How to run both FCP 7 and FCP X on the same computer

Final Cut Pro 7 and Final Cut Pro X share some of their resources so will not run on the same computer –

or to be more accurate in the same user on the same computer.

As those of you that own both FCP 7 and FCP X will know, Both applications cannot be run at the same time. Well here is the good news – and is so easy to do.

Just set up a new user – call it FCP X or something similar and launch FCP X from that user. You can then run  FCP 7 concurrently in your original user account. Of course you could run FCP 7 on the new user and FCP X in the old, if you prefer. Both can be run independently in either user account as well, if you wish. If you already have a second user account – no need to set up a new one.

You will need to copy your purchased (non Apple) Final Cut plug ins (third party effects/titles and generators) to the new account. You could copy your preferences if you want or set up new preferences in the  new account.

Warning: You might run into user conflicts if you copy the preferences/plugins directly from one account to the next so consider copying to an external hard disk and then copy from there to the new user account. (you could copy to the root folder on your Macintosh HD as well, then copy from there to the new user account)

If you are setting up FCP X on the new user account, this is how to copy your plug-ins and preferences to the new user.


Final cut X’s third party plug-ins are kept in the “motion templates” folder which is in the “movies” folder in your user folder

You will need to copy the contents of Effects, Generators Titles and Transitions. To make it easy for you only the third party plug-ins show as the Apple supplied plug-ins are elsewhere.

You need to copy the contents of the “motion templates” folder into the “movies” folder on your new user account. If you do not have  the “motion templates” folder in you new account’s “movies” folder then you could copy the whole “motion templates” folder across or create a new Motion templates folder.


FCP X keeps its preferences in the User Library.

Copy the two files:

Place them in the same location in your new user account.

If you want to move the FCP 7 to the new user you only need to move the Preferences to the new user.

FCP 7 keeps its Plug-ins in the System Library rather than the user Library: You do not need to copy these as the new user has access to them because they are in the system.

The preferences are in the user library:

The preferences do need to be copied.

Copy these into the same place in the second user account.

Tutorials: Final Cut Pro X from $1.99

47 individual lessons over 8 hours of tutorials,
Separate Basic and Advanced sections.

VEO shop

We recommend the plug-in collection
from FCPEffects:


2 responses

  1. I have mountain lion with final cut X installed. Do I switch over to the new user account and install final cut 7 there? If the answer is yes, then do I still need to copy these folders over that you mention?

    • Hi Justin,

      Same thing applies with Mountain Lion, in principle anyway.

      I have not used Mountain Lion with FCP 7 – I have heard reports that it does not run well. But Apple approve it for use with FCP 7 – so guess it will be OK.

      Your question about moiving folders will still be the same with Mountain Lion


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

Gravatar Logo

You are commenting using your account. ( Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. ( Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. ( Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. ( Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s