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Ben Chase

(RESOLVED) Plug-in Manager painfully slow since 2018.11 update

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@msmcleod I just went back over to Cakewalk to try out this nifty idea of creating a new category or ctrl-clicking.  Now I cannot get the properties dialog to display at all for any Audio FX in the Browser.  It still works for Instruments, but right-clicking any of the Audio FX does nothing - no properties popup.

  • I closed my project and re-opened.  Nothing.
  • I closed Cakewalk and re-opened. Nothing.
  • I closed Cakewalk and that project, opened a different project. Nothing.

These are the kinds of things that drive me nuts.  If I'm in the middle of a tune and encounter one of these oddities, it makes me want to quit, or switch to a different program.

 

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16 minutes ago, Blades said:

@msmcleod I just went back over to Cakewalk to try out this nifty idea of creating a new category or ctrl-clicking.  Now I cannot get the properties dialog to display at all for any Audio FX in the Browser.  It still works for Instruments, but right-clicking any of the Audio FX does nothing - no properties popup.

  • I closed my project and re-opened.  Nothing.
  • I closed Cakewalk and re-opened. Nothing.
  • I closed Cakewalk and that project, opened a different project. Nothing.

These are the kinds of things that drive me nuts.  If I'm in the middle of a tune and encounter one of these oddities, it makes me want to quit, or switch to a different program.

 

Wow, that's strange.

It works perfectly for me on Audio FX, MIDI FX, and Instruments.

I guess it's possible %APPDATA%\Cakewalk\Library\Library.db has somehow got corrupted. How.... I've no idea.

However, if you come out of Cakewalk and rename Library.db to Library.db.bak, and restart Cakewalk it should recreate it. I'm guessing that this might make your properties dialog re-appear.

You can always rename it back if it doesn't.

CORRECTION - renaming it back doesn't restore the layout :(

Edited by msmcleod

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7 hours ago, John said:

Heck, I didn't know  that one could do all that the plugin manager could do in the browser. Cool.

I also did not know that!  

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While on the topic of plugin scanning and browsing... Could it be possible to include the current selected grouping names in the browser plugin search (manufacturer, category, what have you)? For example, sometimes you remember the manufacturer of the plugin but not the plugin name. 🙂

Of course you can select Manufacturer and scroll down... but for example Waves plugins are so far down there.

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10 hours ago, Noel Borthwick said:

The time taken has nothing to do with the listbox population. Its reading the registry that is slow. Though you see it slow for 7 VSTi's behind the scenes it has to go through the entire inventory to find them. If you have a few hundred VST's a lot of registry reads. The DX effects enumeration is much more efficient than the registry enumeration hence its fast. 

The logic can of course be improved by using caching (like CbB does) and this was a todo item back in the day. This wouldn't improve the first load time of the plugin box but subsequent loads would be quick.

maybe it's time to move away from storing the VST inventory in the registry? or would there be too much knock-on work?

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We already have mechanics to store it in a database since the last two years. Its also in the registry for backwards compatibility with other versions of SONAR.

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13 hours ago, Blades said:

@msmcleod I just went back over to Cakewalk to try out this nifty idea of creating a new category or ctrl-clicking.  Now I cannot get the properties dialog to display at all for any Audio FX in the Browser.  It still works for Instruments, but right-clicking any of the Audio FX does nothing - no properties popup.

  • I closed my project and re-opened.  Nothing.
  • I closed Cakewalk and re-opened. Nothing.
  • I closed Cakewalk and that project, opened a different project. Nothing.

These are the kinds of things that drive me nuts.  If I'm in the middle of a tune and encounter one of these oddities, it makes me want to quit, or switch to a different program.

 

Note that to edit categories inside the plugin browser you must set your filter (dropdown on plugins tab) to "Sort by category" or it wont work. That is likely why its not showing up for you.

Some important distinctions between the plugin manager, layouts and the built in plugin browser. The plugin browser stores all the scanned plugins in a database and the categories are like tags so you can group things under multiple categories. As you found you can make your own categories as well. (These are not to be confused with the category in the plugin manager which specifies the plugin type)

Any changes in categorization in the plugin browser only apply when the "Sort by category"  filter is selected. i.e. it is completely distinct from plugin layouts which are authored in the plugin manager. If you want to utilize the plugin browser categories in other plugin menus or as layouts you can simply choose "Manage Layouts" from the plugins tab dropdown and it will automatically populate a layout with all your custom categories and even honor multiple categories. Once you save a new layout with that you can use that as a layout in the plugin browser from then on.

