Apple Qmaster: Shell Commands

Apple Qmaster is the distributed computing component of Final Cut Pro and Compressor, and if you like using the Terminal Shell in the Mac OS, the Command Line is the tool for you. With the terminal shell, you can use command in a UNIX type syntax to perform many functions into master or even automate task via a batch commands. This how-to guide will show you how to install Qmaster on a remote computer via the command line in Terminal Shell, as well as teach other command shell commands.

(Note - In order to use Apple key master effectively, you'll need to install it on every computer that you want to use for distributed processing. All computers must be on the same network and subnet in order to use the clustering power of Qmaster and Apple compressor.)

What You Will Need

  • A computer with Qmaster and Compressor installed
  • A network of 2 more computers
  • The Qmaster installer package (AppleQmasterNode.mpkg)

Step 1: Insure Compressor and Qmaster Are Same Version

Before you begin, you need to ensure that the versions of Compressor and Apple Qmaster match. For instance, if you are using Compressor 3.0.6, then you'll need to make sure that Apple key master version 3.0.6 is installed as well. If the versions do not match, the two pieces of software will not work together. You can check the versions by clicking 'Help' on the menu bar and then clicking the 'About' button. The small pop-up window will tell you the version of each program you have installed.

Step 2: Open Terminal Shell

Once you are sure that the version numbers of Compressor and Qmaster match, open up Terminal Shell on your Mac computer. You can access the Mac OS Terminal by going to 'Applications', and then clicking on 'Utilities'. There, you'll see a link for the terminal program. Click the program link to open it.

Step 3: Copy Qmaster Installer Package to Remote Computer(s)

Next, copy the installer package AppleQmasterNode.mpkg to the remote computer. You can go to each computer individually to copy the installer package or drag-and-drop it into each computer on your network. Just be sure not to change the file hierarchy of the installer package.

Step 4: Login to Remote Computers

Log in to the remote system where you want to install Qmaster.

Step 5: Install Qmaster to Remote Computer

Once you're logged on to the remote computer, you can complete the installation of key master by typing the following at the command line: sudo installer -pkg AppleQmasterNode.mpkg -target /

Step 6: Setup Qmaster Preferences via the Command Line

Instead of using the Apple Qmaster pane in system preferences of Compressor, you can use terminal shell commands to set the preferences. To set preferences via the command line, use the command 'qmasterprefs' plus the command line options you need to enable or disable service nodes or cluster controller services. Below is a syntax sample of settings for system preferences and to master. (Note - The angle brackets '< >' represent a mandatory argument in a command and brackets '[ ]' represent arguments that are optional.)

qmasterprefs [options] [-cluster <on | off> [options]] [-service <name> <on | off> [options]]

For a full list of available presence commands, refer to the key master instruction manual or visit this website.

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