What is the "Set creation time" option for?

What is the “Set creation time” option for?
I was also intrigued by the “Extract sub-clip” option.


What possible uses do these options have?

At first, I thought that the option “Set creation time” would be useful to correct date errors in some videos without using ExifTool commands, but on the other hand, when rendering I would be losing quality in that video. Therefore, I suppose there has to be another utility for this option that I have not yet discovered.

“Set creation time” is a new feature that was added to the latest version. It has to do with how the files are sorted in the playlist. It allows you to change the date the file you are using was created. You can do it in both the Playlist window by right clicking on a clip and also in the Properties window like you have there. Although I have noticed that the change only seems to stick when it’s done in the Playlist window and not the Properties window.

“Extract sub-clip” is an option to export a shorter clip from the original clip you have but without any re-encoding. You can select the specific section of the clip you want to export either by setting the in and out points in the preview window when you are playing the clip from the playlist then going to the Properties window or by choosing a clip in the timeline then going to the Properties window there. However, it still needs some work as some people have reported that it can be buggy:

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Thank you for the quick response.
I don’t know if I got it right, but it’s strange to me that the “Set creation time” function has as its main purpose to organize the playlist. Although perhaps this is very useful, I don’t finish seeing it.
My idea was as follows:
I have videos that don’t have the correct date and time. I saw this function “Set creation time” and I thought that maybe I could modify the wrong date with correct data and then export without recoding.
In the picture, there is a difference of 2 hours which is normal (time zone and daylight saving time).
SC, it is able to extract the different creation data that the video file incorporates.

I also assumed that the “Extracting Sub-clip” function would make a copy of the video but with the correct date.
This was the theory I had in mind, however, I can not modify the crucial parameter for the video to have the correct value of “Medium created” that appears in the details of the explorer in W10.


To vary this value to the correct data, I use an Exiftool command, which is cumbersome for me because there are a lot of videos with erroneous data so it would be great if SC had the ability to change this.
An Exiftool command example to vary the wrong data.

This value is the value that the Photos application of W10 takes as a reference to sort the files of photos and videos, so if the video (or photo) has an incorrect date in this value, the sorting will not be correct.

Although I’m focusing on the subject as the metadata modification of a video (without modifying video or audio), all this can also be applied to a video edition (for example to remember a family event, a birthday, a trip, graduation, etc.) that we want to place on the correct date in which the event occurred (not on the date of the edition-creation of the video rendered in SC).

There’s a small utility you can use that might make it easier to change file date and other attributes.
This one’s useful for bulk renaming.

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Change file attributes, however I can’t (or I didn’t know) change the “Medium created” value.
I tried this application a long time ago, but I couldn’t modify this value.
The same thing happens with this application:


For my photo archive, I use Geosetter to modify metadata and geotagging in images as well as rename batch files. However, Geosetter does not allow you to modify the metadata of video files.

This value “Medium created” is not the same as the date of creation-modification and last access of a file.

I’ll try to learn more about this.:thinking:

After a few attempts to change this parameter from the home user interface (no advanced codes or options), I remembered that this parameter is locked. That was the problem.
None of the applications for changing attributes and dates worked. The only way I found was through the Exiftool command line.
When I try to change the day (4 -->5) and press the “Apply” button the error appears because the selected property is read-only (only occurs in that property, I can edit the value Copyright, director, author, etc without problems).

The “extract sub-clip” function also copies this value (and also copies the read-only attribute of this value, not to be confused with the attribute of the entire file).
The “Set creation time” function did not work for me, either from the playlist or from the information window. I set different creation time values, but nothing changed in the metadata shown in the information window in Shotcut.
I don’t know anything about the theory behind these limitations, so I just try things and look for alternatives (the most comfortable within my reach).
Finally I know two options to overcome this:
-Exiftool command line (avoids the read-only attribute of the referred value)
-Use Avidemux to make a copy of the video file. The copy thus made does not clone the referenced (read-only) value. Then I can modify the dates and times with any of the applications that have been shared here.

But surely someone with more knowledge than me, will have some explanation and a simpler solution.

