Preferences: Inspire

Define preferences for mouse controls and options related to how information is calculated and displayed.

Modeling Space

Preference Description
View projection Select how to display 3D objects on a 2D plane:
  • Perspective: Show distant objects as smaller and close objects as larger to provide greater realism.
  • Orthographic: Useful when you want to create scale drawings with accurate measurements and proportions.
Front view Select which plane to use as the front view. The default is -YZ.
Turntable rotation axis Select which axis to use as the central axis for turntable rotation. The default is Z.
Mouse drag Select whether a click and drag is used to Move an object or Box select objects.
Show tooltips on parts Select to show tooltips when hovering over parts in the modeling window.


Preference Description
Surface Thickness: Define the default thickness used when creating surfaces.
Fillets Radius: Define the default radius used when creating fillets.
Chamfers Distance Angle: Define the default distance and angle used when creating chamfers.

Distance Distance: Define the default distance 1 and distance 2 values used when creating chamfers.

Part Replace Auto Position: If Auto Position is enabled when doing part replacement, Inspire reads the internal transformation of the part within the CAD file to position the part within an assembly. If this option is turned off, it reads the part in where the part was created, generally (0,0,0).
Partition Default Offset: Define the default offset used when creating partitions.
Parts Select to maintain part orientation when moving to a new assembly.
Autofind Select to automatically find features upon entering tools.

Export format: Select either ASCII or Binary as the export format for STL files.

Export subdivision quality: Increase the level to create more triangles by splitting existing ones, maintaining the original geometry.


Import Format: Select whether to convert to PolyNURBS or mesh when importing OBJ files.

Import from CAD File Hidden Parts: Select Yes to import hidden parts that exist in some CAD formats like Catia V5. Note that importing hidden parts makes the import slower.
Healing: When importing a CAD model, choose how the application repairs geometry issues.
  • Check and heal: Check each part and only heal when necessary.
  • Always heal: Heal all parts without checking.
  • No heal: Do not heal any parts.

Split cylindrical faces: Enable this option to trim CAD cylinders on import.

Save to CAD format Ignore seactivated parts: When saving a model as a Parasolid, IGES, STEP, ACIS (.sat, .sab), STL, VRML, or Evolve (.pn) file, use this option to indicate whether to include parts that have been deactivated. This setting does not have an impact when saving as Inspire Studio .imod files.

Save parts in current positions: Select the checkbox to save parts in their current positions without maintaining transformations relative to the assembly. This simplifies the model structure when you import the data into your CAD system.

Parasolid export version: Select the version of Parasolid that Inspire exports to. By default, files are currently exported to 28.1.

SimSolid: Face Faceting Parameters

SimSolid uses lightweight facets to represent part faces. Assembly, part names, and hierarchy are retained. Default facet settings should be sufficient for most geometries, but adjustments can be made. The following faceting parameters are used to control tesselation:

  • Resolution: The Sandard, Enhanced, and Fine options will calculate the face faceting parameters automatically. Select Custom to input each parameter manually.
  • Chordal deviation (mm): The maximum distance between the actual part surface and the tesselated surface.
  • Angular deviation (deg): Influences the tesselation of curves with relatively small radii in comparison to the overall CAD model.
PDM (Product Data Management) Select the check box to Check for updated parts at a regular interval as specfied in the Timer (minutes) field.


Preference Description
Recovery File Create recovery file: Select this option to attempt to recover your model if the application closes unexpectedly, such as during a loss of power.
Recovery Playback Step-by-step recovery on right-click: If this option is enabled when you load a recovery file, it allows you to right-click to progress through the sequence of actions that preceded the crash. You can resume the application normally at any time during the step-by-step process.

Mouse Controls

Preference Description
Zoom Speed Use to change the speed when zooming with the mouse.
Presets This option defines the pan, view, and rotate controls assigned to the left and right mouse buttons, so they are the same as used in another application.

Presets mouse controls for Inspire can be edited. To restore the preset values, click Use Defaults in the lower left corner of the Preferences window.

