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Cleaning My Sonar X3 DAW Registry

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  • Cleaning My Sonar X3 DAW Registry

    For any Sonar users out there. Also, this may be a problem outside of Sonar, but I'm not sure.

    I've noticed that while using a registry/hdd trash cleaner that when I reboot Sonar X3 all of my VST's are out of commission. What's strange about this is that while I ONLY clean what's on my C:\ drive, it does NOT blow away the VST paths that point to my C:\ drive, but ONLY blows away the paths that point to the separate partitions where I store all of my VSTi's, and FX. So, obviously there's some kind of instruction in Sonar (whether it's an INI file or what) on my C:\ drive that points to the other drives, and tells the cleaner to delete THAT, and NOT the paths that point to the C:\ drive.

    Now, I know there's a bunch of folks that are going to read this and have 1 or more of the following responses. So, here's my response to those ahead of time, and I think my responses are quite reasonable, and I would appreciate a thoughtful serious debate on this, instead of smartA$$ remarks that really add nothing to the discussion.
    1.) So, for the response of "Well, why do you insist on cleaning your registry/hdd, especially, if it does what you say it does?"
    Answer:Because just like DAW have known for years that defragging your hard drive makes for much better/faster throughput, especially when working with many multitracks, and 32-64Bit realtime FX. So, the same principle applies with your registry. The more useless crap you have in your registry, the longer it takes for your processor, AND HDD to find, and access the correct data, no matter how fast your system is. In addition, the cleaner I've been using has a timer that tells you how long it takes for your system to boot. Now, as you can see in my forum signature, I've got a significantly better than avg system, and when my system is operating at it's optimum I've seen it boot in as little as 19 secs. THAT'S FAST! Yet, because it takes so long to reset my VST's AND the drum maps, I've avoided cleaning my system for just 1 week, and already it has slowed down to a 65 sec boot time. THAT'S SLOOOWW! That also tells me there's a LOT of crap that needs cleaning, and a lot of room for improvement. I didn't pay what I did for this system to be that slow, and I don't think any of the serious users here would disagree with me.
    2.) The other response I'm anticipating is: "Well, if you don't want to reset your VST paths, and you say the ones on the C:\ drive remain intact after cleaning, why don't you just transfer all that's on the other drive to your C:\ drive?"
    Answer: Well, as I stated in the previous response, because 1 of the universal needs in our technology is SPEED...AT EVERY TURN! Further, if for some reason my C:\ drive crashes that means I have to remember all of those VST's, and settings, blah, blah, blah in order to re-install. Also, that's just that much more the C:\ drive as to deal with. And as I eluded to earlier, the way the drum maps are set up causes you to spend an inordinate amount of time reassigning maps....and that's if you CAN remember what the assignments are. Now, if they added a Print opt, or something that could save EVERYTHING on the map, as in exactly what s'ware, or h'ware synth you had mapped to any given sound, that would be a HUGE step in the right direction. Also, while I don't use the Step Sequencer that much, it only stands to reason that those settings would also be blown away.
    So, as for viable solutions: First of all, I'm not trying to make Cakewalk out to be the bad guy, I'm just trying to find a happy solution. So, I looked in the Settings for the cleaner for a way to exempt the "other than C:\" map from being blown away. Not there. I agree that writing their tech support might offer a solution, however, I still think it's a much easier route to pursuit to find the setting in Sonar that points to that path.
    I'm going to send this to CWalk Tech Support, and see if they can shed any light on it. If there are any other ideas I'd really appreciate it.

  • #2
    I been using cakewalk back in 195 and have gone through several versions of sonar up to version 8. I haven't upgraded to X versions yet but they are all the same when it comes to handling files.

    I learned along time ago, its best to store your wave files on a separate internal drive when recording. You do have to tell the program where to save the wave files under the audio options tab and then direct the cleanup scan to look for them in that folder.

    Once you delete the picture icon for the song, the cleanup scanner should find all the wave files for that project. (I say should because I've had a few instances where all the files weren't found for some reason or another, and had to manually delete them.

    Once that's done you will also get a tone of cache files that will get built up in the audio file. These are the scanned images of the wave views. I'm sure you noticed the wave view and the time it takes for those files to render before you see a visible wave form. All those scans get saved in a folder and can be safely deleted. They don't disappear on their own, and none of them take up much space. Maybe a couple of K bytes or less, but they do build up. I usually do it when I've completed all my current projects and want to do a clean sweep.

    Those are the only two items I mess with and my DAW remains rock solid with no fragmentation worth mentioning.
    If you only have one drive than I can see where your system will get bogged down. Windows creates slack files which constantly change size and any storage items on your main c drive is going to wind up getting moved as demands dictate.

    With a separate drive for your wave files, nothing fragments. The data stays the same all the time. The most you may get is holes between the older files you delete and the newer one and defragging cleans them space by reorganizing. It doesn't affect the speed in any way whatsoever. Its not like you're getting cookies and temp files jammed in the middle of a project where the heads have to jump all over the place to play back your project. The other benefit is you have two independent sets of heads working at the same time. The C Drive heads can be accessing your effects logarithms while the other set is streaming the wave files.

    There is no reason whatsoever to clean up any registry files if the computer is only being used as a DAW, and you aren't installing or removing a bunch of plugins or programs. If you have issues with effects not showing up, the reason is Cakewalk isn't recognizing them properly. As far as boot speed, that's caused by how many programs you have self starting and running in the background. I suggest you visit the Black Viper site, and check out optimizing the Services. Unless the registry is screwed up, its not going to be the issue with your slow boot speed. Its more likely the internet trying to connect or a whole list of crap programs loading in the background.

    You can also fun the run screen and type in MSconfig. Go to the startup tab, en shot off all those crap programs from loading, everything from CD burners, to anti virus and anything else you don't absolutely need running. I don't keep my computer connected to the internet so I even disable the internet. I only keep my sound card on the list. I have consistent boot and shut down speeds of around 15~20 seconds.

    If you have slow downs you can hit ctl-alt-del and open the task manager and view the processes running. If there's some CPU pig program running it should be visible.

    The other thing that can kill you is stealth Trojan programs, adware etc. These come packaged with illegal downloads and if your system is infected you probably deserve to have your computer crash.

    Other then that, it takes time to optimize your computer to run its best. I'm able to go at least 2 years with heavy work running it as a daw completely trouble free. The most I may get is an occasional freeze when I been working on a project too long without saving it and have a ton of high end plugins going. Sonar has an undo feature which likely runs out of cache after so many changes. You can freeze it after several hundred changes or edits (at least it seems that way) You can turn on the automatic save feature to avoid that issue. I just find its NG because I may be working on several different versions and don't want them saved unless I tell it to.

    Once you have your plugins set up, you don't have to have the program scan those plugins every time you start the program. I only run it when I'm adding new plugins. Otherwise, It remains static.