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Variables are used to adapt and alter your workflow jobs to fit your output needs and incoming media. A variable is represented by a text string encapsulated with the percentage (%) character: %f_fps%, %username%, %s_original_name% etc… FFAStrans variables are always prefixed with a “s_” (string), “i_” (integer) or “f_” (float):

%s_v_codec% —> DNxHD120
%i_height% —> 1080
%f_fps% —> 29,97

FFAStrans has 3 kind of variables: Generic inbuilt variables, special inbuilt variables and user variables.

Generic Inbuilt Variables

These variables are automatically populated. If variable cannot be populated, they will mostly have an empty string or a zero (0), (e.g: height or width for an audio file, number of audio channels for a video file, mxf version for a quicktime file, etc). FFAStrans has 5 types of generic inbuilt variables :

  1. Media Variables
  2. File Variables
  3. Time Variables
  4. OS Variables
  5. FFAStrans Variable

Variables are generally populated on the fly when needed.

You can call all these generic inbuilt variables when you want and insert it by pressing the arrow-button next to a text field. All fields that has an arrow next to it supports variables.

1.Media Variables

Media properties are derived from the original input file. Different types of media can contain different kind of properties

Video And Audio Variables

%i_v_streams%Number of video streams (1).%i_a_streams%Number of audio streams (4).
%i_v_bitrate%Video bitrate of first video stream (50000).%i_a_bitrate%Audio bitrate of first audio stream (128).
%i_frames%Media length in frames (2600).%i_a_bit_depth%Bit depth of first audio stream (16).
%s_pixel_format%Pixel format of first video stream (yuv422p).%i_a_channels%Total number of audio channels (2).
%f_frame_rate%Frames per second (29.97).%i_a_sample_rate%Audio sample rate of first audio stream(48000).
%s_frame_rate%Frames per second represented as num/den (30000/1001).%s_dbe_layout%Json formatted audio layout including Dolby E after full decode.
%s_v_codec%Codec of first video stream (mpeg2video).%s_a_codec%Codec of first audio stream (pcm_s16le).
%s_v_profile%The profile of the first video stream.%s_a_codec_long%Long codec name of first audio stream (Advanced Audio Codec).
%i_v_first%Stream number of the first video stream.%i_a_first%Stream number of the first audio stream.
%s_pix_aspect%Pixel aspect of the first video stream (1:1).%i_tot_channels%The total number of audio channels.
%f_duration%Media length in seconds (137.48).%f_duration%Media length in seconds (137.48).
%i_interlace%Field domination(0=Progressive, 1=Upper, 2=Lower (1)).%s_a_layout%Return audio layout as array. First instance is number of channels in first audio stream, etc.
%s_date_created%Creation date of media (2015-15-11 21:16:33).%s_date_created%Creation date of media (2015-15-11 21:16:33).
%i_v_bit_depth%Bit depth of first video stream (10).%s_a_profile%The profile of the first audio stream.
%i_dheightDisplay height of the codec video.%i_has_coverReturn 1 if audio file has cover image.
%i_dwidthDisplay width of the codec video.%i_has_dolbyeChecks if source media has Dolby E content.

Video Variables Only

%i_height%Media video height of first video stream (1080).
%i_width%Media video width of first video stream (1920).
%s_v_codec_long%Long codec name of first video stream (Windows Media Video 2).
%s_disp_aspect%Display aspect of the first video stream (16:9).
%s_chroma_loc%Location of the first chroma sample (Upper left).
%s_color_space%Color space of the first video.
%s_color_trans%Color transfer of the first video.
%s_color_prim%Color primaries of the first video.
%s_color_range%Color range of the first video.
%i_intra%Checks if media is intra frame based. Return 1 if true, 0 otherwise.
%i_gamma%Gamma curve applied during encoding (Slog3).
%i_rotation%Find the rotation/orientation of the source media.
%s_duration_tc%Media duration as time code (00:05:10:12).
%s_date_created%Creation date of media (2015-15-11 21:16:33).
%f_start_sec%Start TC converted to seconds (2591.96).
%i_stc_hh%Start hour from TC.
%i_stc_mm%Start minute from TC.
%i_stc_ss%Start second from TC.
%i_stc_ff%Start frame from TC.
%s_start_tc%Start TC of Media (01:13:48:20).
%s_start_tc_alt%Alternative start TC based on creation time. NOT frame accurate.
%f_pix_aspect%The calculated aspect from denum/num (1.4222).
%f_v_tbase%The time base of the source video returned as float.
%i_xoffset%Start position of display width.
%i_yoffset%Start position of display height.
%i_v_precharge%Return number of pre-charge frames if available.


The latest calculated

Metadata Variables

%s_format%Format name of the container.
%s_mxf_version%Checks the mxf version used in the MXF source.
%s_mxf_op%Find the operational pattern used in the MXF source.
%s_format_long%Long format name of the container.
%s_master_display%Master display info if present on PQ/HDR10 video.
%s_info_ffprobe%Complete media info from ffprobe in JSON format.
%s_info_exiftool%Complete media info from exiftool in JSON format.
%s_info_mediainfo%Complete media info from mediainfo in JSON format.
%i_max_fall%Maximum program average frame light level in nits.
%i_max_cll%Maximum program light level in nits.

