Autosave in Maya

Autosave is a very handy feature, available in Maya.

Autosave, its names says it all, it incrementally saves the file, by default it saves the file with a five-minute interval.

This can be extremely useful if you are used to working for long hours, and you are used to seeing the apple spinning pinwheel.

Let’s not go more in depth with why you see the pinwheel, time to go straight into setting up Autosave.

First open Maya preferences. Windows > Settings/Preferences > Preferences settings-and-preferences

Maya Settings/Preferences
Maya Auto Save Off

The AutoSave tab is located under File/Projects

All you need to do is click on the Enable checkbox, you can edit the settings below according to your requirements.

Maya Auto Save On

Thank you for reading,

How to fix skewing problem when rotating geometry in Maya

Duplicating mesh to speed up the model creation process, but sometimes Maya does not like that.

The mesh might skew while transforming, rotating or scaling, which can be very time to consume to fix and deform the mesh to an unfixable state.

This tends to happen due to Maya miss-calculation of grouping.

To fix this select the mesh that is skewing, then go into the outliner and move the node to the top-level removing it from any group.

This will fix the issue and the mesh will transform, rotate and scale normally.

Have a question? Leave a comment below.

Select similar in Maya (Tutorial)

In component mode selecting similar vertices, edges and faces of a similar type to the current selection can be multiple steps and time-consuming.

Maya offers select similar, this tool selects the active component of similar type to the current selection, drastically reducing the number of steps.

This is commonly used when working on non-organic objects that have many similar face angles and areas.

Select Similar is located in Select > Similar

Thank for reading,

Stay tuned for more tutorials.

Have a question? Leave a comment below.

Keyboard shortcuts every Maya user must know

Maya is one of the most popular Animation software widely used by studios and hobbyist. It has advanced features and tools sets that other software currently doesn’t offer making it the most preferred software in a pipeline.

Having many tools to work with can be sometimes very painful especially when you have to go through many menus resulting in a slower workflow.

Here are some keyboard shortcuts that can help you speed up your workflow(the keyboard shortcut may very depending on the Maya version you are using).

  1. File Operations
     Ctrl (or Command) n File > New Scene
     Ctrl (or Command) o File > Open Scene
     Ctrl (or Command) s File > Save Scene
     Ctrl (or Command) Shift + s File > Save Scene As
     Ctrl (or Command) q File > Exit
     Ctrl r Create file reference
  2. Selecting Objects and Components
     F8 Select > Object/Component (Switch between object   and component editing)
     F9 Select > Vertex
     F10 Select > Edge
     F11 Select > Face
     F12 Select > UV
     Ctrl i Select next intermediate object
     Alt F9 Select > Vertex Face
      Shrink polygon selection region
     > Grow polygon selection region
  3. Selecting Menus
     Ctrl m Show/hide main menu bar
     Shift M Show/hide panel menu bar
     Ctrl+Shift M Show/hide panel toolbar
     h With left mouse button for Menu Set marking menu
     F2 Show Animation menu set
     F3 Show Polygons menu set
     F4 Show Modeling menu set
     F5 Show Dynamics menu set
     F6 Show Rendering menu set
  4. Tool Operations
     Return Complete current tool
     Insert Enter tool Edit mode
     Shift Q Select Tool, or with left mouse button for  Component marking menu
     Alt q Select Tool, or with left mouse button for Polygon  marking menu
     q Select Tool, or with left mouse button for Selection  Mask marking menu
     w Move Tool, or with left mouse button for Move Tool  marking menu
     e Rotate Tool, or with left mouse button for Rotate  Tool marking menu
     r Scale Tool, or with left mouse button for Scale Tool  marking menu
    Ctrl t Show universal manipulator tool
     t Show manipulator tool
     y Selects the last used tool that is not one of Select,  Move, Rotate, or Scale
     j Move, Rotate, Scale Tool Snapping (press and  release)
     =, + Increase manipulator size
     – Decrease manipulator size
     d With left mouse button move pivot (Move Tool)
     Insert Switches between move pivot and move object  (Move Tool)
  5. Displaying Objects (Show, Hide)
     Ctrl h Display > Hide > Hide Selection
     Shift H Display > Show > Show Selection
     Ctrl+Shift H Display > Show > Show Last Hidden
     Alt h Display > Hide > Hide Unselected Objects
     Shift l Show > Isolate Select > View Selected (in the  panel menus)
  6. Tumble, Track, or Dolly
     Alt Left mouse button Tumble Tool (press and release)
     Alt Middle mouse button Track Tool (press and release)
     Alt Right mouse button Dolly Tool (press and release)
  7. 2D Pan/Zoom
     \+ Middle mouse button 2D Pan tool
     \+ Right mouse button 2D Zoom tool
     \ Enable/disable 2D Pan/Zoom.
  8. Hotbox Display
     space (When pressed down) Show the hotbox
     Alt m Default Hotbox Style (Zones and Menu Rows)
  9. Edit Operations
     z Edit > Undo (also Ctrl+z/Command+z)
     Shift Z Edit > Redo
     g Edit > Repeat
     Shift G Repeat command at mouse position
     Ctrl d Edit > Duplicate
     Ctrl+Shift D Edit > Duplicate Special
     Shift D Edit > Duplicate with Transform
     Ctrl g Edit > Group
     p Edit > Parent
     Shift P Edit > Unparent
      Ctrl (or Command) x Edit > Cut
     Ctrl (or Command) c Edit > Copy
     Ctrl (or Command) v Edit > Paste
  10. Modeling Operations
    1Default polygon mesh display (no smoothing)
    2Cage + smooth polygon mesh display
    3Smooth polygon mesh display
    CtrlF9Convert polygon selection to Vertices
    CtrlF10Convert polygon selection to Edges
    CtrlF11Covert polygon selection to Faces
    CtrlF12Covert polygon selection to UVs
    Ctrl`Proxy > Subdiv ProxyDisplays original mesh (proxy) and a smoothed version of the original.
    Ctrl+Shift`Proxy > Subdiv Proxy > (Box icon)Displays Subdiv Proxy options window
    `Toggles the display between the original (proxy) and the smoothed mesh.
    ~Displays both the original (proxy) and the smoothed mesh.
    Alt`Modify > Convert > NURBS to Subdiv, Polygons to Subdiv
    Alt+Shift~Displays option window for Modify > Convert > NURBS to Subdiv > (Box icon)or Polygons to Subdiv > (Box icon)  (depending on whether NURBS or Polygons are selected).
    Page UpIncreases Division Levels for Smooth Mesh Preview or Subdiv Proxy.
    Page DownDecreases Division Levels for Smooth Mesh Preview or Subdiv Proxy.
    lLock/unlock length of a curve (press and hold)