Basically plugin layouts can be thought of as user categorized sets of plugins. The plugin browser categories are "built in" - it initially builds its categories from categories advertised by the plugin vendors for VST3 and there are also some factory authored ones for common VST2 plugins that we did. You are free to save these as plugin layouts and keep different sets of them or use the simpler built in browser categories. I suspect most users would find the latter approach simpler than maintaining plugin layouts.

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There was a bug introduced in later versions of Platinum and/or early ones of Bandlab when using plug-in layouts, where they are no longer distinct between different areas (eg. can no longer have one plug-in view for clip effects, one for track effects and one for bus).  Reduced the utility somewhat.

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I believe that was an intentional change. It was too confusing for many people to have one layout per section. It was done in 2016 or so.
Generally layouts are too much work for most people so we switched to the tag based built in plugin categories which is quick and easier to use.

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I never organized my few hundred plugins. I know what they are and find them easily.

I usually just type the name in the browser.

Seems like Noel likes me best and built me exactly what i needed. 

#I'm the favorite

Edited by Gswitz
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I use the default menus and don't create any custom menus in the plug in manager but I used to and I know the time and effort I put in to making those menus.

This is kind of a cool feature to have. It gives CbB another great depth at customization. That's what every DAW's greatest point is (customization). A way to use the DAW like you created it, similar to the music you make.

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Note that to edit categories inside the plugin browser you must set your filter (dropdown on plugins tab) to "Sort by category" or it wont work. That is likely why its not showing up for you.

Yep - that was completely it.  A little ironic that using a saved view, which I'd use to specifically show plugins in a certain way breaks the method of being able to sort/filter by them.

Anyway - completely works and I think in general, this direct from the browser method would be preferred!

Thanks.

 

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I don't recall seeing anything in here about another unique PIM attribute: the ability to click on a scan folder, call up Options, and set attributes for all plug-ins in the folder, simultaneously (e.g., "Configure as Tempo-Based Effect").

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On 1/9/2019 at 7:49 AM, Noel Borthwick said:

Sure thats fine but I assume thats that's something you do very occasionally right? Once you make a layout you don't need plugin manager anymore.

Hi Noel, as one who has a terrible addiction to buying plugins (or sourcing free ones) - I am adjusting my plugin layouts every couple weeks to include new ones or rearrange the schema. I seem to be in the plugin manager quite regularly. 

OOPS! Just realised I'm responding to what was said several pages back. I'm a bit slow today.

 

Edited by Pastacrow

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"Sort by Category" has the ability to create folders. Plug-ins may be in more than one folder. Folders may not be nested. This is the only layout that may be customized using the browser.

The Plug-in Manager is the only program supplied by BandLab to create additional custom layouts.

There is a third party program developed by  @TheSteven called MenuMagic that creates custom layouts.

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On 1/8/2019 at 6:27 PM, Noel Borthwick said:

Plugin Manager is not really being maintained these days and it hasn't been updated in a very long time.  We plan to ultimately depreciate it from Cakewalk. Its only provided for legacy reasons.

The only reason you need to ever use it today is for creating plugin layouts. Everything else and more can be done much more efficiently directly within the Cakewalk plugin browser tab, including scanning from preferences.

What is the reason you still use plugin manager?

Layout is key Noel , also i would to be able to do everything from the browser ..

Another thing is being able to see plugins gui.  Some think it s a gimmic but it s priceless when you have zillion of plugin to manage , and doubles ....

layout is updated every purchases , and every projects !!

 

And the most ilportant thing i used to do via register , is plugin renaming !!

Edited by Zo
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Plugin renaming is a big help especially with PI's like Kontakt that install 3 variants with the same name. 

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Another disadvantage of only having the "Category" tree instead of custom layouts is the fact that it is simply sorted by name (categories and plug-ins) and you do not have the possibility to reorder and set separaters. I really would miss the Plug-in Manager. To me this would be a real degradation of CbB compared to Sonar, because I always preferred it compared to the limited possibilities in most other DAWs.

And not to forget, there is another good thing of custom layouts: You have full control over the plugin type, e.g. if you have problems with a Vst3 of a plugin, then you can choose the Vst2 to be included in your custom layout. You do this once and you do not have to be aware of it each time you select the plugin. The same is true for the exclusion of plugins. I guess all this stuff is not possible in the Plug-in Browser!

By the way I don't know if it is possible at all to copy the "Category" changes from one computer to another other? This is also a crucial feature of the Plug-in Manager.

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5 hours ago, marled said:

By the way I don't know if it is possible at all to copy the "Category" changes from one computer to another other? This is also a crucial feature of the Plug-in Manager.

Copy %appdata%\Cakewalk\Library\Library.db

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