Too Large to Save as PSD?

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I'm getting the message that I can't save a file because it is too large for a PSD format. I can save it as a PSB format ok, but here's the thing - the document is only 961MB with the layers (all layers active). See screenshot below. Any suggestions as to why it won't save as a PSD file when the file size in total hasn't yet reached 1 GB? Thanks.


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Glenn Davy

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Posted 1 month ago

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Cristen Gillespie

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Not seeing the layers, I'm going to ask perhaps a rather stupid question. Do you have Smart Objects with image layers inside? I once even found contents inside a complex Smart Object had been duplicated by an action I'd run, so what should have been ~1GB turned out to be just over 2GB. The Info panel couldn't see it at all.

Photoshop notoriously is unable to come even close to guesstimating the actual size of a document before you try to save it, and Smart Objects can be the  culprit, they hide so much from us.
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Glenn Davy

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Thanks for this Cristen. No, nothing is a smart object (yet), but I do have one Shape Layer that is filled. I would have thought the data showing in the screenie would have taken that into account, but perhaps it doesn't. That is something to watch for certainly, but unless the shape layer (just one) is a hogging some space that's not accounted for, that's not it.

EDIT:  Now, I do have about 5 or 6 alpha selections saved. Could that be it?
(Edited)
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Cristen Gillespie

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Hard to think of a filled shape layer pushing you past the 2GB limit. '-}  Is it possible to show a screenshot of the layers? If something is there, someone here may be able to spot it.

Of course, possibly something has gotten farkled in memory, so if you haven't, try restarting PS and if that doesn't work, restarting your computer?  Beyond that, I have no idea and have to hope someone else knows something about this. I've never seen it where it wasn't justified, so I'm interested in what can cause it.
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Glenn Davy

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Yep, hang on. I'll grab a screenshot of the layers.
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Glenn Davy

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Here you are. Plus there are 6 alpha channels saved as well. Note that most of the layers are empty at the moment. Now, the file size is pretty big - 36" x 36" at 360 ppi (roughly 12,800 px), but that should be reflected in the data at the bottom left. Anyway, here is a screenie of the layers:



(maybe it's penalizing me for being a dummy - "Antarctical"??? Sheesh! LOL)
(Edited)
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Cristen Gillespie

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LOL. That's gotta be it. I read it first as "Antarctica!" I thought you were being a bit biased there, but. . .

I'm afraid I can't spot anything either that's making it more than 2 GB. There doesn't appear to be anything "hiding" from PS to make it miscalculate the size by more than double.

I don't think, anyway, that 6 alpha channels would double the size of the file, but I'm sure I could be wrong. You might try saving a duplicate without the alpha channels just to check, if you feel like fooling around with this rather than just get on with it after saving it as a PSB. How much time do you want to spend on this is the question.  '-} I do know I once saved a PSB that turned out to be less than 2GB  on disk, at least according to Bridge and the Finder, so. . . it can get it wrong.

Maybe on Monday Jeffrey will have a good idea of what's happening, if no one spots this thread before then.

Or on Monday the gremlins will have departed for greener pastures and it will save properly. I think we've all had major things go wrong, only to evaporate without our knowing why they went wrong in the first place. (sigh)
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Glenn Davy

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Thanks for this Cristen. Yeah, it's but one of many mysteries. I've actually transferred this to my MacBook Air as I have a Cintiq hooked up to it so just for fun I'll see if it still has the same issue there (same version of PS though). By the by, I should have mentioned that I'm on an iMac 27 5K with 32 GB RAM and Mojave (latest version), in case any of that matters. Anyway, we'll see but if I do find an answer I'll be sure to post it as I know others (including you from the looks of it) have run into similar problems. Till then... :)

EDIT - UPDATE - You gave me a clue here about looking at the file in Bridge. It says it's 3.43 GB! I have an Adobe Stock image that is serving as a template for the layers I'm painting underneath it (the stock file will be discarded once the painting is complete). I see in Bridge it's 1.5 GB itself. Add that to my base file, and that's how you get the 3.48 GB size. So that mystery is solved I guess, but why PS doesn't seem to be accounting for it in the main file (composite) I can't say. So, I guess the PSB designation is warranted after all (would be nice if that barrier could be removed and everything is simply PSD, or not).
(Edited)