Education, RocketStock

How to Find Missing Files in After Effects


Quickly find your missing assets in After effects with this easy shortcut!

Quick Note: This technique only works in After Effects CC and above.

One of the best new features to come to After Effects in recent years is the ability to search for missing assets in the project panel search bar. If you simply type in the word ‘Missing’ into the search bar, After Effects will auto-fill three terms for missing assets: Missing Footage, Missing Fonts, and Missing Effects. If you’re about to save your project and give it out to someone else, I highly recommend using this new feature. Here’s how to fix each error code if they come up on your computer.

1. Missing Footage

Missing footage is probably the most common error you’ll get in After Effects. Fortunately, it’s incredibly easy to fix. If you’ve searched for ‘Missing Footage’ in your timeline, you should see all of the missing clips designated by a ‘bars and tone’ icon.

Quickly Locate Missing Items in After Effects: Replace Footage Demo

To replace or ‘link’ the missing footage, all you need to do is right click on the missing footage and select Replace Footage>File (Control+Command+H). You will then be prompted to find the missing footage on your computer.

2. Missing Fonts

This shows the compositions that have missing fonts. If your project features a missing font, you can fix this error by closing your project and installing the font on your computer. Installing a font is easy. Simply download the font and double-click on it. Your computer will automatically take you through the process of installing the font.

Quickly Locate Missing Items in After Effects: Font Installation Demo

After the font is installed on your computer, you can open up your After Effects project. If you receive an error code that looks like the image below, you may have installed in incorrectly.

Quickly Locate Missing Items in After Effects: Missing Fonts

3. Missing Effects

Missing effects are a little more complicated to find. Nine times out of ten, the reason why you can’t find your missing effect is because your project utilizes a plugin effect that is not standard in Adobe After Effects. To fix this error,  you will need to install the effect in one of two ways.

1. Install by hand: The first thing to check — see if you can install the effect/plugin by hand. All you will need to do is simply drag the plugin file into the plugin folder on your computer. You can find this folder by navigating to Adobe After Effects>Plugins. You can either make a new folder or drop the plugin/effect into an existing folder.

Quickly Locate Missing Items in After Effects: Plugin Installation Demo

2. Install by software: You may need to install the effect using the plugin developer’s proprietary installation software. Plugins like Element 3D and Optical Flares use proprietary software to install the plugin.

Quickly Locate Missing Items in After Effects: Element 3D Installer Example