[UX] Have the Large Toolset displayed by default instead of Getting Started

I’ve hardly ever seen anyone using the Getting Started Tool Set in SketchUp. The SketchUp courses I’ve seen often start by telling how to get the Large Tool Set to show instead and even the video tutorials show the Large Tool Set (of course with people asking in the comments how to get the toolbars to display that way).

In my view the Large Tool Set is superior in every way. The Large Tool Set doesn’t hide commands in fall out menus, which makes it easier for new users to remember the tools and find what they are looking for; you can easily see the Circle tool without first having to guess it’s concealed underneath the rectangle tool.

The Large Tool Set is by default also organized as a grid, making it much easier to remember the location of the icons as they have a much stronger spatial relation to each other than when just being organized as an array. You easily remember that Follow Me is located below Push Pull, which is located close to Move which is above Rotate. With Getting Started you just remember a tool is e.g. somewhere around the middle.

The Getting Started Tool Set also lacks several tools that are useful even for new users, e.g. Follow Me, and is quite inconsistent in what tools it contains. E.g. it has Tape Measure but not Protractor which is its sister tool. It also has 2D text but not 3D text.

Getting Started is also, in view, cluttered by the Open 3D Warehouse, Open Extension Warehouse and Send to Layout commands that aren’t tools and therefore in my view are more appropriate to launch from a menu than a toolbar, especially if the toolbar otherwise only contains tools used to interact with the model.

Lastly, eventually you will switch to the Large Tool Set anyway because you need the tools in it, or simply to easier follow tutorials. If you don’t then hide Getting Started you’ll end up with a lot of duplicated buttons that uses up screen real estate and clutters the interface. Switching toolbar after having used Getting Started for a while requires you to unlearn what you have already gotten used to to learn something else instead. To me this is extremely counter-intuitive. Don’t get me wrong, I love the modular approach of SketchUp and how you can add more tools and features as you learn, but you shouldn’t along that path have to go backwards and unlearn anything you’ve previously learned. The program shouldn’t set you out on the wrong course to begin with and then force you to go back again to chose another path.


I agree, but what I would really want to see would be a “Full tool set” bar (or, split into two toolbars with a full set of draw/edit/measure tools in one, and all display/style/view related in the other). All these easily fit on the fringes of a FullHD monitor.

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I don’t really see how one big “full” toolbar would be better than multiple small ones. Multiple small ones gives more control to the suer of what to show at each time and allows you to gradually add things in smaller steps. That said Face Style and Views could very well be shown by default (if they aren’t already).

Good idea.

I also like other software that has buttons you can click/hover over to reveal more tools or related functions.

The arc /curve tools could be grouped under one button.

Zoom and Zoom window could also be grouped. Modifier keys could be more straight forward. eg ALT uses the alternative tool.

Additional functions (too "confuising for new users) could be hidden underneath tools. For example, Push Pull could be click+hold to open up Push Pull Multiple.

In this way you can dramatically reduce the amount of buttons on screen while giving convenient access to regularly used tools.

Adobe illustrator and photoshop are excellent examples of this. very intuitive and decluttered.

There are flyout buttons on the Getting Started toolbar. You can move and/or copy them to other toolbars.
(The drawback is that they are hardcoded so we cannot create our own custom flyout toolbars.)

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Wow I never spotted that. So the getting started toolbar is, in some ways, more advanced than the large tool set.

Makes no sense to me!

The fly out buttons is one of the reasons I dislike the Getting Started toolbar, and think the Large Tool Set is superior. They hide away too many useful tools and adds a cognitive load as the user have to learn what tools are in the same group. SketchUp has less tools than PS so there isn’t the same need for it here. I think the designers just followed a trend/copied an idea into a place where it doesn’t make as much sense as it did in PS.

For plugins on the other hand I think fly out buttons could be useful, as plugins often add a lot of complexity.

Maybe, if the Large Tool Set becomes the getting started tool set there could be another one aimed for more advanced users that re-use the same layout of Large Tool Set (2 columns wide, same grouping) but with fly out menus to make it more compact so you have more space for plugins. This could be called the Compact Tool Set.

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It came along with the v2014 release.

“Useful” is the key word. They should normally be used to group tools not used often (in order to save screen space.) But they implemented them hardcoded, and grouped tools used most often. (“Back-buttwards”)

I’m the one who originally requested them, but not this implementation. They decided to take part of my ideas, and only implement a basic mimic of LayOut’s command groupings. I wanted full customizability, and Ruby API exposure.

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2 posts were split to a new topic: Copy and paste from context menu

To me, flyout toolbars are just a gimmick.
SU’s highly functional toolset is comparatively small in number.
The notion of hiding tools under a button makes it easier for new users to comprehend is preposterous.

Certainly, having the Large Tool Set displayed by default would be an improvement over Getting Started.
But only if it’s fixed first.

As it is, the Large Tool Set is an awkward, unmanageable brick.
It will not dock at the top, only at either side.
And when docked, it’s not 2 columns wide, it’s slightly less.
Two ‘normal’ toolbars won’t dock neatly below the Large Toolset without forcing a third empty column.



I totally agree with making the Large Toolset the default toolbar.
I used to dock my toolbars on the 2-sides and bottom of my screen.
However, many of my colleages and clients are unfamiliar with the tools available and have to be told where to locate them. Most of these people I deal with over the telephone.

So its much easier to do this with everyone using the Large Toolset and seeing it at the left margin; everyone is on the “same page”. It saves time explaining things. Eventually, when these folks become familiar with the tools and their names they will prefer their own configuration of Toolbars, but until then …


Now you are looking at it from the more experienced users point of view and what a few of them think about the getting started toolbar.

Is that a question or a statement?

Well, none of the reasons I´ve read above seems to be from a beginners point of view.
Tools like follow me tool are mentioned as one of the reasons, but that´s not one of the primary tools you need. Not the first couple of hours anyway.

None of the comments are written by a beginner.

So based on that, its a statement. :wink:

The whole point of this FR is to help new users. I’ve seen people getting used to the getting started toolset and then struggle to unlearn it when learning the large toolset. The reason why no new users have replied could be that new users aren’t very active in the forum, besides asking for help for the first problem they’ve run into.

I can’t see any reason why Follow Me couldn’t be one of the tools you test the first hour or two. It is far more basic than opening the extension warehouse or 3D Warehouse which are both in the Getting Started toolset.

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To summarize, Getting Started is simplistic, but not simple.

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on a mac there is only the one, default toolset…

you can use large or small icon size, but the tools remain the same…


Didn’t know that :open_mouth: . On PC you can also change tool size, as a separate setting.

From a quick googling it appears the Mac toolbar is the same as the PC Large Toolset, which is another reason for it to be shown by default on PC.

Edit: After looking at some more images I’ve found the Getting Started toolset too on Mac, and even both at the same time.

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This is news to me. I have been using Sketchup on Mac for 12 years and have never seen the Getting Started toolset. Where is it to be found? All I see is the Large toolset which can be reached at View>Tool Palettes.

there is no getting started toolset on Mac. There is the default to be dragged in your toolbar: