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Remove NoteTracks from 3Ds Max Scenes

Recently, I have been struggling with some weird issues with 3Ds Max, mainly some stupidly long load and save times on very small files. Even if I merged in the objects into a completely empty file, the problem would occur on the new file. This was not only a problem for opening and saving files, but also it meant some files were timing out in Backburner, so I had to render locally.

The other problem was that 3Ds Max would not close properly, and I would have to kill 3Ds Max via the Task Manager, not ideal at all!

Initially I suspected that maybe there were a corrupt piece of geometry, but deleting the entire contents of the file, and saving would make no difference. I also tried changing the save location, different drives, moving maps, merging into a new scene and pretty much every other trick I could think of. I then suspected it might be a RAM issue, so I upgraded from 8gb to 16gb, and although this helped with the loading of the files, it made no difference to the saving or rendering of the files.

After sometime searching the web, it appeared that I wasn’t alone, and although it wasn’t a common problem, some other people were having the same hard time as myself!

Cleaner2 Results

What the problem actually turned out to be was that my files had millions of NoteTracks hidden inside them. I have no idea how they were generated, but I know I didn’t put them there! The easiest way to check for note tracks I have found is to run the Cleaner2 script from http://www.scriptspot.com/3ds-max/scripts/cleaner

When you run the script, it will show you how many NoteTracks, and other info which can probably be “cleaned”. You can click “Clean all selected” which will remove the NoteTracks and other info, but I have found this to be very slow, especially if you have over 10 million NoteTracks.

The other solution I came across was found here on the CG Architect forum. Using 2 lines of code the NoteTracks are very quickly removed. To do this open the MAXScript Listener, and type / copy and paste -

trackViewNodes[#Max_MotionClip_Manager].track = copy trackViewNodes[#Max_MotionClip_Manager].track
 

Hit enter, then type

gc()

And hit enter again. Now if you run the Cleaner2 script you should see you have no NoteTracks in your file.

 

Cleaner2 After Clean Up

A word of warning, only run this code / script if you are sure you wish to delete all NoteTracks. NoteTracks are used in animations, and probably other areas of 3Ds Max, so be careful, and only “clean” your file when you are sure you are not deleting or destroying something that you actually need!

I have put this code inside a script file in-case anyone wants to add it to a short-cut or button.

Click here to download. Once downloaded please open the file in Notepad or a similar program and read the disclaimer before running the script.

If you have found this useful, please let me know!

 

Deano

22 Comments

  • Dattaram Telvekar on Jan 31, 2013

    Hi Dean,

    Your script helped us too much. I am very much thankful for this. This one is awesome dude…..

    thanks once again.

    PS: In future if you find anything else, please let us know….

  • Anuj on Jan 31, 2013

    It worked miraculously great…

    Saved lots of time

    Lots of thanks…!

    Just wanna know does it harm my file in any way, i mean is it possible that i may lose my files’ contents or anything…

    • Dean on Mar 01, 2013

      As far as I am aware it only removes the tracknotes from files. Whether you need the tracknotes is something you need to decide. I think tracknotes are using for some animation processes, so tracknotes aren’t always bad.

      Dean

  • Poorna on Jan 09, 2013

    Wowoooo great!

    Thanks!.. you saved my lots of time.. i have been struggled in 3 days..

    Biggggggg Thanks!!!!

    Keep up your good works!.. and thanks for sharing..

    :)

  • Anthony Fraine on Dec 11, 2012

    Cheers Deano, just sent this page link to Nick and Ciprian, they had a scene which when absolutely empty, required 5gb of ram to load. Notetracks were the culprit – and you sorted it!

  • Antony on Dec 04, 2012

    I’m having the exact problems described here. One thing I don’t understand though – in order to run the script do I need to load the file first? I’m working on a lot of files that have these load time problems in them. So wondering if I can clean them all before having to load them.

    • Dean on Dec 04, 2012

      You have to open the files, run the script, save and close. I didn’t really notice long load times, rather long save and close times and the tracknotes used a lot of RAM too.
      To increase speed for opening the files to clean them, disconnect from you drive where your textures are stored, or move the textures file temporarily. This is a quick work around for files which are buggy and take ages to load as I find it’s usually down to texture maps being loaded.
      Dean

  • Vizcon on Nov 27, 2012

    So, if anybody should have an idea to solve that, i would really appreciate!!
    Note: I cleaned every Xref file as well! thx

    • Dean on Nov 27, 2012

      Have you tried merging the xrefs to one new file, then save, close and re-open, and then run the Remove Note Track script? What happens when you run the Cleaner script, does it show you have Note Tracks in any of the files?

      Dean

  • Vizcon on Nov 27, 2012

    Having same problem with a scene loaded with xref files, suddenly there was a long load and save times on that very small files. So I used that script, asI did before with success, but the problem was still there!! I have tried everything, did try with save as->;File->New ->Keep Object, didn’t work also

  • Arnaud on Oct 30, 2012

    Hi Sir,

    Your script did a wonderful job on a couple of scenes we were having huge troubles with ! For some odd reason the script did not work though but typing things directly into the script listener did the trick !

    Thanks !

    • Dean on Oct 30, 2012

      Glad to hear it helped you out! What version of Max are you using? I have 2012 and 2013 and the script works fine on those.

      Dean

  • Vizcon on Sep 11, 2012

    You saved my day with this script!! Works fine, scene saved normally! thx

  • David Connolly on May 21, 2012

    Thanks for this. I’ve come across this in a few studios I’ve freelanced in, it’s a real pain in the ass. The MAXScript Listener technique works well but usually the notetracks re-appear before too long. Sort it out Autodesk!

    • Dean on May 21, 2012

      Maybe one day we’ll figure out exactly what is causing them, and then someone might fix it!

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