Plugin Compatibility

Comments and discussions about 8bf plugins which can be use in various applications like Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro or Photo-Paint
Yani
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Plugin Compatibility

Postby Yani » Sun May 29, 2005 3:46 pm

Hi,

Down the road in the Corel Forum the question keeps coming up...

"Why doesn't XXX plug in work?"

We are aware there were changes to the Adobe SDK following PS 7. But can you add some more detailed information that I can relay back to that forum. (Given that Corel don't seem to be able to manage any significent comment on this or any other issue. Grrr)

Can you guys add some detail to this for us.

Yani

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Re: Plugin Compatibility

Postby toby » Mon May 30, 2005 6:12 am

Yani wrote:Hi,



"Why doesn't XXX plug in work?"

We are aware there were changes to the Adobe SDK following PS 7. But can you add some more detailed information


Plugins that have been written to the PS7 or PS CS SDKs may be using newer features that Corel (or other host apps) don't support. Plugins that predate PS7 should continue to work, assuming the plugin interface in Corel is PS6 compatible and not broken. Adobe seems to have made sure that their recent versions properly support plugins that use the older API. It's not clear how far future versions of PS will extend this courtesy to users and 3rd party developers.

I know there were bugs in the PS-compatible plugin host in PSP prior to version 9. It's very hard for developers to be completely Photoshop compatible because Adobe doesn't want them to be, so they give out as little information as possible. I believe this is also the main reason for restricting the PS SDK nowadays. This policy is sure to bite them in the ass eventually.

There is some more discussion of compatibility on this site, here.

(Disclaimer: I have never, and probably will never, see the PS7 or CS SDKs. All my plugins are built with PS6 or earlier SDKs and run fine with PS7, CS and most other hosts, I expect.)

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Postby HaraldHeim » Mon May 30, 2005 2:25 pm

Corel Draw and Corel Photo-Paint have become quite compatible with Photoshop plugins from Version 9 on. A lot of plugins don't work with Version 8 of Corel Draw and Photo-Paint.

So if these people who have problems with plugins and use Version 8 or lower, please ask them to upgrade to at least Version 9. If these people use Version 9 or higher, there isn't much that they can do. Although many plugins work in many different applications, there are still a few plugins that only work in Adobe applications.

Another possibility is to try to use these plugins in a freeware application that supports Photoshop plugins. After you applied the plugin you can still copy and paste the image back into a Corel application. A list of plugin-compatible freeware can be found at http://thepluginsite.com/resources/freeplugintools.htm

Concerning Paint Shop Pro (which now also belongs to Corel) I made the experience that some plugin, which work fine in Version 7, now make slight problems in the latest versions 8 and 9. But Paint Shop Pro still should be a bit more compatible than Photo-Paint.

Yani
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Detecting compatibility

Postby Yani » Tue May 31, 2005 12:49 pm

Thanks...

Specifically here we are talking about the GF Plug-in. This worked fine (appearently) with PhotoPaint 9 and now fails on PP12.

It's accessed from the file save menu. As is the plug-in for my Nikon RAW files which also fails. The question is are these plug-in developed using the Adobe 7 > SDK and therefore we are stuffed or is this something Corel can fix?

Is there a way to tell what SDK was used to develop the plug-in?

Yani

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Postby HaraldHeim » Tue May 31, 2005 2:20 pm

The latest version of Genuine Fractals is less compatible and only works in Photoshop. It also fails in Paint Shop Pro. Did you try an older version of Genuine Fractals in PhotoPaint 12? It should work.

I don't know about the Nikon RAW plugin. Maybe it was only developed for Photoshop. You have to contact Nikon about it.

Yani
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Plug-in suffix

Postby Yani » Mon Jun 06, 2005 8:48 am

What clues can we get from the suffix used on the file name...
8be
8bf
8bi (Nikon and GF)
And is there a method to revel the author software that was uesd to create the plug-in.
Yani

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Re: Plug-in suffix

Postby toby » Mon Jun 06, 2005 9:28 am

Yani wrote:What clues can we get from the suffix used on the file name...
8be
8bf
8bi (Nikon and GF)
And is there a method to revel the author software that was uesd to create the plug-in.
Yani

The suffixes tell you nothing, because they are just the standard Windows extensions used for plugins (Export, Filter, and Format respectively, from your list above). Those extensions apply to all versions of Photoshop, regardless of how the plugin was created, and are even also used occasionally by Mac plugin files.

