Content Switching

Userful Control Center provides links to three different tools that can be used to trigger content and/or layout changes on-demand, with a single tap or click of a mouse.

The three options are all very different, and it’s not recommended to use more than one at a time. Rather, each should be evaluated to see which one best suits your needs.

Links to each can be acquired from Remote Control Settings.

  • Preset Switcher: It saves and recalls the entire Userful Control Center configuration. This includes Sources, Resource Groups, Zones, and even Command & Control configurations‌.

  • Source Switcher: It instantly recalls a Source in a Resource Group on a particular display or Zone‌.

  • Layout Switcher: It triggers layout changes in the Command & Control. It is only on-premise.

Presets and the Preset Switcher

A Preset is a database file saved to the local system that contains information about the current state of the Userful Control Center’s mapping page, including:

  • Sources and resource groups, including the actively playing sources.

  • Display and zone mapping.

  • Video wall calibration.

  • Command & Control Configuration (it counts as a source).

Presets do not save or alter any of the following:

  • RBAC users or groups.

  • Source content files (signage player content).

  • Network or other settings.

  • Assigned physical displays. Virtual displays do remain in presets and are re-activated when the preset is recalled.

  • Active user sessions in interactive sources desktops, Web browsers, and VNCs.

  • Events.

  • Printer settings.

Since creating and switching Presets has a very high chance of disrupting the workflow of other users in Command & Control or something using Source Switcher, it is strongly recommended that you use Presets independently of any other tool.

Presets are also not recommended for use in situations where rapid, successive layout changes are needed. Because of the extreme flexibility of the tool, whereas an example one Preset could have all displays in a mirror group of independent displays, and the next may arrange them in a single wall, operations can sometimes take longer than desired to execute. This is the use case that Layout Switcher in Command & Control is designed to fulfill. Preset switches can take between 2-10 seconds to fully execute, depending on the sources used. Layout switches can be configured to execute nearly instantaneously.

The recommended use case for presets is to use them to change the layout or playback of a video wall or group of displays, either up to a few times per day or scheduled at regularly spaced intervals. It can also be used to restore UCC to a saved condition if any assets are mistakenly lost or deleted in the course of UCC operations.

It is recommended that before configuring Presets, all Zones and Sources that will be switched between are already created in Mapping.

Configuring Presets

On UCC’s Mapping page, create all the Sources and Zones that you need.

Create the first Preset by arranging/playing the relevant Zones on their respective Sources, then click on the arrow button next to Apply button in the bottom right corner. Select the option Save As Preset, and assign it a name.

Triggering Presets

Though there is only one way to save Presets, there are multiple options for recalling them. Presets can be triggered from the same interface that is used to save them by clicking on their name or the Play button associated with them.

Remote Control Settings will give you a URL to use to access the Preset Switcher. This can be either a local address or a cloud-connect IP address, depending on how you are accessing the system.

This Switcher UI can also be accessed with the Open Preset Switcher on this server button in Userful Manager.

Presets can be set up as scheduled events, set to recall at a specific time and date, or repeat at certain intervals.

Presets can also be recalled with an external command to the REST API.

Updating Presets

Presets do not update themselves automatically if the UCC configuration changes after they have been recalled. To update an existing Preset, save a new preset under the same name as the existing Preset. This will prompt you with a warning to overwrite the existing Preset. Select OK to save your changes.

Source Switcher

Source Switcher allows users to control a single display or Zone and switch the content playing instantly with a single tap or click. In order for Source Switcher to work, two or more Sources must be in the same Resource Group. It does not matter if this Resource Group is marked as default, or if a Welcome Screen is enabled.

The Resource group must also have at least one display or zone mapped to it. Each instance of the source switcher UI will control one display or Zone.

Source Switcher can be launched in the following ways:

  • You can launch it from UCC, either locally or through the UCC manager.

  • Navigate to Settings > Remote Control Settings.

By default, there is a menu tile that is always situated to the right or bottom-right where you can select which display or zone you want to control.

Once you have selected the correct display or zone, bookmark this URL for future reference. The menu tile can be turned off by disabling the System information and controls option. You can customize the colors of the tiles. Refer to the Tile Welcome Screen topic for more information. Sources can also be switched through the REST API.

Layouts and Layout Switcher (On-Premise)

Layouts are pre-defined setups that exist exclusively in Command & Control. You can use them to create any kind of content setup imaginable, and then quickly and reliably switch back and forth between them.

Layouts can be switched directly from the Command & Control interface where they are created, or as a separate asset similar to the Preset and Source Switchers. You can also access these from Settings > Remote Control Settings.

Note that in order for a user to have access to the Layout Switcher, their Group must be granted access to both the relevant Resource Group where the C&C source resides, and also to the Layout Switcher module in the RBAC settings under the Other Applications header.

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