'Failed to Open Document'

Hi, I am having trouble opening a file - its not a big model but not sure why it was working one day and not the next. It keeps saying ‘Failed to open Document’ when launched. Any help would be appreciated. File attached.
Alcove.skp (1.6 MB)

I can’t open that file either. Perhaps @colin or one of the developers can salvage something from it.

Thanks for trying

Is there a .skb version of the file? Can you open it?

No i cant seem to locate that on my drive

Where were you saving the SketchUp model file? Normally a .skb file is saved in the same directory.

Its on my WD Cloud drive and normally it is saved in there but not on this occasion bizarrely.


So you were working with the file saved in the cloud? That’s been shown to be not a good idea. It isn’t unusual for files to become corrupted (not just SketchUp files) during save or auto save when users do that. If Colin has any success recovering anything in your model it wiill likely be the In Model components and their materials. At least that seem to be the standard result.

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My first question when you posted this in my head was, is it saved to an external or web drive?

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Perhaps thats whats happened - i usually pull them from the device to work on them but possibly i just opened from the cloud… interesting. Thanks

If you want to save your files to the cloud, use your Trimble Connect cloud storage. When you open a SketchUp file from the cloud, the .skp file is first downloaded into a local temporary folder. Manual saves and auto saves are then done locally. When you are finished working on the file you can Publish back to your Trimble Connect storage. Not only does that help to prevent corruption but you automatically have a history to go back to if needed.

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We had a problem with the WD cloud drive in particular. I happen to have one of those, and so we could reproduce and fix the problem. Pretty sure there hasn’t been an update since that fix, but it should be taken care of in the next update. I can’t tell you when that will be, but will try to remember to come back as soon as I can tell you it’s ready.

Thanks All - I take it that means the file is nakered?

Colin that is rather an odd or perhaps leading reply.
Firstly, does this mean you didn’t look at the file attached. or you did and it can’t be fixed?

Secondly, does this mean there is an understanding of why non local files become corrupted?


I looked at the file to see if it had the corruption we’ve seen with the WD cloud drives. I’m not positive that it is the same. I asked the developer who did the fix whether he was able to fix such affected files, but he didn’t reply to me yet. Actually, I spoke to him now, and he will look at the file to see if it is that issue, and if he can recover anything.

In this particular case it looks like the WD software sees the SketchUp 2021 or later file as being a compressed archive, which it is, and the file gets recompressed with the header information now different. You can save 2020 format files to the same folder, and not get a problem.

It’s a different issue to the cases where the file data really gets corrupted. Those cases have happened for years before SKPs were compressed archives. A surprisingly high percentage of the files that I can’t recover are using unicode characters in the names of materials and other elements. It’s possible that the unicode characters are not surviving a save to a remote server. But that’s just a wild guess, we can’t make it go wrong to know for sure what the cause is.

We’ve had recent reports of people having trouble saving to Dropbox and Google Drive, but again, it doesn’t go wrong when we try the same steps.

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The developer was able to rescue the file.

Alcove (recovered).skp (1.6 MB)

It was the same WD cloud drive corruption we’ve seen before.

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Thank you very much for recusing the file and the explanation Colin. Hugely appreciated.