This feature tells Shotcut what the user wants to consider the creation time of the file to be. This property is initially inferred from the file. First, Shotcut looks at embedded metadata (EXIF). If that is not present, then it looks at the file Modified time.

There are two purposes for this in Shotcut:

  1. It can be used in the playlist to easily sort the clips. This can be useful to help organize the clips in the playlist, or to sort them before adding them all to the Timeline (since people typically want all their clips to be chronological on the timeline).
  2. It can also be overlayed on the video using the Text filter by using the “#createdate#” keyword. This is not a well documented feature. I use it to burn the date in my home videos.

The Creation Time is not used in the export process at this time. I would need to better understand a use case for that. Also, it does not modify the original file or make a copy. I think it would be very wasteful to re-encode an entire file just to change the date in the metadata. If you set the creation time on a clip and open the .MLT file in a text editor, you can see how the property gets saved in the .MLT file as a property on the cilp. This is all it really does.

Thanks for pointing this out. Actually, it does get applied from the Properties window, but Shotcut fails to update the display to show the new setting. This is a bug I will fix for the next release.

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I now understand the purpose of this function.
On the entire recoding of a clip to change a metadata, I agree that is a waste of resources and time and that is not the purpose of SC, however, in W10 the error 0xC00D3E8E forces to look for some alternative method, and for many users is simpler a graphical interface to write commands (for example in Exiftool).
This is more problematic when there are many videos with erroneous dates and times to correct. :sweat:
So, when I saw this I tried if this worked in SC, instead of manually modifying each video with Exiftool. Unfortunately for me, this function in SC is not intended for this. :persevere:
Thank you for your response and for your work.:slightly_smiling_face:

In Linux there is a very handy command called “touch” which can change date and time of files.
Windows does not have that command but there are programs available to replicate the “touch” function.

A quick search for touch+windows revealed this:

Never used it so can’t vouch for it.
Perhaps it will do what you need.

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Thanks for the information. I’ll check this out.
Very kind :blush:

On linux the “touch” command only changes the modification and last-access date, not the creation date.

Also, changing the creation time won’t work if there is a creation time in the EXIF metadata, since Shotcut uses this and only if this is missing does it use the file’s systemdate, as per Brian’s comment above.

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Unfortunately fstouch doesn’t work for what I need.
For the time being, the tests I conducted draw two conclusions:
-The “cloning” or copy, using Avidemux, removes the blocked value “Medium created”, but at the same time removes other original metadata (e.g. the label of the brand and model of the camera, as well as any reference to the coding date and labeling date).
-Metadata modification using Exiftool command line (or ExifToolGui) allows maintaining all EXIF, XMP, IPTC, and other metadata. This allows maintaining the camera model, GPS location, even the time from Power On.
I think the locked value corresponds with the XMP Digital Data Date and Time tag.
Therefore, I will continue to modify the erroneous values using Exiftool, although it is cumbersome is the method that best maintains the original metadata.

There is XnViewMP which is multiplatform, free and which allows to rename, change the dates, modify or create the data EXIF, IPTC, XMP


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Thank you for your interest.
A few years ago I used XnView to manage photos.
I tried the classic version today, but it doesn’t modify the parameter I need (at least in video.mp4 files).
With ExifToolGUI, I access the video metadata. To change the value I must type the command related to the new values and execute “ExifTool Direct”.

In the example image, we can see the EXIF (Maker) metadata that my Panasonic camera incorporates in the video.
Among other data I found curious the value Time since Power On, the value AF Mode Area (Tracking) or the image stabilization information (optics in my camera) On, Mode 1

I looked into this and now I realize that it is working as designed. When you open a clip from the playlist in the preview window, you are opening a COPY of that playlist entry. Any changes you make to the clip in the player or in the properties panel will not be applied back to the playlist item it was copied from. This also applies to “creation time”. In order to change the creation time in the properties panel and apply it to the playlist, choose the “Replace” option in the playlist menu and Shotcut will replace the playlist item with the clip in the preview player.

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Thanks for the information.
That can be very helpful to me.:grin:

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