Problem: Book or file crashes when exporting to EPUB.
Cause: In this one very limited, strange case, the cause was endnote markers. I suspect corrupted character encoding in the source MS Word file, but this is unverified.
Solution: Manually delete and retype all endnote references in affected files.
I stumbled upon an extremely strange and frustrating problem tonight. InDesign would crash when exporting a specific 200 page book to EPUB. This isn’t in and of itself that strange (unfortunately), and I geared myself up for yet another lengthy round of troubleshooting. I narrowed it down to just several documents in the book, so I picked one of them to focus on. I tried exporting to IDML and then reimporting, no effect. I first suspected either frame anchoring or graphics, so I eliminated those, but no results. I then started deleting chunks of text until I found one page that caused the problem. Then I removed all paragraph and character styles — still no affect. I then narrowed it down to one paragraph…one sentence…then…
Yeah. It’s a “2.” But not just any “2.” Oh no, this one is special. Exporting it to EPUB causes InD CS5.5 to crash. Exporting to IDML and reimporting did not fix the problem. Removing all style tagging did not fix the problem. Deleting and retyping it DID fix the problem. Go figure. I’ve saved the infamous “2” in a new, blank CS5.5 document for your puzzlement. I figured after taking me two hours to find in a 200 page book it should get some recognition.
Specifically, the “2” was originally imported into InDesign in a MS Word document as an endnote marker. Hmm… could it be using some sort of strange unicode or corrupted font reference that’s messing up the export? InD exports to PDF, prints, and does everything else I ask it to just fine. It might be a problem with the new EPUB export not recognizing some font encodings.
Here is the sample InD CS5.5 file. Note that opening the file will not cause InD to crash; it’s only when you try to export to EPUB. If you delete the 2 and type a new one, it will fix it. If you change the font, it won’t have any effect (at least not when I changed from Garamond Premiere Pro to Minion Pro). I trashed my InD prefs with no effect. I’d love to hear what a developer or someone with scripting experience has to say about it. The source file that I placed was a MS Word file that had been passed from the author to at least 2 editors back and forth before finally getting to me for layout in the book; the problem could have happened anywhere along the way. I work with hundreds of MS Word files and I make many EPUBs; I’ve done about 8 now since I started using CS5.5 and this is the first time I’ve ever experienced this.
Now I’m off to finally export my book to EPUB (hopefully)!