Adobe Captivate – Recovering a lost video

Something a bit different, one of our users called me as her laptop had crashed and she had lost her captivate videos that she had worked on all day (with out saving) and had to be ready for 09:00 the following mornin I think as IT people we have all had this type of call.

I could sense the urgencyI jumped head first into Captivate a product I have no prior knowledge of, I thought that my finding below were pretty cool, so I published an internal KB and thought I would post it on my blog too,


Individual has lost a document that has not been saved and the backup project feature has not been enabled in the products general settings. In specific cases Mozy may not have backed the cache folder up as they are only created when a new project has been started.

Handy Information

If under the preferences the Backup Project option has been set you can recover from that by locating and renaming the backup file. Captivate also uses a cache folder location, this is to store objects that make up the file so opening larger projects will be quicker in the future.

The cache is normally found under the user profile. The big issue is that each cache folder uses a GUID style name so trial and error is required to locate the correct one.

The captivate .CPTX file is basically a zip file and can be renamed and opened as a regular compressed file.

 Method for recovering the file

  1. Locate the cache folder and make a copy of the folder so we don’t damage the contents. I used the time and date to locate the correct one.
  2. In my case I found the cache was empty so I used an earlier shadow copy to restore the cache before it was corrupted
  3. Under the DB folder you will see a series of files and folders. You need to select the following files and folders
    1. Compressed_data folder
    2. Objects folder
    3. Uncompressed_data folder
    4. Audio.cpad
    5. Info.cpi
    6. Text.cptd
    7. Thumbnails.cpth
    8. Add these selected files and folders to a new zip file. Call it whatever you like.
    9. Once the Zip has been created rename it to a .CPTX file
    10. Providing there is no corruption the file should open when it was last written to the cache

Note: If this doesn’t work then look down the folder structure for corrupt files and remove them before trying again.  We took a copy of the folder in step 1 so this is perfectly safe. If the cache method doesn’t work then try importing the newly created CPTX file into a blank project.

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