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Cannot pick a particle with particle inspector

Hi there.

I'm using both ovito 3.1 and ovito 2.7.1. I found that I cannot pick a particle with the particle inspector.

In ovito 2.7.1, I used "Inspect Particles" under "Utilities". When I put my mouse on a particle and hit the left mouse button, I was told "no particles selected". Similar thing happens in ovito 3.1

I don't know why it's happening. This is my first time encountering this problem. I have an AMD Phenom II x6 1035T CPU, running windows 7. Plus, this PC is a university owned PC so I don't have the admin access.

Hi,

It's the first time a user reports this kind of particle picking problem. In principle, this issue could be caused by a compatibility problem of the OpenGL graphics driver. That's at least the most likely reason, because OVITO needs to read out the graphics buffer to determine which particle is under the mouse cursor. Please select "OpenGL information" from the OVITO Help menu and post the displayed system information here for our reference.

To confirm that the particle picking mechanism is really broken, please check the following: Normally, OVITO 3.1 should display the property values of the particle that is currently under the mouse cursor in the status bar located at the bottom of the main window. Is that function working or not?

You wrote that you haven't encountered this problem before. That means particle picking has worked for you at some point in the past. What has changed since then? Did you switch the computer, or did you install another OVITO version?

Quote from Alexander Stukowski on July 11, 2020, 10:02 am

Hi,

It's the first time a user reports this kind of particle picking problem. In principle, this issue could be caused by a compatibility problem of the OpenGL graphics driver. That's at least the most likely reason, because OVITO needs to read out the graphics buffer to determine which particle is under the mouse cursor. Please select "OpenGL information" from the OVITO Help menu and post the displayed system information here for our reference.

To confirm that the particle picking mechanism is really broken, please check the following: Normally, OVITO 3.1 should display the property values of the particle that is currently under the mouse cursor in the status bar located at the bottom of the main window. Is that function working or not?

You wrote that you haven't encountered this problem before. That means particle picking has worked for you at some point in the past. What has changed since then? Did you switch the computer, or did you install another OVITO version?

Thank you so much for your reply. Check the end of this message for the OpenGL info from the AMD CPU computer.

There is no info shown up when the cursor is on an atom when I was using the AMD CPU computer. It did show atom info when I used an Intel CPU computer for the same version of Ovito. I previously only used Intel CPU PCs for Ovito. Actually, that AMD CPU computer is the only AMD CPU computer in our lab.

This is the OpenGL info for AMD CPU PC:

======= System info =======
Date: Sat Jul 11 17:53:49 2020
Application: Ovito 3.1.1
OS: Windows (144)
Architecture: 64 bit
Floating-point size: 64 bit
Qt version: 5.12.6
Command line: C:\Program Files\OVITO Basic\ovito.exe
======= OpenGL info =======
Version: 3.2
Profile: core
Alpha: 1
Vendor: ATI Technologies Inc.
Renderer: ATI Radeon HD 5450
Version string: 3.2.10318 Core Profile Context
Swap behavior: double buffer
Depth buffer size: 24
Stencil buffer size: 8
Shading language: 4.00
Geometry shaders supported: yes
Using deprecated functions: yes
Using point sprites: yes
Using geometry shaders: no
Context sharing enabled: yes

 

This is OpenGL info for an Intel CPU PC, just for reference:

======= System info =======

Date: Sat Jul 11 17:58:37 2020

Application: Ovito 3.1.1

OS: Windows (192)

Architecture: 64 bit

Floating-point size: 64 bit

Qt version: 5.12.6

Command line: C:\Users\kchen\Downloads\ovito-basic-3.1.1-win64\ovito.exe

======= OpenGL info =======

Version: 3.2

Profile: core

Alpha: 1

Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation

Renderer: GeForce GTX 1070/PCIe/SSE2

Version string: 3.2.0 NVIDIA 436.50

Swap behavior: double buffer

Depth buffer size: 24

Stencil buffer size: 8

Shading language: 1.50 NVIDIA via Cg compiler

Geometry shaders supported: yes

Using deprecated functions: yes

Using point sprites: yes

Using geometry shaders: yes

Context sharing enabled: yes

Thank you for posting the system information.

Note that the CPU doesn't make any difference for OVITO. The software will run equally well on AMD CPUs and Intel CPUs. However, the graphics hardware matters. Your AMD computer contains an ATI Radeon HD 5450 graphics card, which is a fairly old model (from the year 2010, I think). The latest graphics driver for this model seems to be the Catalyst driver 15.7.1 WHQL published in 2015.

ATI graphics drivers from around 2010-2015 contain several bugs, which cause compatibility problems with OVITO of the kind you experience now. Unfortunately, there is not much I can do about it. It's virtually impossible to develop workarounds for these issues, especially without having direct access to the hardware needed for testing.

My suggestion is to replace the graphics card in this computer (if you have the option) with a different or newer model. Graphics hardware from Nvidia has always provided very good compatibility with OVITO, and even older and cheap models should work well with the software.

Quote from Alexander Stukowski on July 13, 2020, 8:00 am

Thank you for posting the system information.

Note that the CPU doesn't make any difference for OVITO. The software will run equally well on AMD CPUs and Intel CPUs. However, the graphics hardware matters. Your AMD computer contains an ATI Radeon HD 5450 graphics card, which is a fairly old model (from the year 2010, I think). The latest graphics driver for this model seems to be the Catalyst driver 15.7.1 WHQL published in 2015.

ATI graphics drivers from around 2010-2015 contain several bugs, which cause compatibility problems with OVITO of the kind you experience now. Unfortunately, there is not much I can do about it. It's virtually impossible to develop workarounds for these issues, especially without having direct access to the hardware needed for testing.

My suggestion is to replace the graphics card in this computer (if you have the option) with a different or newer model. Graphics hardware from Nvidia has always provided very good compatibility with OVITO, and even older and cheap models should work well with the software.

Thank you for your information