Standard Run Tools
All standard tools are available from the NEURONMainMenu. The fastest way to load these tools is to execute
which avoids inefficiencies of the
load_proc() command on
Brief summaries of the menu options are provided below, for more information on select functions see also:
Implementations of the standard tools are in $NEURONHOME/lib/hoc/*.hoc
NEURON Main Menu
Main menu for standard control, graphing, menu generation.
To pop up the panel execute:
Serious users should peruse the init and run procedures.
The run chain that eventually calls
run continuerun step advance fadvance
There is often reason to substitute a new step or advance procedure to do intermediate calculations on the fly. Sometimes it is useful to replace the init() procedure. If so make sure you don’t take away functionality which is already there. See $NEURONHOME/lib/hoc/stdrun.hoc for the implementations of these procedures.
Pop up a File chooser for loading a previously save graphical interface session (default extension .ses) Session files may be loaded several times.
Pop up a File chooser for loading and executing a hoc file. Selected Hoc files are loaded only once.
Pop up a File chooser for dynamically loading a dll containing compiled and linked model descriptions. This is available only under mac os and mswin.
Pops up a Directory chooser for
changing to a specified working directory.
If a dll file has not already been loaded
and if a
nrnmech.dll (under mswin) or a
(under macos) exists in the “changed to”
directory then the dll file is loaded.
A list of the last 10 directories chosen from the workingdir menu item. On the mac and mswin, if a dll file has not been previously loaded and such a file exists in the directory, then it will be loaded.
Pops up a new instance of a CellBuilder for specifying the topology, shape, and biophysical properties of a neuron.
Pops up two tools used to specify
synapse types and the locations of instances of these synapse types
on a cell type defined by the CellBuilder
This makes a network ready cell type that can be used by the
Note that the only Point Processes used to construct synapse types are those
whose model description contains a NET_RECEIVE block. e.g. see
ExpSyn and NetworkBuilder.
Starts a FunctionFitter tool for plotting a parameterized function and easily exploring its behaviour while varying the parameters. Also can fit the function to data using either the simplex or principal axis methods. The more powerful MulRunFitter is now recommended.
Multiple Run Fitter
Pops up a RunControl panel for controlling simulation runs.
Variable Step Control
Pops up a VariableTimeStep panel for controlling the
variable time step, variable order method.
CVode is the integration method. See
CVode is the integration method and there is a separate dt for every cell.
The absolute tolerance used by CVode when it is
active is given by this value times the specific state scale factor.
This latter is normally 1, eg, for voltage,
but if the state is normally found in a range <<1 or >>1 the scale
factor may be explicitly specified in a model description or in
Several useful tools for managing PointProcesses
See Point Processes and Artificial Cells for details about built-in point
processes. The corresponding
.mod file must in general be
examined in order to understand the particulars about a given
point process type.
Several useful tools for managing density mechanisms such
as distributed channels.
See Mechanisms for details about built-in density
mechanisms. The corresponding
.mod file must in general be
examined in order to understand the particulars about a given
Starts an Inserter for the currently accessed section that allows one to insert and uninsert density membrane mechanisms. Currently this is most useful for single compartment simulations.
Starts a ShowMechanism tool that is useful for specifying constant parameters for membrane mechanisms in all sections of a simulation.
Starts a MenuExplore tool that allows one to figure out the correspondence between the physical location of a section and a section name. Also allows one to get a parameter menu for the selected section.
Pops up a panel for displaying values associated with Sections.
Almost completely superseded by the more complete ShapeName except that this tool can make a panel of a single mechanism type.
Menu of possible membrane Mechanism’s. Selecting an item pops up a panel showing the global parameters for this type of Mechanism.
Pops up a panel for viewing/setting the global temperature
Pops up a panel for assigning a
uniform value of
Ra (ohm-cm) to all sections.
Ra used to be a global variable but is now a Section variable that
can be different in different sections. This sets Ra forall sections
equal to the value displayed in the fieldeditor. It used to
be displayed in the NEURONMainMenu but that location is now
administratively incorrect and error prone for models which manage
Ra through the CellBuilder.
