Sharing Motion Templates
We have numerous edit suites, and we need to share motion templates between the suites. We have been doing this by placing a copy of the templates into the local motion templates folders on each computer. However, we were hoping to find a way to keep all the templates on our XSAN so that each room could just access the templates from the same location. That way, if a template is updated, it doesn't have to be copied to each individual station. I did some tests using aliases in the templates folders, and it seemed to work partially. If I used an alias, the template appeared in Motion's list of templates and worked. However, the template does not appear in FCP in the 'Master Templates' list. (This is where we'd really like the template to appear!). It can not be added to FCP's Master Template list if it's only an alias.
Basically, I'm wondering if anyone has found a way to share motion templates without placing a copy of the template in each individual computer's motion templates folder.
Any help would be much appreciated... or even just a confirmation that what I'm trying to do is impossible.
Mark M. Pinder
Chief Technical Engineer
Did you ever find a way to put your templates on your XSAN? I've been trying to do the same thing unsuccessfully.
I'd be very interested in hearing about how you work around this issue - and if you ever have template data go offline when transferring the project btwn workstations.
Full Tilt Poker Academy
Las Vegas, NV
So far the only solution I've found is to create a sync folders automator workflow that looks at your local templates folder and syncs it to a shared folder on the XSAN. I've made this an automator application that I have iCal run every couple of hours. When another editor opens a project with one of my templates they will initially have to reconnect to the shared template but once that is done it forever connects with the shared version. Still early on our testing but so far it does what it needs to do. You'll need to download the sync folders action from.
One option could be to create the Motion Template projects locally, add them into an FCP Templates project, then move that FCP project and the individual Motion Template projects with associated media to an XSAN folder accessible by all editors.
You may need to relink a few bits and pieces initially but if you keep the folder paths relative it should be pretty straight forward.
When editors want the Motion Templates they open the master FCP Templates project ( which just acts like a container really ) and drag and drop the Motion Templates they want as clips into their edit project. ( Alternately an edit assistant could add these into new projects before the editors start which might make things simpler. )
By sharing Motion templates this way you could get around aliases and having to install copies for every User / machine.
This way the text box controls in FCP are independent for each instance used, but, the danger is, if one editor selects a Motion Template in FCP and chooses Open In Editor, and changes a stylistic thing, like the colour of the text, or the background, and saves it, all the instances used will update to that.
Ideally you would write protect the folder containing the master templates on the XSAN so no one can modify them.
If an editor chooses to Open In Editor ( Motion ) alters a template and chooses Save as Template, instead of just Save, Motion will place a new Template into the editors Home > Library > Application Support > Final Cut Studio > Motion > Templates folder.
Of course what would really solve this is if Apple would just write into the app the ability to save your templates to another location. I'm sure they never thought about shared environments when the first wrote the app. We've kinda solved the issue at my work by having an r-sync script that runs every 5 minutes or so and syncs users local templates to a place on the XSAN. If someone opens up a project with a Motion Template from another user the know they have to go reconnect the template to the shared templates folder. Once this link is made it never goes back to the original local template.