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How2 Upgrade to Final Cut Pro 2.0 ­ the Proper Way!

April, 2001

How2 Upgrade to Final Cut Pro 2.0 ­ the Proper Way!

Upgrading from 1.2.5 doesn't have to be painful, and if you follow the advice below, you should have no problems with migrating, and finally using FCP 2.0

by Philip Hodgetts

Don't upgrade if-
Don't upgrade to Final Cut Pro 2 if:
  • you have a Beige G3/300. The performance is not reliable because that series is a little slow overall for Final Cut Pro 2. Stay with Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 and keep the system running as it always has. The benefits of the faster speed and Velocity Engine enhancement makes a G4 upgrade a good investment, particularly if you're earning income from your Final Cut Pro system. Apple promised FCP 1.x would run on this series, not that every version would.
  • you are using the Pinnacle CinéWave for single stream uncompressed or High Definition. Right now (early April) the drivers for the CinéWave are not compatible with Final Cut Pro 2. Pinnacle are working on updating the drivers, as well as drivers to use the CinéWave with multiple streams of uncompressed video, but neither are ready yet. Drivers for HDTV and single stream are expected "in May" (check with your dealer or Pinnacle) while multiple streams with real time effects is expected in "Summer, 2001".
  • you have less than 256 MB of RAM. While Final Cut Pro 1.x could run inside 160 MB of RAM, Final Cut Pro 2 requires 120-180 for the Application and OS 9.1 (required) needs 40-60 MB most of the time. RAM is about as cheap as it's going to be so now would be a good time to increase total RAM, particularly as large project can use extra RAM with FCP2.
  • you have software that has not been updated to work with OS 9.1 or will not run/work with the HFS+ drive formatting.
  • you cannot use QuickTime 5 for some (obscure) reason. QuickTime is always backwardly compatible (will play older movies without problem) and no software should have a problem but if you know of an issue that affects 'mission critical' applications you use, don't upgrade to QuickTime 5. Without QuickTime 5 Final Cut Pro 2 will not run.

Preparing to Upgrade-

Upgrading Final Cut Pro to Final Cut Pro 2 is the easiest part ­ run the installer and you're done. But unless you're ready to upgrade it might not go smoothly and you'll regret it. Successful upgrading is in the preparation, and the sequence of events is very important.
In these follow items I'll be ranking them as:

#### For something you must do ­ like actually install the upgrade!
### Should do items that are highly recommended.
## A wise person would do this, but if you're really in a hurry and feeling lucky, you can skip over this step without any consequences.
# If you really want to be as sure as possible that you'll avoid all problems, do this step as well.

The best time to upgrade is when you've got no projects under way and the drives where you keep your media (Media Drives) are empty. Since that's almost never likely to happen, we'll also talk about strategies for working around the work in progress. Fortunately FCP2 can be installed alongside Final Cut Pro 1.x so you can complete current projects on Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 or earlier while starting new Projects in Final Cut Pro 2. This will get those older projects finished much faster because once you start with FCP2, you won't want to go back.

# - Backup your System (internal) hard drive & Reformat the drive
Not really essential, but a clean drive is a good idea with a major upgrade. The best way to go about this is to back up all the content on your internal (System) drive to the backup of choice. CD-R or CD-RW is a good choice, as most applications folders etc will fit on relatively few internal drives.
Having the backup is reassuring, just in case something happens. As a matter of course I back my entire internal drive (System, Applications, Documents) to CD-R no less often than every 3 months, or before any major upgrade or (since it's a laptop) a major trip. The editing and production machines are backed up at 2am every morning.
This would also be a good time to update your internal drive to HFS+ (Extended format) if it's not already.

At a minimum Run Disk First Aid and have it check your drive, or if you use one of the more advanced Drive Utilities, have that check your hard drive for problems, damage or error. I like Tech Tool Pro and have found it reliable.

#### - Backup your Projects folder
There are two reasons to back up your Projects folder, particularly your Final Cut Pro projects. The first reasons is so you'll have a backup if anything goes wrong, but the second reason is that FCP2 will update the Project file so that it will no longer open in Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 or earlier. Having a backup means you can go back.
I should explain that I do not believe there will be problems, but when it comes to my hard work I'm a 'belts and braces' kind of guy ­ just in case the belt breaks, I've got the braces to hold up my pants!

