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What determines the location where ShadowEdit files are placed? What's involved in moving them to another location or computer?

In my PowerDirector preferences, I have turned on "Enable HD Video Processing (Shadow file)"

Under the File preferences, I have both the import and export folders set to D:\tire\

I attempt to bring my project home at night so that I can work on it there, and then bring it back to work in the morning so when it's quiet I can work on it there. Under my project directory (d:\tire) there were two hidden directories/folders, "Preview Cache Files" and "ShadowEditFiles". (I have my Windows options set to show me hidden folders.)

So far nothing has ever been created in the "Preview Cache Files" folder. What is that used for and under what circumstances are files placed there?

Anyway, I've been moving my project back and forth since the weekend, and today for the first time (with no changes to my project settings) suddenly I've had new preview cache files (at least I believe that's what they are) created right in the D:\tires folder and not in the "ShadowEditFiles" sub-folder. There are STILL preview files in "D:\tires\ShadowEditFiles" but they're older and not complete. (It takes HOURS to create them it seems and only this morning did they finally all complete, but they're right in the main project directory rather than the sub-directory I believe they should be in.

Would someone please be so kind as to try to help me understand how this works?

Thank you.

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Dafydd B [Avatar]
Senior Contributor Private Message Joined: Aug 26, 2006 08:20 Messages: 11973 Offline
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Hi Eldor,
A quick search on the forum - all PDR forums will call up a lot of information on Shadow Edit files.

Saving/creating location - see Preference settings/options.

Do you need them? A powerful computer does NOT need Shadow Edit Files and on any system the creation of these low end mpeg2 temp files is using up resources. You also have to wait for ALL shadow files to have been generated before starting to edit using them (hence the partial files you found). Failure to wait causes unusual issues for the video editor (we've had to deal with some wacky problems over the years). Uncheck the option in Preferences.

Dafydd

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at Mar 12. 2015 04:08

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Dafydd, I did a search of this forum for shadow edit files and all it's done is left me confused. I saw nothing about their location and how to transfer/copy them to another computer. Nor did I find anything that would explain why sometimes they are produced in a subdirectory called ShadowEditFiles and other times right in the project direction, with the "Files" settings in preferences NOT HAVING CHANGED.

And further confusion about whether they're needed or not. You (and others) have been suggesting my computer (particularly the video card) at home isn't powerful enough. My understanding was that in such a case, ShadowEditFiles would HELP the performance. Yet you're suggesting I turn that option off.

Just sign me,

Confused!
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Carl312
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Texas, USA Joined: Mar 16, 2010 20:11 Messages: 9090 Offline
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Quote: Dafydd, I did a search of this forum for shadow edit files and all it's done is left me confused. I saw nothing about their location and how to transfer/copy them to another computer. Nor did I find anything that would explain why sometimes they are produced in a subdirectory called ShadowEditFiles and other times right in the project direction, with the "Files" settings in preferences NOT HAVING CHANGED.

And further confusion about whether they're needed or not. You (and others) have been suggesting my computer (particularly the video card) at home isn't powerful enough. My understanding was that in such a case, ShadowEditFiles would HELP the performance. Yet you're suggesting I turn that option off.

Just sign me,

Confused!

If you do turn on Shadow files, you must wait for all of the files to be generated.

Then you may see improvement in the editing experience.

You do not need to copy the shadow files, they are generated when you open the project if none are there and use Shadow files is checked in preferences.

Shadow files are found in Preferences > File > Export Folder\ShadowEditFiles
Export folder contains the actual folder.

It is better if you have a computer that is powerful enough to not need to use shadow files.

This message was edited 3 times. Last update was at Mar 12. 2015 11:41

Carl312: Windows 10 64-bit 8 GB RAM,AMD Phenom II X4 965 3.4 GHz,ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB,240GB SSD,two 1TB HDs.

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Thank you, Carl!

Yes, of course it's better to have a more powerful computer, but I just can't justify it at the moment. I'm only "dabbling" with video editing so far.

I didn't know that you must wait for the shadow files to be created before editing. Thanks for pointing that out. On my computer(s) it takes FOREVER for that to happen, unfortunately.

Do you have any comment/suggestion about how to move a video project back and forth, hopefully including those shadow files? I like to take my project to work so that when I have time I can work on it, but also then take it back home at the end of the day.

Cheers!
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Sorry, another question... Both my home and work computers have the Preferences > File > Export Folder set exactly the same way for my project and the directory structures on both machines are the same.

