Base layer disappeared - when nothing changed - and base layer should be visible HELP!

Hi Everyone,  I am finishing a course and just ran into a problem.  These pages previously worked fine - now they're not and I didn't change anything.  So, the pages that are now "broken" have a base layer and then several other layers.  On the base layer are objects that the learner clicks to show the other layers.  When the other layers show, I still want the base layer to show (and the other layers for that matter).  I've set this up a million times before - easy.  

In reviewing my output, when I click on the objects on my base layer - the new layer shows as it should, but the base layer is gone.  In the timeline of the new layer - the base layer objects are visible (the eyes aren't poked out) - and in the settings for the new layer - the base layer should be visible - it is not.  

I tried closing the module and restarting it - same problem.  What happened?  I've never had this problem before - and it appears to have affected my other pages that are similarly set up.  Any help is greatly appreciated!!  



21 Replies
Margie Grande

Hi Peeps,  Just responding to myself here.  I couldn't wait, so I had to just rebuild the pages.  I feel there must be a bug or something for this to be happening.  Because I can clearly make the pages work properly - it broke on its own.  

Any comments are still appreciated!  Thanks. 

Karen Indenbom

The exact same thing happened to me this week, and I also posted a question in the forums.  I'm thinking there must be a bug.  I tried new pages and the same thing happened.  I was trying to avoid it, but I'm thinking I might have to just open a brand new file and paste everything back into slides...ugh.

Margie Grande

Thanks Walt and Karen for your responses.  Karen - I actually was able to rebuild the pages in the same module.  I hope it doesn't break again.  

Walt - I'll post part of the broken module soon.  I'm busy right now, but I am interested to find out what's wrong.  I really think it's a bug.  

Walt Hamilton


The first slide has a different master than the others.

I went to slide 1.2, and went to layout. That shows 3 themes available: "Clean", "Default Feedback Theme", and "Clean".

Slide 1.2 uses the second "Clean", while slide 1.2 uses the first "Clean".
They both use the "Blank" layout of the theme, but if you right click on the "Blank" layout of the first  "Clean" and choose Format Background, you will see that it has a solid fill, which is what hides the base layer. Set it to no fill, and it solves the problem for all the slides.


Margie Grande

Hmmm.  I'll have to check that out Walt.  Because, it was working fine for weeks, until just recently (with the same setup) - so I still don't understand why it would change - by itself.  

I removed my file from the above post, because I accidentally left the other scenes in the module.  Aaargh!  I was trying so hard to not reveal info from my client!  Please delete the files after you've looked at them.  Thanks!  


Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

Hi Margie and Karen,

Without seeing the files and how it's behaving it's hard to say if it'll be a bug. A few things I'd want to check into first, is that you're working on local project files as described here and if one particular file is behaving oddly, I'd suggest importing it into a new project as described here.  You could also look at conducting the repair to ensure things are starting fresh. 

If you're still having a difficult time, and would like us to take a look at the files we'd be happy to. You can share them here in this forum thread or a new one using the "add attachment" button or send along to our Support team here. 

Margie Grande

OK, I see what you are looking at, but the background is set to 0% on the transparency.  So, I don't understand why that would matter.  

Anyway, how do you have "no fill" on the background for the slide master?  Sorry, that should be easy to do - but I don't see where to do that.  Thanks.  

Walt Hamilton

First, let me clear up my earlier mistake. Instead of

Slide 1.2 uses the second "Clean", while slide 1.2 uses the first "Clean".

it should read

Slide 1.1 uses the second "Clean", while slide 1.2 uses the first "Clean".

The transparency % doesn't refer to the amount of  background, it refers to the amount of transparency, so that means it is not transparent at all.

Go to View -> Feedback Master and choose the "Blank" layout  on the first "Clean" theme.

Right click on the thumbnail in the left panel ->Format Background -> No Fill


These guys are masters for layers, not slide, so they can have a fill or not. Since you have 2 themes with the same name, my guess is that at some point you imported slides. When that happens, they bring in their master, even if it has the same name as one that is already present. I think that is where the problem started.

Margie Grande

Thanks Ashley.  I mean, it's a piece of cake to change the background on a main slide, but I can't see where to click a box to have no background on the slide master.  It seems like it wants me to choose anything but having no background.  I'll look at the slide master article.  Thanks. 

Walt Hamilton

It's not a slide master, it is a feedback master.

They are different because feedback masters work only on layers, and your problem was on a layer that was using a feedback master.

On the layers, there is no option for not having a background. There are just the options to have no fill, or what kind of fill (gradient, texture, etc.)

Margie Grande

Thanks Walt.  I'm afraid I'm completely lost now.  I know what a feedback master is - but I thought those were only employed in question objects.  I will have to ask support, because I wouldn't even know where to look to see the feedback master for the layer on a slide - when I created the layer by hitting the "layer" button - ?  Sorry, feel like a newbie on this one.  

PLUS, I still don't understand why this worked for weeks and weeks as I worked on this project - and then it broke - suddenly, with no changes on my part - ?  To me that smells like a bug. 

Walt Hamilton

Until today, I didn't realize that all layers use feedback masters.

I shot a little video that may help. Before I started, I went to the feedback master and set it to have a filled background, just like the bad ones in your presentation.

In the video, I create a plain layer. It completely covers the base layer. Then I go to the feedback master, choose the blank layout, and change the background formatting to no fill. When I do that, the base layer shows through my new layer.

As to how it happened to you, if I had to guess, I would say that your file had 3 different themes in the feedback layer. I think you may have imported a slide. Imported slides bring in all their baggage, including all their master and feedback masters. Layers and slides you created after that used the most recent masters, which in this case was the imported ones. That's my best guess.

Margie Grande

Thanks for going to all this trouble, Walt!  I had no idea either that layers used feedback masters!!  Thanks so much for the video!  I see what you are doing - and I can fix the feedback master backgrounds myself now.  However, I STILL don't understand why it would work, for weeks and then not work.  That is odd to me.  I probably need to let that one go.  ;   )  

And yes, I copied slides from other modules and pasted them in - and edited them.  However, this is the FIRST time this problem has come up.  I also "fixed" the slides in question, by rebuilding the slides - not fixing the feedback master.  Though, I'll check my fixed module and see if those feedback masters have an empty background or not - maybe it was the luck of the draw - ?  

Thanks again, Walt!  You really stuck to it for me!

Margie Grande

Okay, okay - I think I know the full story now.  Just as you said - I went back to my "broken" module and clicked on one slide layer (that was not working as it should) - and went to the feedback master and changed the background to "no fill" - just doing it once, fixed the whole thing (because, of course, it fixed the one feedback master my layers were using with the filled background).  

Somehow, I must have added one layer that chose that filled background - and it must have switched ALL the layers in my module (because it "broke" out of the blue) - which would explain it.  

You've been trying to tell me this all along!  ha ha!  Thanks though - I really GET IT now!  ;   )  Wish I would have known this earlier - it would be so easy to fix - it would have saved me several hours!  

Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

Hi Margie, 

Glad that you were able to get everything situated here and sorry that it took much longer than needed. Walt, huge help here - so much appreciated! 

If you run into an issue again that you think is a bug, and you're unable to keep the file here in the forums you can connect directly with our Support engineers here to share your file privately. They can also sign an NDA if needed. 

Please feel free to let us know if you need anything else.