Toon Boom Harmony 17.0.1 Release Notes

Here is the list of changes in Harmony 17.0.1, build 15085 (2019-09-05):

Rig Cache

Feature Description
Accurate parallax rendering of layers

In Harmony 17.0.0, when character models are cached, they were rendered from an arbitrary point of view right in front of them. In most cases, this did not cause any issue. However, if a cached rig had elements that were placed at different positions on the z-axis, the cached preview image would be inaccurate due to the parallax effect.

As of Harmony 17.0.1, all cached rigs are rendered from the point of view of the scene's camera.

As such, the Bypass Problematic Nodes and Hide Problematic Nodes options have been removed from the toolbar at the bottom of the Camera view. These options were added specifically to deal with character rigs containing elements that are too far apart on the z-axis, and are no longer useful.

Onion Skin support When Onion Skin is enabled, drawing layers in cached rigs will also appear in the Onion Skin preview.
Keyboard shortcut The OpenGL Node Caching command was added to the Keyboard Shortcuts dialog. When assigned to a keyboard shortcut, it toggles node caching on or off.
Top View and Side View support

The following changes have been made:

  • Cached rigs now appear as flat green hairlines in the Top View and Side View. Those lines represent the amount of lateral space the cached preview image occupies in the OpenGL preview.
  • Cached rigs appear as a single, flattened thumbnail in the list of element thumbnails on the side of these views.


Feature Description
Better control when drawing a straight line with a freehand tool

In Harmony 17.0.0, the key combination for drawing straight lines with a freehand drawing tool changed to Alt + Shift. The behaviour was also changed: When moving your tablet pen or mouse in the opposite direction as the line, the angle of the line locked, allowing you to draw over it to adjust its thickness.

As of Harmony 17.0.1, you can keep adjust the angle and length of your line as long as you're holding both the Alt and Shift keys, regardless of the direction you pull your pen or mouse. You can lock the angle of your line by releasing one of either the Shift or Alt keys, after which you can redraw over your line. If you release both keys, you will resume drawing freehand.

Locking a drawing guide's angle

If you press and hold the Alt key while using drawing guides, the angle of the guide lines will stop following your mouse cursor and lock in position until you release the Alt key, allowing you to keep the guide lines at the right angle.

By using this feature, you can rework the thickness or length of lines that you are drawing with a guide. It's also useful if you want to draw a dotted line along an axis.

Hidden preference to enable legacy drawing keyboard modifiers

A hidden preference was added to allow users who preferred the drawing key modifiers for Harmony 16 and earlier to restore those modifiers. Enabling this preference does the following:

  • Holding Shift will make your freehand drawing tool draw a straight line in any angle.
  • Holding Shift + Alt will make your freehand drawing tool draw a straight horizontal or vertical line.
  • There is no way to lock your line's angle and draw over it.

You can toggle this preference by downloading, importing and running the script at the URL below:


Feature Description
Export in H.264/MPEG-4 with audio

It is now possible to export movies in H.264/MPEG-4 format with audio.

In order to support this, exports made with the H.264/MPEG-4 codec will now use the QuickTime Movie (.mov) extension instead of the MPEG-4 (.mp4) extension. This is because, when using this codec, Harmony can only export sound in uncompressed audio (PCM) , which is not supported by the MPEG-4 container.

Hence, the option in the Export Movie dialog and the Write Node layer properties has been renamed H.264/MPEG-4 (*.mov). It is still different from QuickTime Movie (*.mov) in that it is created by Harmony and does not depend on Apple QuickTime.

Node View

Feature Description
Follow Node View hierarchy instead of Timeline view hierarchy when navigating nodes

The keyboard shortcuts, Select Parent Skipping Effects (B) and Select Child Skipping Effects (Shift + B) are often used to quickly navigate the hierarchy of a scene. However, in certain cases, the hierarchy may appear different in the Timeline and in the Node views. Up until now, these keyboard shortcuts only followed the hierarchy in the Timeline view.

A new option,Follow Node View Parenting for Node Navigation, was added to the Advanced tab of the Preferences dialog. When enabled, these keyboard shortcuts will allow you to navigate the scene's hierarchy as represented in the Node View, rather than in the Timeline view.


Feature Description
User interface language

It is now possible to select your preferred user interface language in the Preferences dialog.

Harmony currently supports English, Chinese (Simplified), Japanese and Spanish. In previous versions, Harmony would always launch in the language of your operating system if supported, or in English otherwise. By setting this preference, you can make Harmony launch in a specific supported language regardless of the language of your operating system.

