Viewport Controls

 
 
 

You can choose different views to display in these four viewports as well as different layouts from the Viewport Label Menus.

NoteThis section covers general configuration of the viewports. To learn how to use the other viewport controls, such as zooming and panning the view, see Viewing and Navigating 3D Space.

Viewport Layouts

You can choose from other layouts different from the default configuration. To choose a different layout, click or right-click the General viewport label ([+]), and from the General viewport label menu, choose Configure. Click the Layout tab of the Viewport Configuration dialog to see and choose the alternative layouts.

Typical viewport layout

NoteThe viewport layout is saved with your MAX scene file.
TipYou can change the default viewport layout by saving a maxstart.max file with the desired viewport configuration and placing it in the \defaults folder .

Viewport Layouts

The Viewport Layouts feature lets you set up any number of different viewport layouts in a session and switch quickly among them. See Viewport Layouts.

Active Viewport Borders

When four viewports are visible, one viewport, marked with a highlighted border, is always active. This is where commands and other actions take effect. Only one viewport at a time can be active. Other viewports are for observation only; unless disabled, they simultaneously track actions taken in the active viewport. When Auto Key or Set Key is on, the active viewport border changes to red.

In general, a viewport becomes active as you work in it. You can move an object in one viewport, and then drag the same object in another viewport to continue the move. To activate a viewport without changing the selection, right-click it. If you left-click a viewport, the viewport is activated and whatever you click is selected, or, if you click an empty area, everything is deselected. You can restore previous selections with Undo.

Viewport Labels

Viewports are labeled in the upper-left corner. You can control many aspects of a viewport by using the Viewport Label Menus.

Dynamic Resizing of Viewports

You can resize the four viewports so they are of unequal proportions. To do so, drag the intersection of two, three, or four viewports, on the splitter bars. To return to the original layout, right-click an intersection of the dividing lines and choose Reset Layout from the right-click menu.

The new viewport proportions are saved in the scene. However, changing the viewport layout always resets them.

World-Space Tripod

The three-color world-space tripod is visible in the lower-left corner of each viewport. The colors correspond to the three axes of world space: red=X, green=Y, and blue=Z. The axes are labeled in these same colors. The tripod always refers to world space, regardless of the current reference coordinate system.

The world-space tripod is on by default. To turn off this feature, see “To turn off the world-space tripod in all viewports” in the following procedures.

Viewport Tooltips for Object Names

When you’re working with objects in a viewport and pause the cursor over any unselected object, a tooltip appears with the name of that object. If you need to select something or link to something, wait until you see the tooltip to be sure you have selected the object you want. These tooltips are disabled when you work in sub-object mode.

Tooltips are on by default. To turn off this feature, see To turn off object name tooltips, below. For more information see Viewport Navigation and The 3ds Max Window.

Procedures

To make a viewport active, do one of the following:

To switch between single and multiple viewports:

Activate the viewport you want to minimize or maximize, and do one of the following:

To resize the viewports:

  1. Drag the intersection of two, three, or four viewports to move the horizontal and vertical splitter bars.
  2. Move the intersection to any new location.

    If you don't drag a corner, you can move the borders horizontally or vertically only.

  3. To reset the viewports, right-click an intersection and choose Reset Layout from the right-click menu.

To change the number of viewports and their arrangement:

  1. In any viewport, click or right-click the General viewport label ([+]). 3ds Max opens the General viewport label menu. Choose Configure.
  2. On the Viewport Configuration dialog, click the Layout tab.
  3. Choose a layout from the choices at the top of the dialog.
  4. Assign what each viewport will display in the lower window of the dialog by clicking or right-clicking a viewport representation and choosing from the right-click menu.
  5. Click OK to make the change.

To turn off the world-space tripod in all viewports:

  1. Choose Customize menu Preferences to display the Preferences dialog.
  2. Click the Viewports tab.
  3. In the Viewport Parameters group, turn off Display World Axis.
  4. Click OK to make the change.

To turn off object-name tooltips:

  1. Choose Customize menu Preferences to display the Preferences dialog.
  2. Click the General tab.
  3. In the UI Display group, turn off Enable Viewport Tooltips.
  4. Click OK to make the change.
  • Viewport Label Menus

    In the upper-left corner of each viewport is a label bar that consists of three labels. Each label is a clickable shortcut menu to control viewport display.

  • Viewport Navigation

    At the right end of the status bar are the buttons that control the display and navigation of the viewports.