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Unify 1.1.7 crashes when trying to load a layer preset  

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getdunne
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July 26, 2020 10:59 pm  

Posting on behalf of @flori

In UNIFY I use the LAYER button (top left) to get to my XMLs. There is also CloudCity (XMLs) after the update of July 24th.

I can see all the XMLs per VST (that's where I put them in the past), but when I click one, UNIFY crashes.

Could this info help?

Addition: It's Add Instrument that does not work for getting XMLs to load, like I saw John do it in the Live Stream, BUT ... I did solve it partially by adding a new UNIFY layer and then load an XML using the button on the far right of that layer and use 'Replace from Layer preset'.


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getdunne
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July 26, 2020 11:03 pm  

@flori

So you're saying you can't load ANY layer presets from the "Add Instrument" menu on the "+ layer" button (see attached image), but you CAN add an empty INST layer and then use "Replace from layer preset"? This is most unusual.


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Robert.P
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July 27, 2020 1:33 am  

No problems here (Win10, Unify standalone). I can add a new Instrument Layer from presets, also I can load saved plugin settings (by selecting XML file: "Operation -> Load Plugin State").


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Robert Pryke
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July 27, 2020 1:53 am  

I am also not experiencing crashes.

Win 10 Pro x64, Unify Standalone

Version 1909.

i9 9880H


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flori
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July 27, 2020 3:41 pm  

@ getdunne

To be more specific, today I tried the "Add Instrument" menu on the "+ layer" button for various VST-preset-XMLs I added to UNIFY.

All my XMLs are placed in: Documents/PlugInGuru/UNIFY/Presets/LayerPresets/InstrumentLayers/xxx (=VST I have, plus Sub-Floder for Genre etc.).

BTW: I do not use the by @Robert.P suggested 'Operation>LoadPluginState' because that is not the location where I store my XMLs (see above).

Here's the weird thing.

Absynth 5, Blue2, Dexed FM, Digits, Dx10, Falcon, can all be added that way, but after that ...

FM8, Gurusampler, Jx10, Kontakt, Kontakt NKMs I made myself, OBxd Analog, Omnisphere, Omnisphere Multis I made myself, PG-8X plus PluginGuru CloudCity, all make UNIFY crash. After restarting my Windows7 computer because I can't stop the UNIFY-process in the task-manager, UNIFY starts up flawless with correct Audio/Midi-settings.

Ofcourse adding an Empty Instrument Layer, using the Layer Operation Button on the right and use 'Replace from Layer preset' works flawless.

But that is some sort of 'work around' when you want to try out an extra layer.

 


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getdunne
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July 27, 2020 7:15 pm  

@flori

Could you please zip up a few of your own layer-preset files (preferably for FM8, Guru Sampler, and Kontakt) and post here, so I can analyze and test them? There might be an issue with these files.


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flori
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July 27, 2020 7:23 pm  

@getdunne

Attached is a 7z with 3 directories you asked for.

Thanks for getting into this.


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getdunne
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July 27, 2020 7:49 pm  

@flori

This is very strange. All your layer-presets load fine for me, in Unify v1.1.7 and in my working beta version.

Are you on Mac or Windows?

Please post a screenshot of the layer-add menu, open to your list of instrument layers. I'm wondering if it may be related to how many presets you have defined...


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flori
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July 27, 2020 8:06 pm  

@getdunne

I'm on Windows7-64 Home

There are 7,129 XML presets stored in: Documents/PlugInGuru/UNIFY/Presets/LayerPresets/InstrumentLayers/xxx (=VST I have, plus Sub-Floder for Genre etc.).

Unfortunately I can't post a PNG, tried to sent you one today earlier, but I have a Mac-keyboard on Windows PC and even with Google-search I could not figure that one out, sorry.

Yes, I do have a lot of XMLs, coming from my VIP and copied into UNIFY (XML-format instead of UNIFY-format) as my new platform. Guess I'm not the only one 🙂 and waiting for a Browser-update from Scotland 🙂


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getdunne
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July 27, 2020 8:27 pm  

@flori

Please post when you have anything new to add. At this point, I don't have enough information to diagnose your issue. The only thing I can suggest would be to move all your layer presets (sub-folders and all) to another location, then copy them back in a few at a time, and see at what point Unify starts crashing. That's what I would do.


