17 Replies
michael skrajner

For some reason, my previous post didn't show up in its entirety. here is the full reply..........

This is the message we are receiving.

Error loading story_content/data.xml

I am using the most recently-updated version of Articulate Storyline 2 (Update 9—Build 1605.1919).

I saw in other posts that this error message was an issue in an earlier version of the original Articulate Storyline 1. I also saw something about ESET Antivirus possibly causing this issue (again, I think this was in Storyline 1 anyways), but I checked this and this is not the issue.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

I especially am just wondering why this data.xml file is referenced in the code, when no such file exists in the published output.

michael skrajner

okay, i will reach out to the support engineers.

but i have two related to questions:

(1) should there be a data.xml file in the published output?

(2) Is ESET be an issue on the developer's side--that is, ESET causes an issue on the computer that the developer is using, presumably when the content is published? Or is ESET an issue on the user's end? Or both?

Barend Maaskant

I noticed the same problem. I make an export flash/html5 with my virusscanner (Norton) turned off. The html5 version does not load; IE popups a message 'Error loading story_content/data.xml: error'

There is a data.sfw in the export but no data.xml.

I need an update fast (or a link to an older version which functions allright) because of deadlines.

Also on iPad the export does not open :(


Edit: I opened an export of another module I build in july (with the previous version of SL2). It has no 'data.xml' but opens without problems. What to do?


Edit2: Some files have this problem, some don't. I took a working .story, deleted all but first and last pages, inserted the pages from the module which didn't export right -> no solution. Something in the .story file is corrupted; it opens but  never publishes html5 right again, even when I delete all added pages,
Then I took a working file again, deleted all but first and last page and copied all pages one by one, testing after every page. On the end of the file are three identical questions (placeholders to be filled later). The file published html5 ok until I copied the second of these three questions.

Leslie McKerchie

Hi Barend!

I took a look at the support case that Michael filed and it seemed that he was not publishing/sharing from the intended environment as we recommend here.

Do you have a .story file that you would like us to take a look at to better understand what may be happening. I'm afraid I'm not following your description fully. 

If you need to share privately, you may do so here.

Barend Maaskant

The helpdesk helped me out. For some reason a variable caused the problems. I had to delete the variable, add it again and correct the actions where the variable was used. Then everything was OK again, in two files (in the second file I copied some pages of the first file).

Next step: find out how can this occur ...

I remember I had something with that variable when I copied some pages from an existing file. A question like 'merge ... same name or rename'. I can't remember for sure what I choose, I think 'don't rename'. This made me search the forum, with result:


Probably we must get suspicious when this question about variables pops up. Best abort the copying, I think ...

Update: I was curious how to find the corrupting variable in case this ever happens again. I took the original .story file (which is in fact a zip); unpacked it with 7zip and had a look at file story/story.xml
There my variable which was originally named 's20_done' had a strange name 's20_done'. The sequence  was apparently added in the merg process and crashed the html5 loading.

Val Carter

So far, I don't see a recommended solution to the 'error loading data.xml' file.   I am creating a link in my host software to a Storyline html5 output and it displays this message.  However, when I upload the content to the server and create an http link to the server, the storyline output is displayed.  Is there a fix or not?

Ali Goulet

Hey Mac--Sorry that's happening!

I'm happy to assist here but I'll need your help. I have a few questions to start with:

  1. Where are you uploading your published output to when testing it?
  2. What version of Storyline are you using?
  3. Are you running the latest update for your version?
  4. Can you share your unpublished .story project file here so I can do some testing? You can add it as an attachment right to a comment in this thread.

Thanks for letting us know about this-- keep me posted!