### - Backup your System Folder
The System folder is the Central Nervous System of the Macintosh and becomes customized for every system whenever you install new software. It also contains the Preferences files for your applications, including Final Cut Pro. It's good to have the Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 preferences file for future reference. (Final Cut Pro 1.0.1 stored it's preferences in the Final Cut Pro folder so if you're updating from 1.0, make a special backup of the Preferences.)
By backing up at least the System folder you've got the opportunity to go back to where you were. Exactly. Same Extension Set, same Preferences, same magic combination.
There is software ­ Rewind I believe ­ that will take your system back to a previous time but I haven't used it. It has won a couple of 'Best of Show' awards. Personally, there's nothing like having a backup I can go to myself.

## - Create a copy of your Favorites to get them to Final Cut Pro 2
Favorites are saved with Preferences and there's no easy way to get them to Final Cut Pro 2 since Final Cut Pro 1.2.x and Final Cut Pro 2 don't share Preferences files. Here's a workaround, but there may be other ways.
Create a new Project in 1.2.x and call it something like "Favorites Exchange". You'll need some Clips but in reality a Slug, a Gradient and something with audio will be fine. What you'll need depends on what Favorites you have.

Filters: Add all your favorite filters to one Clip. It can be in a Bin, the Browser or a Sequence, doesn't matter. If the Clip has audio it will take all your audio and video favorites.
Transitions: Alternate a Slug and a Gradient Clip in a Sequence and add one favorite transition each time they meet, until you've applied all your favorite transitions.
Motion Tab Settings: Add one motion tab setting to each Clip ­ those Clips in the sequence that you've used for your Transitions favorites would be good candidates. You can only have one set of Motion tab settings per Clip, and they're the most work to restore so only keep the ones you really need ­ but it's not that difficult.
Save the Project and you're done.

## - Copy Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 and it's Preferences to another Drive
If you want to continue using Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 alongside Final Cut Pro 2 for a while, copy the Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 folder to another hard drive, for example one of the media drives, to prevent the updater installing over it. The update version of Final Cut Pro 2 is a true updater in that it modifies the existing software converting it to Final Cut Pro 2. The shipping version (full, new purchase) will install alongside Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 without modifying it.
Rename the Folder Final Cut Pro 1.2.5.
Open the System Folder, then the Preferences Folder. Inside the Preferences folder, locate the Final Cut Pro Preferences folder and copy the whole folder to the other hard drive along with the Final Cut Pro Folder. Put the Preferences folder inside the Final Cut Pro folder for storage. Leave a copy inside the Preferences folder as it has your Registration information that the updater will need to refer to validate the update.
After the update is complete you can copy the Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 folder back to your main hard drive and the preferences back to the Preferences folder.

#### Clean Install the Operating System
This is important. Do NOT do an update install. Preferably do a clean install direct to OS 9.1 with the 9.1 installer, but if you don't have that available (and I'd recommend buying it) do a fresh, Clean Install of OS 9.0.4 and update it to 9.1 before installing anything else.
Even better is to then connect to the Internet and run the Software Updater after installing 9.1 to get the latest versions of the software drivers. In particular you'll want the latest FireWire drivers Version 2.7 or later.

Warning: Be very careful if 'offered' the Firmware Updater. If your RAM is not 100% perfectly within specification you can lose access to it. At this time I'd caution NOT to go with the Firmware Updater. But if you want to know if your RAM is good enough for FCP (and can live with the consequences of it not being), then go ahead. (At Press time Apple is addressing the issue of the Firmware upgrade and you can get more info at -ed.

A Clean Install puts new, fresh copies of every part of the Operating System on the Hard Drive. An update will copy over only those parts that have been updated and leave any existing Extension in place. The Clean Install ensures that no corrupt drivers or Extensions are in place.

Tip: Once a Clean Install is done, go into the Control Panels and Extensions folders (separately) and select all icons, then change their label color to something you don't use often. I make mine Brown so that I know the Brown colored Extensions are the ones installed by Apple, ditto the Control Panels).

After doing the Clean install of the Operating System do not copy across Control Panels and Extensions from the old System Folder. We'll get to them later but first of all we want to make sure that Final Cut Pro 2 is working with just the installed System with no 3rd party 'pollution'.


