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ftrack Connect is a desktop application that provides an integration with your favorite DCC applications and allows your computer to communicate with ftrack projects, enabling enhanced functionality.

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Installing ftrack Connect

Standard (Out of the Box) ftrack Connect installation steps:

1. Go to the ftrack Connect download page at ftrack.com/downloads

2. Click the Download ftrack Connect button.

3. Scroll down and select your app's operating system to download.

4. Launch the installation file and follow the onscreen instructions.

5. Continue onto Launching the app below.


Using ftrack Connect

Launching the app

  • Windows users: Double-click the shortcut on the desktop or find it in the start menu.

  • macOS users: Double-click the ftrack-connect executable in the Applications folder.

  • Linux users: double-click the ftrack-connect executable in the folder where the installation .tar file was extracted.

MD5 - Enables verifying data integrity and detecting unintentional data corruption.


Signing into the app

Please note: Before you can start using Connect, you will need to sign in with your ftrack user account.

There are two ways how you can sign in to the Connect app:

  • Signing in automatically:

1. Enter the site name or https://sitename.ftrackapp.com account URL on the sign-in screen.

2. Upon clicking Sign in, your web browser will open and let you log in to your ftrack user account. If you’re already logged in to your ftrack user account, you will be authenticated and prompted to close the browser window.

3. You are now signed in to ftrack Connect and ready to use the app.

  • Signing in by using an API key:

Users can also sign into ftrack Connect without a web browser using their API key.

1. Click Sign in with username and API key at the bottom of the sign in screen.

2. Enter the site name or https://sitename.ftrackapp.com account URL.

3. Enter your ftrack account user name.

4. Find your personal API key on the My account > Security settings > Personal API key. (More info here).

5. Copy and paste the key into the ftrack Connect app and click Sign in.

6. You’re now signed in to ftrack Connect and ready to use the app.

Tip: Once signed in, you will not have to sign in again, even if you close and reopen the app.


Launching a desktop application or action

The Actions tab displays shortcuts of available Actions and supported desktop applications.

  • For example, if you have Adobe Photoshop installed on your computer, a shortcut to the app will display in this tab and let you launch it together with the ftrack integration.

Tip: Learn more about Actions and how you can add your own.

Desktop application

The Connect app provides two types of software integrations:

1. Those that can be launched from a task context only.
2. Those that can be launched from any context (project, task, folder, etc.).

Tip: If you have trouble finding an application on the Actions tab, please see the FAQ below.

A desktop application can be launched by simply clicking its icon. If multiple versions of an application exist on your computer, a menu with each version will appear.

Please note: We are currently in the middle of a technology transition, and some integrations are not yet considered production-ready to be used with the updated Connect version.

Action

An Action can be triggered by simply clicking its icon. Any Action displayed in this tab is the same as those available in the web interface of ftrack.


Publishing files

The Publish tab enables you to create new assets or version up an existing asset on a project without launching an application.

Tip: You can read more about publishing in ftrack here.

Adding components

An asset version can hold several components. Each component usually represents a file on a disk. You can drag and drop files from your computer into the dashed line area to create a component for each file, or alternatively, browse to the file(s) by clicking the Browse button.

Each component’s name will be based on the filename of the file. You can manually edit the name if desired by clicking the name of the component and typing a new name.

A component can be removed by clicking the trash can icon next to each entry.

Please note: Sequences of files will automatically be detected and added as one entry.

Selecting a linked entity

Each asset version needs to be linked to an entity on a project. We recommend linking asset versions to tasks, but you can also choose other entity types.

You can select an entity in two ways:

1. By clicking the Browse button next to the Linked to field in the ftrack Connect app and selecting an entity from the project tree dialog.

2. By clicking the Publish files with Connect button in the top of the sidebar in the web interface.

If you choose the first way: you can navigate through the project by double-clicking items in the list.

The navigation bar at the top will show you where you are, and you can also click an item in the navigation bar to jump back up the hierarchy.

Alternatively, use the neighboring Navigate up button to move up a level at a time.

Please note: If an item you expect to see in the list is not appearing, try clicking the reload button to refresh the list from the server.

