Re: Using PBC tools for a cubic and a rectangular box

From: Giacomo Fiorin (
Date: Tue Mar 27 2018 - 08:35:54 CDT

On Tue, Mar 27, 2018 at 9:09 AM, Brian Radak <> wrote:

> Hi Monika,
> The usage of pbctools is a little more complicated than what you are
> doing. I recommend looking at the plugin documentation (
> Short explanation - pbctools does not know anything about your box
> dimensions (which MUST be orthorhombic) until you tell it. That information
> is NOT extracted from the DCD frames, but can be read from an XST
> trajectory.

I'm not sure that's the problem... "pbc get -all" may tell whether the
correct unit cell is being read for each DCD frame.

Monika, I would definitely try to visualize the trajectory in VMD after

At times I found pbc unwrap to give incorrect results (i.e. a few waters
had bonds longer than one unit cell). In those cases, qunwrap gave correct
results, and was also much faster:
If the system topology is set in a way that VMD sees each molecule as a
distinct "fragment", I would recommend:
qunwrap compound fragment

This worked well for me for polymer simulations in LAMMPS, which unlike
NAMD wraps every single atoms in the original unit cell (i.e. breaking


> This will assign your fixed box size to all frames, *then* you can unwrap--000000000000a5ce1b056864fa83--

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