sequences "not found"

Posted by scotty perey 
sequences "not found"
November 30, 2005 02:10AM
Help! I just made a Quicktime movie of my master sequence, on it's way to Pro Tools for audio work, and when I went back and reopened the Final Cut project, I got two or three warnings saying "not found" and finally "Error: out of memory." When the project finished opening, several of the sequences were not available, including the master (even though they were still all listed in the Browser; clicking on it there would yield "not found" again)

I find it suspicious that this happened pretty much right after creating the eight-minute master sequence into a Quicktime movie. (which I am very, very relieved to have available to fall back on, if indeed the other stuff is gone!)

I am wondering if dwindling space on the main hard drive would be the culprit (it was down to 1.7G)

Also, I wonder if it could be a problem with the LaCie 250G external HD that I acquired recently?

Are these sequences retrievable?


FCP5, Tiger, 2G Dual
Greg Kozikowski
Re: sequences "not found"
November 30, 2005 07:31AM
You almost certainly ran out of hard drive. The system sees hard drive space as "memory."

10% to 20% free space on all drive connected to a video machine.

OSX Hates full drives. You may be able to retrieve some of your work with Disk Warrior. I don't think you'll be able to do it with the Drive Utilities in OSX.

Filling up a drive is really bad because to return the drive to normal requires you to delete or move some of the work. That, in turn, almost guarantees permanent damage of the missing files.


Re: sequences "not found"
November 30, 2005 08:19AM
Try cleaning up your drives and then opening an autosave of the project. I'd agree that you need to get a lot of media off the system asap - 1.7 gig is very low.

I think an autosave will work ok though.
Re: sequences "not found"
November 30, 2005 09:56AM
Yes, on a 250GB drive, I would usually leave at least 40GB free. 1.7GB means your drive's been working at low oxygen for awhile now. Add that to the fact that it's a Lacie drive...not a happy combination.
Re: sequences "not found"
November 30, 2005 08:36PM
Actually, it?s the internal hard drive that got down so low. Here?s what I think may have happened:

I just bought the Lacie drive, and I?m almost certain that I changed my setup so as to capture video and audio there, figuring that?s what I bought it for. If I indeed already did so, I am wondering if there is a way I could have inadvertently reset my setup to capture my footage to the orginal (internal) hard drive. Yesterday (before my data loss) I was capturing a tape, and the ?out of memory? dialog came up. I assumed it meant the internal hard drive, because I just bought the 250G external. Unfortunately, I didn?t bother with this cleanup until after trying to work with my evening project which ended up losing the sequences.

Alas, there was no room to autosave all that interim time, and my most recent backup is prior to the latest changes. Luckily, I do have a Quicktime movie with which I can finish the project, but I definitely want to figure out what happened here. Obviously, it was the low memory that sent my sequences to some cyber-nether-region, but my concern is whether I inadvertently reset the capture destination back to my internal drive, or if that could?ve been done automatically by trashing preferences or something other.

It?s my first ?real-world? project, nothing too serious, and I sem to have escaped terrible misfortune by the skin of my teeth, and a valuable lesson islearned about hard drive space. I can only imagine what it would be like if this was a huge contract that I needed to edit further. I?d be freaking. (And purchasing Disk Warrior perhaps...)

One last thing: memory space issues notwithstanding, do you all recommend assigning the autosave destination to the internal drive, so as to keep it apart from the Lacie in the event of its failure?

Thanks for all of your insights, everyone...

Re: sequences "not found"
November 30, 2005 08:46PM
Amazing... immediately upon my last post, I found the link that Koz recommended in another post ( and it certainly answered my main question regarding trashing preferences:

"You will need to put all the capture, system, and timeline settings
in again fresh."