    Thank you for reading,

Have a question? leave a comment below or discuss on Hacker News

Difference between .ma and .mb file type in Maya

In Maya, there are two types of file format you can choose when saving a file .ma and .mb these file types are very different from each other and store content very differently and have different file sizes. But there is a bigger difference than the ones listed above and you might have questions that you want an answer for What is the difference? and Which is a better file format?

Maya Binary

**Maya Binary** stores all the content in numerical data and stores exactly as it was represented internally. This means it has a smaller file size and faster to read for Maya in terms of performance. However, the disadvantages are if the file has been damaged it cannot be recovered quite often times and has a higher chance of data corruption.


Maya ASCII the ASCII stands for American Standard Code for Information Interchange this stores all the content in characters that are encoded in UTF-8. This means the file is plain text and contains characters which when opened in a source editor can be seen as string data. The file size is also larger and can take a while to open in Maya. The file can be edited to remove the string that is no longer in use or was causing conflict while opening the file in a different Maya environment/setup. There is an example of files with the same content stored in the two different formats. Maya Binary file is not readable.

Maya ASCII is readable and displays information like which `version` of Maya the file was last saved in and which `OS` was used to create the file. I would recommend Maya ASCII because the files don’t get damaged very often and lets you have access to the content stored in the file. It can also be version controlled which is a good practice if the file needs to have multiple versions or has a big team working on it.

Thank you for reading.

How to render wireframe in Maya

Rendering wireframes can be a great way to showcase your model or modeling skills, especially when you have to display renders of your work in a showreel or your portfolio.

A quick video on the entire process

Maya ships with Maya Vector renderer, which lets you render vector and also offers the option to render the wireframe, which means you can render wireframe of your model without having to use a third-party plugin or external renderer.

How to do it.

Go to the render settings window, by clicking the last icon.

Switch to Maya Vector from the renderer drop down menu.

Now the render settings window should look like this.

Go to the Edge Options.

Enable Include edges.

Now click on render, now you will get a similar to the image below.

The final output should look like this.

Thank you for reading.

Autodesk Maya on Fedora

Autodesk Maya 2018 on Fedora 29/30

Maya is a multi-platform 3D animation software that is available for Windows, OSX and Linux developed by Autodesk and used by a large number of people for 3D Animation, 3D Modelling, Game development, and Simulation. Maya has many other areas of use. It depends only on how you use it, It’s one of those software’s that can do anything you want if you have a real imagination. Maya is a paid so software you need to own a license or have student licence to use it.

To install Maya on Fedora. We need to download the official Maya RPM package that comes with a GUI installer, that makes the installation even easier. Let’s get started with installing Maya on our Fedora workstation.


  • Logging in as root in a terminal window. su –
  • Installing the required dependencies. yum install mesa-libGLw libXp gamin audiofile audiofile-devel e2fsprogs-libs libpng12 libXmu libXt libXi libXinerama libxcb tcsh xorg-x11-fonts-ISO8859-1-100dpi xorg-x11-fonts-ISO8859-1-75dpi liberation-mono-fonts liberation-fonts-common liberation-sans-fonts liberation-serif-fonts
  • We need to symlink to ( you need to have libtiff already installed).
  • Downloading the Maya RPM package.
  • You can download it using Curl or Wget


curl -# -L -O  


  • Unzip the package. tar -xvf -o Autodesk_Maya_2015_SP5_English_Linux.tgz
  • cd into the directory. cd Autodesk_Maya_2015_SP5_English_Linux.tgz/
  • Run setup./setup # use sudo if not root user.
  • You need to click next and then choose the installation type. If you are going with standalone go ahead with that. If you prefer network installation go ahead with that (I have not tested network install).
  • Insert your serial key and product key.
  • Then choose the packages you want to bundle while installing.
  • The installation screen should look something like this.

! If the installation was successful you should get a screen that looks something like this. ![Autodesk Maya install success]( you can run Maya by running `maya`in a terminal window or by logging out and logging in so that the application menu is updated with our new application install path.

  • If you get an error message that says the following. Sorry to disturb you – but I get this error
Stack trace: /lib64/
  • You can fix this issue by symlink this file. This should fix the issue.
sudo ln -s /lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/

We can now start working on our new project in Maya.

If for any reason the guide does not work or is giving some kind of error, leave a below and let me know.