Viewport windows

The viewport windows show the three-dimensional scene containing the loaded dataset. OVITO's main window has four viewports, laid out in a two by two grid, all showing the same scene from different perspectives. The label in the upper left corner of each viewport window and the axis tripod in the lower left corner indicate the orientation of the viewport's virtual camera.

Navigation functions

Use the mouse to rotate or move the virtual camera of a viewport:

  • Left-click and drag to rotate the camera around the current orbit center, which is located in the center of the simulation box by default.

  • Right-click and drag to move the camera parallel to the projection plane. You can also use the middle mouse button for this.

  • Use the mouse wheel to zoom in or out.

  • Double-click on an object to reposition the orbit center. From now on, the camera will rotate around that new location in space, which is marked by a three-dimensional cross.

  • Double-click in an empty region of a viewport to reset the orbit center to the center of the active dataset.

Note that the z-axis is considered the "up" (vertical) direction, and OVITO constrains the camera orientation such that this axis is always pointing upward in the viewports by default. You can change this behavior in the application settings of OVITO.

Viewport toolbar

The viewport toolbar is located below the viewports and contains buttons to activate various navigation input modes. In addition, you will find two other useful functions here:

The Zoom Scene Extents function automatically adjusts the virtual camera of the active viewport such that all objects in the scene become fully visible. The active viewport is marked by a yellow border. Use the Ctrl key (Command key on macOS) to zoom all viewports at once.

The Maximize Active Viewport button enlarges the active viewport to fill the entire main window. Clicking the button a second time restores the original 2x2 viewport layout.

Viewport menu

Clicking the text label in the upper left corner of a viewport (e.g. Perspective, Top, etc.) opens the viewport menu as shown in the screenshot.

The View Type menu lets you switch to one of the standard viewing orientations and between parallel (orthogonal) and perspective projection types. The Adjust View function gives you precise control over the position and orientation of the viewport's camera using numeric input fields.

The Preview Mode option activates a virtual frame inside the viewport to indicate the area that will be visible in rendered pictures. The aspect ratio of this frame reflects the output image size currently set in the Render settings panel. With preview mode active, the viewport contents including the background and any overlays will be rendered like in the final output image.

Use the Create Camera function to insert a camera object into the three-dimensional scene. This object will be linked to the viewport, and moving the camera object around automatically updates the viewport accordingly. This gives you the possibility to animate the camera.