3 Replies Latest reply on Feb 22, 2010 8:55 AM by Mike Blaustein

    Need Help: Opening external files from Director


      Hello Everyone,


      I apologize if this is rudementary, however I'm stumped. I've done quite a bit of work back in the Director MX days using PCs and I have a job I'm working on for a client that requires the opening of PDF and Quicktime files from CD/DVDrom. It has to work on mac and pc. I've tried everything I can think of..including embedding PDFs into the director movies using Active X (which I never got it to work) to using the Open command with the moviePath(code which seems to not work in 11.5 Director).


      Basically I need some help with code...what code would allow me to access and open PDFs on the same CD/DVD rom that my presentation will be playing from? Assuming the PDFs/Quicktime files would be in a sub folder off the root of the CD/DVD. I am working on a Macintosh running Mac OS X v 10.6.2


      Is this even possible anymore with Director 11.5? Can I open external files?  I will be checking for Adobe Acrobat and Quicktime installations and if not present prompting them to install on my movie load. So let's assume those two applications are installed and associated with their respective players/readers.


      Thanks in advance to any help you can provide.


      POST EDIT:


      I downloaded Buddy API and got it to work from within Director on the Macintosh and in an older version of Director on a PC, however it is not working from the projector. I'm assuming this is because I didn't include the xtras. It's late, I'm tired..I'll double check in the morning.


      I would like to know if it's possible to do what I need to do without Buddy API - thanks!

        • 1. Re: Need Help: Opening external files from Director
          Sean_Wilson Adobe Community Professional

          It's possible to do what you describe without Buddy API.


          For starters, you should be displaying QT videos in your Director movie as sprites instead of in their external application. PDFs can be displayed in Director (again, as members/sprites) using INMs Impressario xtra. ActiveX will never work on Mac.

          • 2. Re: Need Help: Opening external files from Director
            Dignified_Dude Level 1

            Sean - thanks for the post.


            Couple things. The client doesn't want the PDFs to open inside the Director application. They do not have as much of a problem with the Quicktime movies opening in Director.  I personally felt it was more consistent with the user interaction and flow of design to launch the videos to pull screen within their respective players not to mention less design time spent by not having to create custom video controls allowing the end user to control movie playback or go full screen with the videos.


            As mentioned in my original post (in the edit) I figured out how to do what I want to do with the BuddyAPI Xtra, however I'm still hoping someone can provide me with direction on how or if I can do this without an additional xtra or third party module. I would like to keep the presentation dependant on native Director abilities for both the Mac and PC.


            In addtion, should I decide to go ahead and use the BuddyAPI xtra to open the PDFs and Quicktime movies externally with their respective readers/players does anyone forsee any problems that could arise on the two different operating systems (i.e., that being Macintosh and Windows)?


            Thank you

            • 3. Re: Need Help: Opening external files from Director
              Mike Blaustein Level 4

              The only way to do that without BuddyAPI (or some other xtra that does the same thing) would be to use Director's open...with command.  If you know where the exe is for the quicktime player or acrobat reader, then you can do this:


              open the moviePath&"somefile.pdf" with "c:\program files\adobe\acrobat\acroread.exe"


              Of course, you would have to have it check for Mac and tell it where to find that file also.  If the user does not have acroread installed in that folder, then the command will fail.  It is a stupid way to do it.


              The smart way is to use BuddyAPI which will always work, cross platform, and allow you to do error checking and such to make sure that things work properly. If this is all you are using BuddyAPI for, it is free as well.  You can use up to 2 functions in any given projector for free.


              I do this all the time and have never had problems with BuddyAPI.  If you do not want to use it for some reason, then good luck.  You will need to be able to find out where the applications are located on each target machine.  The only way I know of to do that is to use another of BuddyAPI's functions (baFindApp), but that sort of defeats the purpose of not using BuddyAPI...


              To include the xtra in your projector, add an xtras folder underneath the folder where your projector is located and add the xtra there.  Or you can include it in the projector by clicking on Modify, Movie, Xtras and Add it to the projector there.  You may need to also edit your xtrainfo.txt file (according to the BuddyAPI docs) to make it automatically add the xtra to the projector in both OSes.