Can’t Save or Save As or Save a Copy or Undo… Help!
Oh yesterday was such fun… after working on a document for a while, pressing Cmd/Ctrl-S every so often (thinking I was saving it), I tried to Undo a mistake I made. Nothing. I headed over to the Edit menu and Undo and Redo were both grayed out. And then the other shoe dropped: I looked at the File menu and saw that all my save options were grayed out, too:
Now, I've been using InDesign for a long time, and I'm relatively cool as a cuke about these things, but I will admit that I did use an expletive or two. I mean, was my document saved or not?
The answer, it quickly became clear, was Not.
Look, I have no idea why this happened. I'm not sure I want to know. But I will tell you what I did about it, in case it happens to you.
First, I thought through the various reasons why a feature might be grayed out in InDesign. Then I considered just closing the document, or force-quitting ("end task"), and losing all my work. And then I remembered my friend IDML.
I reached for File > Export, and chose InDesign Markup (IDML) from the Format pop-up menu. IDML is usually used for saving backward to earlier versions or cleaning up file corruption, but in this case it saved my bacon (or bacon-flavored kosher tempeh, for who prefer). When I opened the IDML file back in InDesign, all my work was there, and the file could be saved.
Then I could close the original, messed-up file, and go on with my work.
Before I proceeded, however, I did take one additional step: I quit InDesign and relaunched it, rebuilding the preferences files. Just in case.