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Rodrigo Elesbao

Feature suggestion: organize plugins by folder tree

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Just to thank you by Cakewalk, which I find it wonderful and powerful; and to suggest you a feature: just mirroring the plugins folder tree structure in Plugins TAB, as in Windows Explorer. Oftenly, we want to organize our - usually many - thirdy party plugins by ourselves, and this is a very fast way to do that. I used to use that feature in my ancient Synapse Orion (below) and that make things pretty simple. Thats just a suggestion, I know how hard things could be. Thank you for this nice piece of software.
 

path tree organized.png

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This was the default layout for VST2 plug-ins until August 2016 when the new Sort by Category/Manufacturer/Type layouts were introduced. Prior to August 2016 DX plug-ins were sorted by manufacturer and VST3 were sorted by Category.

It is still possible to create a custom layout to mimic the OS directory tree using the plug-in manager but custom layouts do not get automatically updated when changes are made to the plug-in directories.

 

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Yeah, but I find that Category/Manufacturer/Type sort layout so... insufficient, often a sort of rework to do. "Oh, I need a Manufacturer's plugin!". My thoughts are more like "What about a distortion? Ok, it's gonna be Distortion X, where did I put it?" As I did say in another forum, those layouts actually organizes the plugins in a huge one list. It's like take all kind of gadgets, tag them by categories, and so put them in just ONE drawer in a cabinet. All the DAWs actually do that for some reason. Why would I need to pass by a reverb when I want a distortion?

 

path tree organized cakewalk.png

Edited by Rodrigo Elesbao
wrong image attached

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Category tags are a VST3 feature. When the default changed in August 2016, Cakewalk created a database of category tags for its DX/VST2 plug-ins and many 9rd party plug-ins. Still there are quite a few plug-ins that do not have categories setup in the database.

Regardless of the plug-in format, users may create and change the categories as they see fit. A plug-in may have multiple tags or no tags (in which case the fall into the Uncategorized folder).

If one cannot remember where a plug-in is located in a layout, there is a search option just above the layout tree. Partial name searches can be very effective.

 

 

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does seem like an oversight to leave out sorting by folder tree, that hopefully would be an easy implementaion/addition

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Losing the original "Default - All Plug-ins" layout in August 2016 was a big problem for me and I did let Cakewalk know about it. I would not mind if Noel added it back. My VST2 folder tree is ready for it to be restored.

The VST3 folder tree can be a mess as many manufacturers dump their files in the root C:\Program Files\Common Files\VST3 and provide no way short of manually moving the files after installation. I suppose they are relying on DAWs using category tags. At least CbB supports modifying the tags.

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i think the vst3 folder is at least an attempt to make it consistent, but yeah plugin devs could do better - use manufacturer or product or category sub-folders, matching the plugin metadata when possible

code-wise folder tree is the easiest thing for host to use/offer once you've scanned it

Edited by pwalpwal
added "plugin" and then "for host"

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6 minutes ago, pwalpwal said:

code-wise folder tree is the easiest thing to use/offer once you've scanned it

Code-wise using existing features is the easiest. Re-integrating old code or adding a new sort option is not the easiest thing to do.

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12 hours ago, scook said:

Code-wise using existing features is the easiest. Re-integrating old code or adding a new sort option is not the easiest thing to do.

sure

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