2.File Variables

File properties are derived from the original input file. ALL files has these properties so they will allways be populated with data.

%s_original_attrib%Attributes of the original file (RASH).
%s_original_ext%Original extension.
%s_original_name%Original filename without extension and path.
%s_original_path%Path of original file.
%s_original_path~n%Folder name n-steps backwards.
%s_original_folder%Path of original without drive or UNC.
%i_original_size%File size of original in bytes.
%s_original_date%Creation date of original file (YYYY-MM-DD_hh-mm-ss).
%i_original_year%Creation year of original file, e.g. 2020
%i_original_mon%Creation month of original file. [1-12]
%i_original_day%Creation day of original file. [1-31]
%i_original_hour%Creation hour of original file.
%i_original_min%Creation minute of original file.
%i_original_sec%Creation second of original file.
%s_original_root%Valid drive or UNC server path of the original file.
%s_original_drive%Drive or UNC server of the original file.
%s_recursed_path%Path of original without drive/UNC, monitored path and filename.
%i_source_size%File size of current source in bytes.
%s_pickup_file%Full path to the original file picked up by the monitors. 1'st level source. Full remote or local path of file picked up by def_runner based on individual monitor settings. Can be any binary or non-binary reference files like .lnk, .url, .xml, .json.'(*Note)
%s_original_full%Full path original file name as picket up by monitor or manually submitted. 2'nd level source. Full remote or local path to binary file discovered by monitor'(*Note)
: The %s_pickup_file% is ALWAYS the file that's being picked up by monitors, hence its name. But, this might be just a link to another file. Consider the case of for example a "c:\shortcut.lnk" file. This file just point to another file, say "\\server\share\cool.mp4"

This gives us the following different contents of the two variables:
%s_pickup_file% = c:\shortcut.lnk
%s_original_full% = \\server\share\cool.mp4

3.OS Variables

These variables, also called system enviroments, are the ones that resides within the OS independent of FFAStrans. But all can be utilized within FFAStrans. F.ex. the variable %username% is a part of the OS variables. OS variables are in fact statics(see user variable/statics) that don't change from job to job, or workflow to workflow.

These variables are specific and depend of each system. You can find the list of all variables here :

We can find for example %APPDATA% –>C:\Users\Share\AppData\Roaming.
Or %windir% –> C:\Windows

4.Time Variables

These are a selection of time variables read from the system time.

%i_gmt_bias%Returns the local GMT bias (-1).
%i_year%Full year (2020).
%i_yr%Short year (20).
%i_mon%Month (01-12).
%s_mon%Abbrevated month name going Jan. to Dec.
%s_month%Month name going January to December.
%i_mday%Day of month (01-31).
%i_wday%Numeric day of week. Starting on Sunday (1) through Saturday (7).
%i_yday%Current day of year. Range is 001 to 366 (or 001 to 365 if not a leap year).
%i_hour%Hour (23).
%i_min%Minute (59).
%i_sec%Second (59).
%s_week_day%Weekday name going Sunday to Saturday.
%s_w_day%Abbrevated weekday name going Sun. to Sat.
%i_week%Week number of the year.
%i_msec%Millisecond (346).

5.FFAStrans Variables

These are variables generated by FFAStrans. F.ex. %s_wf_name% holds the name of the workflow on where the job runs.

%s_job_id%GUID identifier for the current job (20160219-202314-181-4693BFCC0A72).
%s_job_work%Work folder for the current job (D:\_ffas_workroot\2015052120481\20160219-202314-181-4693BFCC0A72).
%i_job_priority%Priority of the current running job.
%s_wf_id%Identifier for the current workflow (20150521204819).
%s_wf_name%Name of the current workflow (Untitled).
%s_wf_folder%Folder name of the current workflow.
%s_split_id%Split/branch id of the current running job.
%s_node_name%Name of the current working processor node (XDCAM-HD).
%s_source% Full path to the file work file passed by FFAStrans processors. 4'th level source. Any file set as current input/output source for processors'
%s_root_work%Path to the global root work directory.
%s_ffastrans_dir%Path to the local FFAStrans.exe file.
%s_ffmpeg%Full path to the ffmpeg.exe file.
%s_ffmpegx64%Full path to the ffmpegx64.exe file.
%s_prev_node%Name of the previous processor node.
%s_error%Current error message/state.
%s_cache_record%Full path to the cache history record file created by the monitors.
%s_source_dir%Path to the files passed by some FFAStrans processors.
%s_version%Version of the current running FFAStrans.
%s_last_error%Retrieve last viable error message.

Special Variables

There is currently one variable that behave a bit different than others:

%s_original_path~n% = Folder name n-steps backwards. (This variable supports minus notation for retrieving path names from the right side.)

%s_source% represent the input file for any processor. It can be altered using the “Populate variables”-node.