#### Install QuickTime 5 from the Final Cut Pro 2 CD
You can use the version of QuickTime 5 that is on the Final Cut Pro 2 CD or the current release version of QuickTime 5. Both are approved for Final Cut Pro 2. What is not approved are any of the old public beta versions of QuickTime 5. If you've ever had a QuickTime 5 beta, either uninstall it completely or run the QuickTime updater control panel to get the latest version updated. Otherwise install the version on the CD. (If you have already upgraded to the release
version of QuickTime 5 do not go back to the QuickTime RT version on the CD. The release version, and current version, is the most suitable.)
Run the QuickTime installer, or the update, and select Custom install. In the next panel, select all the options - there's a convenient Select All at the top. Continue to the rest of the Install. If you don't do Custom and the Select All, you will get
'missing QuickTime Component' type errors. Custom installs more than the Full or Multimedia Authoring options in the first panel. Go figure.

#### Install Final Cut Pro 2
Finally you're ready to install Final Cut Pro 2. Run the Installer and choose the options that match your system. If you have a RT-Mac card you'll want to choose that option during install as Final Cut Pro 2 will then have the Easy Setup files to set everything to RT-Mac with one menu selection. (I love the way they simplified the setup in Final Cut Pro 2. As someone who gets to try and teach Final Cut Pro, the settings were the worst part and now most people never need go beyond the Easy Setup dialog!)
The choices you make in the Install dialogs will also set your starting defaults, so chances are you'll never have to even choose an Easy Setup.

## Update your Media Drives to HFS +
If the hard drives you use for media are not already HFS+ (Extended Format) this would be a good time to update them, if they have no media on them. Macintosh OS 9.1, QuickTime and Final Cut Pro 2 all support HFS+ for virtually unlimited file sizes. All are required to break through the 2 GB limit of the earlier Operating System.
Having the media drives formatted for HFS+ isn't essential ­ Final Cut Pro 2 can still capture unlimited durations by seamlessly joining 2 GB files, a QuickTime feature and the major benefit of HFS+, small files not taking more space than they should on large drives, isn't that crucial with the size files digital video uses, but you'll need to do it some time.

Warning: Converting drives to HFS+ normally requires a reformat, which destroys all data on a drive. Format one drive at a time, copying data to another drive first, if you have more than one drive. Or wait until you can clean the drive of media before converting it. There is a piece of software, in the MacMedic V1.5 (and later) package called SpaceMaker that converts disks to HFS + (Mac OS Extended Format) without having to clear the disks first, or lose data. While I haven't used it, I've not heard of any problems, so if you just cannot find a time when the disk is clear:

After Upgrading-

Test Final Cut Pro 2

####- First things first. Test Final Cut Pro 2. Start a new Project, assign Scratch Disks and do some test captures. Add Clips to a Timeline and render some effects and transitions. Be sure everything is working as intended before going beyond this point.

### - Return Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 to the internal Macintosh Hard Drive, and move the preferences to the System Preferences folder.

### - Test Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 with your current Project (if any) before continuing. Test Final Cut Pro 2 again. Capture some more footage, add it to the edit and do some more effects rendering.

# - Work with Final Cut Pro 2 for a couple of weeks or at least a few days before adding Extensions and Control Panels back. Most people can't live with this option (myself included) but hold out as long as you can to prove that all is working well before adding those 3rd party extensions.

### - Make a Final Cut Pro 2 Extension Set
Open the Extension Manager Control Panel. As Final Cut Pro 2 and QuickTime 5 will probably have changed the Mac OS 9.1 All Extension set, a copy will probably be automatically created for you. If not, create a copy of the Extension set so that you can return the Extensions and Control Panels back to this state, where everything is working, at any time. Name this Extension set: 'Final Cut Pro 2 Control Set'. Apple recommend the Mac OS 9.1 All for Final Cut Pro 2 and I would only pare that down if there was a serious problem.
Immediately create another Extension set and call it 'Final Cut Pro 2 Operating'. Make the Final Cut Pro 2 Operating extension set the active set. When new software adds Extension they are added to the currently active Extension set without regard to any need to keep it 'controlled'. So the Control Set is there as reserve backup to take us back to this absolutely Final Cut Pro 2 only "and working" set if there are every any potential Extension Conflicts.