You can change this preference in the General tab of the Preferences dialog.


Feature Description
Import image to line art or color art with utransform

utransform has the following new parameters:

  • -addlineart <file>: Import an image as the drawing's line art layer.
  • -uselineartlayer <art layer>: When importing a Toon Boom Vector Drawing as the target drawing's line art layer, select which of the source drawing's art layers to import.
  • -addcolorart <file>: Import an image as the drawing's color art layer.
  • -usecolorartlayer <art layer>: When importing a Toon Boom Vector Drawing as the target drawing's color art layer, select which of the source drawing's art layers to import.

These new parameters work exactly like the already existing -addoverlay, -useoverlaylayer, -addunderlay and -useunderlaylayer, except you can now perform the same tasks on the target drawing's line art and color art layers.

Preserve artwork transformations when replacing bitmap artwork utransform now has the -keep_bitmap_transform parameter. When using this parameter in conjunction with the -addlineart, -addcolorart, -addoverlay or -addunderlay art layers, if the target art layer is a bitmap layer, Harmony will replace the artwork in this bitmap layer without resetting the geometrical transformations that were done to it with the Select tool.


Feature Description
Convert 3D Path functions to Separate functions

The new convertToSeparate() method of the func class allows you to convert a 3D path function into an array of three Bezier functions representing its x, y and z axes.

The conversion must be approximate. Hence, it allows you to use one of two approximation algorithms: one that prioritizes the accuracy of the spline's shape, which may cause some keyframes to be offset in time, and one that prioritizes the position of its keyframes in time, which may affect the shape of the spline a bit.

For more information, see Harmony Scripting Interface Reference

Get tension of an ease function The tensionEase() method was added to the func class. It will return the tension of the ease function that is passed as its parameter—see Harmony Scripting Interface Reference.
Specify colour IDs when checking for used colours The containsUsedColors() method of the Palette class now requires a list of colour IDs as a parameter, to check whether specific colours in the palette are used—see Harmony Scripting Interface Reference.
Export to SVG The TB_ExportSVG.js script has been enhanced to be easy to use. Comments have been added at the beginning of the script to explain how to use it.

