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R.A. McConnell
R.A. McConnell, Mac Support Tech
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 757
Experience:  A-Plus, MCP, 18+ years experience, LINUX admin
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I cannot play my iMoive projects. The other day I opened up

Customer Question

I cannot play my iMoive projects. The other day I opened up iMoive and everything was all messed up. I could not play my projects. So I looked online for help and found a bunch of stuff to help me. I read that I should move my projects to my event folder or something along those lines. But when I looked in my folders section, there were several different folders labeled events and several labeled projects. So I copyed and pasted the different folders inside each other and every possible combination didn't help at all. However, I do have my old projects in the iMoive screen thing in one of the folders now. But when I get to the projects, there is that little yellow triangle telling me that the source clip is missing. I have no idea what the hell is going on. Could you please help me? I would really appreciate it!
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  Danielle-Mod replied 2 years ago.

Hi, I’m a moderator for this topic and I wonder whether you’re still waiting for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will do my best to find an Expert to assist you right away. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you. Thank you!

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yes, I am still waiting for an expert to help me. Thank you for checking on me!
Expert:  Danielle-Mod replied 2 years ago.

Sometimes, finding the right Expert can take a little longer than expected and we thank you greatly for your understanding. We’ll be in touch again shortly.

Expert:  R.A. McConnell replied 2 years ago.
Hello, I'll be happy to help you with this, but I need a little more information first:

When you open iMovie and select a project to view, what are the exact error messages that you get when you try to view it? Sometimes small differences in the text or error images used can make a big difference here, which is why I emphasize it.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Ever since my iMovie got messed up, the 59 or so projects all have the same thing. In each project, each clip I have has a little yellow triangle with an exclamation point. When I hover my cursor over it, it says, "This clip's media file is not currently available."
Expert:  R.A. McConnell replied 2 years ago.
This troubleshooting step is provided as an answer, per site policy, but don't accept it until you're satisfied that it has answered your original question.

It sounds like the linking to the projects has become damaged or is missing. With that in mind, we need to see what iMovie thinks it is for some specific project (pick one of them and do the following step only on that one, writing down which one it is or making a point of remembering which one it is).

This should give you an error message and shouldn't work, but try to export one of the projects using the "Export Using Quicktime" option and let me know the complete error message. It should tell us where iMovie is looking for the project's files and give us some insight into why this is happening.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Ok I chose on of the projects and clicked "Export using Quicktime" and the error message said:

" Missing Media

The following Event used in this project is not currently available:

New Event

The portions of the project which reference this Event will show black frames"

And then is had a "cancel" or "continue" option.
Expert:  R.A. McConnell replied 2 years ago.
Try this same export on one more file and let me know if you get the exact same error message. If you do, then you'll have to delete and reconstruct all of your projects (which is frustrating and time-consuming, to be sure) that reference the same "New Event," which I assume they all will. If the error text is different or references a different event, then there might be some hope here.

Another take on all of this might be to restore a Time Machine backup from before the error occurred, if you have been doing Time Machine backups.
R.A. McConnell, Mac Support Tech
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 757
Experience: A-Plus, MCP, 18+ years experience, LINUX admin
R.A. McConnell and other Mac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I checked 2 other projects and they have the exact same message :(
If I click the "continue" option, it has a window where I can save my export and such but I'm not sure if that will help. As for the time machine, I have never used it because I had no idea what it was for. So are all my projects gone forever then? I can't imagine why this happened. I didn't do anything out of the ordinary to cause this. Do you have any guess as to how this happened so I can avoid it the next time?
Expert:  R.A. McConnell replied 2 years ago.
Since you've already accepted one of my answers, don't accept another unless you feel that I should be paid more for my services. In either event, I'm glad to continue to assist you with this.

What has most likely occurred is that some of the structure of the directories (folders) on your drive has changed. There's one more outside chance for a thing you can try. Let's try to repair the permissions on your hard drive. You can do so like this:

  1. Insert your OS X install disc in your computer's optical drive and turn the system off and back on or restart it.

  2. As soon as the system restarts, press and hold the C key on your keyboard until you see the Apple logo on the screen.

  3. If prompted, select your language, then select Utilities -> Disk Utility from the menu bar. Click once to select your hard drive, then click on the First Aid tab, then on the Repair Disk button.

  4. If you have the option, click to either Verify Disk Permissions or Repair Disk Permissions, confirming that you would like to repair them if prompted.

  5. Restart the system when the repairs are completed.



If that doesn't do it (get back into iMovie and check, when it is done, after restarting again), then it does look like your projects are gone. I'd recommend getting an external hard drive and letting Time Machine have its way with it (it will ask you if you'd like to use the drive for Time Machine backups, and you should just let it do so), so that you have some way of recovering from this type of loss in the future.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Ok I guess I can try that. However, I am at college now and that disk is back home. But thanks so much for all the help! I can just copy and paste those steps into a word document and save it and then try them when I get back home over the summer. If it works, it will be worth the wait!

Should I hold off on making new projects then? I think I can still make new ones, but I don't want to make new ones if they will be ruined when I try and restore the old ones later on. Any advice on that?
Expert:  R.A. McConnell replied 2 years ago.
Be very careful with making new projects. Back them up regularly by copying the folders that they are in and review any documentation that you can find for saving iMovie projects in non-standard locations (like on a backup drive, like a large-capacity USB flash drive or external hard drive).

That's about what I can recommend. Best of luck to you!
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Ok thanks so much! I appreciate all the help!
Expert:  R.A. McConnell replied 2 years ago.
You're most welcome.

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