Q. - Am I to assume that when rendering an imported After Effects composition in Premiere or when exporting the Premiere sequence to Encore, After Effects must be up and running with the composition loaded otherwise it will not render because it is considered offline?
I thought that CS4 was smart enough to load and run the After Effects rendering engine to render the imported composition in Premiere CS4 without having to run the whole After Effects program.
No, AE does not need to be running. Opening a PPro sequence that contains dynamically-linked AE comps will force a "headless" version of AE to launch in the background, as well as the dynamiclinkmanager.exe process which presumably is the messenger between the programs. Your DL'ed AE comps will render just fine. Why do you ask? Are you seeing something else happen?
Q. - Also, why are there three copies of the After Effect process running in Task Manager?
Depending on the amount of RAM you have, you can set a preference in AE that allows it to spawn additional processes to speed rendering; it's in the "Memory" preferences, I believe. I think quad-core systems with ample RAM can have something like 4 simultaneous AE processes running.
Without AE running, i just got the "media offline" when i put the timeline over the composition in Premiere CS4. Even though the render bar over the composition was green when i rendered the sequence, it was still offline. I havn't tried it without AE running at this point.
Maybe Colin will be better at figuring it out than I, but that last post was rather confusing.
You start off by saying that AE wasn't running, then you end by saying you haven't yet tried it without AE running. Well, which is it.
Further, you say you put the timeline over the composition in Premiere. That's just not possible. Premiere doesn't use compositions, so you can't put anything 'over' them. Imported AE comps are just ordinary clips, which you put into a sequence in Premiere. So I wonder, are you working in Premiere, or AE.
Maybe I'm being nitpicky, but the inaccurate terminology has me confused about exactly what you're doing.
Sorry about that, it was late. Let try it again...
I'm running Vista x64 sp2, amd dual core processor with 8 gb of ram.
I created a bunch of lower thirds in AE that i imported into Premiere by loading the composition stored in the .aep file while AE was running. With AE up and the AE project loaded in AE, premiere showed the imported lower thirds and rendered them when i pressed the enter key - all was good. Later on when i re-started Premiere without restarting AE, Premiere displayed the "media offline" message when i put the play head over the composition in Premiere CS4. Even though the render bar over the AE composition clip in Premiere was green when i rendered the sequence, it was still offline.