Rhino 5 splash screen is annoying

Hi all,
I like the added functionality of the Rhino 5 splash screen but it still feels buggy.
It’s very slow to load on my super-fast dual Xeon computer, and it stays on top of everything.
I know I can close it but then I can’t use my favourite feature; select one of the file last used.

Hi Marc,

I agree. We tried and tried and tried to get the splash screen to behave nicely. Ideally, it would work something like this:

  1. You start Rhino
  2. The splash screen appears, both on screen and in the task tray with the Rhino logo.
  3. If you switch to another application, the splash screen acts like any other app and doesn’t stay on top
  4. If you switch back to the splash screen and do something (like select a file), then it stays on top.
  5. When Rhino is finally ready to show itself, it does - right at the same level as the splash screen (that is, in front of whatever programs the splash was in front of, and behind whatever programs the splash was behind).

For a number of technical and perhaps ignorance reasons, we could never get there. Various problems arose like Rhino always ending up behind all other programs, or the splash screen flickering and flashing all over the place as it started. In the end, the result we achieved was the cleanest we could do - knowing it wasn’t perfect.

Part of the problem is that there is code all over Rhino’s startup to “put it in front” of all the other applications on the desktop. This wreaked havoc on the splash screen code. I understand @dalelear found the core reason why Rhino did this in the new Rhino 6 code. With luck we’ll be able to revisit the splash screen there and make it work better. I hope.

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Brian, If you guys know so well how annoying the splash screen is / can be, why we don’t have an option to turn that thing off?

thx, Tobias

We can (by adding /nosplash on the shortcut) but then we loose the ability to use what the splashscreen allows, like opening a recent document.

Ok, I know, but that doesn’t work if you just double click on a 3dm to open it in Rhino.

Where do you expect to see the control to enable/disable the splash screen?

In the Rhino Options / General I guess.
Btw, I don’t ask this cause I hate the splash screen so much. It has more to do with privacy when doing presentations.

thx, Tobias

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Today happened the worst scenario;

  • On the splash screen I chose a recent file. Since it’s a big file and takes a while to open on the network I clicked on the close button (the “x” on the splash screen).

  • I started typing text in another program.

  • At some point when opening a file this way Rhino asks if I want to save changes. Presumably, the default template is open anyway and a change is recorded before the chosen file is really opened. Anyway, I was typing and not looking at the screen at this very moment.

  • The timing made it so the file I was trying to open got overwritten with my default template! Basically erased… I was able to recover it because our server keeps several versions of every file.

  • Two important problem here: when opening, Rhino stays and come back on top unexpectedly, and the default template is opened anyway if we choose to open a recent file.

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I have to concur here… I love the idea of the functional splash screen, but its current implementation is often more hassle than benefit. I haven’t had anything as bad as this, but I have often had the splash screen interrupt other work while waiting for rhino to open something in the background. Then the clicking game begins, trying to restore focus on the proper window. It’s a bit of a pain compared to the gain.


Ugh. I know. Unfortunately we can’t fix this easily in Rhino 5 - whether or not the splash can be disabled. There is code all over the place in Rhino to get it to come to the front when it’s done loading. We recently figured out a deep core reason why Rhino doesn’t behave nicely with Windows, and why all the hacks were necessary. But we discovered it while restructuring the Rhino 6 code, and it’s a big change that we’re not comfortable porting back to Rhino 5. Worse, if we take all the hacks out that bring Rhino to the front, then Rhino consistently starts behind all other applications.

I recently had almost the same horrible experience with Windows update…

I’m replying to an email, and Windows Update appears with a system-always-on-top dialog asking “Would you like to restart your computer so we can install a new driver for that mouse you haven’t used in 8 months?”(1) The default button is “Awesome, yeah! Close all my apps, right now!”

Without noticing, I press Enter to get a new line in my email, and boom - all my apps are shutting down - without saving. Thanks Microsoft!

I’m glad you had backups of your file, and I’m sorry we’re doing to you what Windows did to me. I hope Rhino 6 is better in this regard.

1: Ok, seriously, it probably was a really important update. I admit that. But I still lost some work.


Brian, you can’t be serious here… so what you’re saying is that we have to wait another 5+ years to get the splashscreen fixed??

Please give us an option to turn it off in the meantime.

thx, Tobias

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Turning off the splash, sure, we can do that in Rhino 5. But making the hideous problem of focus and Rhino coming to the top won’t get better in V5.

I tested and if the /nosplash is set for the shortcut then no splash occurs (everyone here already know that.) When I double click on a 3dm to open it, the splash shows up, but it doesn’t show the “recent” pane by default which is where the privacy issues come up. Maybe there is a way to get the recent pane to stick, but I couldn’t do it with my lame tests.

Is this enough for you @tobias? I’m asking because I would rather spend the time working on V6 than patching in features for V5 (which can slow down progress on V6.)

I looked around with no success trying to add options to the file association. Isn’t that possible?

Guys with better knowledge of the registry, isn’t it possible to hack that into the registry?

Or start delivering a nosplash version of the .exe

Its not so easy to find the right key to edit the file association.
Rhino 4 has a \shell\open\command key with a path to Rhino4.exe.
Rhino 5 has just a \shell\open\ key with a friendlyname value but no command.

Does a simple option to turn off the splash altogether slow down progress on V6 so much? Or does McNeel simply don’t want the user to turn it off?

Or do you know how to edit the registry shell open command for Rhino 5 (see my answer toRicardo). That would also be fine.

thx, Tobias

I tried putting the /nosplash in:

I couldn’t get it to work: couldn’t open 5, or file type not supported sort of errors…
It’s the right key at least (I only know because I broke it)…

Any typing on V5 in any way slows down the progress on V6. It’s not a question of how much does it slow down progress to me as it is “where do you draw the line?” There are many small requests like this that I think would be great to add to Rhino, but if there is a workaround that works just as well for the user then it seems like it may be best to use the workaround.

Let’s say we add a checkbox to the options dialog to turn the splash screen off in V5. This will involve small amounts of time from the developer, the documentation team, the translators (every language), and the testers to properly implement.

Again, I’m not opposed to adding this. I was just trying to figure out how critical this was for you.

Would it be too complicated to reverse the behavior?

Default no splash, /splash for splash?

Ok, ok… that’s indeed true. So does anyone of you know if its possible to add the /nosplash to the shell command of Rhino5 64 bit? That would be a working solution of course.

thx, Tobias