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Mylenium

Welcome to the After Effects Error Code Database. This site is the collected wisdom of working with the program ever since version 5.0 seasoned and flavored with some general computer knowledge dating back to the early 1990s and spiced with a dose of common sense. Many of the solutions apply to other commonly known problems with other Adobe programs as well and some of it is even relevant on a much broader, generic system level.

I’m trying to keep things as current and complete as I possibly can and provide help, but please understand that I don’t have the resources to buy a new computer every 3 months just to investigate compatibility issues nor do I always have the time and inclination. I have a day job just like everyone else, suffer from a chronic disease that requires lots of medical attention and have to run my household and so-called “normal” life just like you do. When I’m not busy with any of that, I enjoy dabbling around and creating projects just for the fun of it or playing around with cool new plug-ins as a Beta tester. I also do hang around on a couple of forums to answer questions.

I would like to thank all our supporters that have made it possible to keep this site alive for just that much longer, but due to the ongoing problems in financing the site’s running cost and ultimately my own life I feel no longer able to provide the information contained on my site for free. If you need access to the errors, you will have to make a notable donation via PayPal or Flattr for limited time access.

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Mettle produce plug-ins for After Effects and provide a ton of content to go with them, some of it created by me. Other supporters:

Kevin Schires, Alan Eddie, John Urmann, Lourdes Siqueira, Klaus Brandenburg, Sébastien Périer

For updates on current events and other things around After Effects, please visit Mylenium’s Blog.

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Message text

After Effects error: missing preference section [Output Module Spec String Section v28]

Message interpretation:

Specific output settings were not found in the preferences file.

Possible causes:

This issue cropped up a lot with the CC 2014 versions and relates to various specific file formats and CoDecs not working with the default output settings due to false color space info, wrong pixel aspect ratios and other things being handled wrongly. The problem did not come up every time and also depended on which source footage was used and was also tied to specific video output hardware. It has been observed for Blackmagic systems and their Cinema DNGs, but also some DPX flavors and ARRI Raw formats.

Resolution or workaround:

In most cases the issue was resolved by installing updated drivers and CoDecs from the vendors to make them compliant with the settings. In some cases editing or removing the relevant preference sections in a text editor may have been necessary based on guides from these vendors. Refer to their support databases for specific advise.

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Message text

After Effects error: Error during event PF_Cmg_EVENT Code (PF_Err_INTERNAL_STRUCT_DAMAGED) : GlobalData image was nullptr during DrawEvent (512)

Message interpretation:

There was no data returned from an effect and the composition remained black.

Possible causes:

This is one of the many errors associated with Cineware in CC 2014 and simply translates to a genuine bug. On certain types of Mac the rendering of the actual scene buffer took (seemingly) too long and the plug-in thus requested the data prematurely. As a result the data was incomplete and not used. Obviously this depended on the actual specifics of the scene that would determine the actual per frame render time, so the issue is pretty random and elusive.

Resolution or workaround:

The issue should be resolved in one of the updates, but due to the rare occurrance and continual development introducing new features and quirks may resurface one day.

1 :: 0

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Message text

After Effects warning: A plugin is attempting to do an invalid operation: modifying a locked project

Message interpretation:

A plug-in is attempting to register an invalid function.

Possible causes:

This error is specific to CC 2015 in combination with incompatible older versions of third-party plug-ins. In the given example the user was attempting to transfer a Boris FX Continuum Complete and it failed to register on program start-up because the required API functions had changed. It was thus perceived as changing critical defaults and the program fails to launch therefore.

Resolution or workaround:

Install a compatible version of your plug-ins from the original vendor.

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Message text:

After Effects error: CT bad param: invalid glyphID

Message interpretation:

The program generated an ID for an (Unicode) glyph that doesn’t exist.

Possible causes:

This actually pretty clearly points to a bug – the program or one of the plug-ins should not even be able to calculate a glyph ID that isn’t defined in the Unicode/ OpenType specifications. The exact source of the problem could not be verified, since the user did not provide more info, but it’s reasonable to assume that the issue has long been fixed.

Resolution or workaround:

Always keep your software updated and use the latest certified compatible versions of third-party plug-ins.

83 :: 2

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Message text

After Effects error: CT generic: not ASCII

Message interpretation:

Text rendering failed because the character was not in the ASCII range.

Possible causes:

Just another weird font error. That’s pretty much all one can say about this one. in the given case the user was running the original After Effects CC with the first update (version 12.1) on a Spanish language Windows system, which should not be a problem at all since the program supports Unicode and OpenType just fine, even if it doesn’t use any of the more refined features. Therefore the error remains a mystery mostly. The only reasonable hypothesis is that a specific character was requested by some routine that is not part of the system’s default language region encoding (for most Western European languages this would be Western/ Latin).

Resolution or workaround:

The only advise here is to check the system’s language settings and adjust them.

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Message text:

After Effects error: invalid table address

Message interpretation:

A font did not return a valid character.

Possible causes:

Similar to many other font errors this one remains obscure in that the specific cause never became clear. In human language the error means that a program routine requested a character code from the glyph table of a font, but this request came up empty because nothing existed at the given address. Aside from usual suspects like language conflicts and damaged fonts this could also indicate problems with symbol fonts that are used to render arrows, dingbats, window and panel header elements and that sort of thing, which often is not clear to the user.

Resolution or workaround:

Start following standard procedures – use your system’s font management tools to inspect and verify all fonts are intact and accessible. If you use third-party font managers, turn them off (temporarily) and see if the issue goes away. When you have huge numbers of fonts on the system, strip them down to only what you really need. Not only will this get rid of potentially damaged fonts, but also helps system performance. If you use a custom interface theme on Windows, switch back to the default themes, so customized UI font elements may no longer be referenced. Finally, check your language and region settings to ensure that you don’t use specific character sets from a different region for which you may have no suitable font on the system.

After Effects warning: Could not find the user documents directory.

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Message text:

After Effects warning: Could not find the user documents directory.

Message interpretation:

The program cannot find the documents folder in order to store files.

Possible causes:

This error can occur when you are running older versions of After Effects on contemporary operating systems and have (not yet) saved the project to a specific location while at the same time using auto-save or rendering out bits of your work. In such a situation the program will use the global default Documents/ My Documents folders to store log files and the backup files. Since modern systems use different default user permissions, this can go wrong just as it may not work when security tools may block access to those system folders.

Resolution or workaround:

Start by making sure you run as a user with adequate permissions and always make sure to save your project. That way any log files or auto-saves are placed in sub-folders relative to the project, not the system folders. To avoid those issues in the future, verify your folder permissions and configure your security tools to exclude these folders or at least After Effects files from surveillance. Some basic guidance on this can be found here.