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Massive project file

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James Dean
Massive project file
on Apr 24, 2015 at 11:21:14 am

Hi all,

I've got an .AEP file for a project we've been working on for 9 months (feels a bit like having a baby). The file is currently about 350mb big and takes about 90 minutes to open. It's well backed up and stable to work with.

I've tried to separate out a single comp in the project which just contains a few text layers and no AV layers. I've reduced the project so it just contains the single comp. However, when I save it the file is still 250mb big and it still takes 90 minutes to open.

I can only assume that the project has somehow picked up some 'orphaned' project items that I can't get rid of. I've tried each of the following with no luck:

1) Importing it into a new project.
2) Exporting it in different versions and even XML.
3) Copying and pasting between two instances of AE.

Does anyone have any ideas?

Many thanks,


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Walter Soyka
Re: Massive project file
on Apr 24, 2015 at 1:24:40 pm

Do you have any footage with the Warp Stabilizer effect applied?

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]

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James Dean
Re: Massive project file
on Apr 24, 2015 at 1:50:18 pm

Hi Walter,

Thanks for the reply.

I like your thinking. We probably did have some in at some stage but not now, it's just the text. Do you think the Warp stabilizer data might be orphaned in the project somewhere.

We've got lots of 6k footage comped into 10k comps, so the warp data is likely to be large!

I wonder if I can kill it by hacking an AEPX XML export?



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James Dean
Re: Massive project file
on Apr 24, 2015 at 2:37:47 pm


I've just exported the project as an .AEPX xml file. Having a poke around, there appeared to be a lot of pprf nodes within the node which didn't appear to relate to the project structure I was expecting. So I deleted them.

I re-imported into AE. It came in successfully. I saved it out and my original massive file is down to 8mb and it opens instantly.

Thanks, Walter, for a nudge in the right direction.

Now I'm going to make my car go faster by randomly removing bits of the engine...


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thiery roussel
Re: Massive project file
on Dec 4, 2015 at 8:27:06 pm

Thank you James...
I had the same problem with a project getting huge, nearly 1Gig and taking several minutes to open.
So I did as you did:

Save my project as a xml.
Open the .aepx file with a Text Editor
Delete all the PPRF related stuff that i found in the header of the file.
Save that.
Now my file is only 30mb.

Hope it could help others like me.

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