ADTF Configuration Editor

This guide covers what a session is and where the ADTF Configuration Editor (CE) comes into play. After reading this guide, you will know:

Table Of Content


The CE can also be executed as a Runtime User (Runtime License), but only in Read-Only Mode to view the sessions, graphs, systems and their properties without edit functionality (this is still part of the Developer License). So these are the limitations, other functions like launching tools or sessions or navigate from Home will work the same.
Touch within the CE is not supported and deactivated.
If you are facing any issues regarding scaling and monitor dpi awerness, especially when using the CE on several monitors with different scaling and resolution (especially 4K), you can override the OS scaling under Tools > Options... > General.
If you are facing any issues regarding weird windows, UI behavior or missing widgets, please call the CE from command line with argument --reset to set back to delivery state. The same can occur if your adtf_configuration_editor.cesettings has been damaged.

Available commands

Although the CE is a GUI application it still has some command line arguments.
Type: adtf_configuration_editor.exe --help into a console to get the list of the supported command line arguments:

Files you need to know

Creating a new project with the CE results in a new folder named after the project, containing:


Some important common information for each part of the CE in general.


After loading a project, the CE will appear similiar to the following screenshot:

The CE when a session is loaded

As you might know and expect from other application, you can switch to a dark theme as well (see Tools > Options... > General):

Dark Mode


The CE is a combination of different views (widgets) and comes with a default perspective (layout), which can be resetted anytime under View. Within this menubar entry you are able to enable or disbale these views and save own perspectives, which can be used and switched for different use cases.

View menu

This is very helpful especially when you do not only want to enable or disable specific views, you can also tab, dock, float, pin or rearrange each view including resizing and auto-hover.

Advanced Docking


The most useful menubar entries are also available as toolbar, which can be also hide, move or float like each view widget.


Common Usage

Each view has a different purpose, but it is also very important to know that they are connected to each other for interaction and provide the same behavior.

You will find a search bar in almost every view including the possibilty for changing search behavior, filtering, sorting and many more. For that, use the buttons on the right of the searchbar:

Search Bar

Another basic behavior is that every view has a context menu with all available actions with its specific purpose.

Context menu example

As you can see within this context menu there is also a Help entry which is provided on several places within the entire CE (especially for usable components like filters and services), which can be also triggered when selected by hitting F1. Furthermore, the menubar provides also a common Help entry.


Launch, Connect, Control and Attach

Within section Sessions you will learn, how a session can be launched, connected, controled and attached. Please also keep in mind, that launching and any remote access to a session is a very central use case so it is also available in the menubar and not only within the context menu of a session.

Launch And Remote Connect Menu

Launch Toolbar

Control Menu

Control Toolbar

Attach Menu

Attach Toolbar

System Editor

The System Editor is available when a session has been selected to configure any runtime dependency or functionality. It can be opened from Sessions, Filter Graph Editor or directly via the menubar.

Tools Menu

Tools Toolbar

If your session incorporates with filter, streaming sources or streaming sinks that have dependencies to libraries outside of ADTF this is the right place to define them. Environments variables are useful to abstract away from platform specific paths usable as macros which makes it easier to transfer project files between different PCs or operting systems. You can define additional platform dependencies (e.g. OpenCV or Qt DLL libraries), services and plugins (*.adtfplugins).

If a component defines its dependencies (services, shared libraries) properly, the required services are added automatically as soon as the component has been dropped from the Components view into an Filter Graph Editor. If you want to know more about how components can define their dependencies follow this link.

The order in wich services are loaded can be influenced in two ways:

If an service offers configuration options they will be shown by selecting the service and if you want to rename an service the Rename entry is your friend. Also if you want to define services in a different runlevel.

Change Runlevel of a service

In order to avoid invalid system file paths when distributing a project, define an environment variable to abstract away the system file path using them as macros. All you have to do when moving to a different PC is adjust the environment variable accordingly.

Add an environment variable

Session Editor

The Session Editor is available when a session has been selected to create the used graph, system and property file. It can be opened from Sessions, Filter Graph Editor or directly via the menubar.

You can also include graphs from other sessions, especially for reusability issues. To make them available in the list of available subgraphs inside the Filter Graph Editor, you have to add the related sessions here in Session Editor. Including a graph from another session will not be a copy (only linked) and treated the same as adding a subgraph, but more like a blackbox - your scope will stay in the current session you are working on.

The Session Editor


In order to start the CE go to the bin directory of the ADTF directory and double click on the adtf_configuration_editor.exe file.

