In Animate, you can work with a variety of file types, each of which has a separate purpose:
FLA files, the primary files you work with in Animate, contain the basic media, timeline, and script information for a Animate document. Media objects are the graphic, text, sound, and video objects that comprise the content of your Animate document. The Timeline is where you tell Animate when specific media objects should appear on the Stage. You can add ActionScript® code to Animate documents to more finely control their behavior and to make them respond to user interactions.
Uncompressed XFL files are similar to FLA files. An XFL file, and the other associated files inside the same folder, are simply the uncompressed equivalent of a FLA file. This format makes it easier for groups of users to work on different elements of an Animate project at the same time. For more information, see Working with uncompressed XFL files.
SWF files, the compiled versions of FLA files, are the files you display in a web page. When you publish your FLA file, Animate creates a SWF file.
The Animate SWF file format is an open standard that other applications support. For more information about Animate file formats, see www.adobe.com/go/flashplayer.
AS files are ActionScript files—you can use these to keep some or all of your ActionScript code outside of your FLA files, which is helpful for code organization and for projects that have multiple people working on different parts of the Animate content.
The following tutorial demonstrates working with Animate/Flash Pro.
Tutorial: Creating your first Flash CS5 document
Animate is designed to work with other Adobe® applications to enable a broad range of creative workflows. You can import Illustrator® and Photoshop® files directly into Animate. You can also create video from Animate and edit it in Adobe® Premiere® Pro or After Effects®, or import video from either of those applications into Animate. When publishing your SWF files, you can use Dreamweaver® to embed the content in your web pages and launch Animate directly from within Dreamweaver to edit the content.
Beginning with Animate, XFL is the internal format of the FLA files you create. When you save a file in Animate, the default format is FLA, but the internal format of the file is XFL.
Other Adobe® applications such as After Effects® can export files in XFL format. These files have the XFL file extension instead of the FLA extension. InDesign® can export directly in FLA format, which internally is XFL. This allows you to work on a project in After Effects or InDesign first and then continue working with it in Animate.
You can open and work with XFL files in Animate in the same way you would open an FLA file. When you open an XFL file in Animate, you can then save the file as a FLA file, or as an uncompressed XFL file.
To open an XFL file in Animate:
The application preserves all of the layers and objects of the original file in the XFL file.
In Animate, choose File > Open and navigate to the XFL file. Click Open.
The XFL file opens in Animate in the same way as an FLA file. All of the layers of the original file appear in the Timeline and the original objects appear in the Library panel.
You can now work with the file normally.
Animate prompts you to name the new FLA file in the Save As dialog box.
Beginning with Animate, you can choose to work with your Animate files in uncompressed XFL format. This format allows you to see each of the separate parts, or subfiles, that make up the Animate file. These parts include:
An XML file that describes the Animate file as a whole.
Separate XML files to describe each Library symbol.
Additional XML files containing publish settings, mobile settings, and others.
Folders containing external assets, such as bitmap files, used by the Animate file.
By working with uncompressed XFL format, you can allow each part of the Animate file to be worked on separately by different people. You can also use a source control system to manage the changes made to each subfile within your uncompressed XFL file. Together, these capabilities allow for much easier collaboration on larger projects with multiple designers and developers.
Using live update with XFL files
With live update of editable assets for Uncompressed XFL Documents, you can edit any Library asset from an uncompressed XFL document while the document is open in Animate. Your changes to the asset are reflected in Animate when you finish editing the asset in another application.
To edit an asset from an uncompressed XFL document in another application:
Save a Animate document in Uncompressed XFL format.
In an appropriate editor, such as Photoshop, open the asset you want to edit from the LIBRARY folder of the Uncompressed XFL Document.
Edit the asset and save your changes.
Return to Animate.
The update to the asset is reflected in Animate immediately.
If you have both Animate and Dreamweaver installed, you can select a SWF file in a Dreamweaver document and use Animate to edit it. Animate does not edit the SWF file directly; it edits the source document (FLA file) and re‑exports the SWF file.
Click the SWF file placeholder to select it; then in the Property inspector click Edit.
Right-click (Windows) or Control-click (Macintosh) the placeholder for the SWF file, and select Edit With Animate from the context menu.
Dreamweaver switches the focus to Animate, and Animate attempts to locate the Animate authoring file (FLA) for the selected SWF file. If Animate cannot locate the Animate authoring file, you are prompted to locate it.