%s_success% represent the success message upon job completion. It can be altered using the “Populate variables”-node.

In this example, the objective is to ensure that the input file has a video stream to perform the H264 encoding. Otherwise a message in the status monitor and in Webinterface's jobs list will appear. In this particular workflow, each branch leads to a success(but “no video” node isn't one for the user). The trick is to turn that success into “error” for user. Don't forget to use “execute on success”(conditional “TRUE”) to continue to H264 node OR “execute on error”(conditional “FALSE”) to continue to another node.
You just have to finish your branch by populated the %s_success% variable to a message of your choice e.g: “error” or “failed” or for the example “No video in input file”.

%s_options% (since FFAStrans 1.4) advanced users can force special behaviour.

Mostly used by advanced users to change the encoding commands of internal encode processors to specific needs. You can enable/disable options by setting %s_options% to some value using a populate vars processor. Setting one a single option will not change possible existing options.

Note that skip_encoding=True|save_enc_cmd=True can be used to “not encode” but just calculate some encoding command string which you can change to your needs.

Heading 1 Heading 2
skip_encoding Option to skip encoding in encoding nodes - used to retrieve the calculated encoding cmd in combination with save_enc_cmd
proc_execute Don't execute procs when false
save_enc_cmd Option to save ffmpeg processing and filter chains to variables
allow_text_source Option to turn the string in s_source into a text file
end_branch Option to end the current branch even if there are subsequent nodes
dispel_branch Option to end the current branch even if there are subsequent nodes and hide from history
emulate_crash none,mem,bounds,var,obj,halt,recurse,stress, null, Option to emulate node crash. For testing purpose only!
allow_afuncs Allow using native AutoIT functions in the populate and conditional node.
encode_errors Stop and error on known encoding andomalies resulting in a complete but incompatible file.
afilters Add extra ffmpeg audio filters at the end of filter chain per stream.
apre_filters Add extra ffmpeg audio filters at the start of filter chain per stream.
apost_filters Add extra ffmpeg audio filters at the end of filter chain per stream.
vfilters Add extra ffmpeg video filters at the end of filter chain.
vpre_filters Add extra ffmpeg video filters at the start of filter chain.
vpost_filters Add extra ffmpeg video filters at the end of filter chain.
enc_pre_input Add extra ffmpeg arguments before input specifier.
enc_pre_output Add extra ffmpeg arguments before output specifier.


Read only variable for retrieving the latest internally ffmpeg encoding command (after some encode processor)

User Variables

Normal User Variable : User variables can be populated using the “Populate variables” node within a workflow, a number of other processors like the Loudness Analyzer and via API
Populate Variables help

Scope :

User Variable Values are valid only for the current Branch and it's Child-branches. User Variables cannot be passed directly from one Branch to another.

How to create and set :

  • Press the arrow-button next to a text field,variables window appears.
  • Select “user” category.
  • Right-click into variables window and choose “new”.

  • Set “variable: Creates a normal user variable.
    • Field 1: Enter your variable name, this will always be lower case and spaces are not allowed.
    • Field 2: Here you can just write a description for the variable and its usage.
    • Set “variable and as ”string: Sets the variable as a text string. This is default.
    • Set ”variable and as ”integer: Sets the variable as an integer: whole number. Use this type if you need ffastrans to “guarantee” the value is of type integer. E.g. Spaces are removed and if the original value is a float, it will be rounded down. If the value is too big to fit into 64bit Int, it will be the maximum number an Int can be on your System.
    • Set ”variable and as ”float: Sets the variable as floating point number. Same automatic internal value conversion as int above
  • Set ”static: This is a static that can not be populated dynamically in workflows.
    • Field 1: Enter your variable name, this will always be upper case and spaces are not allowed.
    • Field 2: this option will read “Content”. Here you set the content of the static.
    • Set “static and as ”string: Sets the variable as a text string.
    • Set ”static and as ”integer: Sets the variable as an integer: whole number.
    • Set ”static and as ”float: Sets the variable as floating point number.
: Each time you create or modify a user variable, an archive file is created. You can retrieve the history of your variables from the folder :
%FFAStrans install directory%\Processors\db\configs\archive\user_variables

Static User Variable : This is another kind of variable. Unlike other variables, static variables are always written with upper case.Creating statics are very handy for example representing a very long path in a short static.

Example 1:
%S_MS_OUTPUT% = D:\Media\Customer previews\Huge important company\720p\Windows Media Video\500k bitrate with watermark

Example 2 :

In this example we have several monitor folder nodes with the same input folder.Only accept files or deny files are different.
If a full path is entered, it will work but all paths will have to be changed if the input folder is changed.
Static variables are handy to avoid this.

  • Create a static variable like ”%S_INGEST_PATH%”
  • Enter the appropriate content (the full path of monitored folder)
  • Enter your new static variable instead of the full path into all your monitor nodes

If your input path change, just edit and modify the content of %S_INGEST_PATH% and all the paths will be changed at the same time.

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variables/inbuilt_variables.txt · Last modified: 2024/03/20 21:20 by emcodem

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