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flori
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July 27, 2020 8:35 pm  

@getdunne

I was afraid that the verdict would be: you have way too many presets 🙂

But thanks for your suggestion, does make sense. So I will follow that first and investigate.

I'll be back 🙂 when I have anything new to add.

Thank you Shane!!


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getdunne
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July 27, 2020 10:44 pm  

@flori

There is no verdict yet. You haven't given me enough information to reproduce your problem, and until I can reproduce it, I can't diagnose it.

 


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WatchTheGuitar
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July 28, 2020 9:57 am  

@flori

 

No idea if this is a factor, but could it be related to a path length issue? I've seen that in the past where some things work and some don't and most recently hit me on a IK Multimedia install where some of the Miroslav libraries use crazy amounts of directory nesting. The maximum path length is usually 255 characters, but it doesn't necessarily mean that the field where Unify is storing that value has the same length limit.

One way you could test this out is to use the SUBST command in command prompt to create a temporary drive letter assignment to a long path e.g. get it to substitute the X drive letter for Documents/PlugInGuru/UNIFY/Presets/LayerPresets/InstrumentLayers/

and then add that X drive to the plugins list.

The paths issue became worse not long ago when Windows switched my Documents path to be hosted on OneDrive, added a heap of characters to the path that gets expanded out when you try and reference files there.

Just spit-balling so sorry if this is no help.

This post was modified 2 weeks ago 4 times by WatchTheGuitar

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Robert.P
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July 28, 2020 1:12 pm  

@flori

Does it make any difference if you run the Unify as an Administrator?


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flori
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July 28, 2020 2:22 pm  

@Robert.P

Thanks for the tip Robert, but NO.

Tried it earlier today, I'm afraid that it doesn't make a(ny) difference.


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flori
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July 28, 2020 2:56 pm  

@getdunn

Well, Shane I tried your tip of removing and adding the VST-XML-Directories one by one.

I also did start UNIFY as Administrator every time, just in case.

Whatever I tried in the past 5 hours, whatever order I added them, back or forth, it doesn't matter, at a certain point UNIFY does crash.

Even if I remove CloudCity-XMLs completely, and again try your suggestion of adding VST-XML-Directories one by one, same result again.

I also tried and added my XML-Directories to the CloudCity LayerPreset location, which is different from the original XML-location, same result, UNIFY does crash.

So there is no clear distinction which XML-Directory is the culprit here, although some XMLs need (much) more time to load than others as UNIFY sometimes needs a few seconds before it reacts and adds the layer.

Like I mentioned before, I have 7,127 XML Layer Presets, all categorized in 611 (Sub)Directories.

I'm afraid, for now I can't supply you with any other information than the above.

 


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WatchTheGuitar
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July 28, 2020 3:01 pm  

@getdunne

Hi Shane, I got ‘awaiting moderation’ against my earlier post. Is that normal?


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getdunne
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July 28, 2020 4:22 pm  
Posted by: @watchtheguitar

I got ‘awaiting moderation’ against my earlier post. Is that normal?

The forum software seems to require moderation for the first few posts from each user. I don't know the details, but eventually that stops. I don't seem to get informed about posts awaiting moderation, so it sometimes takes me a little while to get to approving them.


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getdunne
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July 28, 2020 4:27 pm  
Posted by: @flori

I tried your tip of removing and adding the VST-XML-Directories one by one.

...

Whatever I tried in the past 5 hours, whatever order I added them, back or forth, it doesn't matter, at a certain point UNIFY does crash.

...

Like I mentioned before, I have 7,127 XML Layer Presets, all categorized in 611 (Sub)Directories.

This is fascinating. There should not be any upper limit on the number of layer presets, or the complexity of the folder structure used to organize them. As you add in more presets, at what exact point does Unify crash? Is it when opening/traversing the preset menus, or when you select a preset?


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flori
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July 28, 2020 5:20 pm  

@getdunne

The crash happens when I select a XML Layer Preset. Browsing/traversing the preset menus is OK, so, it's the mouse-click 🙂

I can add a couple of layers like I explained earlier, but when I select a FM8 XML or worse a Kontakt XML, then I hit a virtual wall and UNIFY crashes.

At the same time, it's good to know that there is no upper limit, nor should there be any influence from the complexity of the folder structure used to organize them.