Note: If the FLA file or SWF file is locked, check out the file in Dreamweaver.
In Animate, edit the FLA file. The Animate Document window indicates that you are modifying the file from within Dreamweaver.
Animate updates the FLA file, re‑exports it as a SWF file, closes, and then returns the focus to the Dreamweaver document.
To update the SWF file and keep Animate open, in Animate select File > Update for Dreamweaver.
You can create a new document or open a previously saved document in Animate, and you can open a new window as you work. You can set properties for new or existing documents.
You can choose the destination for an animation using any of the intents, Animate provides you the preset formats. Choose an intent of your choice from the tabs at the top of the screen such as Character Animation, Social, Game, Education, Ads, Web, and Advanced.
Select the appropriate presets for each of the intents and click Create to start creating animations. You can view the recently used assets in the left pane. Sample assets are provided at the bottom of the startup screen.
Select File > New.
Choose an intent of your choice from the tabs at the top of the screen such as Character Animation, Social, Game, Education, Ads, Web, and Advanced.
Select the appropriate presets for each of the intents and click Create.
You can also choose settings for the document. See Set properties for a new or existing document.
Converting documents to different types like HTML 5, WegGl, GLTF, 360 degree, panaroma etc. on Animate are two clicks away. Want to convert your videos to view it on different platforms with a variety of options? Watch the tutorial at the end of this example and follow these steps.
In the Home page, click Advanced tab.
View the options to use the document in different platforms.
Click File> Convert To and select the required option.
Select File > New from Template.
Select a category from the Category list, select a document from the Category Items list, and click OK. You can select standard templates that come with Animate or a template you have already saved.
Select File > Open.
When you open multiple documents, tabs at the top of the Document window identify the open documents and let you easily navigate among them. Tabs appear only when documents are maximized in the Document window.
By default, tabs appear in the order in which the documents were created. You can drag the document tabs to change their order.
The Document Settings dialog box appears.
To specify the Stage size in pixels, enter values in the Width and Height boxes. The minimum size is 1 x 1 pixels; the maximum is 2880 x 2880 pixels.
To match the Stage size to the exact amount of space used by the contents of the Stage, select the Match Contents option.
To set the Stage size to the maximum available print area, select Match Printer. This area is determined by the paper size minus the current margin selected in the Margins area of the Page Setup dialog box (Windows) or the Print Margins dialog box (Macintosh).
To set the Stage size to the default size, 550 x 400 pixels, select Match Default.
To specify frame rate, enter the frame rate using the Frame Rate option.
This option is only available if you change the Stage size.
This option is only available if you change the Stage size. You can choose whether to scale content in locked and hidden layers in the Preferences. For more information, see Set General preferences.
For most computer-displayed animations, especially those playing from a website, 8 frames per second (fps) to 15 fps is sufficient. When you change the frame rate, the new frame rate becomes the default for new documents.
To apply the new settings to the current document only, click OK.
To make the new settings the default properties for all new documents, click Make Default.
(CS5.5 only) In the Publish section, choose a Flash Player version and an ActionScript version for your document. To access additional Publish settings, click the Publish Settings button. For more information, see Publish settings.
Animate CC is user-friendly and allows you to use its several components. Want to learn how to use the basic interface and tools on Animate? Watch the tutorial at the end of this example and follow these steps.
You can include Extensible Metadata Platform (XMP) data such as title, author, description, copyright, and more in your FLA files. XMP is a metadata format that certain other Adobe® applications can understand. The metadata is viewable in Animate and in Adobe® Bridge. For more information about XMP metadata, see Metadata and Keywords in Bridge Help.
Note: 32-bit Bridge is not supported with Adobe Animate.
Embedding metadata improves the ability of web-based search engines to return meaningful search results for Animate content. The search metadata is based on the XMP (Extensible Metadata Platform) specifications and is stored in the FLA file in a W3C-compliant format.
A file’s metadata contains information about the contents, copyright status, origin, and history of the file. In the File Info dialog box, you can view and edit the metadata for the current file.
Depending on the selected file, the following types of metadata may appear:
Contains author, title, copyright, and other information.
Displays editable metadata. You can add captions to your files, as well as copyright information. IPTC Core is a specification that was approved by the IPTC (International Press Telecommunications Council) in October 2004. It differs from the older IPTC (IIM, legacy) in that new properties were added, some property names were changed, and some properties were deleted.
