From: Josh Vermaas (
Date: Fri Jun 27 2014 - 10:37:00 CDT

Hi Tristan,

I think the string in the file render controls dialog gets passed
directly to the shell to be executed (at the very least, the text in
that dialog box never gets passed through a Tcl interpreter that I can
see), so it dutifully tried to execute tachyon (with passed parameter
-res [expr 879. I'm not sure why it didn't die when the first argument
wasn't an integer) on the list of files * 5] [expr 886 * 5]. The
wildcards * are what got you into trouble, since it will try to render
everything in the current directory (twice no less, since it appears in
the argument list twice).

What I tend to do is save the tachyon file and then run the renderer
externally if I want a crazy-big image. (render command = "echo hello",
then open a new terminal and run tachyon with all the options I want on
the created data file)

Good luck!
-Josh Vermaas

On 6/27/14, 12:12 AM, Tristan Croll wrote:
> So this is more of a humorous event than a bug that is going to really
> hurt anybody. In order to render a bigger-than-screen-size image using
> the File Render Controls dialog, I added:
> -res [expr 879 * 5] [expr 886 * 5]
> ... to the Tachyon input line, where 879 and 886 are the window
> dimensions from running
> display get size
> Evidently this doesn't work, since now Tachyon is busy attempting to
> render all 481 files in the current directory (a couple of dozen of
> which are actual Tachyon files), and I can't kill it without killing
> my VMD instance. It's nearly done, thankfully...
> Anyway, after all that, I think a really nice feature to add to this
> dialog would be a "screen size multiplier" box or drop-down menu, to
> make it easier to render very large images without the need to know
> the specific syntax for each renderer.
> Cheers,
> Tristan