### - Restore Extensions, Control Panels and Preferences
I'd really like to say that you should re-install all software again but that can be a huge burden. The best reason to re-install is to avoid any corrupt extension but since they're fairly rare, following this strategy should work.
Only ever restore one, or at most two, Extensions at a time. Personally I prefer to wait until I need to run an application that requires the extension before I restore it to my active set. Partly because I usually have no idea what half those Extensions do anyway, and waiting to be asked for a given Extension helps me work out what belongs to what, but also so I only add back in the Extensions I really need now. It's amazing how many Extensions never make it back into the folder because I just never need them. Keep the Extensions folder lean and happy.
Never add more than 2 Extensions at a time ­ or the extensions for one Application if it uses more than two (can you say Microsoft?) without extensively testing Final Cut Pro 2 between. That way, if you run into an Extension conflict, or some problem arises, you know exactly which two might be the culprit. Much easier to troubleshoot 2 Extensions than 20!
Add back Control Panels the same way ­ one or two at a time.

## - Restore your Favorites
Open the Favorites Exchange Project in Final Cut Pro 2. It will update the Project format when opened. You want it to do this. Once open, restore your favorites by:

Filters: Open the Clip with the Filters applied, in the Viewer. Select the Filters ­ all of them if you like ­ and drag them to the Favorites folder. They'll be immediately added with the original names.
Transitions: Open the Sequence that has the Clips with the Transitions between them. Drag each Transition to the Favorites Folder. It will be added with the original name.
Favorite Motions: A little less easy but not too bad. Open each Clip in the Viewer from the Timeline in turn. While the Clip is in the Viewer, choose the Make menu and select 'Favorite Motion'. The Motion Tab settings will be saved as a Favorite Motion again, under the name of the Clip so you'll have to rename the Favorite Motion again, but that's easier than redoing the settings, including any keyframes you might have had.

And if it doesn't go smoothly?

It will go smoothly if you follow these guidelines but if you run into problems, these might be some causes or solutions:

  • General Error Messages: In Final Cut Pro, General Error Messages are very broad, but at least one set was solved by reverting to a minimal (OS 9.1 Basic) Extension set. This could have been a corrupt Extension left over from an upgrade, rather than a clean install.
  • Dropped Frame Warnings: The solution may be to just turn off the Dropped Frame warning! Final Cut Pro 2 is much more sensitive to the reporting of non-standard frame lengths from QuickTime. This lead to "false" dropped frame reports in two circumstances ­ on Capture and when playing from the first frame of a Clip. The explanation is that when QuickTime starts capturing a Clip it is not always on a 'frame boundary' ­ it might start 1/3 the way through a frame, 1/2 way through a frame, 15/16th the way through a frame. QuickTime doesn't care ­ it will just count that bit as an extra bit on the next full frame for a frame of more than 1/29.97 or 1/25th (PAL). QuickTime is quite happy with variable length frames while Final Cut Pro 2, wanting standard video intervals complains about the 'long frame' which it interprets as a dropped frame. The way to check is to look at the Clip Analyzer (Tools menu) on a few Clips with 'dropped frames'. If the report is the "one Clip had a frame length of 2 frames" but all others were 1 frame, don't worry there's not really a dropped frame. Play from frame 2 and things will be fine. If you get another report, then you probably do have a dropped frame.
  • Type 12 Errors: RAM related, could be from mismatched RAM, substandard RAM or more RAM in the system than is supported. Try removing one or more RAM modules and see if that stops the problem. Remove each RAM module in turn until you identify which module is causing the problem. Be aware of, and use, static prevention when handling RAM to prevent 'zapping it' with static electricity.

But it will go smoothly, and you'll love Final Cut Pro 2.0

copyright©2001Phillip Hodgetts

Philip Hodgetts is the author of the DV Companion 2 and co-developer of the Intelligent Assistance approach to "What you want to know, when you want to know, how you want to know." Philip has had his own video production company since 1980 and worked on everything from long form documentary to corporate video to national TV commercial (Australia) with a strong emphasis on education and training video production.

He fell in love with Non-Linear Editing the first day he saw an Avid MCXpress, and purchased a Media 100 in late 1994. His first exposure to Final Cut Pro was at NAB 1998 when the alpha version was on limited display and immediately recognised its potential. His first Final Cut Pro job was a TV commercial that was on air in PAL the week Final Cut Pro 1.0 was released. FCP 1.0 did not officially support PAL.

His current major project (apart from updating the DV Companion, extending the Companion concept to other software and building a new website) is editing a long form documentary with 40 hours of source tapes in Final Cut Pro across the Pacific. Editing in LA with a Producer making revisions in Sydney by sending Project files by email.

You can purchase DV Companion by clicking HERE

copyright © Michael Horton 2000-2009 All rights reserved