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ZBrush 3.5 ZTool AutoSave

by admin on Apr.07, 2010, under Freebies

Alrighty boys and girls,

Here it is! An AutoSave utility for ZBrush 3.5. Anyone working with ZBrush knows how crash happy the app can be, and I’m sure I’m not the only who sometimes gets “lost in the moment” and forgets to save a huge piece of work.
In fact, it happened to me again last week, and I grew tired of having to redo a LOT of work; so I decided to whip up this little extension to the Tool palette.

You only need to save once in the beginning of your session, and auto save does the rest. :)

And if any Pixologic guys are seeing this… Please, please update the ZScript language and make [Sleep] and [ISwitch] WORK as a ZPlug! Or even better, release a fully fledged C++ or whatever SDK!

If you have any suggestions on how to improve Auto Save, or you just wish to contact me, please do so at kristof@maphart.com. :)


And there’s a Mac OSX version as well! Tested on Mac OSX Snow Leopard and Zbrush 4.0.
Autosaver for Mac OSX


25 Comments for this entry

  • BrwK

    Yeah!!! very nice plugin. I’ve lost a lot of stuff since it.
    Thanks a lot dude!

  • mantra

    Thanks a lot man !!!

    awesome plugin


  • Guedin

    I’ve just got one plugin installed with my ZBrush, and it’s yours. I can’t remember how many times it saves my life !
    I’m using it since 6 month now and I can’t live without it !

    Thanks a lot for this !

  • sibi kasim

    Thanks man,,, I will try it … seeing the comments, i feel really happy. Thanks again and ,,,….
    a very good job..

  • hey this is awesome only one problem it doesn’t work… :(
    at least not on a mac version of Zbrush 4…
    I really do need this, I’ll pay if you fix it for my config!!

  • admin

    Mac OSX version is up. :)
    And thanks for the nice comments guys!

  • Ace

    Hey Maph,

    Amazing plugin, but I was curious if will work in ZB4? I tried it, and no dice, maybe I’m doing something wrong?

    I followed the Readme, and when I click on the Prompt (when it asks me to save the file before continuing) it hangs up, I waited for well over 15 seconds, and nothing happened. I also tried it on a low-poly model as a dry-run, but it still hangs.

    Cheers and ciao.

  • Angel

    I can’t believe…..FINALLY an autosave plugin for Zbrush, recently i’ve lost a model because my Laptop Crashed, If I had this plugin before, many models that came from “inspiration” had not been discarded forever. REALLY Thank you very much, greetings from México btw.

  • Angel

    Oh it’s me again, i have one suggestion to your awesome plugin, it would be great to have a spinner to limit the amount of copies to make in the plugin in the incremental mode.

  • admin

    Ace: Sorry for the late reply though! But I’ve used it extensively on ZB4, heck I’ve used it more in Z4 then Z3.5 (where it was originally made for!), but that crash is weird.
    Does your regular save work? Are you saving in Read Only directories? Etc…
    Angel: Thanks, glad you find it useful. Do keep in mind though, that this plugin is not failsafe. Due to ZBrush’s horrendous plugin handling, only one plugin may be active at a time, so if you fire up another plugin, it will basically kill the timer on the autosaver!
    I will take a look on a new version after my current project, which will hopefully resolve that particular (yet fundamental) flaw.
    Care to elaborate on the copies thing? Like, you put on incremental and it keeps incrementing to a given number (user defined), or each increment gets saved over a given number (user defined) before saving under a new increment? Or something entirely different? :)

  • Angel

    Thanks for the reply Maph, yes exactly this: “you put on incremental and it keeps incrementing to a given number (user defined)” and for Ace user, i’m using this plugin on Z4 Win7 64 and works great.

  • admin

    Allrighty, I’ll see what I can do, but it won’t be for until I start ZBAutoSave v2.0 I’m afraid. :)

  • Angel

    Thanks Maph really appreciate your work. greetings

  • Martin

    Marvellous tool ! Big 10x for sharing it :)

  • Ace

    Hey Maph,

    Sorry for the late reply. Anyway, here is what was the issue:


    I’m not in dire need of using it, and I have the same system as Angel so I have no idea why it’s doing this, but since it works for you guys, then I guess it’s problem with my setup and no the plugin itself (and I have no idea on how I can solve it since I already tried).

    Anyway, much appreciated for the time, wish you luck mate.

  • admin

    Oh, I see! I never really tried it with custom UIs! When I get some more time on my hands I’ll try to reproduce that (after backing up all my brushes ‘n stuff of course).
    I could dock it to something else but the Tool palette (like the standard ZPlugin window), but in all honestly; that would make no contextual sense what so ever imho. I mean, it’s reason d’etre is tool related.
    Anyhoot, if I can reproduce + fix it, I’ll let you know. ;)

  • Jaskaran

    Hello Maph,

    Thank you so much for this lovely plugin. Been looking for it since ages. Reading above, it seems like it works perfectly with Zbrush 4. Just wanted to know if you’ve tried and tested it with Zbrush 4R2. I’m having an issue with the plugin in R2. Whenever I enable the plugin, I can’t switch between the subdiv level using the subdiv slider but I can switch between the subdivs using the D and Shift+D. Any solution to this?

  • admin


    I just tested what you described and you are correct. Until you restart ZBrush, the SubDiv slider doesn’t work properly, in fact; it is not the only one that is broken! I noticed that several of the sliders in the tool palette are broken when you activate the autosaver, which is kind of a problem. Maybe this was already the case in 3.5 and 4.0+, but I never noticed because I’m a keyboard shortcut kind of guy.
    I have a feeling I know what’s causing this and I’ll look in to it for you!

  • Ilya

    Man, you have to say that it doesn’t save any sort of material editing/poly painting. I’m working with ZBrush4 and I’ve just lost a few hours of work. :(

  • admin

    Hi, it saves polypainting just fine. I am not doing anything special with this plugin in terms of custom file formats. I simply save the current ZTool once every n minutes. And materials do not get saved with ZTools.
    I did a quick test with polypaints, and it works. Did you enable colorize after re-opening the file?
    Also, did you use another plugin during the polypaint session? That may explain a thing or two as well. When another plugin is invoked, ZBrush kills mine, it’s just how it works I’m afraid. It’s best to turn on “notify me” to be sure that the autosaver is actually saving away your ZTool.

    If you keep having troubles with this, shoot me an e-mail! I’d be happy to try and help out. :)

  • Tyler Durden

    Zbrush R42b

    Your plugin doesn’t work! After selecting incremental it only saves three file increments and then doesn’t save them at all after that?! (Even though the notification message comes up stating that it has saved them??) Nice idea, but useless in practice.

  • Durden Tyler

    ZBrushs4R4 Update 2 this plugin no longer showing up for me at startup. Why oh why doesn’t Pixologic do this already!?!?
    They made a recover option but if they would only prevent the problem like with your “scripting/plugin”, then we all could be happy.

    Thank you for sharing never-the-less!

  • floe

    Thanks a lot!
    Great tool! works fine!
    Really made my day after multiple crashes in one afternoon!

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