Yet even with those settings, suddenly I was getting those shadow files being created NOT in the ShadowEditFiles sub folder specified in Preferences, but in the actual project folder, which is set in Preferences. I can't figure out what would make them be placed there rather in the sub folder they started out in and which is specified in Preferences.

I have some older shadow files in "d:\tires\shadoweditfiles" and newer ones in "d:\tires" together with my media clips and project files.

Do you have any idea what would make this happen?


Quote:
Shadow files are found in Preferences > File > Export Folder > ShadowEditFiles
Export folder contains the actual folder.
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Carl312
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Texas, USA Joined: Mar 16, 2010 20:11 Messages: 9090 Offline
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Quote: Thank you, Carl!

Yes, of course it's better to have a more powerful computer, but I just can't justify it at the moment. I'm only "dabbling" with video editing so far.

I didn't know that you must wait for the shadow files to be created before editing. Thanks for pointing that out. On my computer(s) it takes FOREVER for that to happen, unfortunately.

Do you have any comment/suggestion about how to move a video project back and forth, hopefully including those shadow files? I like to take my project to work so that when I have time I can work on it, but also then take it back home at the end of the day.

Cheers!

The only safe method is to Pack Project Materials. You can then copy that Pack Project Materials folder to a Flash memory or to a portable hard drive.

Pack Project materials only copies the 'Stuff' on the Timeline.
If you want the other material in the library, make a folder in the Pack Project folder and copy the assets to it.

PD 13 does have a check mark to include the other material in the library.

[Thumb - Check Mark in PD13 Pack Project Materials.PNG]
 Filename
Check Mark in PD13 Pack Project Materials.PNG
[Disk]
 Description
Check mark in PD 13 to include Library files
 Filesize
212 Kbytes
 Downloaded:
131 time(s)
Carl312: Windows 10 64-bit 8 GB RAM,AMD Phenom II X4 965 3.4 GHz,ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB,240GB SSD,two 1TB HDs.

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Still no one is answering my question about how to move the ShadowEditFiles from one computer to another. Or what "switch" tells PD that those files exist (and even maybe where they are).

These files persist from editing session to session, so they're not being recreated every time you start the project in PD. SOMETHING must tell PD that they exist.

Once we know that, it should be an easy matter of copying the right files to the second computer, without PD then having to recreate them.

(And yes, it's best to have a powerful enough computer not to need these files. SIGH)
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Carl312
Senior Contributor Private Message Location: Texas, USA Joined: Mar 16, 2010 20:11 Messages: 9090 Offline
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Quote: Still no one is answering my question about how to move the ShadowEditFiles from one computer to another. Or what "switch" tells PD that those files exist (and even maybe where they are).

These files persist from editing session to session, so they're not being recreated every time you start the project in PD. SOMETHING must tell PD that they exist.

Once we know that, it should be an easy matter of copying the right files to the second computer, without PD then having to recreate them.

(And yes, it's best to have a powerful enough computer not to need these files. SIGH)

I do not think it is recommended to copy the shadow files from one computer to another computer.

If you were moving to a more powerful computer, you would not need the shadow files.

I have seen in the forum mentioned that shadow files can actually slow down a faster computer.

The shadow files are in the folder of the Export folder as set in Preferences. I think for them to be of used on the second computer the settings in Preferences and the folders would have to be the same on both computers.

You could copy those files in that folder to the same folder structure on the other computer.

Still it is best to let the other computer generate the needed shadow files, only if necessary.

All you really want to do, is copy your project materials to the other computer. Pack Project Materials to an external hard drive will do that.


Carl312: Windows 10 64-bit 8 GB RAM,AMD Phenom II X4 965 3.4 GHz,ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB,240GB SSD,two 1TB HDs.

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Quote:
I do not think it is recommended to copy the shadow files from one computer to another computer.


Have you seen that stated somewhere?

Quote:
If you were moving to a more powerful computer, you would not need the shadow files.


It's already pretty much been determined that my home computer cannot really be called powerful (or powerful enough). So at least there, shadow edit files should help.

Quote:
The shadow files are in the folder of the Export folder as set in Preferences. I think for them to be of used on the second computer the settings in Preferences and the folders would have to be the same on both computers.


That's what I have! Same Export folder set in Preferences on both machines, same directory structure, etc. Yet suddenly (without any changes to Preferences, and I double-checked that) I've got some (older) shadow edit files in d:\tires\ShadowEditFiles and some (newer) ones right in d:\tires. I'm trying to figure out what could have caused that.

