Logic Pro 7.1 – File Management (2005-0904)
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Logic Pro 7.1
Personal Manual by Edgar Rothermich
EdgarRothermich@mac.com <http://homepage.mac.com/edgarrothermich>
File Management
File Type
Logic uses only one file type for storing the “Song”. The file has the extension “.lso” (logicsong).
Based on different behaviors, Logic uses actually 3 variations of the song, even if they all look the same in the Finder
A Song behaves like a:
Regular Song –Template Song – Project Song
Regular
Template
Project
Regular Song vs Project Song
Regular Songs and Project Songs have a different instruction set for handling Media Files and Auto Backups
Because these instruction sets are stored inside the song file, you cannot be 100% sure if a song file behaves like a Regular Song or a Project Song
by just looking at it in the Finder.
When you work on a song, you manage a lot of data: Record MIDI data, create Mixer movements, import audio and video files, load audio
instruments, plug-ins and sampler instruments, setup the environment and more. All this information has to be stored in your song, so the next
time you open the song, all the information is exactly there where you left it.
You can divide all the stored information into two categories: Data which is stored directly in the song and data which is only referenced to the song
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Category 1: Data which is stored in the song
o MIDI data and music related data
o Mixer data
o Environment
o Screensets, Transform Sets, Hyper Sets, Score Settings
o Song Settings (“File > Song Settings”)
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Category 2: Data which is not stored in the song – only a reference
o Audio Files, Apples Loops
o Sampler Instruments (EXS24)
o Samples (EXS24 Samples)
o Ultrabeat Samples
o Impulse Responses
o Movie Files
These are all media files and they can be quite big. The song file would become way too big if Logic would store all that information
inside the song file. Instead, only a reference in form of a path name to the media file is stored.
But there a two potential problem:
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When you move only your song to a different computer, all the Category 1 data will be right there, your MIDI data, Mixer setting, etc. But
wheat happened to your Category 2 data, all the media files. Your song is pointing to audio files, movie files, Sampler instruments that
might not be available on the new computer you are open up the song. The stored path names to the media files are broken!
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What if you move or delete some media files on your computer, by accident or on purpose? You also get a broke link the next time you open
a song which has a reference to those media files
Here is where the Project song comes in:
The Project Song has the instruction to copy the media files to the same parent directory. This is the same folder where the Project Song is located.
(This folder is considered the “Project Folder”). The path name reference to the media file therefore points to its Project Folder. Now all the media
files needed for that song are conveniently located in one place. If you want to move the project to a different computer/location, you just move the
folder and you know that you have all the related files. If you want to touch any media files inside a Project Folder, then you know that you might
break a reference link from the Project Song inside that folder.
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Instructions for a Project Song
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The parent directory of the Project Song is considered its Project Folder
Media files, used in the Project Song will be copied into the Project Folder and then referenced.
Project Folder
A subfolder for each media type will be created inside the Project Folder. The “Audio Files” folder
gets created together with the Project Song, the other folders gets created when needed.
o Audio Files
o Impulse Responses
o Sampler Instruments
o Samples
The Project Settings define which media files are copied and which ones staying in their original
location. The settings are established when you create a Project Song with the “File > New”
command and can later be changed from the “File > Project > Settings” menu
Two additional media file types which, are not automatically copied to the Project Folder, can be
copied with a separate command; “Consolidate” or “Save as Project”. A separate subfolder will also
be created:
o Movie Files
o Ultrabeat Samples
A “Song Backup” folder inside the Project Folder will be created for storing the backup files based on the “Audio Backup” feature, setup in
“File > Preferences >Global > Song Handling> Auto Backup”
NOTE:
The instructions are stored with the song file. This means when you are in the Finder and move or copy a Project Song out of its Project Folder
to a new different folder, then that folder becomes its new Project Folder, because the Project Folder is not stored as a specific folder with a
folder name but only the function of a “parent directory”. In other words the folder in which a Project Song is located is per definition its Project
Folder. When you open a Project Song that you have copied or moved in the Finder and drag more media files into it, then these files will be
copied into subfolder of the new parent directory. All the pathname references to the original Project Folder still exist, but it is advised that you
do a “Consolidate” command to get all your media files back under one “umbrella”.
