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Starship Krupa

A cure for Browser Category creep?

Question

As someone who tries out and obtains a LOT of plug-ins, as well as likes to customize and organize his plug-in layout. Now, after 3 years of running Cakewalk I have 56 different categories that pop up on the menu when I'm selecting a category.

I guess what Cakewalk does is every time you install a new plug-in that has a new and unique "Category" tag embedded is it adds that category to its list. And that process seems to be a one-way street: I can't find a way to delete categories that I don't want to use.

You get the picture. Ever-expanding category list. How do I knock it down?

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Right click on the catagory, open the list and at the bottom is Reset category. If anything was in there it goes to the uncategorized folder.  

Screenshot (34).png

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Use Utilities -> Cakewalk Plug-in Manager. Works very well. Plus you can put a VST in more than one category. You don't tag a VST, you create categories and add VSTs to it.

You create a Plug In Layouts. For FX and instruments. Different ones if you want. Add Folders (Categories), add VSTs. As many as you want. Where you want. You can even have master Categories PaidFor and Freebie,

And then in the Browser, where you select Sort byr Category, Sort by Manufacturer you can select your own layout.

And it isn't Cakewalk that tags them, the manufacturer does.

Cakewalk's list (part thereof)
2116674951_2021-03-1818_09_16-Window.thumb.jpg.0562f63e4ea1b01453998ce92448be34.jpg
 

My list (complete)
101790880_2021-03-1818_09_29-Window.jpg.6435a7eec59e87df85ec14f0e7fc35a7.jpg

 

You can have sub-folders, and sub-sub-folders.
675313166_2021-03-1818_11_37-Window.jpg.bfc727bd3ca066b96d8d0224c47f863c.jpg

Edited by Nigel Mackay

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6 hours ago, John Vere said:

Right click on the category, open the list and at the bottom is Reset category. If anything was in there it goes to the uncategorized folder.

That doesn't address my issue, which is that the categories list in the menu where I choose a category (or categories) has grown humongous.

5 hours ago, Nigel Mackay said:

Use Utilities -> Cakewalk Plug-in Manager. Works very well

I haven't had the best luck with that. The layouts I've created with it are initially fine, but things go sideways when I install new plug-ins. They don't show up in the Browser.

Also, the utility is on the deprecation list, so I am shy about using it.

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Categories are stored in a SQLite database %appdata%\Cakewalk\Library\Library.db in the plugin_properties table

There are three sources for tags:

  • The VST3 plug-in manufacturers
  • The user through the plug-in browser
  • Cakewalk when they initially created library.db

AFAIK, the only way to reducing the number of tags is directly manipulate Library.db.  

I like DB Browser for SQLite for SQLite db work.

What I find annoying with the category drop down is it mixes FX and synth categories in one big list.

 

User created layouts are not automatically maintained. This is one of the few reasons the plug-in manager still exists as part of CbB.

 

 

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3 hours ago, Starship Krupa said:

That doesn't address my issue, which is that the categories list in the menu where I choose a category (or categories) has grown humongous.

I haven't had the best luck with that. The layouts I've created with it are initially fine, but things go sideways when I install new plug-ins. They don't show up in the Browser.

1) With your own list the number of categories is up to you.

2) If you use your own list you have to edit your layout to add the new plug-ins each time you add/remove.

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4 minutes ago, Nigel Mackay said:

If you use your own list you have to edit your layout to add the new plug-ins each time you add/remove.

That is a bigger pain than having a long category menu, for me. I test out multiple plug-ins every week.

Maybe I'll do some spelunking in the registry, see if I can find where Cakewalk is storing these.

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2 minutes ago, Nigel Mackay said:

See scooks post about Library.db.

🤦‍♂️ I somehow missed it. Apologies to both.

Quote

What I find annoying with the category drop down is it mixes FX and synth categories in one big list.

Ugh, yes, this compounds the issue I'm having. I have a good buddy who is a database master, I'll forward him library.db and see what he can come up with.

Edited by Starship Krupa

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My solution is I test all VST’s on my office machine. If I like a plug in ( rare) I then plunk it in my main DAW computer. I’m showing about 90 right now in my main computer and most of those are junk that cakewalk installed and I should get rid of some of them but this is time consuming stuff 

My office computer became a huge mess of plug ins so I did the smart thing and re did it with a fresh OS and SSD drive 

Edited by John Vere

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I have so many plugins that I now tend to use search in the browser panel more often than not. Usually putting in the first few letters is enough. When I find the one I want, if it is in the wrong category I will change it then. A classic case is "Wider" which I use quite a lot but can never remember the manufacturer or which category it is in.

Although that could just be me :D

Once found, I just drag it across to the fx bin from the browser

I watched a video the other week of composer Trevor Morris (Vikings) he has a template which his staff use to put new vsts in a track folder called "new" and every now and again he will go into it to try them out and decide which ones he likes.

Perhaps this is the answer, we just need to hire some assistants.

 

Edited by Hatstand

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23 hours ago, John Vere said:

Right click on the catagory, open the list and at the bottom is Reset category. If anything was in there it goes to the uncategorized folder.  

Screenshot (34).png

The best thing to do is to move the plugins to the category you want it to be in / and delete all the duplicate vsts  in the x86 common file folder and Vst folder. 

What's actually nice about moving thing around in the browser is that you can create subfolders too. You can place different compressors subfolder in its main folder. 

With me, My multiband plugin folder are placed in my compressor folder. This keeps things neat for me. The catergory delete itself when it becomes empty. I'm not much of a long list fan. 

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On 3/18/2021 at 11:22 AM, John Vere said:

Right click on the catagory, open the list and at the bottom is Reset category. If anything was in there it goes to the uncategorized folder.  

Screenshot (34).png

What can I do when Reset category is grayed out and isn't an option? I'm coming across a number of instances where Reset category is grayed out and I can't relegate them to the uncategorized folder. Is it possible that I've overflowed the uncharacterized folder?

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I tried opening library.db in DB Browser, did some searches, and there are categories in Cakewalk that don't show up in library.db, so I suspect that they are stored in some other location. Either that or my searches were faulty somehow, but I spent some time with it.

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