 

BTW: I just read @WatchTheGuitar's tip about the path length. Could that become an issue when the folder structure is very complex, as in my case.

This post was modified 2 weeks ago by flori

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getdunne
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July 28, 2020 8:19 pm  

UPDATE for all concerned: @flori sent me a copy of his layer-preset collection, with which I was able to reproduce the problem very quickly. I have diagnosed the cause, and this issue will be fixed in the next Unify update.

 


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thsve
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July 29, 2020 6:51 am  

@flori

Have you created all 7127 XML files for patch layers manually in UNIFY, or do you have a smarter way to do it? It's a bit tedious to do it in UNIFU one layer at a time 😎.

Win 10/Cubase Pro 10.5/Wavelab 8/Spectrasonics all/NI 12/Izotope MPS2Serum/Cthulhu/MusicLab guitar vsts/etc


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flori
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July 29, 2020 11:53 am  

@thsve

In short, manually, yes, BUT ...

I come from AKAI VIP, which is almost perfect for Browsing and adding all your favorite VST presets, tagging them anyway you like, etc.

So I did have a head-start, as I had all my Fav VST presets right in front of me in VIP and the very tedious thing I had to do, was to save each of them as Layer Preset (XML) in UNIFY.

Another way to do it is to manually save them as UNIFY-file in your USER LIB, but that takes some extra time regarding the Save-window-features in UNIFY.

Believe me, UNIFY is the best VST-platform around and also much more user friendly as you have a 'normal' database structure, but the Browsing, adding and tagging is something they're working on I hope. But I do realize that it is/can be a very complicated future project.

VIP works (totally) different, with their own dedicated and very very complicated preset structure.

And to be honest, it's not fair to compare them, because UNIFY will always win due to their threaded VST-per Core-structure, just to start with plus the ease of use 🙂


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thsve
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July 29, 2020 12:01 pm  

@flori

OK, thank you for the answer. So it is just to accept and do it the hard way then 😥 .

Win 10/Cubase Pro 10.5/Wavelab 8/Spectrasonics all/NI 12/Izotope MPS2Serum/Cthulhu/MusicLab guitar vsts/etc


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flori
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August 1, 2020 2:04 pm  

@thsve

There is however a 'thing' I forgot to mention.

XML and UNIFY are totally different formats, each for different purposes.

The XML is just 'a pointer' to your VST-preset (where ever that location may be on your HDD), nothing more and saves only the default-preset-setting at hand.

UNIFY however, saves a lot more preset info, e.g. every inch you change in your preset while working on it while in UNIFY, is also saved.

XML doesn't do that!

So that's another difference. Plus the fact that you can share your (USER LIB) UNIFY-file with friends and make it work in their (USER LIB) UNIFY.

XMLs can not be shared like that.


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getdunne
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August 1, 2020 2:55 pm  
Posted by: @flori

The XML is just 'a pointer' to your VST-preset (where ever that location may be on your HDD), nothing more and saves only the default-preset-setting at hand.

Are you referring to Unify's XML layer presets? If so, this is not correct.


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flori
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August 1, 2020 4:10 pm  

@ getdunne

Ooops ...

In that case, Shane, please explain where I go wrong?


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getdunne
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August 1, 2020 6:14 pm  

@flori

Both layer-preset (.xml) and patch (.unify) files use XML. The .unify files are wrapped with a header containing a byte count, and a trailing NUL byte. A layer-preset is simply the portion of a patch which defines a single layer, and is not wrapped.

In both of these formats, "stateInformation" tags contain the binary state of a plug-in, which Unify receives from the plug-in instance when saving the patch/preset. Some plug-ins return state-data which is entirely self-contained; others (including our own MIDIBox and Guru Sampler) return state-data containing at least some file references. A tiny handful of plug-ins (Knifionium is one) return state-data consisting primarily of a reference to one of that plug-in's own existing patch files, usually supplemented with a list of parameter changes.

To summarize: there is no fundamental difference between Unify's patch and layer-preset files; both encode plug-in state-data in the same way. The exact contents and format of the state-data varies from one plug-in to another, and Unify neither knows about it, nor can control it in any way.


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flori
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August 1, 2020 6:49 pm  

@getdunne

Uhmpf! Shane, thank you for your in-depth explanation of the XML-format in general and the use in UNIFY.

 


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