Compare Instructions
Media Files
Auto Backup
Regular Song
Leave the media files in their original location
and store only the pathname as a reference
Save a backup file into a folder with the same
name as the song but with an extension “.bak”
Project Song
Copy the media files first to the Project Folder (based on the
Settings) and then store the pathname as a reference.
When you drag media files into your song, then audio files will be
copied right away, where other media files will be copied the next
time you save your song.
Save the backup file into a folder called “Song Backup” inside the
Project Folder
You can see in the “File > Project” menu if a loaded song is actually a Regular Song or Project Song:
Because in a Regular Song all the media files stay in their original location, there are no settings necessary which determine which media files get
copied to the Project Folder
“File > Project” menu
Project Song Settings
The instructions for the Project Song tells Logic to copy the media files to the Project Folder. In the Project Settings you can decide which media files
are affected by this instructions. You can change the settings any time.
Activate/De-Activate the commands with their checkboxes:
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Copy external audio files to project folder
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Convert audio file sample rate when importing
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Copy EXS instruments to project folder
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Copy EXS samples to project folder
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Copy impulse responses to project folder: for the Space Designer)
Technically you could uncheck all the options and the Project Song would treat media files like a Regular Song: leave the media file at their location.
(The Audio Files folder gets created in the Project Folder even if you uncheck that copy option)
Movie files and Ultrabeat files will not be copied when opened in a Project Song. You have to use the “Consolidate” or “Save as Project” command if you
want to include them in the project folder.
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Auto Backup
Usually if you open any computer file (text file, picture file, Logic file), edit it and save it, the original file will be overwritten with the new edits. If you
realize that you made a mistake and want to go back to the original file then you are out of luck, because it was overwritten. Logic however provides
some safety mechanism that enables you to go back to previously saved files.
You open a song file (“My Song”) and make some changes. Now when you save that file, Logic will first put a copy of the original file into a backup
folder add an incremental two digit number at the end of the file name (“My Song.00”) and then overwrites the original file. Now you make more
changes and hit the save command. Again, Logic puts a copy of that file into the previously created backup folder and adds the next higher number at
the end of the file name (“My Song.01”). In the “File > Preferences > Global > Song Handling > Auto Backup” is a popup menu, where you select how
many backup files Logic keeps in the backup folder. After it reaches that limit it starts to erase the oldest version and rearranges the two digit number
of all song files the next time it copies a new backup file into it.
Logic handles the Auto Backup procedure a little bit different for Regular Songs and Project Songs:
Regular Song
Save:
When you save your edited song the first time(“My Regular Song 1”), Logic
creates the backup folder and names it with the same name as the song
file name with the extension “.bak” (“My Regular Song 1 .bak”) and copies
the file with a two digit incremental number (“My Regular Song 1.00”).
Save As:
When you make a “save as” of your song with a new name (“My Regular
Song 2”), continue to edit it and hit the save command, Logic will create a
new backup folder with the new name of your (saved as) song (“My
Regular Song 2.bak”), and copies the file with the two digit incremental
number (“My Regular Song 2.00”)
Project Song
Save:
When you save your edited song (“My Project Song 1”) the first time, Logic
creates the backup folder, names it “Song Backup” and copies the file
with the two digit incremental number into it (“My Project Song 1.00”).
Save As:
Everytime you make a “save as” of your song with a new name (“My
Project Song 2”, “My Project Song 3”, etc), continue to edit it and hit the
save command, Logic will add the incremental copies of each song to the
SAME folder.
