'Set Nodes to Shader' is part of the Shader Preset system available in the Shaders Palette.
it act like a 'isolate select' for materials.
It works by scanning the selected Node Names for matching parts against Channel Names that have been previously saved as Shader Inputs
via the Save Shader Preset Tool in the Shaders Palette
In the below example we have a VrayMtl Shader.
We have assigned Channels to the different Shader Inputs via the Shader Palette using the Dropdowns.
On the right you can see the same shader setup represented in the Nodegraph
In order for the Shader to know our Name preferences for the future (Diffuse Color = DIF, Bump Map = BUP etc.)
we save a Shader Preset by right clicking / Save Shader Preset.
Whenever we create a shader with the Name VrayMtl in any project Mari will now start looking for existing Channels that
match our previously used Naming Convention.
Saving a Shader Preset on the left ..... and the shader setup with connected Channel Nodes in the Nodegraph
Below you can see an example of a node selection. The Nodes are currently not connected to a shader.
Notice that - while the Nodes have different Names than the Channels we have saved as part of the Shader Preset (picture above) - they contain the same
identifiers such as Metal_DIF, Metal_BUP etc.
With the Nodes selected and the Target Shader Selected in the Shader Palette, once we run Set Nodes to Shader, all Shader
connections will be made automatically. Any shader connections that can't be made (because no Node with the appropriate Name was selected)
will be cleared.
Toggling between current and previous shader mapping
Run Set Nodes to Shaderwithout a Node Selection (but with the Target Shader selected in the Shader Palette)
and the previous state will be restored. This allows you to toggle between current and last state of the shader
If you want to reset your shader connections to the initial state they were before the first time you used Set Nodes to Shader, you can use the Reset Shader option.
This is different than executing Set Nodes to Shader without a selection, which will always toggle between the current shader input mapping and the last used shader mapping, which might not necessarily be the first ever shader input configuration if you used Set Nodes to Shader multiple times in a row.
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