Quote:
All you really want to do, is copy your project materials to the other computer. Pack Project Materials to an external hard drive will do that.


There's nothing that Pack Project Materials does that's special. (I've tried it.) Copying the ENTIRE project directory, including the ShadowEditFiles sub-directory should get you everything that Pack Project Materials does AND MORE. There is absolutely no reason that I can see for this not to work. And PPM doesn't get the shadow files or as we know, anything not actually on the project's timeline.

Anyway, I guess I'll just chalk that up to gremlins. On my work computer I'll try turning off the ShadowEditFiles and will delete them. And I'll see how things work.
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Dafydd B [Avatar]
Senior Contributor Private Message Joined: Aug 26, 2006 08:20 Messages: 11973 Offline
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Hi Eldor,
Most of us regulars here have uncheck Shadow edit file generation. You've asked about moving Shadow Files etc. It is a long while since I actually played with doing that, moving these temp files and substituting them with others. Rather than try to pin an editor down on this matter I would suggest you experiment. Simply carry out the following.
1. Put one HD file into the library (I used the boat.wmv file). And wait for the icon to turn green.
2. Go to the Shadow File location, a) it's a hidden folder called ShadowEditFiles b) See Preferences/File/Export location, to find it.
3. Change the Preference/General settings to uncheck
4. Change the Export location
5. Move/copy the Shadow folder to the new export location
6. reengage the Preference/General/Shadow file option to check
7. Go to the media Library
8. Icon should be green

In my quick test, moving the Folder and changing the export location worked.

Dafydd

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at Mar 12. 2015 16:17

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Dafydd, I'm certainly NOT trying to "pin an editor down on this matter". I'm sorry you feel I am.

As I said several times, I'm a beginner with this, and I was hoping the assembled expertise from the kind folks here would help me figure this out.

Your "test" has no real relevance to the issue.

And don't worry, I am and will continue to experiment and if I figure anything out, I'll report it here in hopes that it might help someone else.

Just to clarify the issue... With two identically set up computers (identical in terms of directory structures and PowerDirector Preference settings for creating ShadowEditFiles and Import and Export folders set the same), it SHOULD be possible to pick up a video project entirely (the project folder and the two hidden folders for "Preview Cache Files" and "ShadowEditFiles") from computer #1 and move/copy it to computer #2 and HAVE IT USE the already-created (from computer #1) ShadowEditFiles. But that appears NOT to work. The shadow files appear to be re-created on computer #2, even though the ones from #1 should be used.

I am continuing to test and will report my findings.

(I'm also upgrading the GPU this weekend AND the hard drives. My drive C: (where I keep Windows and applications) is an SSD, and physical drives D: and E: are/were 5400 rpm 1Tb drives. I'm replacing both those with 7200 rpm 2Tb drives.)

Cheers!
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Myk
Senior Member Private Message Location: The Hartland of Michigan Joined: Feb 05, 2015 16:09 Messages: 205 Offline
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When a computer creates a file, it writes more than the file name to that file. It also creates other coding, and the computer knows where it put it.

Trying to move a temp file to another computer can result in that machine not knowing anything about it, so it is ignored. It may even get in the way of other functions.

I know this doesn't answer your Q about why one computer writes it here, the other writes it there, but none-the-less, each machine knows where it's own file is.
As has been suggested, just turn shadow files off. .
.
Never, under any circumstances, combine a laxative and sleeping pill on the same night.

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I know about that, but I doubt that the *_0.MPG shadow files have any such info written into them, but it's possible. In any case, even if what you suggest is happening, taking those files and dropping them (all of them) into another IDENTICAL directory structure on another machine should work.

In this case, it's almost as if PowerDirector says "you can't fool me... I know this is computer #2 and not #1, even though everything is identical."

What is a possibly more likely scenario is that the shadow files created are somehow DIFFERENT, because the video cards on both computers are different. But since the source files and the final output files are supposed to be the same, it's a bit of a reach to suspect the shadow files are different.

Quote: When a computer creates a file, it writes more than the file name to that file. It also creates other coding, and the computer knows where it put it.

Trying to move a temp file to another computer can result in that machine not knowing anything about it, so it is ignored. It may even get in the way of other functions.

I know this doesn't answer your Q about why one computer writes it here, the other writes it there, but none-the-less, each machine knows where it's own file is.
As has been suggested, just turn shadow files off.
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