Dorico hangs when moving Playing Technique

Dorico 5.1 crashes repeatedly when I try to move a user-created playing technique from one staff to another in Write mode. A google search found a Dorico source that started off saying that this is a known issue, but following the URL to find out more about it lead only to a document that seemed to have no references to the issue.

I’m sorry to hear that you’re experiencing a crash. If you can reproduce the problem reliably, please cut down the project to the smallest chunk that reproduces the problem, and attach it here, together with the steps required to bring about the crash, and we’ll take a look right away. If you’re worried about posting a Dorico project here for some reason, you can alternatively send it to me in a private message (click my username above this post and then click the Message button in the pop-up that appears). Please be sure to include all the steps required to reproduce the crash in your message.

Thank you @dspreadbury

Select the footnote number 2) with the mouse and attempt to move it (in Write Mode) down to the lower staff and beyond. Dorico 5.1 crashes (that is, stops responding and must be force quit) every time in the supplied file on my Mac mini with OS 12.6.

Perhaps one cannot actually move Playing Technique from staff to staff (although I thought I did do it at one point but maybe not). But I am assuming that this should not crash the program in any case.

Mozart K 309 copy.dorico (1.2 MB)

Many thanks for including your project, John. So far I’ve been unable to reproduce the crash. Could you please do Help > Create Diagnostic Report and if the resulting zip file is smaller than 4MB in size, please attach it here? If not, please send it to me via to my email address, which is d dot spreadbury at steinberg dot de.

Do you mean using “Move to Staff Below” Alt M …? That works fine for me.

You are very welcome @dspreadbury I should have said: when I attempt to drag the 2) to the lower staff etc. I will attempt to send the requested file. I am probably doing something illegal, but thought that you would still want to know what I am experiencing.

@benwiggy Thanks for the prompt so that I could correct my description for Daniel. I was unaware of that command.

@dspreadbury Here is the report:

Dorico (1.3 MB)

I get the same hang when attempting to drag. But moving with Alt-M works OK.

TBH I would never think of dragging items in Dorico, unless nudging them around in Engrave.

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Thanks for the confirmation @Janus I nudge and I drag; dragging is often much faster.

I don’t think dragging items in Dorico is generally a good strategy. There are ample tools to cut/copy/paste/move/nudge/extend/shrink stuff as needed.

Also the very existence of separate write, engrave and play modes might suggest that we are not dealing with a simple canvas.

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Thanks for the diagnostics. So it sounds as if Dorico is hanging, and not crashing. When an application crashes, it quits unexpectedly back to the desktop, i.e. the application completely disappears, and you’ll normally then get a message from the operating system to tell you that the application has unexpectedly quit. When an application hangs, on the other hand, you get the busy pointer (or on Mac, the “pinwheel of death”) indefinitely, the application stops responding, and eventually you have to force it to quit.

In any case, you cannot drag an item from one staff to another. If you want to move an item from one staff to another, you need to either cut and paste it, or use the Move to Staff Above/Below commands.

Obviously Dorico should not hang when you try to drag an item in this way, so I’ll try to figure out why that’s happening.


@dspreadbury I corrected the title of the thread. I think I have been at least subconsciously aware that one couldn’t drag items from staff to staff but just happened to try it this time. I hope that reporting my experience will be helpful.

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It’s absolutely helpful, John, so please do keep reporting any issues you find. We have to assume that for every report of an issue here on the forum, many similar instances go unreported, so we’re very reliant on the reports we get from dedicated users in this community to help improve the software for everybody.


@dspreadbury I will definitely do that, Daniel. My wife (a former programmer) tells me that I tend to take software to the outer limits, so I may occasionally stumble over oddities.