Using Data Skip to Approximate and Render a Large Dataset

Question: I am running out of memory rendering my fine-mesh data. How do I read-in a smaller, decimated version of my ordered dataset into my layout? More details: If you are working on a computer with limited resources, some processes can surpass the available computer memory. If you are unable to add more RAM, this can cause Tecplot to slow or, at worst, crash. Try this solution if some actions […]

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Changing a Contour Legend Variable Name

Question: How do I change the name of a variable in the contour legend box? See Figure 1. Solution: Renaming a contour variable requires altering the variable name in the Data Set Information dialog box: 1) In Tecplot 360, go to Data>Data Set Info… (see Figure 2). 2) Double-click the name of the variable displayed in the contour legend and replace it with the desired name. Voilà, the contour legend […]

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Fix Contour Labels Location

Problem: When exporting a picture, the location of the contour labels changes: Solution: By default the image is rendered off-screen and implies a re-draw of the plot. There are two possible solutions:   1) Prevent the re-positioning of the labels when a redraw occurs: In the Contour Details dialog, in the Labels tab, toggle Generate automatic labels (with each withdraw) off.   2) Prevent the redrawing by using the on-screen […]

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How to Show Invisible Frame Borders

Problem: I have multiple frames on the paper and I don’t want frame borders in my export. So I’ve turned off the option Show border in the dialog Frame>Edit Active Frame. At the same time I’d like to see an outline for all invisible frame borders to get a better idea how these frames are positioned and overlap on the page in the 360 EX session. This outline should not […]

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How to Reset the Light Source Position

Problem: I have changed the position of the light source interactively using the mouse. There’s no UI option to reset the light source to its original position. How can I do this? Solution: Use a macro command to reset the light source position: #!MC 1410 $!GLOBALTHREED LIGHTSOURCE { XYZDIRECTION { X = -0.2 Y = -0.2 Z = 0.959 } }


Customize the Color Palette

Problem: I want to change the default colors of the palette. Solution: Call a macro at Tecplot’s startup to overwrite the default colors in the palette.   To do so: Edit the tecplot.cfg file in Tecplot’s installation directory and include a set of $!BASICCOLOR macro commands to change the palette. In the palette, each color placeholder is referd to as CUSTOM#, where # is the placeholder number in the palette. […]

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Creating a GIF from a Sequence of PNGs

Question: When I use FFmpeg1 to convert a bunch of pngs to a GIF, it produces an ugly GIF (see the example script below and Figure 1). How do you use FFmpeg to convert a series of .png images to a high quality GIF in Windows? Example script (creates an ugly GIF):  ffmpeg.exe -r 20 -i HighQual_%6d.png -s:v 2152×1914 -f GIF ffmpeg_HighQual.gif     Solution: Both FFmpeg and ImageMagick2 convert can […]

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Calculating the Volume of an Iso-Surface

Question: How do I calculate the volume of a completely enclosed iso-surface? Solution: The volume of an iso-surface (no holes in it) may be calculated using 360’s data calculation, alteration and integration features by following these steps: A)   First, create a zone from your iso-surface: Display the iso-surface of choice by going to the side panel and clicking the Iso-Surfaces Details… button. Activate only one iso-surface group and ensure that […]

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Installing a Maintenance Release of 360 on Windows Does Not Work

Problem: Installing a maintenance release of 360 on Windows which replaces an existing 360 installation does not update 360 to the newer maintenance release version, even though the installer says the installation is successful. Solution: Close all running instances of Tecplot 360. A maintenance release overwrites the existing 360 installation. If 360 is running the operating system will prevent the executable from being upgraded. Confirm that all running instances of […]

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Min-Max Values of Transient Data

Problem: The min-max values shown in the Data Set Information dialog do not show values across all time. Solution: If you have transient data, the min-max for a variable is only for the “active zones” which unfortunately means only the current time step because the other time steps are not currently active. To see the min-max for the entire data set, run the PlotMinMaxContourOverTime.mcr macro from the Tecplot handyscripts GitHub […]

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