The different views of the CE


This is the entry point after creating or loading a project, where you can switch, add or remove the containing sessions showing also their hierarchical relation when included. To define the relation between graph, system and properties within a session, please use the Session Editor. To configure and extend the functionality of a session for runtime, please use the System Editor.

Common overview
Available options

Besides basic adding, renaming, opening and removing sessions from your loaded project, the context menu contains quick launch options and entries for custom launch defintions (see Tools > Options... > Launchers).

The context menu of the Sessions
Remote connection

The CE implements an RPC client which makes it possible to connect to a session - better say the related RPC interface of the ADTF Launcher. This will provide the user the option to remote control from within the Sessions in following two ways:

  • Launch and remote connect selected session
  • Enable remote connection for selected session (which already runs in related ADTF Launcher)
  • Under Tools > Options... > Remote Connections it is possible that the CE will always automatically connect to specified url, no matter if already running or needs to be launched, it will polled and connected when available: These can used with any specifed launcher by using the generic Launch... command:

    Generic launch

    Once there are one or more sessions connected, it will be visualized within the Sessions view by displaying the current runlevel:

    Overview of remote connected sessions

    Within the context menu you will find options to control the session after launched and connected, e.g. to control runlevels, attach with other ADTF tools or handle running transitions like start, stop or init steps.

    Control the session

    Another benefit is the visualization of live statistics directly at the Sample Streams within the Filter Graph Editor:

    Sample Stream statistics


    The Component view holds the elements that can be drag and droped into the Graph Editor. You can choose between Type and Class ID for grouping.



    The CE also provides a integrated client to acces one ore more component stores. This view enables the user to search for available adtfplugins and components within the configured stores.


    After that the associated settings can be configured and found under Tools > Options... > Store. The desired stores can be enabled by adding a URL and acces token to the list. Before a adtfplugin can be downloaded a location must be defined. Now the view can be used to browse and download the desired adtfplugins.

    Using the client to find adtfplugins
    Downloading adtfplugins

    After a successful download the components are automatically loaded via the ADTF Environment Mechanism and are available in the Components view.


    This view is the main entry point for the CE. The Home view is not only a landing page, it offers some quick actions to create or open projects and jump to documentation at the top. The Left navigation bar provides some default actions linking to additional information which can be adapted and extended in your adtf_configuration_editor.cesettings file (see Tools > Options... > Home View)


    Filter Graph Editor

    The filter graph is where all about data streaming and runtime behaviour takes place. You can use filters as well as streaming sources and sinks. We recommend to separate your graphs info different parts (e.g. data receiver/transmitter, playback, data processing, visualization, etc) by using subgraphs/included graphs. (link for more information about streaming architecture).


    Processing can be triggered with the help of different types of Runners. By default triggers are sent between the data samples and stimulate the following filter to do further processing, however if this behavior is not desired, connections can be configured to be asynchronous. In this case Timer Runner can be used to take control over the exact timing (this can be useful for expensive visual updates) or Thread Runner to do heavy processing on a different thread. To let data flow between two elements place a Sample Stream between them and connect the pins by drawing a line (will be added automatically during performing a pin-2-pin connection).


    Graph files can contain several graphs, which can be nested together as subgraphs. For your orientation, each graph window represents one graph file and shows the session in the tab title on top. The tab bar on the left are the single graphs within the shown graph file.

    The Filter Graph Editor

    Use right-click and context menu in any free space of the graph area for defining interfaces for in and out relations and, of course, some zoom and auto-layout functionality. Furthermore the context menu provides the option for adding an existing graph as subgraph (handled like a common filter), from the same graph file or a different session using ADTF Include Mechanism (see Session Editor). You can open and jump into these subgraphs and edit both side-by-side.

    Graph Navigator

    The Filter Graph Editor contains also a Graph Navigator at the bottom right of the graph area for convenience regarding scrolling, moving, zooming and item selection in larger graph setups (see section Available shortcuts). To show click on the icon on the bottom right, per default it will behided again when changing the scope. You can adjust these behavior under Tools > Options... > Graph Editor

    Graph Navigator
    Quick Search

    Due to the fact that graphs should be seperated but can be as well very large, we offer a Quick search. This will help to find and jump to all containing components within the selected graph, which is very helpful especially for a Sample Stream or Binding Proxy which label name is hidden and only visible as tooltip for a better overview. It is available in the context menu anywhere in the Filter Graph Editor as well as a shortcut. It provides a dropdown menu including all containing graph components

    Quick Search - component list

    as well as an case sensitive auto completion in the type field. Use the arrow keys of the keyboard to complete the search strings or navigate through the component list:

