Component Browser Thumbnails generated in SU2020 (windows only)

Saving a component to a library (using the context menu>save as) results in a thumbnail with top-down view of the component. This is a changed behavior from previous versions where you would get a thumbnail generated based on how the component was oriented in the model.

This works correctly on the Mac, so appears to be a window only issue.


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The thumbnail is created when the component is created (even without saving.)
I see this same “top down” parallel projection thumbnail generation in SU2018 as well.

We have to save out the component as a file, then open this file in a new instance of SketchUp, manipulate the view to a perspective iso and save the file (with “Redefine thumbnail on save” checked in Model Info > File > General.)

Then in the original model, right-click the component in the browser (or one of it’s instances in the model) and choose "Reload…, picking the saved file in the openpanel.
The thumbnail is then updated.

So why is it this way ?

Perhaps because the XY ground plane is the cutting plane for window and door components and the devs just try to make it easier on component authors ?


Thanks for that Dan,

I’ve tried several times to do what you have said, but am unable to get a component thumbnail back to a perspective view.

I’ve disabled all non-SketchUp extensions and used a sample SketchUp component. When I save it as a component, the newly generated thumbnail is always a top-down view.


As mentioned initially, this only happens on Windows (Mac retains the perspective thumbnail).

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Seems like the latest updates to Sketchup 2020 broke the thumbnail generation so the thumbnails are only generated from the top view when you Right Click > Save As. Same issue when saving a component through the API.

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I work quite like Palo and I also noticed this strange action. I also use Component Finder. I will still observe and test, but it seems that it is the add-on that overwrites the preview of the component. When I save a component from the context menu (right-click on the component) or from a native component list, the preview is saved correctly.

We’ve reported this issue to Sketchup and they confirmed it’s a bug.

I’m not sure how to recreate this, but I’ve had some cases where Right Click > Save As, rather than the thumbnail being updated, it would keep the previously cached thumbnail, so it would appear as though it is saving correctly, but if you’d make a change to the component it would then save in a top view.

@Palo Which version of SketchUp are you running (see Help > About SketchUp…)?

I’m only finding this issue on SU2020 on the Windows platform. The Mac version is working as expected.


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Do it on a custom component. Trying to change a built-in library component can be problematic.

I have gone back and re-tested everything.

It looks like the thumbnail problem may have initially arisen from my extension doing a ComponentDefinition.save_as. As stated originally, this issue only surfaces on the Windows platform. The mac works as expected.

Once this upgrade has occurred, I cannot reset the thumbnail. Bringing the component into SketchUp and manually re-saving the the library component does not reset the thumbnail. Components that were not updated through ruby in SU2020 save as expected.

You are right Dan, the built-in components appear to be problematic as they continue to store with a top-down view.


That is not what I meant. I was referring to that they are stored in %ProgramData and not User %AppData%. Plus you do not really want to be changing the distributed components.

It would nice if this method allowed a version named argument so componet’s could be backsaved to an older version skp file.

The thumbnails bug is now fixed in Sketchup 2020.1.

Thank you SketchUp!

Yes, thank you for fixing this quickly SketchUp!

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