Menu of tools which use the
Impedance class to calculate
voltage attenuation as a function of position and frequency
Pops up an ImpedanceRatio template tool for plotting the log of voltage attenuation (and other functions of impedance) between a selected injection and measurement site as a function of frequency.
Pops up a Impx template tool for plotting the log of voltage attenuation (and other functions of impedance) at a specific measurement/injection site as a function of a selected path along the neuron in which current is injected/measured.
Pops up a LogAvsX template tool for plotting the log of voltage attenuation (and other functions of impedance) between a specific measurement/injection site as a function of distance to every point on the cell.
Pops up an ImpShape template tool for displaying the morphoelectronic transform of neuron shape in which distance is represented as the negative log of attenuation.
Archive And Hardcopy
Checkin this simulation to RCS and print all windows on the printer.
This menu item exists only when nrnmainmenu is executed after the file RCS/nrnversion exists. Ie when the files in the current working directory have been placed under NEURON Project Management control.
Starts a Family tool for controlling a family of simulations. One defines a variable and set of values for looping over an action.
Starts an ExecCommand tool for specifying and executing a hoc command.
Kinetic Scheme Builder
Starts a KineticBuild tool for simulating a single channel kinetic scheme
For creating common kinds of graphs of functions of time. These graphs are connected to the standard run procedure such that at every step (see Run Control) the value of the functions are plotted.
Plots values vs t-.5dt
Suitable for plotting ionic currents (when calculations are
Plots values vs t+.5dt
Suitable for plotting states such as m_hh, n_hh, etc. These
plots may be very accurate when
secondorder = 2.
PlotShape . A picture of a neuron suitable for specifying
time, space, and shape plots.
Graph that is flushed when above plots are flushed.
This is suitable for selecting vectors from the PlotWhat menu
and seeing them change every time step.
Graph for plotting f(t) vs g(t). When started a dialog
box pops up requesting the expression for g(t). As in the PlotWhat
browser for graphs you may enter any variable or function, but it
should change when the RunControl’s InitRun button is pressed.
Starts a Grapher tool for plotting any expression vs a specified independent variable. Lines are not drawn on this graph in response to a run. However it can be made to control a family of runs.
Plots values vs t. Suitable for plotting voltage and concentrations, especially when calculations are secondorder correct. v(.5) of currently selected section is always plotted but can be explicitly removed with the Delete command in the Graph menu.
Save to File
Menu for saving/retrieving the last Vector selection to a file. eg. from a PickVector as well as other Vector tools.
The format of the file is:
optional first line with the format
optional line with one number which is the count of points.
a tab separated pair of x, y coordinates each line. If there is no “count” line, there must be no empty lines at the end of the file and the last character must be a newline.
When the file is saved with this menu item, the label and count are always present in the file. For long files retrieval is much more efficient if the count is present.
The implementation of these operations is in $NEURONHOME/lib/hoc/stdlib.hoc vectors and performing simple manipulations on them.
See Save to File
Starts a GatherVec tool collecting x,y values where x and y come from variables.
Starts an VectorPlay tool for playing a vector into a variable.
Starts an VecWrap tool for displaying several vectors and performing simple manipulations on them.
Starts a tool for drawing a curve.
A list of all the ungrouped windows (except the NEURONMainMenu) and window groups. Windows mapped to the screen are indicated by a checkmark; others are hidden. Windows may be hidden by selecting the Hide item on the menubar under the window title. Windows may be hidden or mapped by selecting the item in the ungrouped window list. Selecting a window group will hide or map all the windows in that group.
A window appears in this list if it is not a member of a window group. All ungrouped windows may be mapped or hidden by selection of the show or hide menu item.
Window group names appear in this list. Selecting this item pops up a window group manager used for creating, renaming, inserting/deleting windows into the group, and saving a selected group to a session file.
The window group manager is a dialog box so it must be closed after use.
When a window group name is defined it may be selected in the WindowGroups list. The windows of the group are indicated in the middle list. Selecting items in this list and the ungrouped windows list removes or inserts the window into the group.