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Postby HaraldHeim » Mon Jun 06, 2005 9:32 am

It also doesn't matter which Photoshop SDK version was used to create a plugin. You can create plugins with older SDKs that only work in Photoshop and you can create plugins with the latest Photoshop CS2 SDK that work in all applications.

Some plugin developers use Photoshop-specific SDK features and don't test their plugins with other applications. That's what makes the difference. If the product specifications don't mention that the plugin is compatible with a certain application, you can only find that out by testing the plugin in that application.

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Except on the Macintosh.

Postby toby » Mon Jun 06, 2005 9:52 am

HaraldHeim wrote:you can create plugins with the latest Photoshop CS2 SDK that work in all applications

For the third time on the Mac platform since PS 2.5, there is a new incompatible executable format for plugins: CS2 now uses Mach-O. (At least Illustrator CS2 does, and I therefore infer, although Adobe does not make the information public, that Photoshop CS2/Mac also does.)

Strictly speaking, you can probably use the PS CS2 SDK to make backwards compatible Mac plugins, but plugins made in the new CS2 format won't be compatible with anything other than CS2 itself (until other vendors update their apps, a possibility that Adobe is doing its damnedest to prevent through carefully restricted access to the SDK).

As far as I know the executable format for Windows plugins has not changed since the first cross-platform Photoshop (v3.0?)

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Postby HaraldHeim » Mon Jun 06, 2005 11:39 am

Yes, it is a bit more complex on the Mac. Old PEF plugins still work in CS 2 on the Mac though.

The latest big change in Windows was back in 1995 from 16bit to 32bit. So almost all plugins that were written for 32bit Windows since 1994/95 still work in Photoshop CS 2.

I hope if CS 3 for Windows will be a 64bit application, it will still run 32bit plugins. Otherwise it will mean a lot of work for many people updating their plugins and many old plugins, which won't be updated anymore, will become useless.
Last edited by HaraldHeim on Mon Jun 06, 2005 11:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

toby
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Postby toby » Mon Jun 06, 2005 11:53 am

HaraldHeim wrote:Old PEF plugins still work in CS 2 on the Mac

That's good news. I had received ambiguous reports of this and still haven't had a chance to test myself.

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Postby HaraldHeim » Mon Jun 06, 2005 11:55 am

Well, at least the CS2 SDK says that PEF plugins still work. I haven't tested it myself. I only heared during the CS2 beta test that some plugins caused problems in CS2 on the Mac, but as far as I know that was fixed.

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CS2/Mac

Postby toby » Fri Jun 24, 2005 8:07 am

I don't think PEF format plugins are still supported. Anyway moving to Mach-O was necessary in order to support the new Intel architecture. No doubt Adobe received a tip-off a long time ago...

I haven't seen the non-public SDKs (PS7, CS, CS2) - but you can build CS2 plugins with any old SDK. As usual, a new code property has been added, 'mach', to indicate the new Mach-O executable format. I have created a complete working example of a CS2/Mac plugin here: http://www.telegraphics.com.au/svn/netpbmformats/trunk (Subversion repository). It is built by gcc and a Makefile is provided. The same Makefile cross-builds the Win32 plugin DLL. You will also need to check out the 'common' project and you will need a Photoshop SDK (any version).

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Postby xpcomputers » Thu Jul 28, 2005 10:08 pm

I have Corel PhotoPaint 12 and can't get the Olympus RAW plug-in to work. It is a .8BA

I see you list various types above, but not the .8BA

What does the "A" stand for?

Various comments in the Corel forums seem to suggest that certains type of plug-ins are less likely to work with PhotoPaint versions 10 to 12, because of issues working with the GUI interface for the file import, export, open, save-as etc ..... whereas plug-ins that are "Filters" are more likely to work.

Can anyone here shed any light on this matter.
Cheers

Mike

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Postby toby » Thu Jul 28, 2005 11:17 pm

xpcomputers wrote:I have Corel PhotoPaint 12 and can't get the Olympus RAW plug-in to work. It is a .8BA

I see you list various types above, but not the .8BA

What does the "A" stand for?


"Acquire" (for scanners, other input sources, etc).


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