Adding links to documents in Storyline

Oct 31, 2012

I'm having trouble getting links to attached PDFs and other documents to work from within Storyline. I'm using the "hyperlink" trigger function by selecting text. I've checked each link using the green checkmark which indicates the links are working. When I leave the screen and return and check the green checkmark again, the links are no longer working. I've checked the published output folder and all docs are appearing in the "External files" folder. I've also uploaded to a live site and tested: what happens is a browser window opens with an error message.  

I've also got these same documents linked from the Resources tab and they work fine from Resources. Would this be causing the problem?

15 Replies
Anne England


I'm having the same problem as Felicity. I've created links to PDFs via a trigger on a button in my Storyline file (as opposed to attaching them to the 'resources' tab) because the client wanted to ensure that, as far as possible, the learners read each PDF before moving on. So I have also created a condition that the button must have been 'visited' before the user can move on.

However, no matter where I place the PDFs (on my desktop or my C drive) the link doesn't work on the published file. The 'hand' icon appears when you click on the button, but nothing happens. The PDFs are in the 'external files' folder in the output folder.

When I go back to check the link, occasionally, and randomly, it changes.

I really need to send the live files to the client for review, and I'd like to be able to do so with the link working.

Thanks for any help


Jeanette Brooks

Hi Anne,

When you test your output and the links don't work, where are you testing from? If you've published for Web, you should first upload your content to a web server and test it by launching the course from there. Testing the web-published content locally from your own hard drive can cause browser security restrictions, which prevent the pdfs from opening.

If you don't have a good place to host web-published content for testing purposes, you could use our free Tempshare keeps the content online for you for 10 days. Or, another approach is, if you prefer to test your content locally and you plan on having all your reviewers view your content locally from their own hard drives, you could publish for CD. This prepares the content for local viewing and will prevent those pesky browser security problems.

If that doesn't solve the issue, would you mind submitting a support case so that our support team can help you further troubleshoot?

Anne England

Hi Jeanette

I published for LMS, as we put our content onto the client's LMS in a test area. If we uploaded the files as normal, I could log in as a learner and test them there.

Otherwise, I'll try your suggested solution.

Many thanks for your quick response; let's hope we don't have to grapple with this one too long!


Ida Svensson

I want to share a problem (and the solution to that problem) in case it will help any other fellow articulate-user out there. (Though it's a bit embarrasing really).

Case: I added some pdf-files to Resorces in the Player. But the documents was unable to open in the published version.

Solution: After some (quite extended and increasingly frustrated) testing I eventually realised the problem with all 6 of the documents. They had all names like "Miljöpolicy 2013.pdf". Space and non-english letters might work on many occasions nowadays. But NOT when you publish your .story-file in articulate. It was TO easy to see it for myself.

Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

Hi Matthew and welcome to Heroes!

Have you looked into testing the course outside of Sharepoint to see if there is a block occurring within Sharepoint? There are a few free web servers you could use for testing within this article. If you're still having difficulty while testing in another web server, we'll want to take a look at how you set up the links to the document.

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