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Create A Project
There are three ways how to create a Project Song:
1) Create a new Project Song from a Template:
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Use the “File > New” command to open up the “New” Dialog Box
Check the “Create project folder” box which opens up the lower portion of the window
Name: This will be the name of the folder (Project Folder) Logic creates in the
“Location” directory below and it will also be the name of the Project Song which will be
stored inside the Project Folder
Location: the directory path where Logic creates the Project Folder. You can type in the
path if you know it. However you can’t enter a directory that doesn’t exist. It is easier to
use the “Set” button if you want to create a new folder
Set: opens up a file selector box to change the Location
Media Files Instructions
The checkboxes are the actual instructions for the new Project Song regarding the
handling of media files and they are identical to the “File > Project > Settings” menu
which you can open later if you want to change the instructions
OK this will create the new Project Song based on the settings above.
2) Save any open Song (Regular Song, Template Song, or even a Project Song as Project
When you select the command “File > Save as Project…” a file
selector box will open with additional options for setting up the
Project.
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Save As: This will be name of the Project Folder AND the
Project Song (inside that folder)
Media Files handling: with each popup menu you select
how the Project Song should act on specific media types
during the save procedure
o Leave the media files
o Copy the media files
o Move the media files from their original location
Song File
Audio Files: including Apple Loops
Sampler instruments and samples:
Ultrabeat samples
Impulse responses for Space Designer
Movie files
Audio files not used in Arrange
Freeze files:
Delete empty folder after moving
Create folders for audio file groups created in the Audio
indow
Copy all / Movie all: this switches all popup selectors
above at once
The selections affect all the referenced files of the current song,
which you want to save as a Project.
The rules, which determine what media files get copied/moved into the project folder, apply only for “Save s Project…” command and do NOT
determine the instructions of the Project Song later. You can open the “File > Project > Settings” menu to set the instruction for the Project Song
3) Consolidate a Regular Song
Although you would use the “Save as Project”
command to convert a Regular Song into a Project
Song, technically you could use also the
“Consolidate” command from the “File > Project”
menu. This is the only command available in the
menu.
The Consolidate command is used for a Project
Song to “organize” all your used media files in your
Project Folder but if you use the command on a
Regular Song it will convert the song to a Project
Song. You can’t choose a new Project Folder
location; the current parent directory becomes the
Project Folder.
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Project Song Management
The “File > Project” menu list four commands to manage Project Songs
1) Project Settings:
These commands determine what happens to media files when you use them or drag them
into your song:
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Copy external audio files to project folder
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Convert audio file sample rate when importing
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Copy EXS instruments to project folder
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Copy EXS samples to project folder
On next save command
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Copy impulse responses to project folder
Movie files and Ultrabeat files will not be copied when opened in a Project song. You have to use the “Consolidate” or “Save as Project”
command if you want to include them in the project folder
2) Clean Up
The Clean up command lists all the media files that are not
longer used in the Arrange Window and gives you the
option to delete individual files.
i.e. you loaded some audio files or Apple Loops earlier into
your Arrangement but replace them later with different
loops. Or when you looked for a special EXS piano sound
you, loaded 5 different sound in you EXS sampler before
you found the right one. All those files were copied to your
Project folder, but they are not needed to rebuild you song.
You can go ahead and delete them. You can uncheck
individual files to keep them for a later use
NOTE: review the “File Path” of the files you going to delete
to make sure they are copies sitting in your Project Folder and not some original files located somewhere on your hard drive!
3) Consolidate Project Objects
The Consolidate command lets you manage your media files
inside your Project Folder.
It acts on all the media files with a reference in your song. You
can choose to “Leave Them”, “Copy Them” or “Move Them”. The
commands are almost the same as in the “Save as Project”
command.
i.e. when you original used the “Save as Project” command and
decided not to copy Ultrabeat samples into your Project Folder
because you didn’t plan to use Ultrabeat, but later you did, then
all the samples stayed in the original location. With the
“Consolidate” command you can bring them into the Project
Folder later.
Consolidate a Regular Song
If your song is a Project Song then all four Project commands are
available. If your song is a Regular Song
then only the “Consolidate” command is
available, the other three commands are
grayed out. (This is one way to find out if
your song acts like Regular Song or
Project Song.)