Re: sequences "not found"
November 30, 2005 11:05PM
Uh-oh ... really, folks, I hate to keep this string going, but now I am having trouble opening Final Cut itself! And when it finally does open, it says "To preserve the integrity of the Final Cut Pro data, it is necessary to ensure the existence of the following path" and it lists the final cut file on the Lacie, along with an option to "repair the scratch disk" (the AV capture settings page that this takes you to also reads that the scratch files were missing, on the Lacie)

I'm starting to get pretty worried, and even though I'd like to spruce up the audio in Pro Tools ultimately, I am feeling very compelled to press this onto a DVD asap , before everything falls apart, which is what it feels like is happening at such low memory here. Sunday is my deadline.

Anyway, I tried to burn the DVD video, and it was supposedly "successful" but read no timecode upon playback, and a sort of forest green screen. I might have missed something in DVD Studio Pro, but everything is getting so buggy in general, I just don't know.

So now, in desperation, I just want a hard copy of my files in case my whole hard drive or two crashes and I have to reinstall everything... am I overreacting here?

Meanwhile, I am finally going to get Retrospect set up (like I should have already) and try to find which software will most easily let me just simply burn the simple data files onto a DVD. Any suggestions would be most appreciated. That is, in addition to "make more memory headroom" which is what I am going to address presently. I just hope that it's not too late to be trying to throw something like Retrospect into the mix of things in trying to save what I've got left, when everything else is going awry (before I get my memory load lightened a bit, at least)

Is this pretty much the classic problem that Disk Warrior is designed to address? Because if it is, then damn the torpedos, I'll buy it!

Thanks for tolerating this long winded post... I feel like I ought to put you all on my Christmas card list or something....

Greg Kozikowski
Re: sequences "not found"
December 01, 2005 12:09AM
It may be time for the hard drive rant.

External FireWire drives were never Apple's first choice to store live video. Archive and transition video, yes, even video for editing, but not live video. Some of them have trouble keeping up.

You can greatly increase the stability of your system by putting the FireWire drive on its own FireWire PCI card separate from the built-in ports of the Mac.

Further, nobody is breaking down the door to praise LaCie for their stability and rebust performance. Quite a number of other manufacturers appear to be more desirable.

The last nightmare you have already experienced is backup. All hard drives fail. It's up to you to make sure the valuable work is always on more than one drive. The people who just came home with a LaCie 2TB tower don't have a 2TB tower. They have a 2T backup nightmare or a 1.5TB RAID 5 backup system, or a 1TB Raid (forgive me I don't remember all the numbers) 1+0 where half the system backs up the other half.

Or just buy two LaCie 2TB towers and use one to back up the other.

Our shop has a combination of those systems.


Re: sequences "not found"
December 01, 2005 01:19AM
It's unfortunate that you're dealing with multiple things already failing, because there is a good string of steps you could've followed at the first sign of trouble. This is the first step I ALWAYS do when I so much as smell a rat's whisker: Backup the project file(s) \to a destination that is NOT any of the drives (not internal or external) that you have hooked up while editing. These things talk to one another, and it's not unheard-of for multiple parts of one system to fail at the same time. But if your backup device isn't even hooked up to the system normally, there's almost no chance it will fail along with the others. And these have to be MANUAL backups. Those who rely solely on Autosave undergo a very painful experience when that option is set wrong, or fails because of bad preferences, etc. I do a manual backup every three to four hours even when nothing's going wrong.

As Koz outlined, backup up media is costly. Probably necessary in some cases, but I usually weigh the huge costs of buying double-plus storage space for a project against the time need to recapture lost clips, and the balance in my cases tends to tilt in favour of not backing up batch-listed media.

If your edit were already locked, export a full-quality self-contained movie file. It's fast and a good insurance policy in the late stage of post. If your prep work was done correctly and thoroughly, you can use this to finish the project by matching it to sound files, using it to create a picture reference, export to the web, burn to DVD, etc. The only major things it can't do are edit changes, EDL export, and OMF export. You can even colour correct the movie file. All this is, of course, best done to the project file, but self-contained movie files help you cut down on the number of times you need to access problematic drives, files, projects, render files, etc. And to cap it all off, this one file is extremely mobile. If your station is going through meltdown, as long as this file is intact, just copy it to another station and you can continue working, while the other station is being overhauled.
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