The FWP protocol is used for connections between FotoWare applications. In the current implementation (as of build 760), FotoStation, Index Manager and Color Factory make full use of FWP 2.0, which provides full client-server functionality so that clients do not require SMB or AFP access to the network shares.
Client-server communications via FWP
All metadata delivery from the server is passed over the FWP protocol. When clients update metadata, the transaction travels over FWP and is executed by the server. Thus, the client does not require network access to the actual shares where the assets are stored.
Thumbnail and preview delivery
Index Manager produces cached items for all assets in its document folders and delivers these to clients over the FWP protocol. When assets are updated, for example when an image is edited, Index Manager updates the cached item and pushes new thumbnails and previews to the client.
Search processing and data mining
Search queries and results are passed between client and server over the FWP protocol.
Client-side data mining is handled on the server and the query results are passed to the client.
Most file operations are handled by the server upon client request. However, some features. such as high-resolution image editing, requires the client to download the file, make the changes, and upload it back to the original repository. These use cases are described in the paragraph below.
Features that "check out" files from Index Manager
Opening files in Photoshop
For any format that Photoshop can save, using “Save” after editing the image will immediately start an upload to Index Manager.
Using Save will overwrite the original image in the archive. This is the reason why the duplication feature described above is important. If it's important to preserve the original image, make a duplicate first.
The image can also be Saved as with a new name. The new image file will automatically be uploaded to the archive and appear as a new asset.
File saving and naming requirements
- The image must be saved to the same folder as the image that was checked out and opened in Photoshop.
- The first part of the name must be the same as the original image. “Image.jpg” can be saved as “Image_new.psd” but not as “New_Image.psd”
Images that are saved with Save as will never overwrite existing files with the same name in the archive. Instead, an incremental number is added at the end as required.
RAW files opened in Photoshop
The Open in Photoshop function also supports RAW files.
Using the “Done” button in Camera Raw will create a sidecar file with the Raw settings and this file is uploaded to Index Manager.
Using the “Save Image…” option will save the RAW file as a DNG and this will also be uploaded to Index Manager provided that the two points above are respected.
The “Open Image” option will also work as described above.
Opening files in the associated application on the client
Using the Open function in FotoStation will open the asset in the associated application on the client machine, and can be used to edit practically any kind of document. The file saving and naming requirements are the same as described above.
Editing images in FotoStation's image editor
JPEG, TIFF and EPS files that are opened in FotoStation's image editor and re-saved will be automatically uploaded back to the Index Manager server, replacing the original asset in the archive.
For other formats (typically RAW) the file is always saved as a very high quality JPEG file and uploaded as a new file to Index Manager.
Performing a real crop in FotoStation
While a soft crop is technically just a metadata change, a real crop, involves editing of actual image data, requires the file to be downloaded to the client, modified, and then uploaded back to the server.
Local repositories for checked-out files
The features that involve checking out files from Index Manager described above rely on saving a local working copy of the files.
Checked-out files are stored in a folder in the logged-in user's user profile:
Mac: ~/Library/Application Support/FotoWare/FotoStation/Downloads
FotoStation keeps a record of the current state on disk. If FotoStation quits in the middle of an upload, the upload will restart when FotoStation is relaunched.