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Thread: Flash Skin Tutorial?

  1. #1
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    Flash Skin Tutorial?

    For those of you who were hopping to find a tutorial on how to skin flash, unlucky? Although I hope that this will eventually hold all the information you need to do this.

    So, I have noticed a couple of people have started making flash skins but are yet to release them. Although I have never made a skin from scratch I have done enough modification of skins to say I have a good grasp of how to skin in RR and also how to create flash animations. However I would like to move up a level and start skinning in flash. Only problem is I haven't the foggiest where to start. What files do I need in the skin directory and how would i go about creating just a button to load a defferent screen with transition animation?

    Thanks in advanced for your help

  2. #2
    Maximum Bitrate DiNASTY's Avatar
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    Here's a quick q/a:

    Q: How do you add flash to a skin?

    A: Just as you can add a button (B) or label (L) to a skin using RRskineditor, you can also add a "Flash Movie" (F) by defining it's size and path. Flash movies have the extension (.swf) and should be placed in the skin folder. You can refer to the skinning tutorials by Meelobee or J187 for more information about the skin editor.

    Q: How do I make the flash movie?

    A: Typically, Macromedia Flash MX, or SwishMax are used. (SwishMax offers a free 30-day trial with full functionality) Small flash movies such as clocks, calculators and logos can also be downloaded from various sites on the net.

    Q: How do you get a RR label to show in the flash movie?

    A: First you want to define the desired RR label in your skin by manually editing the .skin file or by using RRSkinEditor. (For this example I will use the "CPU" label, although any RR label can be used) When you add the label to your skin file, you may set the length and width of the label to 0 and the x/y position to 0 as well. Below is what it should look like in your skin file:

    L,0,0,0,0,,,,,,"CPU",

    Next you will want to create the flash movie. All you will need to do is add a "dynamic" textbox and name it "CPU" (without quotes). That textbox will now automatically update itself with the CPU reading from RoadRunner. You may use any font, color or effect you desire for the textbox. Now, you just need to export the movie to .swf and define it in the skin file.

    To define it, select ADD > FLASH MOVIE in RRskinEditor and type out the path/filename of the swf in quotes: "cpu.swf"
    Also, remember to enter the correct width and height of the flash movie.

    TIPS: If the label doesn't display in your flash movie, make sure the dynamic textbox is large enough to show the entire contents of the RR label. If your textbox is cutting off even the last digit/letter of the label, it may not show. If it still doesn't show, you may have the label in a sub movie "sprite" in which case, you need to name your dynamic textbox "_root.CPU" (without quotes)

    Q: How does flash communicate with RR and viceversa?

    A: Flash uses "fscommands" to send commands to RR. Alternately, every label defined in the current skin is automatically sent to your flash movie as a string variable. You can access the contents of the variable simply by using the name of the label. For example: If you have a "VOLUME" label defined in the skin, RR will automatically send the current volume % to flash and you can utalize it in flash like so:

    Code:
        if (VOLUME == "100%"){
            myVar = "Turn that **** down!!!";
            fscommand("SETVOL;Wave;50");
        }
    Q: What skin commands can I send to RR?

    A: You can send any and every skin command using "fscommand("SKINCOMMAND");" However, there are some special characters that need to be sent differently.

    • @@ is used in place of ! (i.e. "@@SELECT+")
    • \\ is used instead of single \ (i.e "RUN;C:\\myapp.exe")


    Also, button up/down states can be recreated in flash. For example, a fscommand("NEXT","BUTTONDOWN") would start fast forwarding the song until a fscommand("NEXT","BUTTONUP") is executed.







    That's the basics i guess. I have more info if anyone is interested. Is this even understandable? (I've never made a FAQ before )

  3. #3
    Variable Bitrate pcfreak's Avatar
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    I, like many on here would like to see as much as possible. We are all knowledge hungry geeks here and you know this. Feed Me...... You know flash is becomming the shiznit in skinning.... so I would say we need a "skinning with flash FAQ" sticky....
    Peese

  4. #4
    Variable Bitrate jthiani's Avatar
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    Your the best DiNASTY....

    Question ...how would you control a playlist, folder list and slider from the flash file??? Whats the coding for that???

  5. #5
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    Thanks dinasty,

    So if I am to make a flash skin, I would just create the skin as normal in terms of files but I would create a flash object using (F) that would be the same size as the screen?

  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate DiNASTY's Avatar
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    If you want the flash to take up the whole screen, yes. Just use RRskinedtior or define it in the .skin file like so:

    F,0,0,800,480,"movie.swf"

    Remember to put the swf in the skin folder and you should be all set.

  7. #7
    Newbie moesbarn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jthiani
    Question ...how would you control a playlist, folder list and slider from the flash file??? Whats the coding for that???
    you'll need to learn quite a bit more actionscript (the flash coding) to get to that stage, i'd suggest having a look at some of the tutorials on www.flashkit.com and/or www.actionscript.org
    once you get the hang of it the possibilities are extraordinary, enjoy!

  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate Jarrod's Avatar
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    In addition to DiNASTY's post:

    Q: How does flash communicate with RR and viceversa?

    A: The label name variables are all local to the root of the flash movie, so if you want to access a variable from a movie clip placed the flash stage you need to reference it like so:

    Code:
        if (_root.VOLUME == "100%"){
            myVar = "Turn that **** down!!!";
            fscommand("SETVOL;Wave;50");
        }
    note the '_root.' part.
    Jarrod - Holden VX S!

  9. #9
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    resurrecting this thread as i have another ? that would help others i'm sure. Can someone explain how to have a rr label show in the flash movie?
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  10. #10
    Maximum Bitrate DiNASTY's Avatar
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    Sonicxtacy02, I added what I know to the FAQ on post 2. If you have any questions let me know
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