Fixed Issues

  • When opening a scene on Windows, Harmony sometimes fails to initialize the audio device, preventing audio playback.
  • WebCC fails to launch on GNU/Linux.
  • Harmony crashes when attempting to delete a control point when using the Centerline Editor.
  • Harmony may crash when pressing a keyboard shortcut to temporarily use the Centerline Editor tool and a keyboard shortcut to temporarily use another tool simultaneously.
  • Harmony occasionally crashes when working in the Camera or Drawing view with multiple OpenGL views opened on macOS.
  • Harmony crashes when attempting to undo after copying and pasting animation keyframes on a layer's parameters in the Timeline view.
  • Harmony may hang when a Two-Points-Constraint node has a parent peg with a scale of 0.
  • Harmony crashes when connecting an Image-Switch node that has no input image to a Composite node.
  • Harmony hangs indefinitely when using the Contour Editor with the Snap to Contour and Apply to Line and Colour Art tool modes enabled.
  • Harmony may crash when enabling caching on several nodes.
  • Memory leak may occur when playing a scene that has multiple cached rigs in high resolution.
  • When a scene created in Harmony Premium and which contains cached rigs is opened in Harmony Advanced or Harmony Essentials, then saved, caching gets disabled for all rigs in the scene.
  • Changing drawings in a cached rig using the Drawing Substitutions view will not make the cached preview image update.
  • Switching between the Rigging tool and another tool will not make the cached preview image update.
  • Selecting an element in a cached rig does not disable its cache if the rig is connected twice to its composite.
  • The first playback of a scene with cached rigs is slower than if there was no cached rigs.
  • Manipulating the Transform tool control box on an element in a cached rig is slower.
  • Cached preview images may appear in the exported images when exporting Open GL frames.
  • Cached elements may appear cropped when moving them in the Top or Side views. HAR-5358
  • The Toggle Node's Cache button is not greyed out when no element is selected.
  • The Load Grid Preset button of the Grid Wizard opens an Open dialog, then displays an error message.
  • No error message appears when attempting to create a Master Controller with the Grid Wizard or the Slider Wizard where all the source poses are the same.
  • When creating a Master Controller in a Harmony Server scene and creating the poses database (.tbstate) file at the job or the environment level, Harmony will not create the scripts folder in which to store the Master Controller, causing it to fail to create the file.
  • Error message appears when saving a grid preset in the Grid Wizard dialog.
  • The left column of the Timeline view does not scroll along when holding Spacebar and clicking and dragging on it.
  • View specific toolbars may disappear after restarting Harmony.
  • Timeline view does not remain centred on mouse cursor when using the keyboard shortcuts to zoom in or out.
  • Library view toolbar is not present in the default workspace.
  • Preview of drawing stroke does not appear when drawing with the Pencil tool while holding a modifier key if the Draw Behind option is enabled
  • When starting a drawing stroke with a drawing guide, the start of the stroke may shift a bit as Harmony determines which one of the guide's axes to lock onto.
  • The Stamp tool draws an extra line when drawing a stroke with the Draw Behind tool mode and the Current Drawing On Top switch enabled.
  • Preview of drawing stroke does not appear when drawing with the Brush or Pencil tools and a drawing guide if the Draw Behind tool mode is enabled.
  • When the Apply to Visible Drawing Layers tool mode is enabled, it is not possible to select several strokes with the Select tool by holding Shift and clicking on each of them.
  • The Alt modifier key has no effect when using a keyboard shortcut to temporarily override the current tool.
  • When drawing with the Brush tool using a textured brush, if there is a minimum amount of pressure set in the Pen Pressure Feel dialog, the vector envelope of the brush stroke may be too small and clip the texture inside it.
  • When drawing with the Pencil tool using a fixed thickness preset, if there is a minimum amount of pressure set in the Pen Pressure Feel dialog, pencil lines are drawn even when not putting the minimum amount of pressure to draw a stroke.
  • If the user presses and releases Shift while drawing with a guide, the drawing stroke may end up different from what was drawn.
  • Visual artifacts appear when drawing a straight line with the Stroke tool by holding the Shift and Alt keys on macOS.
  • Control box of the Transform tool's is extremely small when selecting an element that contains an empty drawing
  • Control box of the Transform tool is wrong when selecting a peg containing several elements and one of them contains an empty drawing.
  • The bounding box of the Transform tool does not adjust to new position of peg when pasting a keyframe on the selected peg layer.
  • Bounding box of selected drawing does not update when undoing a transformation with the Transform tool in Animate Off mode, if the selected drawing is animated with a 3D path function.
  • Bounding box of selected drawing does not update when undoing a transformation with the Transform tool in Animate Off mode, if the selected drawing is animated with a 3D path function.
  • Attempting to select an element in the Camera view sometimes fails after zooming in or out when in Render View mode.
  • Copying and pasting a keyframe on a parameter in the Timeline view does not update the value displayed for the current frame.
  • Some drawings are discarded when importing a template containing synced layers.
  • If the user syncs two layers, undoes, then copies and pastes one of the formerly synced layers using Paste Special, the resulting copied layer will appear to be synced.
  • When a layer that is a clone or a duplicate of a synced layer is selected, the synced layer indicator appears for that layer in the Node view and the Xsheet view.
  • The names of every layer listed in the Convert to Synced Drawing Layer dialog are prefixed with Top/.
  • If the Default Pass Through Composite preference is enabled, composite nodes created with the Group Selection with Composite command are not Pass Through.
  • Using the Select Child Skipping Effects keyboard shortcut (Shift + B) does not work if the child layer is connected under a deformation group containing a Transformation-Switch node.

    NOTE Attempting to select a child node through a group that contains a Transfromation-Switch node will only work if the Follow Node View Parenting for Node Navigation preference is enabled. This preference can be enabled in the Advanced tab of the Preferences dialog.
  • When rendering a scene in double-precision (16-bit / channel) PNG format (ie: PNGDP3 and PNGDP4), pixels with negative colour values (ie: pixels rendered through by a Shadow node) are rendered as solid red.
  • Cannot remove Subnode-Animation attributes that have been created dynamically with a script.
  • If the user sets a custom keyboard shortcut, switches to a different shortcut set, then clicks Cancel, the new custom keyboard shortcut is saved.
  • WebCC crashes when attempting to render a preview movie if the Cisco OpenH264 codec is not installed.
  • Error when attempting to download the Cisco OpenH264 codec on GNU/Linux.
  • In Harmony Server, if a palette stored in a job or environment that is locked for editing by another user is selected while Edit Palette mode is enabled, its colour swatches will not load in the Colour view.
  • When uploading changes to a scene on WebCC, the content of the scene's frames folder on the database server gets deleted.
  • When loading a skin on certain gaming character rigs, the exposure of some of the drawings in the affected layers is reduced to one frame.
  • The Harmony SDK does not compile on macOS without explicitly adding its subdirectories to the INCLUDEPATH variable.