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Mike Matzdorff promised he would write up his 'Most awesome tip in the world' for FCPX and he's kept his word and done exactly that. He's cracked how to access an updating Library by another user.

If you've watched the most recent FCPX Virtual User Group, you will have seen Mike talk about how to share a Library without going through the process of exporting XML or making 'transfer libraries.' Mike explains:



Principle: Open Libraries can be synced (think library back-ups)

Objective: Make incremental one-way sync updates of a user’s Library that other users on the same shared environment can access.

Preparation: Media and Cache must reside outside of Library.

Concern: Disrupting internal components of a Library.

Solution: Place the Library in a folder and sync the folder.

Caveat: Unwise to have your own Library and synced Library open at the same time.   FCP X will error with "can't save, must quit" error.

Any user in a shared environment can access another users synced Library that is at most, 5 seconds out of date. Primary user can make an event of another user to grab. Or a user can grab on their own.

Specific settings are on the following page. Discussion at the Pixel Corps VUG starts about 27:07 on the video at this link. We were using a Mac Pro, a laptop and a Jellyfish storage box and Sync Folders Pro.



  • Make a duplicate in finder of original Library to sync
  • Place original in folder named with user’s name
  • Place duplicate in folder structure “synced libraries>user’s name”


In “Sync Folders Pro” (Get Sync Folders Pro here)

  •  Set the “A” folder (original) & the “B” folder (synced)
  • When first making a sync relationship a dialog will come up asking where to store the sync log, we put it in a folder called “syncfiles” outside of the folders that contained the libraries.
  • Set the one-way sync (A=>B)

 FCPX Library Sync 2

Right click to open bigger image in a new window


Set the auto sync increment (5 seconds in this case)

All other setting were default

 FCPX Library Sync 1


Run the sync, sync Library will now be up to date for other users.


UPDATE: Mike shows the MacBreak Studio guys this workflow in this latest episode.


matzdorff1Mike is a writer, director, editor, assistant editor and has composed the score for one indie film and a stage play. He has spent over 20 years in editing rooms of feature films and Emmy winning television shows, including, Fight Club, Analyze This, Last Comic Standing and Monk.

He was the first assistant editor on the first major film edited on Apple's Final Cut X software and wrote a book on the experience loaded with real world tips, tricks, and proven workflow techniques.

Recently, Mike has been a keynote speaker at the FCPX Creative Summit and a guest lecturer at the University of Illinois and San Diego User Group.

You can find him on Twitter @fcpxfeatures and on his blog fcpxfeatures.co




Written by

Mike is a live-action and animation editor. Recent work includes: Looney Tunes, Batman, Young Justice for Warner Bros.

He worked with Duncan Studio in Los Angeles on CBS Films, Middle School: The Worst Years of my Life and recently (2020) worked with Apple on some very cool internal content.

Notable work from the past, USA Network's MONK, David Fincher's Fight Club and Panic Room, and he wrote, directed and produced indie film, Feed The Fish.

Mike is also a writer and has two completed spec scripts (one feature and one pilot) and authored a book on feature film workflow for Apple's Final Cut Pro software. He has spoken at multiple conventions instructing and endorsing Final Cut Pro X.

Lastly, Mike is a father of two and lives in Studio City, California.

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