Run Options

Preference Description
Gravity direction When running an optimization or analysis, if the weight of a structure is a significant portion of the load it is bearing, then you should include gravity. By default, gravity pulls toward the negative z direction, but you can change the direction using the pull-down menu.
Notify when run history exceeds size Enable this option if you want Inspire Studio to notify you when the run history exceeds the notification size specified in the field below.
Run history notification size (MB) Specify a maximum size for the run history. If the run history exceeds this size, you will receive a notification if Notify when run history exceeds size is enabled.
Number of CPU cores The number of CPU cores used during optimization or analysis runs. For larger models, significant time savings can be achieved by using at least two cores to perform the calculation.
OptiStruct solver method Options are Auto, Standard, and DDM:
  • Standard: Use the standard version of the solver.
  • DDM: Use a different version of the solver that is more efficient for larger models.
  • Auto: Let Inspire determine which method to use.
Analysis solver Select whether to use SimSolid or OptiStruct as the solver for analysis.
Memory allocated to the solver (MB) Specify a maximum size for memory allocated to the solver.
Run at model location Enable this option if you want to store run history in the directory where the model is located rather than the run history path.
Run history path Specify the default location where run history is stored.
Disable Altair One Disable the option to run jobs in the cloud on Altair One.
Analysis Legend Colors Change the legend colors for each of the analysis result types.
SimSolid Custom Settings
  • Number of adaptive solutions: To improve the accuracy over the entire assembly, increase the number of adaptive solution passes. The range is 3 to 6.
  • Adapt to new features: Uses special logic that has more aggressive adaptivity for stress gradient areas at local features. Applies only to structural linear and nonlinear statics. This is not used in modal or thermal analyses.
  • Adapt to thin solids: Provides special functions for a more accurate representation in thin curved solid sections. A best practice is to use this locally on a part by part basis.


Preference Description
Default materials Change the default material assigned to newly created parts.
Show Inspire standard materials Inspire Studio includes a standard material library that can be accessed from the Parts and Materials table or the right-click context menu. Deselect this option to disable the standard material library. (You must designate a custom material library under My Standard Materials first.)
My standard materials Designate your own custom material library. Click the Value field and then browse to a material file.


Preference Description
Tessellation edge deviation The maximum distance allowed between the edge and the geometry used to approximate it for rendering. A smaller deviation will result in better graphical quality but slower system performance.
Tessellation surface deviation The maximum distance allowed between the surface and the geometry used to approximate it for rendering. A smaller deviation will result in better graphical quality but slower system performance.
Enable fading effects Select this option to make a part slowly fade away when you hide it. We recommend that you deselect this option when working with large assemblies to improve performance.


Preference Description
Snap to grid Enabled by default, this function allows you to snap objects to a grid as you sketch curves or translate parts. Deselect the check box to turn snapping off.
Snap to visible grid only Restrict snapping to visible grids only.
Make sketch plane normal to the view Enable this option if, when sketching on a part, you want Inspire Studio to automatically rotate the part so that the sketch plane is normal to the view. If you want to maintain a true view of the sketch plane, deselect this option.
Auto apply constraints Sketch constraints are specific limitations or restrictions that can be placed on sketch curves. Some sketch entities are created with sketch constraints automatically applied, like perpendicular angles for rectangles. Disable this option to stop the automatic application of constraints when sketching.
Auto apply constraints after using the Break tool By default, sketch constraints are automatically applied after using the Break tool. Disable this option to stop the automatic application of constraints when using this tool.
Define auto tangent angle When joining lines and arcs, a tangent constraint is automatically applied if the line and arc are nearly tangent. Use this option to define how far, in degrees, the line and arc can deviate from a straight line and still have the constraint applied.
Define auto perpendicular angle When joining lines, a perpendicular constraint is automatically applied if the lines are nearly perpendicular. Use this option to define how far, in degrees, the lines can deviate from perpendicular and still have the constraint applied.
Define auto horizontal vertical angle When sketching line segments, a horizontal or vertical constraint is automatically applied if the line segment is nearly aligned with the grid. Use this option to define how far, in degrees, the line segment can deviate from the grid and still have the constraint applied.
Grid spacing Inspire Studio has five progressive levels of grid spacing. To change the default spacing for a particular grid, enter a value in the Grid spacing text box. Grid spacing for metric and English unit systems are maintained separately. (See numbers and units.) Click Use Defaults to restore the default values.

Mass Calculation

Preference Description
Mass calculation Right-click the column header in the Model Browser and select Mass to view masses. To improve overall performance, when a CAD file is imported the mass sizes are not calculated and are shown as ** in the Model Browser. Click the Calculate button to display the mass.

Move Tool

Preference Description
Free Move: Show angles when editing tool position By default only the X, Y, Z coordinates of the Move tool origin are shown in the microdialog. If this preference is selected, the angles are shown as well when editing the tool position.

Collision Detection

Preference Description
Check for collisions Define whether Inspire Studio should check for collisions between all parts, no parts, or only parts that specifically have collision detection applied.


Preference Description
Model units Change the unit system used for calculations for Motion analysis. All structural analysis and optimization runs use MKS units. To run structural analysis or optimization in different units, export the preferred units and run manually.
Display units Change the unit system used in the user interface.