Error - This file could not be opened

I can not open my layout file. Someone can help me please?

Needs more information, and/or the layout file. Upload it here if it’s under about 15MB, or share it via a file sharing service like Dropbox, OneDrive or WeTransfer.

I worked on my file this morning, then i saved and close the program.
Now, i am trying to open the file again and appears the message: This file could not be open.

thank you!

The file is massive. I think that you may have one SketchUp model and that you copy and pasted individual items from that file, into your LayOut page. Each time you did that you created another copy of the SketchUp model inside LayOut, with the size taken up being the size the SketchUp file was at that point.

As it stands there are 44 copies of the model in the LayOut file, and most of those are 430 MB. I’m not sure how the reference files get their names, but several files had names that included strange characters, that prevent the contents from being included in a zip file. A LayOut file is really a zip file, and those strange names may have led to the current problem. Or, the massive size of the file has exceeded some limit I’m not aware of.

I tried deleting all of the reference SKP files, but that didn’t fix the problem.

The company is closed today, let’s see if @trent or @Adam have suggestions tomorrow.

Thank you for replying.

Any news?

Trent has had a busy day, but is taking a look before he finishes working. I think I may need to show him what I’ve tried already, so he can be concentrating on new ideas.

Can you confirm which version of LayOut you had been using on this file?

I figured it out, it seems to be 2019. Do you have any recent PDFs made from the file?

I have something for you to try.

It looks like you either copied and pasted parts of large models into LayOut, or you used File/Insert each time you needed the same model file, after having set up that model file to look how you needed it that time. The end result was that you had 44 SKPs inside the LayOut file, taking about 18 GB of space.

Normally you would insert a given model once, and then to use it in other pages you would copy and paste inside LayOut. To see various views inside the model you would either use scenes in SketchUp, and select those in LayOut, or use LayOut to directly control what camera view is showing, and what Tags are visible.

The current file is too demanding for any reasonable computer. To get around that I removed all of the SKPs from the file, that cut the LayOut file down to 39 MB. What you can do now is go to each viewport, see what SketchUp file it needs, then go into that SketchUp file to remove and purge anything that won’t appear in the viewport. You would still have 44 models, but each one would be as small as it can be in order to show what you need to see.

Here is a zip file:

That will expand to be a SKPs folder, inside of which is a file named celsoemarcelaNoSKPs.layout (that’s the LayOut file with all of the SKPs removed), and there are the 44 SKPs that you will want to optimize first, then relink to the viewport that the file is needed for.

When you open celsoemarcelaNoSKPs.layou you can close the initial dialog box that appears, that shows all of the files that are missing. Instead, go to each page that has viewports, select a viewport and look in the SketchUp Model panel to see what the file name is, then click on the button to relink to the SKP. But as I said, look at the SKPs first to see what they contain, and which things they have that will never be seen. Remove those things, go into Model Info, Statistics, and Purge Unused. Do a Save, and then go back to LayOut to relink the SKP you just optimized.


Hey Colin,

I have a similar issue here…

I’ve got a file I’ve been working on , that now won’t open. Error message is “Unexpected File Format”.

If I send it to you could you try and get it working again?




Yes, I would try.

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Hey Colin, that’s great

File on this link;


You may be used to my other messages by now. This file has the materials and components in it, but nothing in the scene. I see that some components do include a lot of geometry, so hopefully you can make use of this:

Thanks Colin

it´s 2019 version.
I have one PDF but there is only a few pages when i started the project.

if you can get the PDF of the file that i sent to you it would save my life.

it worked out!! Thank you very much.