User's questions about Visualis

Welcome ! This page contains an anonymous list of user's questions about the installation or the manipulation of Visualis, and the answers from the webmaster. We invite you to read carefully this page, you may find many useful information !
And don't hesitate to submit your own questions !

To search for a keyword in the FAQ, use Ctrl+F (maintain the Ctrl key pressed and type f).
Click on any question listed below to display the answer.

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Installation / Material related questions

Q1 : Basic question : I did not find the setup program ! I receive a .zip file, and it was "unzipped" somewhere when I double-clicked on it... but nothing more happened... What should I do ?

Q2 : Impossible to install Visualis Electromagnetism... During the installation, the program shows the message "Error during loading. The disk seems to be protected (read only). The program must be installed from the admin session.". But I am the administrator ! How can I solve this problem ?

Q3 : I just buy Visualis (the electromagnetism version), but when I run the program, the screen is black... I can load and use models, but all is red on black, and very slow. Is it normal ?

Q4 : I enter the authorization key of Dynamics, and the application seems to start correctly, but I just get a screen with a grid, and nothing else. No help or menus... How can I do something ? How can I show the menus ?

Q5 : I recently buy a DELL computer, with an ATI Radeon graphic card... I just install Visualis Electromagnetism, but the soft is very slow, impossible for example to see the oscillator working. Is it possible to improve the performances ?

Q6 : Our school recently buy a full license of Visualis Electromagnetism (we have around fifty machines). Is it possible to install the soft without having to enter authorization key on each computer ?

Q7 : I am a mathematics and physics teacher, and your products (Dynamics and Electromagnetism) interest me much, but I work on apple computers. Is there a Mac version ?

 

Use related questions

Q1 : I am accustomed to Excel, and I would like to extract the simulations of Visualis (Electromagnetism) in this software, (for example, I would like to compare the results of my experiments with those of Visualis). Can you help me ?

Q2 : I am now teaching mechanics to my students, and I would like to show them the train which cross the earth (the one we see in the video !) but impossible to create a tunnel through the earth ! How can I do that ?

Q3 : I'm now teaching magnetism to my students, and I don't see the magnetic field lines in Visualis... Did I miss something ?

Q4 : I would like to show my students the natural repartition of charges in a conductor. We see this example in the video, but I'm not able to rebuild the model. I can create a group of charges in the middle of the screen, but that's all... can you help me for the next steps ?

Q5 : Question : I didn't found how to show the "real time" graphs on the objects. No model seems to propose them, and I think it is an important point. Can you help me ?

Q6 : Your soft interest me much, but I would like to know its limits. Then I have some questions :
- How can we build objects ? Can we precise their shape ?
- Can we represent the differences between the magnetic field inside different materials ?
- Can we represent circular currents ?


 

Installation / Material related questions

Basic question : I did not find the setup program ! I receive a .zip file, and it was "unzipped" somewhere when I double-clicked on it... but nothing more happened... What should I do ?

In fact it is really simple. Visualis (since version 2.8) has no more setup program. You just have to unzip the zip file where you want it, then you can open the 'bin' folder in the unzipped folder, and run 'Visualis.exe'.

Notice : you can found some good model examples (to open with Visualis) in the folder "Files\Demo".

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Impossible to install Visualis Electromagnetism... During the installation, the program shows the message "Error during loading. The disk seems to be protected (read only). The program must be installed from the admin session.". But I am the administrator ! How can I solve this problem ?

The message is correct. i.e. the system doesn't allow the setup program to write on the main disk. Perhaps because of OS restrictions, or because of the antivirus. Anyway, this problem was solved with the version 2.8 of Visualis Electromagnetism. You can download it free if you bought an old version.

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I just buy Visualis (the electromagnetism version), but when I run the program, the screen is black... I can load and use models, but all is red on black, and very slow. Is it normal ?

It can be a material problem, difficult to solve, because Visualis need a good 3D graphic card, nVidia if possible...
It can also be a problem due to OS, or to the graphic drivers... It is strongly recommended to use Visualis on Windows 2000 or XP, with the last drivers of the graphic card. This problem can appears if you use Windows 95 or 98.

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I enter the authorization key of Dynamics, and the application seems to start correctly, but I just get a screen with a grid, and nothing else. No help or menus... How can I do something ? How can I show the menus ?

It is a material-related problem due to the graphic card (or to its drivers). The menus are displayed, but they are "hidden" by the 3D view, which is drawn above them...
More precisely, the graphic card is not able to display at the same time the windows objects and the OpenGL view (buffer problem).
You should try to get the last drivers of your graphic card, it may solve the problem.

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I recently buy a DELL computer, with an ATI Radeon graphic card... I just install Visualis Electromagnetism, but the soft is very slow, impossible for example to see the oscillator working. Is it possible to improve the performances ?

This problem was noticed on some ATI graphic cards. The superposition of the 3D view and the menus (windows objects in general) abnormally slows rendering. It is possible to correct this problem just by hiding menus (F11 key).

