Block Definition Problem

To be honest, block in rhino is super complicated and confused to use. I was expecting the problem to be solved in Rhino7 but it seems this bug isn’t fixed yet.

1.Layer Hierarchy

Creating a block definition from the original file by copying components from different layers. Now every layer can hide part of the block definition. And this was super annoying in editing or visual.

I suggest making this block definition created in the original file as the way the import block works. I mean creating a layer automatically once a block is defined. The main block will be a separated layer and the sub block into sub layer.

2.Block manager

It is so unorganized that hard to work on. It just shows every block in a single interface and arranging alphabetically. Just imagine when editing these blocks, people would actually want to edit their sub blocks likely.

I suggest hiding all sub blocks and only show the main blocks in the block manager. And then when click on the main block the windows pop out will include also the sub block.

When deleting the layer, it tells me there is a block definition so I can’t do that. Then I will run the block manager and searching them one by one like an idiot.

When hiding some layer to make the visual cleaner, the block supposed to be seen is partially hidden. Again double click the block, go into every sub block and change their layer like an idiot.

That’s what always happening now and makes me reluctant to use block. I really hope the problem of block can be solved nicely and make it more logical and effective.


Honestly, I don’t think the current Block system can be fixed. It’s too involved and entangled with other stuff in the system.

I think the way forward is to start developing an entirely new Block2 solution which does away with all the current limitations by design, not by “fixing” it, while keeping the old block system as is to avoid breaking the entire world for legacy models. The old block system can then be deprecated in future main releases of Rhino.

The future of the current block system doesn’t look bright.

// Rolf


It sounds like another year development for Mcneel. I really hope they can get this done as soon as possible. The block definition not even a new feature, it simply has a severe bug in working progress.

I’m not a developer, but I have some basic understanding in it.
I DONT get what should be complicated to develop a Block-Manager where you can sort, order, sub-order, preview or have a drag and drop system?? I don’t think you have to reprogram a lot of your program to do that or am I wrong?
Block handeling is so BASIC that I would be surprised if it’s deep in the program

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How can I raise the attention of this serious bug from McNeel?

Im actually gonna to reply myself like this haha

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I didn’t see anything related to this in Rhino 8 WIP. Is this currently being addressed? I just realized I need to redefine an entire library of blocks we use to avoid sorting alphabetically. Not a ton of work, but time would be better spent elsewhere.

I don’t understand what you mean with this, can you rephrase?

I was hoping to find the ability to reorder and group (parent/child) blocks within the Block Manager the same way we are able to organize Layers. Am I missing something? Is this possible?

This type ability to organize/rearrange items would also be useful for Document User Text. It appears that all items are organized alphabetically, the ability to change that would be useful.

No, you’re not missing something, that’s not possible.

Document user text is like a dictionary. You can sort alphabetically or reverse on keys and values, by clicking the column. Apart from that there is search. If you want a different order, I suggest you use numbering of your keys in the order you want them to appear in the list.

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Understood. Just for further context, We use the Blocks and Document User Text as inputs for our Drawing Template system. There are certain parts of these inputs that apply across multiple templates, while others are specific to one drawing or in rare cases a single sheet. It would help our users if we could arrange these items in a consistent manner according to how they’re used throughout the template system. I understand it isn’t possible to do this but wanted to offer a use case for reference in the future. Thanks for the reply!