    Graph Labels

    It is also possible to show or hide pin names of graph components. In case of hidden, the related content will only be visualized when selected or hovered by mouse. Furthermore, the Filter Graph Editor only marks recommended target pins during connection draw. Please keep in mind that the value of the property will be stored in the adtfuilayout of the adtfsession to guarantee your arrangement after loading the adtfsession. Keep also in mind the auto-layout will only cover visible content including pin names. Use this feature for compact behaviour. To enable/disable please navigate to View > Show Pin Names Permanently or use shortcut Ctrl + Space. Furthermore it is possible to show/hide sample stream names seperated (Toggle View > Show Sample Stream Names or use Shift + Space)

    Align Helper

    When you select more than one component within your graph, an align helper bar will appear in the upper left corner:

    Align helper bar after multi-selection

    Button Change Orientation Keep
    move all selected components to the left farest left border of all selected components vertical coordinates
    move all selected components to the center horizontal center of all selected components vertical coordinates
    move all selected components to the right farest right border of all selected components vertical coordinates
    move all selected components to the top farest top border of all selected components horizontal coordinates
    move all selected components to the center vertical center of all selected components horizontal coordinates
    move all selected components to the bottom farest bottom border of all selected components horizontal coordinates
    rearrange all selected components horizontally user specified distance vertical coordinates
    rearrange all selected components vertically user specified distance horizontal coordinates
    rearrange all selected components horizontally calculated distance vertical coordinates, outer horizontal borders
    rearrange all selected components vertically calculated distance horizontal coordinates, outer vertical borders


    If components from Components or the Filter Graph Editor provide some configuration options or additional information and help, it will be displayed within the Property Editor by selecting the component within its Graph / System Editor. It is also possible to jump properties from dependent services.

    The Property Editor

    It is possible to add properties manually to each components and whole graphs. This is useful to create generic graphs, which can be included as configurable subgraphs. Furthermore you can link properties of components to graph properties to make them available to set from "outside" (parent graph). Please also have a look at Use and link graph properties for more information.


    This view is to show and edit the priority of connections and components. For an explanation what happens during (de)initialization please have a detailed look at Session Initialization .

    Priorities of connections and components

    Validation Protocol

    All session, graph, system, property or setting related problems spotted by the CE are displayed here.

    Validation Protocol

    The get further information or help to solve the the entry, please consider the context menu for details:

    Validation Protocol Details

    If the problem is related to a specific graph component, it will be also marked within the Filter Graph Editor including a tooltip.

    Validation Tooltip

    CE Log

    Within this view, you can redirect the console output including also JavaScript / QML occur within the CE:

    CE Log

    This can be different loglevels from the CE itself, but also come along inside custom Qml Filter Editor scripts. You can also have a look at $(ADTF)/bin/adtf_playback_input_filtereditor.qml which will be used to create pins from the .adtfdat within the ADTFDAT File Player. Other examples can be found as well at $(ADTF_DIR)/bin/*.qml.

    You can enable/disable the logging persistent within Tools > Options... > General or temporary by starting the CE with flag --enable-logging.


    Here you can define custom settings for the CE.


    This section is to adapt basic appearance and behavior.

    Options: General

    Graph Editor

    This section handles behavior within Filter Graph Editor and its Graph Navigator.

    Options: Graph Editor

    Home View

    This section is your possibility to enhance the landing page with useful shortcuts for your daily work.

    Options: Home View


    This section shows each relation and included loaded package.

    Options: Environment


    This section defines additional shortcuts and to launch sessions.

    Options: Launchers


    This section handles the entire license management for ADTF Tools and Plugins.

    Options: License

    Remote Connections

    This sections manages URLs for remote connection and options to disabling RPC & friends.

    Options: Remote Connections


    This section handles all the settings neccessary to use the CE as client for one or more component stores. At least one store endpoint consisting of an URL and access token must be defined in order to use this feature. If you wish to download adtfplugins as well be sure to set the download location.

    Options: Store


    This section is the place to add shortcuts for additional tools which can be executed from CE.

    Options: Tools

    Available shortcuts


    Shortcut Action
    Ctrl + N Create project
    Ctrl + O Open project
    Ctrl + S Save project
    Ctrl + W Close project
    Ctrl + Q Exit application
    Ctrl + Z Undo
    Ctrl + Y Redo
    Alt + O Open Options
    Ctrl + F1 Open documentation of ADTF Configuration Editor
    Shift + F1 Show About Dialog

