Data source

A data source is an essential part of every pipeline as it provides the input data that is passed to the modifiers. The data source of the current pipeline appears under the "Data source" section of the pipeline editor as depicted in this screenshot. Most of the time you will work with the External File data source type, which imports the input data for the pipeline from one or more files stored on your local computer or a remote machine.

Data sourceDescription
External fileReads the simulation data from an external file.
Static sourceFeeds a static dataset that is held in memory to the data pipeline.

External file

The "External file" panel lets you configure the parameters of the data source, in particular from which external file(s) the input data for the current data pipeline should be read. The panel is automatically displayed after you imported a data file via OVITO's Load File or Load Remote File menu functions. You can return to the panel at any time by selecting the topmost entry under the "Data source" section of the pipeline editor.

Toolbar functions

Pick new file

Selects a different data file on disk, which will subsequently serve as new input for the current data pipeline. All modifiers in the pipeline are retained but the data they operate on gets replaced.

Note that OVITO will not automatically detect whether the file you picked is part of a numbered sequence of files in the same directory. In order to load a series of files as a new animation, you need to manually enter a search pattern into the "File pattern" input field. Furthermore, note that OVITO will automatically adjust the viewports to fully show the newly loaded input dataset. If you would like to preserve the current view configuration, first use the Create Camera function from the viewport menu before loading the new data file.

Pick new remote file

Same as above, but allows you to load data from a new remote URL instead of picking a file from the local filesystem.

Reload data

Reloads the data for the current animation frame from the external file. This is useful if the file contents have been updated or replaced, for example after re-running a simulation.

Update time series

Searches the directory for new files that match the current file search pattern or rescans the selected input file to discover any new animation frames that have been appended to the file.

Animation panel

This sub-panel lets you control how simulation frames found in the input data file(s) are mapped to OVITO's animation timeline. This page provides further information on this advanced topic.