From: Axel Kohlmeyer (
Date: Thu Apr 14 2005 - 05:39:38 CDT

On Thu, 14 Apr 2005, Adrian Koh wrote:

AK> Dear all,

dear adrian,

AK> I'm trying, with much difficulties, to get through Chapter 12 of the
AK> User Manual.
AK> I'm attempting to customize VMD to my preferred defaults like a "White"
AK> background, "Orthographic" display, "VDW" graphic representation, and
AK> setting the default directory to my own directory, in order to avoid the
AK> tedious process of redirecting from the VMD directory every time I want
AK> to open a file somewhere else.

for most of this you need to set up a .vmdrc file in your home
directory (or vmd.rc when using windows)

so for background, orthographic you can see e.g.:

setting the 'home' directory can be easily done
with adding a 'cd /my/home/directory' in the .vmdrc/vmd.rc file.

now setting the default visualization is more tricky. you
can of course hack the vmd source code and recompile. but
there are also ways of hook into the process of loading
a molecule. an example of how to do the latter is at

but note that this is some kind of a hack and will not
work under all circumstances and especially pay attention
to the warning.

AK> Can any one explain simply how could this be done? Thank you very much :).

i hope this is simple enough,
AK> Regards,
AK> Adrian

Dr. Axel Kohlmeyer   e-mail:
Lehrstuhl fuer Theoretische Chemie          Phone: ++49 (0)234/32-26673
Ruhr-Universitaet Bochum - NC 03/53         Fax:   ++49 (0)234/32-14045
D-44780 Bochum
If you make something idiot-proof, the universe creates a better idiot.