This command converts the Regular Song into a Project Song and is similar to the “Save as Project” command without the file selector box:
When you select: Consolidate” command, Logic creates a Project Folder with the same name of the song in the same directory and puts
the original song (adds the Project flag to it) with all the media files subfolders inside.
4) Rename
You can rename the Project Folder and/or the Project Song. Using this command instead of
renaming the files in the Finder keeps the Project Manager updated without rescanning the
drive. The files in the “Song Backups” folder will not be renamed!
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Template
Besides the Regular Song and the Project Song, there is a third kind of song, the Template Song. The idea of a template song is the same as a
stationary file in word processors. You create one or more song files that act like starting points for a specific task.
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You can create a song that has a couple of instruments loaded, the one you mostly use when you start composing.
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You can create a song that has some plug-ins pre-loaded for mastering
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You can create a song that has 24 tracks prepared with specific input and send routing for audio recording purposes
When you start to do one of those tasks, you would just load one of those songs and everything is ready to go.
It is interesting that the Logic application has an “Stationary Song icon” available but it doesn’t use it.
Template Locations:
Logic provides a special location for those pre-configured songs, called Templates. Although you can store a pre-configured song anywhere you want,
but only if you store that song in that “Song Templates” folder then it has the special Template functionality
There are actually two locations:
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/Library/Application Support/Logic/Song Templates/
This is the root location for the factory template that Logic creates during the installation
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“username”/Library/Application Support/Logic/Song Templates/
this has a similar path, but it is located in the user directory
Template Functionality:
A song opened from one of the two “Song Templates” folder has a special feature: It is “read-only”
This means that after you opened that song and made some changes, hitting the save command will not overwrite the template song. Instead, it will
open the file selector box where you have to enter a new location and/or new name. This ensures that your template song always stays as it is.
This functionality works only if you use the “File > New” command and select the “Use song
template” feature to open the Template Song. If you use the “File > Open” command to open a
Template Song inside the Song Templates folder or open it by dclick on it in the Finder, then it
will not behave like a “read-only” Template Song, but like a Regular Song or even like a Project
Song, if you have moved a Project Song file into the Song Template folder.
Save Template:
There are two ways to create a template song:
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You can move any song into the “Song Templates” folder. Beware, that you can move files only into the “Song Templates” folder of your user
directory. You don’t have access privileges to move files into the “Song Templates” folder of the root directory unless you have root access.
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You can use the “Save as Template” command from the File menu. The command opens a file
selector box where the Song Templates directory is already selected. So you only have to
enter a name for the Template Song. Logic prompts you with an error message if you change
the directory of the file selector box and try to save the song outside the Song Templates
directory.
You also can freely organize your templates inside the Song Templates folder in the Finder
by creating sub-folders if you want.
The “Save as Template” is actually a “Save a Copy as Template” command, which means that
you continue to “stay” in your song and backup path regardless of the save as command and the name you chose for the Template
NOTE: This is the only trick to “convert” a Project Song back to a Regular Song: Move the Project Song file into the Song Templates folder, open it from
with the “File > New” command, make a edit and save it. Voila, now it’s a Regular Song again. Check the “File > Project” menu and you will see only
the consolidate command active.
Autoload:
There is a special template named “Autoload”. See the section “Launch Logic” for details.
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Open Song
Launch Logic
Which song will be opened when you just launch the application? There are 5 possibilities: Logic runs down the list of 5 possible songs and opens
that song which it finds first. If it can’t find any of the files 1. to 4. then it will launch song option No5. All the songs with the exception of No1
(Most Recent) are opened as Song Templates.
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Open most recent file
The checkbox “Preference > Global > Song Handling > Automatically open most recent song at startup” has the highest priority. When
it’s unchecked, then Logic moves to No2
“Autoload” song in user Library
Logic looks for a song file with the name “Autoload” in the user directory “~/Library/Application Support/Logic/Song Template/”. You
can create that song and move it into that folder or use the “Save as Template” command. This will act as your standard startup song
template.
If that file doesn’t exist then Logic moves to option No3.
