This has been bugging me for a while, so it's a good time to ask. Frequently when I look at the order of projects in the browser or files in the Finder via the import window, the sorting order makes no sense. It's nearly random. I can re-sort by ascending or descending again and it's fine. Is there a rhyme or reason to how FCPX displays these sorts? Or is it simply a long-standing bug?
I haven't noticed that but it wouldn't surprise me - there are various little UI quirks in that area.
If you click on the "Projects" library smart collection, does that ever mis-sort the results? Is that in filmstrip view or list view?
Inside the library each project exists as a separate folder and CurrentVersion.fcpevent database file. Each .fcpevent file contains several SQL tables containing all the metadata, media pointers and edit history for the project.
The browser must enumerate the projects to display the list. This doesn't seem that difficult but there is some kind of non-obvious overhead. We can deduce this from the "deferred project loading" behavior sometimes seen. That is random and unpredictable.
The internal SQLite database must be opening each project database file to obtain some info. It's not a client/server system but an "in process" library. It's possible for a large group of projects that deferred loading behavior might interfere with enumerating those to produce a properly sorted list. This is just speculation.
[Joe Marler]"If you click on the "Projects" library smart collection, does that ever mis-sort the results? Is that in filmstrip view or list view?"
I would have to double-check. I'm pretty sure it does at times. But typically I see this behavior most often in the import window. List view and dual displays. Regarding the latter, I tend to see various UI issues more often with dual displays than with single.
[Joe Marler]"So in the import media window, you click on the column heading to sort by name and it doesn't maintain that after restart or a random period of time?"
Correct. Often even when I stay in the program, if I go to the import window a number of times throughout the session, it doesn't stick. Bear in mind this media is on a NAS volume mounted as SMB. Library is on a local, external drive.
[Oliver Peters]"this media is on a NAS volume mounted as SMB. "
That might be it. The below article implies possible sorting changes during file enumeration on SMB with various versions of macOS. There was an optimization after High Sierra 10.12 which might affect this.
It would be interesting to discuss this with other FCPX users on NAS systems and see what their experience is.