Searching for Missing Files in FCP

Posted on by Larry

[ This article was first published in the January, 2010, issue of
Larry’s Final Cut Pro Newsletter. Click here to subscribe. ]

Peter Tours writes:


Larry, can you tell me what the attached message is asking for and how I can make it stop doing that? Or make it happy and find it?

Larry replies: FCP is searching for a missing render file. This can happen when you export a QuickTime reference movie, load that reference movie back into FCP for editing, then delete some or all of the render files associated with that reference movie.

Reference movies are ONLY designed for files that you don’t want to keep — for example, to export a file that will immediately go into Compressor. Since all compressed files are always self-contained, using reference movies is both fast and safe.

However, the problem with a reference movie is that if you delete only ONE render file, the entire movie will not play. This means that if you want to export a movie, then import it back into Final Cut – or any other program – for additional editing, you MUST use a self-contained QuickTime movie.

The only way to fix this error message is to find the original sequence that created this movie and re-export it as a self-contained QuickTime movie. Then replace the old, broken, reference movie with the self-contained version.

Remember – reference movies are fast, but only to be used for files that are temporary.


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2 Responses to Searching for Missing Files in FCP

  1. Pol says:

    So, if I’m understanding correctly, it’s looking for reference file info… If I delete the reference files instead of making new self-contained files, will this cure it?

  2. Jane says:

    I am getting a message that my render files are full and I need to make space in order to render. When I go to render manager there are no files. I have deleted various render files on my harddrive, but still am unable to render.

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