Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

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topbanana
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Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by topbanana » 15 Apr 2019, 18:49

Would it be possible for FileBot to store the custom formats that we create in our user profile folder... For instance, in a 'FileBot Formats' folder under 'Documents', or similar, equivalent on each platform.

For many of us, our custom formats that we create are crafted from hours and hours of googling, reading format posts, documentation, and tweaked over time, to give us some amazingly powerful formats that pull all the information into the filenames we desire.
So loosing these after a system crash or simply forgetting to save them before a clean install (which is not a simple menu item task), loosing them is a massive disaster... That will demand a huge amount of frustrating rework to get back up and running.

If these formats are saved in the users profile folder, they will automatically be backed up by all the good, standard backup software, without any specific configuring for FileBot. File History, Time Machine, etc, will automatically backup any folder if finds in the users profile. And keep backing it up if and when any edits are made over time.
So after any system crash, we can restore FileBot's formats from the last backup we'd made... (Everyone does backups, right?! :-D )

The art and crafting that goes into these formats genuinely could be compared to any document, photography, spreadsheet, video edits we create, so they should live in the same folders as all our other created work.

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rednoah
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by rednoah » 15 Apr 2019, 19:10

1.
Sharing your formats here is highly recommended, so you won't lose them, and as to help others come up with their own:
https://www.filebot.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=2


2.
You can configure FileBot to store all settings including formats in a file of your choosing:

Code: Select all

setx FILEBOT_OPTS "-Djava.util.prefs.PreferencesFactory=net.filebot.util.prefs.FilePreferencesFactory -Dnet.filebot.util.prefs.file=/path/to/filebot.settings"
:idea: This is what the portable version does by default, but you can also use these options to achieve the use case you're asking for in this thread.
:idea: Please read the FAQ and How to Request Help.

topbanana
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by topbanana » 15 Apr 2019, 19:22

Then can we have FileBot store these setting in the user's profile folder by default?

Having to get all technical and specifically configure FileBot to do the above is not how software should work. And FB's users have to have actively seek out this specific feature, which effectively none will. So almost every FileBot user is open to loosing everything they've created. Unless they actively copy & paste out their formats or follow the unclear technical instructions above.

Could you change to default location, such that settings and, or just the formats are automatically moved to, saved in the user's folders in a future release?

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rednoah
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by rednoah » 15 Apr 2019, 19:29

1.
What you're asking for is not common practice, so I don't intend to make this default.

2.
FileBot does however regularly backup your preferences to a file called preferences.backup.xml in the FileBot application data folder.
:idea: Please read the FAQ and How to Request Help.

topbanana
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by topbanana » 16 Apr 2019, 19:36

Storing created work in the user's profile folders absolutely is standard practice!
MS Word doesn't save word documents in the AppData folder... it stores them in the Documents folder!

Our formats are not just 'settings'... they're not the same as whether a dark theme is set, etc. They're the summation of many hours of research, trial & error, crafting and tweaking.

The application folder is not in a location that automatically gets backed up by many Backup utilities, built in ones or 3rd party.
The user profile folders, Documents, Videos, Pictures, etc, etc, etc, absolutely are backed up. So saving our formats in a subfolder of, say, Documents, would mean that our formats are guaranteed to be backed up when run.

None of your customers enjoy data loss.
And at the moment, even if a user has a backup solution setup and running, they absolutely will lose their Formats, lose their hard work.

Storing these in our profile directories will solve that immediately.

And users that do suffer from a system/HDD crash, theft, fire, etc. genuinely will thank you for moving them there, when they reinstall FileBot and all their formats are magically sitting there waiting to resume work.

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rednoah
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by rednoah » 17 Apr 2019, 04:52

Alright, let's assume formats are like pictures you draw in paint (I disagree, but let's go with it).

Where do those files go?

* %USERPROFILE%/OneDrive?
* D:/Google Drive?
* %USERPROFILE%/Movies?
* %USERPROFILE%/Documents?
* Have the use select a folder the first time around?

What about other operating systems? I have never seen an application that asks me about a safe location to store files on start-up? Should FileBot give you a Save As dialog when you save a format?

I reckon that the vast majority of users do backup, but probably just with Google Drive or other cloud storage, which usually doesn't include any Windows default folders. People that do do proper backups, probably include %USERPROFILE% and then you've got preferences.backup.xml right there in the app data folder as well so those people are covered already.

