File Size Not Reducing

Hello,

I have a video intensive file. And while the results of all videos being uncompressed are gorgeous, I am left with a 3+GB file :( . I first changed all videos from None to Automatic compression, but my file size did not change. I then went ahead and deleted all videos from my file and saved it to see the difference in size before putting them back in and strangely, it is the same 3+GB file size that it was with the uncompressed videos in. Does anyone have an idea why the file is not reducing in size? Even though I deleting them from the slides is SL2 still caching them somewhere? Thanks!

35 Replies
Alan Bourne

Hi I noticed the similar issue in storyline 1 way back.

(Forgive me if I miss anything out its been a while since I did this)

The only way I managed to do this was to rename the storyline file to a .zip extension, rather than .story. When I did this it allowed me to see the contents of the storyline file.

I then sorted the files by size and could quickly identify the videos and deleted these. They will have strange file names, random numbers and letters, not names. When you are done change the extension back to .story

Give that a try, but of course make sure you have a backup of your original storyline file just in case something goes wrong.

Alan

Phil Mayor

I take it this is the source file and not the published file that is large.  I would try importing into a new file.  The file compression will only affect the published output and not the source file as this keeps the original video as part of the source files.

Alan's solution should also work, but is fraught with danger.

Lee Millard

Thanks Alan and Phil. I will try Phil's approach first and then if that doesn't change anything, I'll try Alan's after making a backup copy. Oh, and yes Phil, this is the .story file I'm talking about.

Yeah, you know it is weird that even changing the publishing output quality and changing the compression of the videos to Automatic, it still didn't even make a difference on my published file either. The same 3+GB file.

At any rate, thank you, and I'll report back with my results.

Thanks!

Lee Millard

The import test did the trick! I did not check to make sure all animations and everything else were left intact, but looks like my main concern has been solved. It is now a 54MB file (I left one uncompressed video in).

Now, my understanding was that it didn't matter what size your video was (pixel resolution), SL would reduce it to your Story slide size. For example, I am importing 1080p video into a 720p slide size. Would this make a difference or should I reduce the original video to 720p?

Thanks!

Ashley Terwilliger

Hi Lee,

Thanks for the update and I'm happy to hear your file is back to working at a normal size. 

You're correct regarding the video size, as when you publish a course, your videos will be encoded so they're no larger than your slide size with a key frame every 5 seconds—unless you've turned off video compression. 

Debbie Chaddock

I too noticed that Storyline file size did not decrease even after removing video or audio assets. And if you REPLACE an audio or video, then the file size increases as though you had added the new asset without removing the old one.

Merely performing a Save As doesn’t seem to fix the problem.

Here's what worked for me, so I hope it works for others.

SOLUTION:

  1. After removing or replacing the assets in Storyline, SAVE the file and CLOSE Storyline (not just the file).
  2. From Windows Explorer (suggest using Details view), note the current file size, and RENAME the file, e.g. filename_BIG.story.
  3. From Windows Explorer double-click the file to OPEN it.
  4. From Storyline, select File > Save As and enter a NEW NAME, e.g. filename_DATE.story.

 The new file (filename_DATE.story) should now be smaller than the previous one (filename_BIG.story).

Leslie McKerchie

Thanks again for popping in to share Debbie :)

Here is the information that we share:

A project file might not immediately shrink in size when you delete a video. Storyline keeps deleted assets temporarily after you delete them in case you need to click Undo to restore them. The good news is your project file will eventually shrink, usually after saving it a couple times. But you can also get it to shrink right away by saving and closing the project file, then re-opening it and saving it again.

Alexander Salas

Hi Leslie, 

I had a similar issue and it all came down to .bin file that was hoarding all the temp data.  All that's needed is to replace a .bin file with an empty one of the same name.  Articulate should write some code for this ;  )

Here are the steps I followed as it reduced the file from 71MB to 5MB:

  1. Save a backup of the original .story
  2. Change extension to  .zip
  3. Open the zip file (without extracting it) and go to story>media folder
  4. Right-click the .bin file cut and paste it on your desktop
  5. Click to rename the the bin file to copy its name i.e. RgYtwsdw...
  6. Open Notepad>File>Save as name of original bin file and save as .bin
  7. Replace the empty .bin file in location on #3 on this list
  8. Rename the zip to .story
Kevin Freeborn

Thanks Alexander.  This helps us to see what we have accumulated in our Storyline files.

We have been discovering that Storyline 360 does hold onto a lot of assets even after removing them from slides/scenes.  We are currently rebuilding a Storyline file that got too large and crashes Storyline.  After submitting it to a couple Articulate engineers their conclusion was that there was nothing wrong with the file or slides - just that the file size (just under 1 GB) was too big for the software to handle.  

It would be great to have a feature that lets you access and clean up assets you don't require anymore.   

We also learned we MUST reduce the size of assets (PNG, MPEG, WAV etc.) PRIOR to using them in a Storyline 360 file.

Ashley Terwilliger

Hi Megan, 

Thanks for checking in. I see that Miker worked with Kevin and it was reported to our QA team for additional investigation and in that case it was a file that was too large too publish as a single course. 

There isn't a specific file size limit where projects exceed available memory. It can vary for each project and computer. If you'd like us to check your file we're happy too - can you send it to our Support Engineers here? 

Megan Creegan

It's not that my file size is too large, the problem is that we use several short videos for the course. When we go through the first round of reviews, I use "scrap video" which is a draft of the videos with robot voiceover before we get the script approved. Then when I add final audio, I replace all those videos with the final videos. So the problem is it doesn't shrink after I remove and replace the videos. For example, if I have 5 "scrap" videos and the file size is 30 MB, then I remove those videos, the file size is still 30 MB, so when I add the new videos, it makes the file ever larger. I can't send my file because it contains proprietary information, but the issue is very easy to duplicate. 

Ashley Terwilliger

Hi Megan,

We've seen that occur when you're adding and removing the videos in the same work session - which is by design. Storyline keeps deleted assets temporarily after you delete them in case you need to click Undo to restore them. The good news is your project file will eventually shrink, usually after saving it a couple times. But you can also get it to shrink right away by saving and closing the project file, then re-opening it and saving it again.

You mentioned saving and closing multiple times - have you tried to do a "save as" to make a new copy of your file? Keep in mind that you'll want to save it locally still (to your desktop or anywhere on the C: drive). 

JoEllen Magnus

The "save as" option isn't working in SL3 when I encountered this same problem today. I can see that the old, replaced video is still being encoded when I publish the file, and the original .story file size isn't decreasing, even after closing, re-opening, and "saving as" a different name more than 5 times. Any other suggestions?

Orgadata AG
JoEllen Magnus

The "save as" option isn't working in SL3 when I encountered this same problem today. I can see that the old, replaced video is still being encoded when I publish the file, and the original .story file size isn't decreasing, even after closing, re-opening, and "saving as" a different name more than 5 times. Any other suggestions?

I have still the same Problem, can anybody generate a function to clean not used files. Please! My .story is now 3.7GB an Storyline is working in 32bit....help