Something weird happened to an epub I'm working on.

It still looks OK in Sigil, except no image displays when I click on the page cover.xhtml. When I click on the epub icon, it doesn't open in iBooks. So I drug it into Pagina, and got this error message:

File 'META-INF/container.xml' could not be found

I've Googled for help but haven't found anything useful yet. It appears to reference a distinct page named container.xml, but I can't find such a page in my working epubs. I did a search for the text container.xml in my working epubs and again drew a blank.

Does anyone know what this error message means and how I can fix it?


This sounds like a minor error. I have a META-INF/container.xml which I have never looked at until now. The entire file says:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" standalone="no"?>
  <container xmlns="urn:oasis:names:tc:opendocument:xmlns:container" 
        <rootfile full-path="OEBPS/package.opf" media-

The specification for this file is here: http://www.idpf.org/epub/31/spec/epub-ocf.html#sec-container-metainf-container.xml

By the way, if you don't already do this, you should always use the epub validator to validate your epub file. (This error message sounds like the output of an epub validator).

(Let me add that my ebook production process generates the container.xml file automatically. Sigil should do the same. Perhaps you changed a setting or accidentally deleted this file?)

| improve this answer | |
  • Interesting. I created a new file named container.xml, and it fixed my problem. However, all my images vanished (though they may have vanished before the fix). After adding container.xml and importing my images from a backup folder, I got a bunch of error messages for having each image listed twice in the manifest. It's also interesting that I can't find the file container.xml in my working epubs. – WordBear Jun 10 '17 at 23:55
  • Unfortunately, sigil, in trying to simplify your job, can make things more complex by requiring you to master the interface. Sometimes starting from scratch and importing things one at a time can help. – idiotprogrammer Jun 11 '17 at 15:13

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