Camera Data (Exif)
Displays information assigned by digital cameras, including the camera settings used when the image was taken.
Displays metadata for video files, including pixel aspect ratio, scene, and shot.
Displays metadata for audio files, including artist, album, track number, and genre.
Lists information about SWF files, including title, author, description, and copyright.
Keeps a log of changes made to images with Photoshop.
Note: The History Log preference must be turned on in Photoshop for the log to be saved with the file’s metadata.
Lists any Version Cue file-version information.
Displays information about images saved in the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) format.
To add metadata:
You can save a Animate FLA document using its current name and location or using a different name or location.
When a document contains unsaved changes, an asterisk (*) appears after the document name in the document title bar, the application title bar, and the document tab. When you save the document, the asterisk is removed.
To overwrite the current version on the disk, select File > Save.
To save the document in a different location and/or with a different name, or to compress the document, select File > Save As.
From the Save as Type menu, choose Animate Uncompressed Document (*xfl).
The description appears when the template is selected in the New Document dialog box.
To delete a saved template, navigate to one of the following folders and delete the template FLA file from the category folder that contains it.
Mac OS - <HardDisk>/Users/<userName>/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Flash CS5/<language>/Configuration/Templates/
Select File > Exit (Windows) or Animate > Quit Animate (Macintosh).
If you have documents open with unsaved changes, Animate prompts you to save or discard the changes for each document.
Click Yes to save the changes and close the document.
Click No to close the document without saving the changes.
To preview and edit your documents, print frames from Adobe Animate documents, or specify frames to be printable from Flash Player by a viewer.
When printing frames from a Animate document, use the Print dialog box to specify the range of scenes or frames to print and the number of copies. In Windows, the Page Setup dialog box specifies paper size, orientation, and various print options—including margin settings and whether all frames are to be printed for each page. On the Macintosh, these options are divided between the Page Setup and the Print Margins dialog boxes.
The Print and Page Setup dialog boxes are standard in either operating system, and their appearance depends on the selected printer driver.
Prints the frame at full size. Enter a value for Scale to reduce or enlarge the printed frame.
Fit On One Page
Reduces or enlarges each frame so it fills the print area of the page.
Prints several thumbnails on one page. Select from Boxes, Grid, or Blank. Enter the number of thumbnails per page in the Frames box. Set the space between the thumbnails in the Frame Margin box, and select Label Frames to print the frame label as a thumbnail.
To choose not to print any of the frames in the main Timeline, label a frame as !#p to make the entire SWF file nonprintable. Labeling a frame as !#p dims the Print command in the Flash Player context menu. You can also remove the Flash Player context menu.
If you disable printing from Flash Player, the user can still use the browser Print command to print frames. Because this command is a browser feature, you cannot use Animate to control or disable it.
Open or make active the Animate document (FLA file) to publish.
Specify only one !#p label to dim the Print command in the context menu.
You can also select a blank frame (rather than a keyframe) and label it #p.
Open or make active the Animate document (FLA file) to publish.
Open the Animate document (FLA file) containing the frames you will set to print.
To organize your work, select the next frame after a frame labeled #p.
Only one #b frame label per Timeline is allowed. This option is the same as selecting the Movie bounding box option with the Print action.
You can print the background color set in the Document Properties dialog box. Change the background color for only the frames to be printed by placing a colored object on the lowest layer of the Timeline being printed.
This action changes the entire document’s background color, including that of movie clips and loaded SWF files.
To print that color as the document’s background, designate to print the frame in which you placed the shape.
To maintain a different background color for non-printing frames, repeat steps 2 and 3. Then place the shape on the lowest layer of the Timeline, in all the frames that are not designated to print.
Use the Print command in the Flash Player context menu to print frames from any Animate SWF file.
The context menu’s Print command cannot print transparency or color effects and cannot print frames from other movie clips; for more advanced printing capabilities, use the PrintJob object or the print() function.
The command prints the frames labeled #p by using the Stage for the print area or the specified bounding box.
If you haven’t designated specific frames to print, all frames in the document main Timeline print.
Select File > Publish Preview > Default or press F12 to view your Animate content in a browser.
Right-click (Windows) or Control‑click (Macintosh) in the Animate content in the browser window to display the Flash Player context menu.
Printing from the context menu does not interact with calls to the PrintJob object.