[Chimera-users] Transparent background

Greg Couch gregc at cgl.ucsf.edu
Mon Dec 17 09:43:42 PST 2007

On Fri, 14 Dec 2007, Abbas wrote:

> Hi,
> One feature I really appreciated about chimera was the ability to
> make pictures without a background, however recently i realized this
> is not possible anymore I checked out under the effects dialog under
> tools>viewing controls and it give me an error saying this wasn't
> supported. I haven't changed my computer since i first started using
> chimera I have updated to the latest version of chimera available for
> OSX 10.4, I wonder if this is the cause of the problem.
> I would really like to have pictures without backgrounds like I used
> to, I know PyMol lets you do it, but I dislike this program. In any
> case I would greatly appreciate any help/pointers on this issue.
> Thanks in advance. abbas.

Transparent backgrounds depend on the graphics card capabilities reported 
by OpenGL.  On Mac OS X, Apple decided not to support background 
transparency (nor full window antialiasing) for OpenGL/X11 applications, 
so to use that feature you would have to use the Aqua version of chimera. 
Unfortunately, the chimera's cross-platform user interface toolkit, Tk, 
while improving for Aqua, has gotton worse for chimera, so you'll have to 
use an old version of chimera for Aqua to get transparent backgrounds.
You can also file a bug report with Apple to help them decide to spend 
the time to fix it (OpenGL "destination alpha" and multisampling not 
supported in X11).

 	Greg Couch
 	UCSF Computer Graphics Lab

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