a script and then try to match them up in InDesign. It would be some effort, an hour or twoish of work, but it then it would be over. I realize that's not a solution that is convenient for everyone, but perhaps you could find someone to implement that kind of solution if you have to do this regularly.

                                              • 20. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                                shuwhan

                                                I realize this thread is a bit old, but I actually found the cause of this problem and was able to fix it without redoing all of my links.  In my search for a solution I came across this thread, so I figured I'd post my solution in the event someone else is ripping their hair out like I was


                                                For me, I had the exact same crash and stack trace above when exporting ePub after placing a word doc that had hyperlinks.  In my case, the problem was any hyperlink that contained a # character in the URL.  In these links, InDesign created them with sortof a "null" link, not creating a valid hyperlink in the hyperlinks panel, but still formatting and treating the text like a hyperlink in the text body.  To fix the problem I wrapped those URLs in bitly URLs, deleted the old link text, retyped it, and manually created a hyperlink.  After fixing my 10 or so links with # symbols (out of 300 or so links) everything else exported without issue

                                                 

                                                Good luck!

                                                • 21. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                                  Jakobsen2 Level 1

                                                  Hi.

                                                  I have trouble with indsign cs5.5 only chrash when i try export my document for ePub. But when i try from cs5 it exports fine, but not with offchourse the article panel that i will love to use and the object export options that are in cs 5.5. I upgraded my indesign just for this purpose, but it really doesn't work. I've got 7.5.2... anyone have a clue where to start looking for faults in my document, with in mind that it exports to ePub from cs5?

                                                  • 22. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                                    John Hawkinson Level 5

                                                    Jakobsen2, please open a new thread for your problem;

                                                    I see that you did! http://forums.adobe.com/message/4265875#4265875.

                                                    I will reply there.

                                                     

                                                    Edit: See other thread


                                                    • 23. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                                      Distant Hopes

                                                      I have had EPUB exports crash on me for two reasons, both of which were eventually detectable and solvable:

                                                       

                                                      1) One or more of my URL hyperlinks were 'shared hyperlinks'. I now always uncheck that box when placing hyperlinks.

                                                       

                                                      2) There was hidden information attached to numbered in-text references that had been imported from (presumably) a Word document having used some form of referencing tool/plug-in. These were almost completely undetectable, in that there are no visual indicators that they are any different from 'normal' supertext numbers. The only way I have found to flush them out involved manually highlighting chunks of text while watching the hyperlink panel to see if it would let me place a hyperlink there. If not, the hyperlink URL bar would 'grey out'. Manually retyping all reference numbers discovered in this fashion have solved my export problems.

                                                      • 24. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                                        tender heart#1

                                                        When I am on pch .com it crashes a lot now my black jack screen just shows zeros and I asked adobe why its doing that and they could not tell me?

                                                         

                                                        @

                                                        • 25. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                                          tender heart#1 Level 1

                                                          Also this site crashes a lot

                                                          • 26. Re: InDesign CS5.5 crashing upon epub export
                                                            Steve Werner Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                                            @tender heart#1

                                                             

                                                            These postings have nothing to do with the forum thread on creating EPUB from InDesign from 2012.