Editor for Worksession .rws files needed

Editing Worksession .rws files directly is needed.

The current situation is I have to open a Worksession, wait for all the files to load. detach the files which are not needed, attach new files or files which were updated and saved with a different name outside Worksession, etc. Instead I need to be able to open the .rws file, edit the file names and paths as needed, including deleting and adding file names and paths, and the save the revised .rws file.

I was hoping the .rws file is a simple text file but it isn’t. I assume it contains a list of the files and their paths, and which file is “active”. It should be simple to create an editor, which would significantly increase the utility of Worksession.

@pascal Any possibility of adding this to the “heap”?

Situation where being able to directly edit a .rws file would be very beneficial:
… Worksession has numerous files.
… Worksession has multiple very large files
… Files have been edited outside of Worksession and save under new names and the .rws file needs to be updated with the new names.
… Very large files are no longer needed. Currently files cannot be detached from a Worksession without first waiting for the files to load.

Hi David - I can certainly add this to the pile… but realistically - even though I get what you are saying and it makes perfect sense, making an editor for those seems like a stretch in the short term at least - I am a little surprised these are not text files, actually, my surmise of the moment is that it if it was a design decision and not just a default thing to do, that it was to make them less hackable, perhaps, but I just made that up…
It may also be that there are enough other things to change - layer states and so on - that could get out of sync too easily in a hand edit. But… on the heap with it… RH-60431 Direct editing of rws files


Pascal, thanks for adding to the heap.

My guesses or reason for .rws files not being simple text files are:

  1. .rws are related to files used for blocks. I don’t use blocks so don’t know how they work.
    same data type was used as in .3dm files
  2. Originally there were plans for worksession to be much more than it is currently, and protection from hacking was needed. It looks like .rws files have not changed since V5.

I am not aware of anything like layer states or the like being saved when a Worksession is saved. The .3dm files and other geometry files always load and open exactly the same as if loaded and openned outside of Worksession. Update - Dale is correct. The layer state of reference files is saved.

Yep, there sure are.

With the Worksession command being scriptable, you could probably come up with your own “worksession” format: read your special file and just populate a worksession via scripting.

– Dale

@dale You are correct about the layer status of the reference files being saved. I’ve been using Worksession for years and not noticed that.

I may be missing something but I want/need to edit the Worksession ,rws file without opening the Worksession and loading the associated files. How would I do that by scripting the Worksession command? The situation is I have a Worksession with numerous geometry files, some of whcih have very large meshes. I want to delete some the files from the Worksession without first waiting for the files to load. How would I script that?

Script it like a batch process? Run it and walk away until it is done.

Open each rws
Delete/add files as required
Save each rws

Waiting for files to load is precisely what I want to avoid.


Minutes, whic can waste tens of minutes.

When a user is waiting more than a few seconds for a computer to complete a task they tend to stop paying close attention, and then become distracted. The result is they will not notice when the task if finished and waste additional time.

I thought an editor would be simple to implement, and useful to many users of Worksessions.

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I agree entirely. It is one of the worst aspects of a few programs I use and makes them extremely frustrating and nearly worthless (Rhino is not one of them). Was merely trying to find an interim solution with my suggestion.

My understanding is that Worksessions are more sophisticated than a simple list of file references. There is some added intelligence that is meant to make them easier to use by trying to locate missing files.

Looks like Worksessions save some added information to support the functionality.

That said, would massively advocate for some sort of RWS editor or reader that doesn’t require opening Rhino.

One important use for us is being able to figure out which files reference which, without having to open them all. For example if you change a model that gets referenced in a network of other models. You need to know which ones to update, without having to open all of them.

And then! you could actually build a map of your network of file references…

The ability to directly edit a Worksession .rws file without opening the .rws file is still needed. Hopefully it will get some attention.

I agree - this would be very helpful! Using something similar to the current worksession editor, but outside of Rhino. That being said, the current worksession editor has long delays when selecting a file and that is not desirable.

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