    Projects and Sessions

    Shortcut Action
    Ctrl + Shift + N Add new session to project
    Ctrl + Shift + O Open selected session
    F2 Rename selected session
    Del Remove selected session
    F5 Launch selected session with ADTF Launcher
    Ctrl + F5 Launch selected session with ADTF Launcher (using debug binaries)
    Shift + F5 Launch selected session with ADTF Launcher (enabled profiling)
    F6 Launch selected session with ADTF Control
    Ctrl + F6 Launch selected session with ADTF Control (using debug ADTF Launcher and binaries)
    Shift + F6 Launch selected session with ADTF Control (enabled profiling)
    F7 Launch selected session with ADTF GUI Control
    Ctrl + F7 Launch selected session with ADTF GUI Control (using debug ADTF Launcher and binaries)
    F8 Launch selected session with FEP-Selfmanaged Launcher
    Ctrl + F8 Launch selected session with FEP-Selfmanaged Launcher (using debug binaries)
    F9 Launch selected session with FEP Launcher
    Ctrl + F9 Launch selected session with FEP Launcher (using debug binaries)
    Ctrl + Shift + E Enable remote connection for selected session
    Ctrl + Shift + L Launch selected session (remote connection will be enabled)
    Alt + Y Open System Editor
    Alt + E Open Session Editor


    Shortcut Action
    Alt + C Attach with ADTF Control
    Alt + G Attach with ADTF GUI Control
    Alt + L Attach with ADTF Log View
    Alt + P Attach with ADTF Property Editor
    Alt + S Attach with ADTF Status Monitor

    System Editor

    Shortcut Action
    Ins Add element
    F1 Show help for selected service (if specified in corresponding Plugin Description)
    F2 Edit / Rename selected element
    Del Remove selected element
    Ctrl + Del Remove all elements or platform
    Shift + Up Move selected service up within current Runlevel
    Shift + Down Move selected service down within current Runlevel
    Shift + 1 Set RL_System for selected service
    Shift + 2 Set RL_Session for selected service
    Shift + 3 Set RL_StreamingGraph for selected service
    Shift + 4 Set RL_FilterGraph for selected service
    Shift + 5 Set RL_Running for selected service

    Filter Graph Editor

    Shortcut Action
    Ctrl + Space Show pin names of graph components permanently or only when focused/selected
    Shift + Space Hide/show label names of sample streams
    Ctrl + Tab Navigate through graph tabs
    Ctrl + Shift + Tab Navigate through graph tabs (reverse)
    Ctrl + Left-Click Multi select components
    F1 Show help for selected component (if specified in corresponding Plugin Description)
    F2 Rename selected graph element
    Del Remove selected graph element(s)
    Shift + N Add notice
    Ctrl + A Select all graph elements
    Ctrl + F Quick search
    Ctrl + X Cut selected graph elements to clipboard
    Ctrl + C Copy selected graph elements to clipboard
    Ctrl + V Paste graph elements from clipboard
    Ctrl + L Auto-Layout
    Ctrl + - Zoom out
    Ctrl + + Zoom in
    Ctrl + # Zoom all
    Ctrl + . Zoom reset
    Shift + Left-click (and hold) Move graph area
    Mouse-wheel Scroll vertically
    Shift + Mouse-wheel Scroll vertically (x10)
    Alt + Mouse-wheel Scroll horizontally
    Alt + Shift + Mouse-wheel Scroll horizontally (x10)
    Ctrl + Mouse-wheel Zoom
    Ctrl + Shift + Mouse-wheel Zoom (x10)
    Ctrl + Shift + C Copy name of selected component
    Ctrl + Shift + P Copy path within graph of selected component
    Alt + Y Open System Editor
    Alt + E Open Session Editor
    Alt + Click Show Properties for selected component/graph

    Graph Navigator

    Shortcut Action
    Left-Click (and hold) Move red view section
    Shift + Left-Click Select components
    Ctrl + Shift + Left-Click Multi select components
    Shift + Left-Click (and hold) Move selected components


    Shortcut Action
    F2 Rename selected property
    Ctrl + X Cut selected property to clipboard
    Ctrl + C Copy selected property to clipboard
    Ctrl + V Paste property from clipboard
    Ins Create new property
    Del Remove selected property


    Shortcut Action
    Shift + Up Decrement priority
    Shift + Down Increment priority

    Validation Protocol

    Shortcut Action
    Alt + D Show further details for entry

    CE Log

    Shortcut Action
    Ctrl + A Select all messages
    Ctrl + C Copy selected text
    Del Clear window


    Shortcut Action
    Alt + Y Open System Editor
    Alt + E Open Session Editor
    Ctrl + Alt + D Start DDL Editor
    Ctrl + Alt + M Start Mapping Editor
    Ctrl + Alt + P Start Profiler GUI

    Where to go next?

    Have a look at the ADTF Launcher guide to learn about the central command line tool for executing sessions.