Corrupt Indesign File – Won't open

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This topic contains 11 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Jennifer Idol 3 weeks, 1 day ago.

  • Author
  • #69819

    Matt Ansell

    Hi, i’ve been recommended to post on here by a user on the Adobe forums (

    We’ve been having sporadic trouble with Indesign files that crash the application upon opening. It happens to a tiny percentage of files (99.9% are ok!). But when it happens it won’t work in any way.

    We have tried broken documents on different macs and have tried ID2Q as well as Markzware themselves but they can’t fix the one we sent.

    We keep previous versions of documents saved (in case a client changes their mind) and they are ok but something happens to a file that breaks it. It appears to only have been happening since CC and CC2014.

    Does anyone have any advice?

  • #69828

    David Blatner

    That is great that you are keeping previous versions. Documents can go kablooey, but as you said, fortunately it is very rare.

    The best bet is just to figure out what might have been changed… for example, it could be a bad font, or a corrupt image that gets added to the file. Or it could be a glitch caused by working off a server. It’s probably impossible to track down without watching until it happens again.

    • #69835

      Matt Ansell

      Thanks David – can’t understand how it has gone from being bulletproof for all versions but has gone wrong CC onwards!!

  • #69836

    Matt Ansell

    Just as a matter of interest, is it a problem working off a server?

  • #69842

    Eugene Tyson
  • #80541

    Have you tried InDesign File Repair tool. If not then give it a try. You can first download the trial version in which you can scan your damages or corrupted INDD files. Once the scan completes you can then preview the repaired files. If your files are shown correctly in Preview you can then go for full version of the software.

    For more information please visit –

    Good luck!!!

  • #80545

    Matt Ansell

    Thanks for the help – i’ll try the tool when/if it happens again!

  • #81527

    You are most welcome

  • #85854

    tony kite

    If you are also going through any sort of InDesign errors, then primarily you must find out that whether only single file is affected or the entire folder of inDesign is damaged.
    When you are confirmed that your file or document is damaged, then make use of below mentioned steps to retrieve your corrupted or lost data back:
    1. Save as:
    This is the very first technique you must try out to tackle your corrupted file. Using “Save as” selection since it compels InDesign to onslaught the structure of its directory. After storing it with the help of “Save as” option a file becomes comparatively small is size.
    2. Content Export as an INX or IDML file and reopen that file
    You can accumulate InDesign file in couple of supplementary formats: The file format of INX has been reachable because launching of the original CS version. The IDML format was included in CS4. In order to troubleshoot, export a file to INX or IDML and then try to reopen it again in InDesign.
    3. Move all content to a new document:
    You just do not have to COPY and PASTE personage frames to a whole new fresh file, as an alternative, InDesign facilitates you with an option using which you can shift whole page from one document to another.
    If still you are not able to solve the issue with InDesign file then most preferable option would be to make use of some third part reliable software in order to fix corrupted InDesign documents and best choice for this is InDesign File Repair Tool. It recovers all elements including Text, layers, Tables, Images, Notes, Media Objects, Footnotes, Bookmarks, TOC, Cross-references, Hyperlinks, Special Characters, Standard Shapes, Animation and so on.

  • #85944

    Please email your InDesign file to and I will take a look at the document.
    If the file is larger than 10 Mb, you can zip (and password protect) the file and upload to Creative Cloud account (or Dropbox) and send us the document link.

    Sanyam Talwar

  • #88903

    Sanyam Talwar was able to save my file as an idml. I was unable to open it. It would seem InDesign crashed while I had a cursor open in a text block for the story that corrupted the file.

    I had reinstalled InDesign, reset preferences, copied the file to other locations, tried opening it on another computer, restarted my computer, and all to no success.

    It was only Sanyam’s help that showed me the value of Adobe and got me back to speed.

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