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Our school recently buy a full license of Visualis Electromagnetism (we have around fifty machines). Is it possible to install the soft without having to enter authorization key on each computer ?

Normally, if Visualis Electromagnetism 2.8 is installed on user sessions, it doesn't ask each time for the key. But if it does, you can get a special version that allows you to install it massively.

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I am a mathematics and physics teacher, and your products (Dynamics and Electromagnetism) interest me much, but I work on apple computers. Is there a Mac version ?

Sorry, but unfortunately not ! Visualis only works on Windows XP and 2000. Building a Mac version is very difficult, especially because of the user interface.

But it is possible that Visualis works on MaOS with a emulator. (Virtual PC, for example)... I suggest you to try it with the TRIAL version of Visualis.

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Use related questions

I am accustomed to Excel, and I would like to extract the simulations of Visualis (Electromagnetism) in this software, (for example, I would like to compare the results of my experiments with those of Visualis). Can you help me ?

In the version 2.8 of Electromagnetism, it is possible to export in Excel the values of the field intensity. Suppose for example you want to export the field around a solenoid.. Once you've create the solenoid, open the 'Fields' menu, and select the 'Intensity' check (you can choose precision here). Then click the 'Scene' menu, and choose 'Export CSV'.. Then select the field to export and click 'OK'.

You can then open the exported file with Excel. The file contains the values of the field intensity.

In Dynamics 3.0, it is also possible to export the simulation graphs.

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I am now teaching mechanics to my students, and I would like to show them the train which cross the earth (the one we see in the video !) but impossible to create a tunnel through the earth ! How can I do that ?

There is a simple way to create the tunnel (simpler than in the video) : once you've created the earth and a mobile, you just have to limit the simulation to one single direction (for example 'X'). Thus, the mobile will move as if it was blocked in a tunnel.

In summary :

  • Change the view to 'Front' (Key '2')
  • Change scale to [mgm] ('Display' menu)
  • Create the earth on the center of the screen
  • Check the 'Structure' option (to see inside the planet)
  • Create a mobile on the surface of the planet
  • Change the simulation step to 10
  • And finally activate the simulat

You can now show the position / velocity / acceleration graphs, and follows the mobile using 'F' key.

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I'm now teaching magnetism to my students, and I don't see the magnetic field lines in Visualis... Did I miss something ?

Magnetic field lines cannot be automatically drawn in 3D. Then you have to place them manually (just click in the scene, and press 'M' key). You can move them, and delete them (key 'Del').

For example :

  • Change view to 'Top' (Key '1')
  • Add two linear currents
  • Add one or two field lines (Key 'M')
  • Remove field coloration (from the 'Fields' menu)
  • Remove main grid (Key 'G')
  • Move lines to see how they react

But to see the field globally, vectors and intensity are still better. But you can find in the 'Demo' folder some good samples of 3D magnetic field lines.

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I would like to show my students the natural repartition of charges in a conductor. We see this example in the video, but I'm not able to rebuild the model. I can create a group of charges in the middle of the screen, but that's all... can you help me for the next steps ?

Indeed, this model is not really intuitive to build. You can proceed as follows :
First, open the 'Display' menu, and change scale to [m]. Then, in the simulation menu, reduce the limit distance, to see it on the screen.
Then create a group of charges inside the simulation area (use the 'Group of charges' button to simplify the operation).

Now you can go back in the simulation menu, and uncheck the 'Inertia' option (thus, the charges will simply follows the field lines). Now you can set the simulation step to 2E-2 (validation by key 'Enter' or 'Return'). (The smaller the simulation step is, the better the simulation will be, but the bigger it is, the faster the simulation will become... You have to choose the step according to your computer.)
And finally click on 'Activate simulation' to show the result.

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Question : I didn't found how to show the "real time" graphs on the objects. No model seems to propose them, and I think it is an important point. Can you help me ?

Yes, it is important, and relatively simple to control. You just have to open the object's properties (double-click on the object, or 'Properties' button on the main menu), and to click the small 'Graph' icon in the corner. You can also right-click on the object and select 'View graph'.
Now you can select what kind of graph you want to show, and run the simulation. The graph will be updated automatically. Try it for example with the 'Bouncing ball' model.
Important notice : you can see the graphical construction of integration and derivation of the functions, simply with the popup menu of the graph.

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Your soft interest me much, but I would like to know its limits. Then I have some questions :
- How can we build objects ? Can we precise their shape ?
- Can we represent the differences between the magnetic field inside different materials ?
- Can we represent circular currents ?

About designing precise shapes for the objects, only the object 'Electric wire' is completely editable. For the others (charge, solenoid, etc...) you can just modify their properties (position, width, height, radius...). Thus for the third question, you can model any current : solenoid, linear, circular... Now about the second point, there is unfortunately no material management in Visualis. Indeed it was basically designed only for teaching the bases of electromagnetism.

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