After updating to Dorico 4.1, rest input not working

Can someone please help me out? I just updated to Dorico 4.1 and simple rest input is not working. I’m using the exact instructions in the manual, that is, Write mode > Note input > Inputting rests.

Simple note input is working, just not rests.

I noticed that the rests don’t show up until either one of the following happens: 1) I enter my first actual note, or 2) I start with force duration active. This was not obvious from the manual, nor was it stated in the manual.

Is there a way to always force rests to display?

It’s working for me. Are you doing the following?

  1. Note input mode
  2. O for Force Duration
  3. Comma for rest mode
  4. Choose a duration and type a letter A-G.

I don’t remember having to have force duration active just to enter a simple rest before any note input. To me, that doesn’t make sense. But yes, except for force duration, that is what I’m doing.

I can’t say whether or not it makes sense, but Force Duration has always been required to enter explicit rests, AFAIK.

As you probably already know, you typically don’t need to enter explicit rests. Just enter a duration and press the spacebar to advance the caret, and the rests will appear retroactively as required by the meter.

No, actually I didn’t know that. I don’t understand how I made it this long without discovering that, but better late than never.

Yes, I probably only need to input an explicit rest maybe once every couple weeks!!

Note that sometimes rests won’t appear in their finished form until you enter the notes following the rest.

Would it be beneficial to make it clear in the manual that rests don’t show up until notes have been entered?

But on the bright side, I’m very thankful that tool tips have been added in this version!

Yes, I do think some explanation might be helpful. t’s not really clear here that the implicit rests don’t immediately appear. I could see that being confusing to a new user. @Lillie_Harris, thoughts?

Another minor note is that when going to Layout options in setup mode, to set the fixed number or systems per “page” the manual refers to the “page” as “frame”. Someone not familiar with Dorico might be very confused at that point.

Please understand that I love Dorico and I’m just looking out for you all so that new users aren’t put off by these minor omissions.

There can be more than one frame on a page.


1 Like

Here’s the page for inputting rests. It includes activating Force Duration as a necessary step, because otherwise Dorico combines implicit rests. If one has decided one needs to input rests specifically, these are the steps to follow as they ensure the rests you enter are the rests that end up appearing on the page.

One could argue that it’s not just rests that aren’t “finalised” until the bar is complete, as the same is true for notes (i.e. depending on the meter and Notation Options, a note might appear as two tied notes or a single dotted note, and this can change when you input the next note or don’t, and leave it followed by a rest).

On the page you linked @dan_kreider, the opening sentence

Implicit rests are automatically shown between the notes you input

hopefully conveys some element of flexibility / variability? Implying a dynamic link to notes? This point is reiterated further down the page.

Re pages vs frames: the default page templates include a single, large music frame that takes up the majority of the page. However, @jesele is correct that this isn’t necessarily the case, and in Dorico, the important part of this consideration is the music frame, rather than the page. That’s why there are “system breaks” and “frame breaks”, rather than “page breaks”.

This is explained in the intro to the topic explaining how to set fixed casting off of systems. Likewise on the page about frame breaks.

I don’t necessarily think the documentation is unclear, but I sometimes can’t see past my pre-existing knowledge and put myself in a new user’s shoes!

I will make a note of it regardless, but rewriting already-translated material has to be balanced with authoring new material.

A more involved explanation / description of what’s going on and why is perhaps better suited in material targeted at new users; in the First Steps guide, I used little bullet point “asides” to explain things in a little more detail with the support of regular images, which hopefully helps on this point e.g. on this page.

Then the instructions in the help make even less sense.

If you would like to expand on what you mean by this, I’m all ears. In order to consider whether changes are required to improve existing documentation, I need pointers including things like topic titles/URLs, perhaps the context in which you were looking for information, whether indeed you found the most useful pages using particular search terms or not, etc.

IMO this is not a problem with the relevant sections of the documentation. The problem was an incorrect expectation of having to enter all rests explicitly, as in other software. None of this discussion would have been necessary if you understand and accept how Dorico works. It’s a feature rather than a bug, as they say.

1 Like

The the bottom line is that it’s not mentioned in the basic documentation that you have to enter a note first before the rest shows up. And yes I do understand this because I’m a long time user. However somebody just starting out wouldn’t know this and it’s not mentioned in the documentation. If you would care to point out where it is then I would be glad to look it up.

Perhaps Notes and rests in the “Dorico concepts” section. Users tend to search only for the answer to what they are trying to accomplish right now, and ignore the orientation material in the top sections, and the helpful Getting Started video. A bigger mistake in the case of Dorico than most software.

It is often easy for us users to see where and how something could have been clearer for ourselves as we learn the software, but my experience with {trying to suggest improvements to the documentation and UI from the perspective of a new user} is that it doesn’t work. The Team already have their approach and are doing their best with it.