Export file names to text

Terminal file listWe have had the need to export the names of files in certain folders for clients or our records. We have two methods to do this:

1. Use the Mac Terminal

2. Use TextWrangler, a free program

Terminal

To use the terminal, open Terminal (applications>utilities) on your Mac, navigate to the folder you want to make a text file out of the file names in the folder, then type:

ls -R > contents.txt

This command lists all files in the current folder and its subfolders. That file is then placed in the current folder. Hidden files can also be added to the listing with:

ls -a -R > contents.txt

TextWrangler

Open TextWrangler. Create a new blank file. In the Edit menu, select Insert / Folder Listing…

Navigate to the folder you want the file name listing from, then select it. All subfolders will be added, too.

Sharing FCPX 10.1 projects

FCPX projectsThere are questions all over the net about how to share Final Cut Pro X (FCPX) 10.1 projects between different sites and editors. There are some discussions about how to use XML to transfer the files, or having shared drive locations. Those all may work, but they’re not useful with a 2 hour film’s worth of media (30+ hours) shared between different sites.

We at TVL Video have been using this technique to work on films between our locations in San Diego and Jackson Hole. The process has worked flawlessly and we thought we’d share the procedure with the rest of the FCPX community.

This procedure is wordy but meant to lay everything out as clearly as possible. Using this process, you will have a file small enough to fit in email, without having to transport video files around. This whole procedure is reliant on both sites have the same video files in the same Library and Event. That’s the one trick to it. As we’ve added files to the project, it’s easy to transfer them around. But there was no practical way to ship 168GB worth of footage around. So we shipped a drive to our Jackson site, brought both up and everything is working perfectly. We can review dailies and share our edits without issue.

Here’s the procedure:

Create a copy of the project to be transferred

– Click the project
– Right click and select Duplicate Project

Rename the duplicated project to the next version
Click and select the new project

File -> Copy Project to Library -> New Library
Select Movies on System Drive
Name the library “Transfer lib Vxxx”, where xxx = current project name
Click Save

In the popup window, make sure Optimized Media and Proxy Media are UNSELECTED
click OK
Wait a few seconds, then cancel any rendering activity
Select the new library
Right click on the created library and close it out of FCPX

Quit FCPX

Go to finder, find the created transfer library
Select transfer library
Right click on transfer library, select Show Package Contents
Go to the event folder (probably just a date)
Go to the Original Media folder
Delete all media out of that folder
Empty the trash

Go back up to the Movies folder or wherever you created the transfer library
select the library
Right click on the library
Compress “library name”
This creates a ZIP file that can be emailed
Delete the transfer library so only the zip file remains

Email or WeTransfer the ZIP file

Drop received ZIP file into the Movies folder
Right click on ZIP file and click “Open”
This will create an unzipped Library file
Delete the received ZIP file

Open FCPX 10.1
File -> Open Library -> Other
Click the Locate… button
Find the transfer library and open it

At this point, all of the clips will be broken. That’s okay.

Copy (click and drag) the video project to the Event folder (Antarctic Film)

When the copy control pop up appears, make sure Optimized and Proxy media are UNCHECKED
Click OK

Close the transfer library (right click, select close)
Open the transferred project in the Event folder

The project should now relink to all of the media, the project thumbnail may still show broken links, Eventually it seems to recover

In finder, delete the Transfer Library file (to eliminate confusion)

Good luck and enjoy sharing FCPX projects.

 

Mavericks 10.9.2 and Black Magic

Black Magic Ultrastudio Mini Recorder
Black Magic Ultrastudio Mini Recorder

If you are using the Black Magic UltraStudio Mini Recorder and have updated to Mavericks 10.9.2, you will find that your HDMI settings have been reset. As soon as the update came out, we added it to our machines in hopes that it would fix some of our FCPX woes, though it doesn’t look like it.

Instead, what we ended up with is a non-functioning HDMI to Thunderbolt converter. Very quickly we figured out that the only thing that had changed on the machine was the Mavericks update. So, we went into the System Preferences, into BlackMagic Design and, sure enough, the Set Input setting had reverted back to SDI Video and SDI Audio. As soon as we changed the settings, we were back in business and recording off the Nikon D800 for some demo work.

