Open, Insert, or Import a file

The Open command opens a specified Rhino or other supported format file in a new Rhino window.

The Insert command inserts an internally stored block object or an external file as a block, group, or individual objects. The Insert command lets you pick a specific insertion point and apply a scale and rotation to the objects when inserting.

The Import command merges objects in an external file at 1:1 scale and relative to the world coordinate system.


Toolbar Menu Shortcut

STL Tools



Command ⌘ + O

The Open command opens an existing Rhino or other supported format file.


  1. Specify a file type.
  2. Select or type a file name.
  3. Click the Open button.
    Drag any supported geometry file format from Finder.



Toolbar Menu

STL Tools



The Import command merges all objects from file into the current model. When you import a file into the current document, the objects of that file are merged into the current document as they are in the other file.


  1. Select a file type.
  2. Type a file name.
  3. Click the Open button.



Toolbar Menu Shortcut



Blocks >

Insert Block Instance



Command ⌘ + I

The Insert command inserts block objects stored in the file or imports an external file.





Lists the names of blocks defined in the model.

Show hidden block definitions

Displays block names that have an asterisk in front of the name. These blocks are usually imported from another application such as AutoCAD.

Insertion point

Specifies the coordinates for the block insertion point.

Prompt for insertion point

Prompts to pick an insertion point in the viewport.

Use these coordinates

Type the x, y, and z coordinates.


Scales the objects.

Prompt for scaling factor

Prompts to pick a scale factor.

Use uniform scale factor

Sets the same scale for the x, y, and z directions.

Use non-uniform scale factors

Sets a separate scale for each direction.


Rotates the objects upon insertion.

Prompt for rotation angle.

Prompts to pick a rotation angle.

Use this rotation angle

Sets a rotation angle.

Insert block as
Block instance

Inserts the model as a block instance.


Inserts the model as a group.

Individual objects

Inserts the model as individual geometry objects.



Block definition name

The file name and preview.

External file
Read linked blocks from this file

If the external file contains linked blocks, these will be inserted.

Block definition type

Inserts geometry into the current file. This will not update if the external file changes.

Embedded and linked

Inserts geometry into the current file and maintain a link to the external file. Linked geometry can be updated when the external file changes. See: BlockManager. If the external file cannot be located, the geometry is still defined in the current file.


Maintains a link to the external file only. Linked geometry is updated when the external file changes. See: BlockManager. If the external file cannot be located, the geometry will not appear in the current file.

Layer style (Linked blocks only)

A linked block definition references an external file. Each time a model containing a linked block definition is loaded, Rhino reads the referenced file to create the contents of the linked block definition. When you create a linked block definition, specify one of two linked block definition layer styles.


All layers for the linked block definition are saved in the active model. All layer attributes, including rendering material, can be edited and are saved. For each layer in the linked model, if there is a layer in the current model with a matching short name, that layer is used, otherwise a new layer is created.


The layer tree from the linked model is added to the current model as reference layers under a "grandparent" layer with the same name as the linked file. All of the added layers are reference layers. Only the on/off, locked/unlocked states and the layer color can be modified.

Block description

The description attached to the block definition.


The URL attached to the block definition.

URL description

The description of the URL.

See also


Insert objects from the Clipboard.

Work with blocks, groups, and worksessions

Import and export objects

Index of import/export file types

Rhino Wiki: Imported and linked block layer names




Rhino for Mac © 2010-2017 Robert McNeel & Associates. 24-Oct-2017