Versioning digital assets in P4V is the same as versioning code or text files. Anyone, such as graphic and game designers, illustrators, and video editors, can take advantage of the features to preview, share, and access previous versions of work.

All of your assets can reside in the server. This sample project has an After Effects file, an mp4 movie file, a Camtasia project file and its associated captured media, and a wave file. A Photoshop, png and Powerpoint file are also kept here.

P4V recognizes that most of these file types are binary. The fractional number provided tells you the version that is in your workspace (on the left) and the latest version checked into the server (on the right).

Hovering over the filename gives the file type and file size, as well as dimensions and resolution when applicable.

Previews are available for raster image files. Click on the Preview tab to see the image.

Here are previewable file types:

.bmp, .cur, .dds, .gif, .icns, .jpg, .png, .tif, .wbmp

 

You can preview image assets in a folder by changing your Files tab View from List to Thumbnails.

Only one version of a file can be in your workspace. If you want to keep various versions—such as an image file with different effects applied, as we have here, save each file differently. Each file is then versioned separately.

To preview other file types, you must open the file, but it will be “Read-Only”, until you Check it Out.

Let’s Check Out this file so that we may edit it. A yellow triangle badge indicates that we do not currently have the latest version of the file in the workspace.

To retrieve the latest version, select the file or the top level folder, context-click and chose Get Latest Revision. Now we have the latest version.

Next, Check-out this file by right-clicking and selecting Check Out. Checked-out files can be in the Default changelist, an existing numbered changelist, or a new one.

A red checkmark will appear by the file icon to indicate that we have it Checked out. Other users will see a blue checkmark next to the file. To see who is working on a file, hover over it. As we see here, John Wakeman has this file checked out.

Your Checked out files are in a pending changelist in this Pending tab.

To prevent others from submitting changes to a file that you have checked out, you may lock it by context-clicking on the file, and selecting “Lock”. Check with your administrator to see if binary files are automatically locked at your workplace. The lock icon is visible to you and to others. After you submit your file, the file is unlocked and can then be updated by other users.

To open a file, right-click on the file in the Pending tab or in the Workspace tab and select, “Open” or “Open with…” “Open With” allows you to select the application.

This is an Illustrator file. We can either Browse to search for Illustrator, but first let’s go to Preferences. Select File Editors. Here, we can designate which application will open certain filetypes. Let’s add the .ai extension which are Adobe Illustrator files. Now, simply double-click the filename and it will automatically launch Illustrator.

Let’s edit and save the file. Check the file back into the server by right-clicking and submitting the changelist. Add a description of the changes. Click Submit, and a new version, now #3, is in the server.

Keep in mind that if you have externally linked files, such as video footage and image files used in an Adobe After Effects project, you need to add them to your workspace folder as well. Perforce will not be able to find files that reside in other folders on your computer.

All versions of your work are preserved; there’s no need to rename your file with version numbers or dates. In the History tab, you can access all previous versions of a file. Click on a version, and choose, “Get this Revision.” Now version 2 is currently in your workspace.

Also, for raster files, you can compare 2 versions of an image file by dragging and dropping one version atop another. This launches the Image Diff tool within P4Merge. Watch the video, “Using the Image Diff Tool” for detailed information.

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Course - Versioning for Designers and Game Developers