Screen Shot 2014-03-01 at 4.56.27 PM

 

People complain about this little wonder box because they have to go in and change the settings so it works with the HDMI rather than the SDI input. The people with SDI cameras have no issues, so there are never any negative reviews about this.

In any case, we were able to produce an entire video using the Nikon D800 and the Black Magic UltraStudio Mini Recorder. It allowed us to record directly to the computer in ProRes 422, something that camera does not do when recording directly to a compact flash or SD card. This little converter was well worth the money for us.

Setting change
Setting change

The only problem we have run into is it occasionally loses sync when disabling the camera and then restarting it. All you have to do is switch from Log and Capture to Playback and then back. It seems to work every time. Compared to some other solutions, this really has been a salvation for us to shoot very high quality without the need for an external recorder like the Ninja or Aja Ki.

The laptop is not practical in the field, for the most part, as a Ninja might be, but in the studio, recording directly to the computer has made things so much faster. We can review and check our work immediately, without having to unplug a drive, swap cards, or anything. It’s right there, on the computer, ready for review.

Now all we have to do is watch out when the latest Mac Maverick’s update comes out and changes our settings.

Mac OS 10.9 slow finder and open / save dialog box workaround

After upgrading to Mac OS 10.9, Mavericks, our computers have been running slowly when using Finder or using

File open dialog
File open dialog

the File – Save/Open dialog box in any application. It took up to 30 seconds to get files to show. It was a real time waster. In our business, time is everything.

Our first workaround was to close then re-open the application. Though it worked, that was pretty wasteful and miserable. So we tried trashing the Finder preferences file:

com.apple.finder.plist

Preferences library
Preferences library

It can be found in Library – Preferences. You can get there by opening Finder, selecting the menu option Go, then holding the OPT key, then selecting the Library option. Navigating down to Preferences, you can find the com.apple.finder.plist file. Just delete it. Doing so will reset the Finder preferences and, hopefully, fix the Finder slowness for you.

That didn’t work for us. A general solution to any Mac problem is to trash the preferences file. It’s inconvenient but it usually works. Just not in this case.

Instead, we learned that the workaround was to modify one of the system files. If you aren’t sure what you are doing, take your computer to a professional. We aren’t responsible if something goes wrong(!).

Here are the steps we followed to fix the issue:

Nano interface
Nano interface
  • Open a Terminal window
  • Type  sudo nano /etc/auto_master
  • Enter the administrator password
  • Find the line that says this: /net -hosts -nobrowse,hidefromfinder,nosuid
  • Use the arrow keys and add a pound sign (#) before the / character
  • Now you have  #/net -hosts -nobrowse,hidefromfinder,nosuid
  • Click Control+O to save the file
  • Click Control+X to exit the Nano editor
  • Type in sudo automount -vc
  • This will flush the cache

Now, go to a File Open/Save dialog and see what happens. It fixed the lag for us completely.

It’s important to note that you have made this modification, so when the next Mavericks updates come out (10.9.2 or higher) and there is a fix for this problem, you will have to remove this workaround. Otherwise, something might not work. We’re not sure what might break, but we’ll deal with that and post it here when the time comes.

Attachments in Mac Mail

We were sending an invoice to a client this morning when we ran into a problem with Mac Mail in Mavericks. Mac Mail Attachments The invoice, as a JPG, was showing up inline rather than as an attachment.  This can be a major pain for the recipient of the email, as they will have trouble saving the picture.

We found that there is a simple way to get the attachment as an attachment rather than inline.  Open terminal and type in the following:

defaults write com.apple.mail DisableInlineAttachmentViewing 1

This will reconfigure Mac Mail so when you drag attachments into mail, it will attach rather than embed Terminalthem.  If you ever want to reverse the setting, change the 1 to a 0.

Note – to get terminal up and going, go to Spotlight, type in TERMINAL, and it will pop up.