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DDF is the abbreviation for "Device Definition File". DDFs are used by DMXControl to get information about the used devices:

  • which DMX channels are used at all?
  • which functions do the different DMX channels have?
  • how do the colors on a color wheel or the gobo on a gobo wheel look like?
  • are there different strobe functions and if so, which ones?

This and much more information is contained in a complete DDF. DMXControl 3 needs the information to build up the user interface in form of the Device Control and the Control Panel. Furthermore DMXControl 3 allows to control different devices by including the Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL). All information is described in the file in a classic XML structure, so that all details can also be edited only with the classic editor of Windows or Notepad++[1] and the plugin XML-Tools available there[2] are readable in plain text.

This part of the manual about DMXControl 3 deals with the creation of DDFs. The subdivision of the articles is based on the existing Control panel in DMXControl 3 itself. The part of the manual about DDFs in DMXControl 3 is divided into four sections:

  • Basics and important hints for DDF creation.
  • Syntax of the supported functions
  • Procedures for calling certain device functions
  • Examples for manual programming of DDFs for DMXControl 3

Important hint Due to its age, the current DDFCreator does not support all functions that can be mapped in the DDFs for DMXControl 3. Under certain circumstances the DDFCreator deletes components in the DDF, which it does not know. Therefore it is recommended to stop using the DDFCreator as soon as additional functions have been added manually in the DDF



Chapter Summary
General introduction The general introduction gives a rough overview of what DDFs are in the context of DMXControl 3, according to which characteristics the DDFs are used in DMXControl 3 and which directories on the PC are used for the DDFs.
Basic structure This article describes the basic structure of a DDF for DMXControl 3 as well as the specifications like information about the device, which have to be made in the information part.
Function elements This article explains several common elements, which are needed for a complete definition of especially more complex DMX channels independent of the used function and therefore can be found in most DDFs.
Basic rules The basic rules summarize which units the HAL assumes for example when defining the maximum strobe frequency.

Important Hint DMXControl 3.2 does not yet support multibeam devices (devices with separately controlled lamps). This can be circumvented by using several single DDFs, or a DDF and Generic RGB, Dimmer, etc.

Function overview

In the DDFs the following functions are directly supported by the HAL. The table refers you to the different articles, in which the respective functions are explained including all possible variants with appropriate examples.

Function group Functions
Intensity Dimmer, Switch, Shutter, Strobe
Position Position, Pan tilt speed
Color RGBx color mixing, CMY color mixing, HSV color mixing, Color wheel, Color temperature
Pixel effects Matrix, Radix
Gobo Gobo wheel
beam Focus, Frost, Iris, Zoom
Blade slider Blade slider
Effect wheel Prism, Effectwheel
Stage effects Fog, Fan
General functions Index, Rotation
Free functions rawstep, raw, rawranges, const


Chapter Summary
Functions This article lists all procedures available in DMXControl 3.
Examples This article shows some examples for given procedures, but also for own procedures.


Chapter Summary
LED-Spotlight In the first of a total of three tutorials, the DDF for a simple LED spotlight is created. The template is Cameo LED Mini Tri Par Can 3W.
4-Spot-LED-Bar The second tutorial deals with the manual creation of a DDF for a LED bar with four spots using the Eurolite LED KLS-2500 as an example.
Moving Head The third example shows how to create the DDF for a simple moving head. The Showtec Indigo 150 LED is used as a template here, which was also partly sold under other brands.

Links und Referenzen


  1. Notepad++ is a free text and source code editor. More information on the manufacturer's site: https://notepad-plus-plus.org/
  2. Installation instructions for the plugin XML-Tools using the integrated plugin administrator of Notepad++: https://community.notepad-plus-plus.org/topic/16983/xml-tools/2