The toolbar that stretches across the top of the FumeFX UI dialog specifically involves simulations and the Preview Window. These toolbar buttons include actions such as starting, stopping, and saving the simulation. From here, for example, you might choose to play your results straight through, or perhaps, just calculate a single step of the simulation. For additional information on options that affect your simulation, see the Snapshot section in FumeFX Preferences.
Preview - Selecting this button opens the very handy output Preview Window that lets you visually preview your FumeFX simulation without having to render a single frame.
Pin UI - When this option is checked, FumeFX UI and Preview Window will stay opened, regardless if FumeFX is selected or not. You might experience GUI functionality issues if more than one FumeFX dialogs are opened at the same time.
Start - Select this button to run a simulation from the Start Frame to the End Frame (parameters that are available inside the General Tab > Output Rollout). Throughout this simulation, an open Preview Window will show the most recently calculated frame. Note that during the simulation, FumeFX will not block user interface. While FumeFX is running a simulation, you can change simulation parameters or even source and object parameters. However, you will not be able to render, change simulation type, change Extra Detail mode or change input cache.
In Simulation Loop mode parameters such as Grid Dimension, Exporting Channels, Simulate Smoke/Fuel are updated when simulation starts over.
Continue - You can use this button to Continue a simulation from the point at which it had been stopped with the Stop button in the Status Window. FumeFX can continue from any frame that has already been calculated, provided that the velocity channel was exported. So, another option is to Continue from the current frame output; the position of the 3ds Max time slider indicates this continuing point, right click on this button and select ???Current Frame Output???.
You can also Continue from any snapshots that you have specified in the Snapshot options under Preferences; right-click for a pop-up list of available snapshots to continue from. If snapshots were created with different grid parameters, you will be able to select Show same grid settings only, which will limit the selection range to matching files.
Stopping and continuing a simulation from a snapshot file will give you the exact same results as running a simulation uninterrupted. You can also continue from output files; however, since pressure is not saved in output files (.fxd), a slight difference will be introduced into the following frames. This difference will be evident in explosion effects.
In the events when simulation has reached the grid boundary and you needed it to expand even further, FumeFX allows you to change the grid dimensions and continue simulation from previous frame that has been calculated. This feature works only with adaptive grid.
Run simulation through BackBurner - This is a toggle button. When on, user can assign BackBurner jobs and FumeFX will run simulation before the first render begins.
You can use the BackBurner option to start a Default simulation, Initial State Simulation, Wavelet Turbulence simulation and Retimer simulations. It is not possible to continue a simulation through BackBurner.
Cache - Lets you to choose which cache will be loaded. If you select a cache that isn't present an error will show up.
Note: Depending on the selected cache, Stop and Continue buttons will be enabled or disabled. For example, when Wavelet cache is selected it is not possible to start Wavelet Simulation.