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From SWF to Panel

Under normal circumstances, we would probably publish this movie to the same directory as our FLA. But because we're turning this thing into a panel, we need to publish the SWF into the Flash install directory. To do this:

  1. Open the Publish Settings dialog box and, under the Formats tab, uncheck HTML, leaving only Flash checked.

  2. In the File: column of the Publish Settings dialog box shown in Figure 2, click the folder icon and browse to the following directory:

  3. NOTE

    Windows: C:\Documents and Settings\your user name\Local Settings\Application Data\Macromedia\Flash MX 2004\en\Configuration\WindowSWF

    Macintosh: Macintosh HD/Users/your user name/Library/Application Support/Macromedia/Flash MX 2004/en/Configuration/WindowSWF/

    Figure 2Figure 2 Set the publishing path to the WindowSWF folder.

  4. Name the file Resources.swf and click Save.

Now, when you publish the movie, the SWF will go directly into the WindowSWF folder in your Flash install directory. As a result, the SWF will be accessible via the Window > Other Panels menu and will open as a panel. To finish up, we'll publish the movie and access the panel.

  1. Choose File > Publish to publish the SWF to the path specified in the publish settings.

  2. Save your work and close Resources_panel.fla.

  3. Restart Flash MX 2004 and open a new Flash document.

  4. Choose Window > Other Panels > Resources.

Say hello to your brand new Resources panel (see Figure 3).

Figure 3Figure 3 Voila! Your new Resources panel.

Just as if this movie were part of a web site, clicking a button launches the corresponding URL. You now have very quick access to the Flash Exchange and FlashKit.com.

There's just one thing left to do: Add the Resources panel to your standard panel set.

  1. Dock the Resources panel on the right side of the Flash workspace with the other panels by dragging its title bar over the top of another panel.

  2. Choose Window > Save Panel Layout. Name the panel set whatever you want and click OK.

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