Play button in the timeline not working

I want to preview my slide "inside the timeline" so I can pause and move elements as necessary - just like I always do.

For some reason, today, the play button inside the timeline stopped working. After clicking the play button it looks like something is loading for few seconds, but nothing happens.

Anyone knows what's wrong?

The program is updated, and I have the same problem on different computers.

Thank you!

16 Replies
Zdravko Gunjevic

Hi all,

I see this issues has popped up on a few threads. I'm having this same issue but I don't see any way to resolve it. (I've also posted on

This is what I've done so far:

1 - file was originally created with SL1, now upgraded to SL360.

2 - one thread said to make sure Flash was updated. Just did that (on version now) --> didn't fix the issue of the play button not working.

3 - Imported my story file into a new one, as Leslie mentions here --> didn't fix the issue of the play button not working.

Is there another way that I can cue up my slide elements? Need help!



Mike Sørensen


I cannot use the play button on the timeline. Not by duplicating, not by moving the play "pointer" a few seconds in, on the timeline. I cannot use the preview function either. I can play the very first slide, but thats it.
The file is copied from another language version and converted to new. My only thought is that the coying process corrupts the file. My colleague has the same issues with the file when opening it.
Others with similar SL 360 problems?


Leslie McKerchie

Hello Avonleasyg and welcome to E-Learning Heroes. 😊

Thanks for reaching out and sharing that you're running into a similar issue. 

I just took a look at one of my sample courses and I'm unable to replicate this behavior.

I'm curious if the issue happens in any course you are working on or just this particular one?

  • If you cannot re-create the issue in a new course, I would advise you to import the file into a new one and proceed.
  • If it's happening in any/all files, you should conduct a repair of your software.
Andrew Lowe

Hi everyone. I know this is an older thread, but this is now happening to me as well. I just got a replacement laptop from my company, so I installed the whole Articulate suite on it and was excited to dig in. I just made the most basic of animations (three objects take turns fading in and out), but when I click the play button in the Timeline, the playhead doesn't move. All three objects are visible even though I have them taking turns fading in. I confirmed this problem by importing a PPT of a Studio course I built, and the same thing happened -- the play button turned to a pause button and the audio played, but all of the stage objects were there all at once (no effects happened), and the playhead did not move.

Here's the weird thing. If I use the Preview Slide feature, it behaves the way it should. So it clearly understands what I'm going for. It just doesn't function correctly if I use the timeline, and obviously that's a pretty critical feature to be able to use.

Is there a known cause or fix for this? Thanks for your time.

Leslie McKerchie

Hello Andrew,

Thank you for reaching out and sharing what you are experiencing with your project.

As you can see, the play button is working for me in your sample file. 

Does the play head work on any project? 

As Karen mentioned, you should have installed your software with Admin rights:

Articulate 360: Installing, Updating, and Managing the Articulate 360 Desktop App

If you need to enlist the help of one of our support engineers, you can reach them directly here.

Andrew Lowe

Hi Leslie,

Thanks for the response. The playhead did not work in any project at all, no.

I did install the program with Admin rights. What Karen is saying is something different. She recommended that I run Storyline as Admin after installing it. Previously when the problem was occurring, I was running Storyline just by double-clicking a .story file like any normal person would. But now I need to right-click Storyline from the Start menu and select "Run as administrator" every time I want to use it. As soon as I started doing that, the issue went away. So apparently, once you install the software as admin, you better be running it as admin every time you open it.