“Autoload” song in root Library
Logic looks for a song file with the name “Autoload” in the root directory “/Library/Application Support/Logic/Song Template”. You
can create that song and move it into that folder. If multiple user on one machine using Logic then this option will bring up that song
template for all users. Please not that the directory is owned by the system and you don’t have access privileges to copy your
“Autoload” song into that directory. You have to use the “sudo mv” command in the Terminal or login as root
Default Song (StartupAssistant)
Logic looks for a file “com.apple.logic.SetupAssistant.standard.plst” in the user directory “~/Library/Preferences/Logic/” This file will
be created by the little application “Startup Assistant” which you can launch from inside Logic: “Logic Pro > Preferences > Start Logic
Startup Assistant…” . This application will automatically launch after the first Logic installation and prompts you to enter basic setup
information.
Logic creates the “Default Song Template” based on the information of that file. If that file doesn’t exist, then Logic moves to option
No5.
Default Song (without StartupAssistant file)
Logic will create this Default Song based on basic settings written in the application.
File > New
Whenever you have Logic already launched and want to start from scratch, use the “File > New” command. It will open the “New” dialog box.
NOTE: Hold opt key while selecting the “File > New” command will bypass the “New” dialog box and opens the Default Song (option 4 or 5)
Don’t use song template
Logic will open a new song based on the hierarchy in
“Launch Logic” above, except for option No1.
Although the “Use song template” is unchecked, the
song will behave like as a template, which means you
have to save it with a new name. (only if “create
project folder” is unchecked
Use song template
The checkbox “Use song template” should be named “select from the Template
directory”, because either checked or not, it will open the song as a template.
Selecting that checkbox will activate the “Template” popup menu to select a
template song from two possible locations
o User: “~/Library/Application Support/Logic/Song Template”. This menu
will only be visible after you saved at least one template into that location
o Shared: “/Library/Application Support/Logic/Song Template”. These are the
setting, which came with the Logic installation.
Create project folder: this checkbox will extend the dialog box with setting, necessary for saving a
song as a Project Song.
Name: This will be the name of the newly created Project Folder and the name of the Project
Song, located inside
Location: The location where Logic creates the new Project Folder.
Set: Opens a files elector box to change the path of the Location
Checkboxes for Media Management: The settings of the checkboxes will be effective for
that Song and you can view/change them in the “File > Project > Setting” menu
NOTE: When you create a “New” song without the Project Folder checkbox the Template Song will be
loaded into RAM when hit the OK button and the first time you save the song (a Regular Song), you
actually save it to disk with a new name.
When you create a “New” song with the Project Folder checkbox checked, you have to enter a new
song name and location and when you hit the OK button you save it as a Project Song to disk.
File > Open
This will open a file selector box where you can browse to an existing song you want to open
NOTE: same as dclick on a Logic song file in the Finder
File > Open Recent
Select from the list which contains your most recently opened songs. The list is stored in the Preference file
“~/Library/Preferences/Logic/com.apple.logic.pro”
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Open Song - Overview
Launch Logic
Regular
Default/
Autoload
Template
Template
Project
When you launch Logic (and the “open most recent song” option is not checked), it will open the Default Song or the Autoload (see launch option
2 – 5 above) as a Template Song into RAM. The song is not saved yet, it exists only in RAM until you:
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“Save” or “Save as”: prompts a file selector box where you can enter a file name and the file location for your song. The song is stored as
Regular Song.
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“Save as Template”: prompts also a file selector box, but this time it will open right into the path “~/Library/Application Support/Logic/Song
Templates/”. If you change the location you will be prompted with an error message. If you save the file, a copy of the song will be saved into
the “Song Templates” folder and acts as a Template Song next time you open it. The loaded song still resided in RAM and waits for a regular
“save” or “save as “ command
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“Save as Project…” prompts the “save as project” which is an extended file selector box. You select the name (for the Project Folder and the
Project Song) and the rules regarding the reference of the media file: move – copy – leave. The newly save Song is of course now a Project
Song.