Additionally, the Microsoft Store and Mac App Store versions aren't even allowed to access anything other than their application data folder without explicit user authorization, so those editions also can't just store stuff anywhere, on a purely technical level.

Sorry, but I disagree with your request. I'm giving you the options to make it work the way you want. But it won't be default. It's unclean to clutter settings to random files across the system.


EDIT:

:idea: Feel free to convince me otherwise, but do include specific implementation details that you have in mind, and argue how this will seamlessly work for all users, and not just you specifically.
:idea: Please read the FAQ and How to Request Help.

topbanana
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by topbanana » 17 Apr 2019, 18:30

The most flexible solution would be to, yes, ask us where we would like to save our formats at first start up. Great idea.
I'd make the default, initial suggested location:

Code: Select all

%USERPROFILE%/FileBot Formats/FileBot Formats.txt
$HOME/FileBot Formats/FileBot Formats.txt
or something similar.
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Home_directory)

FileBot starts...

Code: Select all

Please chose a location to save your Formats, to ensure they're backed up, not lost.
Tip:  Choose your DropBox or Google Drive folder perhaps!
This file location should be easily changed from your Preferences dialog.

FileBot could also just set the working formats directory without asking us. But have the same item to customise it in preferences.

The fact that when reinstalling FileBot on a clean system, with the user's files restored, and FileBot starts up with our formats already there, that'll be a very nice feature!

If the app needs to get permission to save a file outside of it's application data folder, then so be it, request permission, and indicate why, that FileBot saving your formats in your profile such that you don't lose them.
Lots of other apps use our user profile folders for storing all sorts of different stuff... Adobe, etc, etc. Even for settings. But our formats are not 'settings', they're our creations.

If you hit File - Save in any software, it'll default to your user profile folder. Or perhaps the Pictures folder if it saving a picture, they all vary. They're not going to initially present you with a program data folder.

I can't see that any of your users, customers objecting to FileBot saving or offering to save their Formats in a file in their user profile.
Nobody want to lose their hard work, their creations.

How many FileBot users, like me, have lost all their formats before???
Probably many. But only a tiny fraction of them will search the forums for answers, and even less will post about it.
I searched this forum when i lost mine, but didn't learn anything at the time... I then just searched the registry and found where my recreated formats were hiding, so backed up them.
But assuming that your users already backup their formats is not right. Any backup will have to be actively done, and not easy to automatically do. There's no settings in your GUI to aid this.
Good software is designed to make our tasks easier. Great software will automatically be set such that you don't stupidly lose all your work after a mishap.

If FileBot saves them in our userprofile by default, no one with any normal kind of backup will lose them.
And your customers will thank you for this feature.

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rednoah
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by rednoah » 18 Apr 2019, 05:40

While I understand that it would be nice to store & sync FileBot settings via OneDrive or GDrive via more user-friendly options, instead of system options, FileBot by design doesn't really have options, not options that are fairly unnecessary anyway.

Some users care about their formats. Some users care about their presets. Some care about their rename history. Now we're back to just changing the application data folder.

This is a standard location for application data:

Code: Select all

%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\FileBot
This would be a non-standard location:

Code: Select all

%USERPROFILE%\FileBot Formats
I've had more than one user complain that ~/.filebot is cluttering their $HOME on Linux by default, and prefer some XDG folder, so I'm not inclined cluttering %USERPROFILE% on Windows where this is not common practice.

Again, I'm inclined to let users that are concerned users change the FileBot app data folder for their setup, but leave it default for everyone else:

Code: Select all

setx FILEBOT_OPTS -Dapplication.dir=%USERPROFILE%/FileBot

:?: Not really sure how changing the default app data location from one %USERPROFILE% folder to another makes any difference for your original backup issue though. I suspect you just backed up selected folders from %USERPROFILE% and that's why you lost stuff? In that case, it's more of a backup issue, because if you backup your stuff, you backup %USERPROFILE% on Windows, and $HOME on Linux, which is pretty much guaranteed to contain all settings for all your apps anyway, including FileBot formats, presets, etc.



EDIT:

An interesting historic note, FileBot originally did use %USERPROFILE%/.filebot as app data folder, like on Linux and Mac, to make things work the same across the board. But Windows users did request this to be changed to %APPDATA%/FileBot because that's just how things are done on Windows.
:idea: Please read the FAQ and How to Request Help.

topbanana
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by topbanana » 18 Apr 2019, 12:11

We are not talking about FileBot's settings! No one cares about the settings... They can very quickly be reset.