Creating a new asset or versioning up an existing asset

You can choose to publish a new version of a previously published asset or publish the first version of a new asset.

To create a new asset, enable Create new > Select asset type, and give it a Name.

To publish a new version of an existing asset, select Version up existing and then the name of an existing asset in the list.

Please note: The list of asset types can be managed from System settings > Workflow > Asset types in ftrack.

Tip: The asset name and type must be unique when creating new assets.

Other optional properties

  • Web playable

Selecting the Web playable option encodes the file to be playable directly in the web browser. This will also update the thumbnail.

Please note: Not all file formats can be encoded, just png/jpg and mov.

  • Thumbnail

If not selecting the Web playable option, you can upload a thumbnail for this asset version by dragging and dropping an image file here.

  • Description

You can enter a brief description of the published asset or the changes made since the last published version. Adding context to the asset can be especially helpful for your teammates.


Using storage scenarios

The majority of ftrack's integrations require a storage scenario for ftrack to handle the output paths.

Although this isn't the case for all integrations, it's nevertheless highly recommended to have a storage scenario set up for all the operating systems in use at a company before you start using any Connect and its integrations.

The storage scenario defines where files should be stored when using ftrack integrated applications like ftrack Connect and Adobe Illustrator, for example.

The storage scenario will be configured according to the different platforms used (Linus, Windows, OS X). Paths will be generated accordingly.


Customizing ftrack Connect

ftrack Connect is an incredibly powerful app that can be deeply integrated into your pipeline with custom plugins and processes.

Examples of added functionality include your own custom Actions, event processing scripts or listeners, Location plugins, and many other possibilities.

Custom functionality can be picked up by the ftrack Connect app by placing it in a special plugin directory that the app is watching.

Plugin directories vary by the operating system. You can find it easily on your computer by clicking the menu bar icon and selecting Open plugin directory.

  • macOS users: ~/Library/Application Support/ftrack-connect-plugins

  • Windows users: C:\Documents and Settings\<User>\Application Data\Local Settings\ftrack\ftrack-connect-plugins

  • Linux users: ~/.local/share/ftrack-connect-plugins

Tip: You can read more about developing for ftrack connect here.


Troubleshooting / FAQ

How to troubleshoot if I am having problems with installing ftrack Connect?

  • Make sure you are using the latest app version.

  • Contact support [Send us a detailed description of the issue with screenhot(s)]

Why my application is not shown in the Actions tab?

If you can’t find an application in the Actions tab and have installed it in the default location, first browse to and select a task as the action context at the top of the tab, then wait a second for the tab to reload, and the application you are looking for should be displayed. If you know the application is installed in a non-default location on your computer or network, you will need to modify the application Action hook file (which requires Python knowledge and is only recommended for advanced users).

Why are my DCCs not showing up when opening ftrack Connect?

In order to launch a DCC using ftrack, the app needs to know the context in which you want to launch that DCC. This is most commonly done by setting a context for the task that you wish to work on.

By default, when you first launch the ftrack Connect desktop app, a context is not set, which means your installed DCCs will not show as available launchers. Once you’ve set the task context, you will then see the available DCCs that you have installed plugins for, and you can select which one you want to launch into.

To set your task context in ftrack Connect, you can either use the Browse button or assign the task from ftrack (Right-click on a task > Actions, and the DDC should appear amongst the available launchers.)

Please note: Apart from the Adobe Suite (due to technical limitations), all other DCCs will require you to set the task context before you’ll see what DCCs are available.

How do I know what version of Connect I’m using?

Details on the ftrack Connect version you have installed can be found in the About dialog.

Select About in the context menu that will be displayed when you click the ftrack icon in the menu bar/taskbar. Here you will also find information about bundled integrations, user signed in, ftrack server currently connected, etc.

Where can I find the ftrack Connect log files?

The log files can be found in a separate directory from the ftrack Connect installation. You can open the directory from the About dialog by selecting About in the context menu that will be displayed when you click the ftrack icon in the menu bar/taskbar, and then clicking Open log directory.

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