File > New
Default/
Autoload
Regular
“Template”
Template
Template
Project
Default/
Autoload
“Template”
Project
Using the “New” command opens up the “New” Dialog box with two checkboxes and one popup menu:
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Create project folder unchecked:
o Use song template unchecked: loads the Default Song or Autoload Song as a Template Song into RAM. After that it behaves like
above
o Use song template checked: select a Template Song from the popup menu, which will be loaded as a Template Song into RAM. After
that it behaves like above
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Create project folder checked
o Use song template unchecked: The Default Song or Autoload Song will be saved as a Project Song with the new name you enter, to
the location you choose, and the selected Project setting.
o Use song template checked: The Template Song you choose from the popup menu will be saved as a Project Song with the new name
you enter, to the location you choose, and the selected Project setting.
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File > Open or File > Open Recent or dclick on file
Regular
Regular
Regular
Template
Project
Project
Template
Project
If you open a song with the Open, Open Recent or just by double clicking on the song file, you don’t know for sure what kind of song it is, Regular
Song or Project Song. If it is located in the “Song Templates” folder, then it is most likely a Regular Song, which acts as a Template when opened from
with the “New” command. (Technically you can store Project Songs in the Song Templates folder too). If you open a song from the Song Templates
folder with any command other that the “New” command” , then it will not behave like a Template!
Save:
When using the “Save” command on any of the loaded Songs overwrites the original file in its location. Any Song Backup functionality from the
Preference menu will apply
Save as:
When using the “Save as…” command on any of the loaded Songs opens the file selector box and you can choose a new file name and location to
create a new Song file
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A Regular Song will be saved again as a Regular Song
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A Template Song, which in this case is just a Regular Song, will be saved as a Regular Song
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A Project Song will be saved again as a Project Song. NOTE: If you save the Project outside its Project Folder then all the media files which
where copied to its Project Folder keep the reference path to that location, but all the media files which where setup to be copied or moved to
the Project folder will from now on copied or moved into the same folder where you saved the new Project Song. In other words, the Folder in
which you save the Project Song to becomes the new parent Project Folder!
Save as Template…
When using the “Save as Template…” command on any of the loaded Songs opens the file selector box with the Song Templates directory preselected. The song will be saved as a Regular Song into that folder which makes it behave like a Template Song when opened with the “New”
command.
NOTE: This command acts like a “Save copy as…” command.
NOTE: This will actually convert a Project Song into a Regular Song
Save as Project…
Using the “Save as Project…” command on any of the loaded Songs opens the “Save as Project” dialog box, which is an extended file selector box. You
choose the new name (Project Song) and location (Project Folder) and setup the checkboxes for the media files. The checkboxes determine what to do
with the media files that have a reference in the current song. The behavior on how to copy/move/leave media files once the new Project Song is
saved, will be setup in the “File > Projects > Settings”
Unwanted Project Song confusions
Although you should stick to the Project Song commands inside Logic to ensure the best file integrity and proper functionality of the Project Manager,
it is technically possible to do some “forbidden” actions. What happens then?
Just remember what makes a Project Song a Project Song: A Project Song has specific Project Settings stored in its file: When using media files in the
song, don’t just reference them to their original location but follow the rules of the stored Project Settings to copy/move them to the parent folder,
which is the folder the Project Song is stored and therefore considered the “Project Folder” of that Project Song.
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Move Project Song file in the Finder
All the media files which where copied or moved would stay in the original Project Folder, so when moving or copying a Project Song out of its
Project Folder, The reference path to the media would be still intact. When opening the Project Song in its new (“dis-placed”) location and
adding more media files to it, will copy/move the new media files to the new Project Folder which is the parent folder where the Project Song
now resides. Use the “Consolidate” or “Save as Project” command to clean up the references and media files. To create a proper Project Folder.
Move Project Song file into the “Song Templates” folder
The Song file, opened with the “New” command, will behave like a Template and looses all its Project Settings. However, when opened in any
other way it will open like a Project Song and the “Song Templates” folder becomes its parent directory (Project Folder) and will contain all the
Projects sub-folders.