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Wormhole Content Browser for Houdini

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Hi, there. I'm releasing an "early version" of a tool I've been working on.

The Wormhole Content Browser is a custom UI for Houdini that enables quick browsing, previewing, and importing of content into Houdini.

Some existing features:

  • File browser within a pane tab for easy integration with your desktop.
  • Access browser through parameter context menu to set parameter to a selected file.
  • Easily generate geometry previews using the viewport or mantra.
  • Thumbnails are cached to disk for quick access, especially for previously loaded large images.
  • Import files into SOPs, COPs, or CHOPs.
  • Plus more!

Note: This tool is in development, but the functionality currently provided is complete. I am offering this version for free to get people to bang on it a bit. I will continue to fix bugs and make limited improvements to this version. I am planning on adding more features like improving workflow interactions with Houdini, and tools to search through content in a future version that may not be free.

Here's a link to the gumroad project page: Wormhole Content Browser



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Happy new year! I'm starting the new year off with a new version of the Wormhole Content Browser, version 0.3.3. This version addresses some minor issues related to Houdini 18.0 and includes some major performance improvements for thumbnail generation, as well as bug fixes. There is also a feature to create network background images from images in the content browser for easy network editor reference image contact sheet creation.

0.3.3 Release Notes:

  • Feature: Houdini 18 support.
  • Feature: Image file context menu action to create a network background image. The image is sized to the current network view and attached to the selected node if one is selected.
  • Feature: Context menu action to copy shell compatible path to the clipboard.
  • Feature: FBX file context menu action to merge or load the file by creating OBJ nodes instead of a geometry import SOP.
  • Feature: Major performance improvements in loading previews of many quick to load files. A directory of 760 small files loads in 3 seconds now instead of 59 seconds! This also translates to better interactivity during loading.
  • Feature: Configurable time threshold for saving previews to disk cache. This prevents quickly loading files from being added to the cache saving space.
  • Improved: File label layout is much better.
  • Improved: Delete the selected content root with the Delete key.
  • Improved: Remember last content root location between sessions.
  • Improved: Tooltip help on all context menu actions.
  • Improved: Undo now works on each context menu action where appropriate.
  • Fixed: Missing channel file extensions from file CHOP content dialog.
  • Fixed: Errors when loading icons from HDAs with missing icons.
  • Fixed: Thumbnails for HDAs now correctly get the icon from the HDA.
  • Fixed: Error when selecting an item from the content selection dialog and previews are still being loaded.
  • Fixed: Start browser starts empty so that directories outside of the content root are not shown initially.
  • Fixed: Clear cache didn't work immediately after enabling the preview cache.
  • Fixed: Error with automatic mantra rendering of geometry files with compressed extensions (i.e. .bgeo.sc).
  • Fixed: File tooltips now show the file path native to the current platform (i.e. using \ on windows)
  • Fixed: Errors when generating viewport preview or importing geometry with invalid custom import sop type. Now a dialog pops up offering to create the default File SOP instead if the given node type doesn't exist.
  • Fixed: Generate preview actions not showing up on Mac OS X.
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Happy New Year! Version 0.4.1 of Wormhole Content Browser for Houdini has been released. This version adds support for the Python 3 version of Houdini 18.5 and a small bug fix.

0.4.1 Release Notes:

  • Feature: Support for Python 3 version of Houdini 18.5.
  • Fixed: Capture of selection highlight when generating preview with the viewport in certain cases.

Additionally it seems that I didn't post the 0.4.0 update to odforce in November. Here is the missing information:

Version 0.4.0 of Wormhole Content Browser for Houdini has been released. This version adds support for Houdini 18.5, initial drag & drop support, some miscellaneous usability additions, and some bug fixes.

One issue users might have run into that still needs some work is the preview cache breaking after switching between certain Houdini versions (such as opening in 18.0 after 18.5). Sorry about that, I did not foresee that being an issue. This version addresses part of the problem by not crashing outright in this case and providing a path to using Content Browser even after this has happened. A future version will provide a better workflow surrounding this.

0.4.0 Release Notes:

  • Feature: Support for Houdini 18.5.
  • Feature: Initial drag and drop support from Content Browser into Network Pane. Files can currently only be dropped into a context that corresponds with the file type (i.e. geometry files can only be dropped into a SOP or LOP network). Keep in mind some of the managers (i.e. /img and /ch) are not actually subnet types so cannot take files dropped in them.
  • Feature: (Houdini 18.0+) Drop files onto a LOP to create appropriate loader and connect it.
  • Feature: Support for VDB files as generic geometry.
  • Feature: (Houdini 18.0+) Support for USD files as generic geometry.
  • Feature: (Houdini 18.0+) Import as USD action.
  • Feature: Import as alembic action.
  • Feature: (Houdini 18.0+) Create “Reference Image Object” from image.
  • Improved: Use Houdini icons for various file types.
  • Improved: Help avoid selecting custom SOP type and provide feedback when custom SOP type is invalid.
  • Fixed: Various Import actions failing when Stage viewport is open.
  • Fixed: Viewport renders failing when Stage viewport is open.
  • Fixed: Crashes due to invalid or corrupt preview cache.
  • Fixed: Error when rendering previews of a file that contains invalid geometry.

Here's a link to the gumroad project page: Wormhole Content Browser


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