.ppta file keeps getting renamed to _old.ppta

Articulate '13 it keeps renaming my ppta file as _old.ppta and creates a new version of the ppta file.  This happens when editing older versions and with courses that I've created after the install of '13. This occurs at least once a day when working on a project and sometimes multiple times while working on the same project during the day. I have to close PowerPoint, delete the new ppta file and remove the _old in the original ppta file. If I don't do this, I lose all audio, animations, etc.  Sometimes '13 will create two _old ppta files (_old and _old1).  I'm really tired of this happening. Thank you!

1 Reply
Leslie McKerchie

Hi Joe and welcome to E-Learning Heroes!

When creating, editing, and publishing Articulate Presenter '13 courses, be sure you're working on your local hard drive (typically your C: drive). Working on a network drive or a USB drive can cause erratic behavior, such as file corruption, an inability to save changes, and loss of resources. 

What is the -old.ppta file, and how did it get there?

As a safeguard feature, Presenter '09 will add -old to the end of a PPTA file name if the PPTA file becomes locked by another user or computer service, or if it becomes temporarily inaccessible for any reason.  Some scenarios (though not all possibilities) where this can occur are described below.  Note that the -old.ppta file should contain your missing audio.

  1. If the PPTA file becomes locked by another service: If another computer service (for example:  a backup service) accesses the PPTA file while you are working with it, Presenter may not be able to update the file with new information.  In this scenario, Presenter will rename the PPTA file to-old.ppta, and a new (empty) PPTA file will be generated.
  2. If a user does a "Save As" and saves over an existing PowerPoint file with a PPTA file: Whenever a user does a Save As, Presenter will also copy the PPTA file to the Save as location.  This can cause a conflict if there is already a PPTA file in that location.  Rather than overwriting the file, Presenter renames the file to -old.ppta.
  3. If Presenter upgrades a project from Presenter 5 and a PPTA file already exists in that location: If a PPTA file already exists, Presenter will change the name of the file to -old.ppta and create a new one.
  4. If you have a PPT (2003 or earlier) and PPTX (2007 or later) file in the same folder with the same name: If you have a PPT and PPTX file in the same folder with the same name, Presenter will want to name the PPTA file the same regardless of which file you are working on.  If there is already a PPTA file in the folder that is not associated with the PowerPoint file you open, Presenter will change the name of the file to -old.ppta and create a new (empty) PPTA file for the opened PowerPoint presentation.
  5. A user moves a file outside of PowerPoint, and there is a PPTA with the same name as the PowerPoint file in the target directory: If Presenter detects a project is moved outside of PowerPoint, it will copy over the PPTA to the current directory (provided you have write permissions to that directory).  If there is an existing PPTA file in that location, Presenter will change the name of the file to -old.ppta and create a new (empty) PPTA file.