We're talking about the formats we create! ONLY THEM!

The settings stay put, in their standard locations. We don't care.

The formats we create should be stored in the user profiles with all the other files we create on our computers.

They should not be hidden away in a hidden folder. With no way to find them unless you search these forums for the location... No way of easily changing the location unless you search these forums to find some command that gets typed in... somewhere, i have no idea, it's not there in the menus in the GUI...

Appdata in not backed up by default by Windows Backup (File History) unless you go out of your way to show hidden folders and add it. Which will include HUGE amounts of temporary files that will slow backups and increase their size.

Please split the setting and the formats, and have the formats saved in the user profile, like every other document we create. As standard. So that every user is protected. By default.

No one is going to complain that our formats are saved in our user profile.

Please have some empathy for your customers... We pay for your software, we really appreciate it's function, we spend hours, days, weeks creating all-singing-all-dancing formats. Please give us the feature that ensures that that time and effort is protected automatically!

Please.

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rednoah
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by rednoah » 18 Apr 2019, 12:16

I'll definitely look into finding a better solution, if this is indeed a much desired change.

I've subscribed to your poll thread to see what input we get from the community. Let's see and weigh options.
:idea: Please read the FAQ and How to Request Help.

topbanana
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by topbanana » 18 Apr 2019, 12:35

Thanks.

But please appreciate that (as with all software) only a tiny fraction of your users look at the forums, and only a fraction of those will actually write posts. And only some of those will be aware that they do in fact lose everything if time is not spent actively backing them up, copying them out. And only some of those will some of the many that have had the shite experience of actually losing everything.

My request is that the feature enabled for everyone, automatically, such that no one loses their formats if they have a normal backup (which we all should).

If anyone has a system crash and looses the whole contents of their My Documents folder, there's only one person to blame... That user.

It's a bit like having the option to have seat-belts fitted to your car when you buy it... But it's not advertised... You can get the parts needed to fit them... But it's a bit fiddly... And you'll probably only be looking into doing so after you've had a crash and you've got 8 broken ribs and a disfigured face from going out through the windscreen...

Protecting the user's data should be a standard feature of any software.

Tdoc
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by Tdoc » 19 Apr 2019, 14:43

Is that possible for filebot node?
every time I clean my cookies / computer with ccleaner, and log back to synology DSM filebot node "forgot" all settings and I have to do it again. It is apparently stored on my computer ?
Localy stored on the synology would be nice

thanks

Tdoc
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by Tdoc » 19 Apr 2019, 15:02

Is that possible for filebot node?
every time I clean my cookies / computer with ccleaner, and log back to synology DSM filebot node "forgot" all settings and I have to do it again. It is apparently stored on my computer ?
Localy stored on the synology would be nice

thanks

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rednoah
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by rednoah » 19 Apr 2019, 15:53

1.
FileBot and FileBot Node are two completely functionally-independent tools, and the latter generally doesn't work on Windows.

2.
The FileBot Node WebUI uses HTML5 Local Storage to remember you settings. If you clear Local Storage, you will indeed loose Local Storage. Unfortunately, FileBot Node is currently in maintenance mode isn't actively being worked on.
:idea: Please read the FAQ and How to Request Help.

Tdoc
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by Tdoc » 05 Jun 2019, 15:31

Hi Rednoah, I am coming back to see if there is any advancement on filebotnode for synology with saving profile locally on the synology ? I dont know how many licence are sold because of synology, I should not be the only one !!
Everytime I have to re-enter all the settings, plus SSH to get the subttitle login and password (thats an other improvement to have a small 2 fields to do this instead of getting the SSH on, Login SSH, enter login and pass subtitle, logout, disable SSH !!

in advance thanks for your reply

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rednoah
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Re: Store formats in User's profile to prevent loss.

Post by rednoah » 05 Jun 2019, 15:46

1.
Sorry, haven't touched FileBot Node recently.

EDIT: Storing and restoring form values to and from the server-side is now implemented.


2.
You can use the Configure button in FileBot Node to configure filebot with OpenSubtitles login information. SSH is not required for typical tasks such as installing a license or entering OpenSubtitles login information.


3.
If you're always using the same command, then you could just create a scheduled task and then execute that via Synology Task Scheduler by clicking on the Run button.
:idea: Please read the FAQ and How to Request Help.

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