Point picking

From CloudCompareWiki
(Redirected from Point Picking)
Jump to: navigation, search

Menu / Icon

This tool is accessible via the CcPointPicking small.png icon in the main upper toolbar or the 'Tools > Point picking' menu.


The main purpose of this tool is to let the user pick one, two or three points so as to get various pieces of information (most notably the distance between two points).

Different kind of labels can be created this way.

Cc point picking.jpg


The tool can be launched directly. No selection needs to be made (any kind of point can be picked).

A toolbar will appear in the top-right corner of the 3D view. One of the following actions can be chosen:

  • spawn a specific label (SmallPointProperties.png, SmallPointDistance.png, SmallPointsAngle.png or SmallRectangleSelect.png)
  • save the last spawned label (CcSave small.png)
  • cancel the current picking process (SmallReset.png)
  • leave this tool (SmallCancel.png)


  • the last picked label stays active as long as it is not saved (CcSave small.png). If the user picks a new point then the process starts over and the active label will disappear.
  • see the equivalent PDF documentation for this tool


1 point label

With the first icon SmallPointProperties.png, the user can pick any point and make a standard label appear.

Cc label 1point.jpg

This label will contain all the information available about the point:

  • associated scalar value (if a scalar field is active)
  • point index in the cloud
  • local coordinates
  • global coordinates (if any)
  • normals
  • RGB colors

Notes: an alternative way to create a single point label (outside of this tool) is to pick a point while pressing the SHIFT key.

2 points label

With the second icon SmallPointDistance.png, the user can pick two points and make a 'distance' label appear.

Cc label 2points.jpg

This label will mainly display the distance between the two picked points (as title).

Additionally, the following values are displayed:

  • dX: algebraic distance along the X dimension
  • dY: algebraic distance along the Y dimension
  • dZ: algebraic distance along the Z dimension
  • dXY: distance in the XY plane
  • dXZ: distance in the XZ plane
  • dZY: distance in the ZY plane

3 points label

With the third icon SmallPointsAngle.png, the user can pick three points and make an 'area' label appear.

Cc label 3points.jpg

This label will display the area of the triangle formed by the three picked points.

Additionally, the following values are displayed:

  • the indexes of the 3 points
  • the length of the 3 edges
  • the 3 angles
  • the vector normal to this triangle/plane

2D area label

With the fourth icon SmallRectangleSelect.png, the user can draw a rectangle anywhere on the screen so as to create a '2D area' label.

Cc label rectangle with context.jpg

Simply click and hold the mouse button to define the first corner, then move the mouse cursor and release the button to define the opposite corner. Once the button is released, CloudCompare will prompt for a title.

Eventually the '2D area' label will appear.

Note: this kind of label is useful to define zones of interest in a 3D view seen in a particular point of view. Therefore they are only visible in this point of view.

Similarly to viewports, the associated viewport can be restored anytime by clicking on the 'Apply' button in the label properties:

Cc label 2D area properties.jpg