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Duplicated Smart Objects: how to Replace Contents of only one copy

Community Beginner ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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Smart Objects that are simply duplicated (instead of New Smart Object via Copy) are all sorta linked to the original: doing Replace Contents, etc updates all of the sorta-linked images. Surprise!

1 - How do I even know if multiple Smart Objects are linked like that without actually changing one and seeing what else in the document automagically changed? Don't see any visual indicator. The cut-and-try method is error-prone at best.

2 - How can I break that link? The conventional wisdom seems to be that I should have used New Smart Object via Copy to begin with, but that assumes that I can go back in time to control the original creator of these files. It also makes duplicating Groups containing Smart Objects very awkward. Sure, I could delete all the duplicated Smart Objects and and recreate them with New Smart Object via Copy, reapply all the transfomations, warps, effects, etc, but really!? Somebody's got to know a better way... Some obscure script, maybe?

 

Thanks all!

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Actions and scripting, How to, Problem or error

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correct answers 2 Correct answers

Adobe Community Professional , Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021
1. Layer-SmartObjectMore ->ID 2. Convert to linked, Embed linked P.S. Sorry, no time for details. Maybe the one who understood will create a script.  

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Adobe Community Professional , Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021
Yes that's the method I used in the script when I had the same problem, but for manual work it's exact amount of clicks when you create new layer via copy and delete original  Actually not if we select all smart objects to do this job  Ps. LayerID is something that scripters can check, but not regular users.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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1. I don't think there is a way to see that

2. The easiest is to just make a new smart object via copy from each individual copy SO and delete the original linked copies. Individual transforms, warps and effects are retained that way.

 

Dave

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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Normally you will find Smarts object layer that share objects with other smart object layer have a copy on the top of the documents layer stack.  That makes it easy for user or Photoshop Script to populate Picture packages and Mockup templates. All they need to deal with are the smart object layers on the top of the layers stack.  There is no need to know where  the other sharing smart object layers are in the layer stack.  It a dead give a way when the top smart object layers have their visibility turned off or have 0 fill or opacity that other smart object layer share their object.

 

Why would you want to brake such a link.  The link was made to make it easy to use the template file.

 

Layers that share smart object have the same content however, they position and distorted the content for their use of the content,  These smart object layer have the same content  not different content. If you need different content you create additional independent smart object layers.

JJMack

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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Break a link? For example a layout of many logos, each of which is Grouped with a frame and some other decoratons. You want to be able to add to the collection by grabbing one of those Groups, duplicating it, changing the graphic and repositioning -- without messing up the "donor" logo.

 

As everybody is pointing out, I hadn't realized that you can just New Smart Object via Copy without losing the effects, then deleting the original. Still a bit messy, but not too bad... as long as you remember to New Smart Object via Copy every time!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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Duplicating smart Object layer to share object is very useful for making Templates easy to use populate and and warp object several way for example car seat covers. It is a great feature.

 

IMO if you are creating templates they should be easy to use  and easy to maintain.  You should not create template that are complex to use and hard to maintain for you put too much into a single template PSD.

 

It would be simpler to have multiple simple templates then a hard to use complex to populate and difficult to maintain templates for you have put too much in one basket.   I  think you may have, many products, and many design elements and many logos and you have incorporated all into a single PSD Template.   

 

I'm a simpleton fat and stupid. I have but one rule.  Keep it simple stupid yes  you(me) stupid.

I would have a template for each product that I would populate with  design and I  may duplicate a template for each product that incorporates a different logo  that will be added to each populated design.

 

Very simple easy to create and populate mockup templates.   Very simple basic mockup templates that can be batch populated with Photoshop Automation.   Not complex templates that need to be populated manually tedious and hard to do for much customization need to be dome  populating these complex mockup template.  I'll drink a bottle of wine while my batch mockup populating script  populates my collection  of simple mockup templates with my products designs and saves out populated jpeg images. 

image.png

 

Now where did I put my cork screwy thingamajig?

JJMack

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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Capture.jpg

JJMack

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 27, 2021 Jun 27, 2021

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Capture.jpg

JJMack

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 27, 2021 Jun 27, 2021

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If any of two different solutions (or both) solves your problem, mark it / them as correct 😉

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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Yes, that is totally not good we can't see whether other Smart Objects in the document are duplicates or new independent instances (of original objec if made). I think you can select each Smart Object separately, then make new smart object via copy and delete its original. This way you don't have to recrate all properties.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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1. Layer-SmartObjectMore ->ID

 

2. Convert to linked, Embed linked

 

P.S. Sorry, no time for details. Maybe the one who understood will create a script.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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Yes that's the method I used in the script when I had the same problem, but for manual work it's exact amount of clicks when you create new layer via copy and delete original 🙂 Actually not if we select all smart objects to do this job 😉 Ps. LayerID is something that scripters can check, but not regular users.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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Add a bunch of effects, filters and styles, and other properties. Link it with other layers. And tell me how easy it is to replace such a layer in a couple of clicks. : )
 
 
 
 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2021 Jun 25, 2021

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That's right. In such situation I wouldn't use it for sure, but I never was graphic so never had to enrich smart objects of so advanced stuff 😛

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 29, 2021 Jun 29, 2021

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>2. Convert to linked, Embed linked

That breaks the association with other files perfectly, but has 2 big minuses vs. SmartObject Via Copy:

  1. having to save the file to disk
  2. what if file is already linked? Things get messy if you try to Embed, then Convert to linked

 

SmartObject Via Copy doesn't have those particular issues and is pretty good about preserving transforms, warps, filters, visibility/transparency and others, BUT:

  1. changes the layerID
  2. changes the name
  3. is not connected to clipping layer
  4. messes up traditional Layer Links (i.e. user did Layer->Link Layers)

 

Did I miss anything, or is that the complete discussion of plusses & minuses for those?

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 05, 2021 Jul 05, 2021

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@r-bin: the implications of what you wrote concern me, that SmartObject Via Copy leaves a bunch of loose ends.

I've experimented with SmartObject Via Copy quite a bit and have found that it's very good about automatically copying just about everything, including filters, effects, transform, warp, visibility, layer links, adjustment masks, fill, opacity, locks, grouping, ... The only things that I don't see preserved are:

  • Layer id, index and name. Naturally.
  • Clipping layer. Again, as expoected since a clipping layer can't be associated with 2 layers (the original and the copy) at the same time.

 

Question: were you just speaking broadly to make a point, or are you aware of some other obscure exceptions floating around beneath the surface, things that don't get copied? Thanks!

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 29, 2021 Jun 29, 2021

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>1. Layer-SmartObjectMore ->ID

Thank you for that -- totally unobvious! Just scan all smartObjectMore.ID for dups. Very useful since, as you probably guessed, I am writing a script but chose to phrase my question more generally since much PS scripting is largely a matter of automating UI actions.

 

 

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