From: Axel Kohlmeyer (
Date: Wed Oct 20 2004 - 11:15:27 CDT

On Wed, 20 Oct 2004, Marc Q. Ma wrote:

MM> Dear VMD developers,
MM> Saving VMD states is a great feature. I have enjoyed using it. However,
MM> when I wanted to use the same set of states (saved on Mac OS X) to
MM> display my systems in other machines (SUN OS 2.9 with AFS), I found
MM> that the states contain absolute paths of my files, which is not
MM> usable.
MM> Same problems happen when someone want to share a saved state with
MM> others about the same system but different choice of display styles
MM> (cylinder, coil, bond, etc) -- they usually do not keep a directory
MM> structure same as others.
MM> One way to dismiss this problem is to allow users to save states using
MM> relative path, such as the unix "./" for current directory. States
MM> saved this way will be usable among users studying the same system as
MM> long as they maintain the same relative dir, which can be easily
MM> achieved by putting all files in one directory.


you could easily postprocess the state files with a program like
sed to get the desired effect. try,

sed -e "s@${HOME}/@./@" saved_state.vmd > fixed_saved_state.vmd

to remove the home directory part or

sed -e "s@${PWD}/@./@" saved_state.vmd > fixed_saved_state.vmd

to remove the current path or just replace the ${...} part with
any string you like to remove from the pathname. this is not
totally safe, but should work in many cases.

best regards,


MM> Looking forward to get some insight from you!
MM> Thanks,
MM> Marc
MM> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
MM> Marc Q. Ma, Ph.D. | Tel: 973-642-4497
MM> Department of Computer Science | Fax: 973-596-5777
MM> New Jersey Institute of Technology | Email:
MM> University Heights, Newark, NJ 07102 | URL:
MM> ----------------------------------------------------------------------

Dr. Axel Kohlmeyer   e-mail:
Lehrstuhl fuer Theoretische Chemie          Phone: ++49 (0)234/32-26673
Ruhr-Universitaet Bochum - NC 03/53         Fax:   ++49 (0)234/32-14045
D-44780 Bochum
If you make something idiot-proof, the universe creates a better idiot.