Reference/Release Notes/2.81/UI

Blender 2.81: User Interface


Active and selected items are synced and drawn highlighted
A short demonstration of the outliner improvements

The outliner got many usability improvements.

  • Selection is now synced between the 3D viewport and outliner by default, in both directions.
  • Walk navigation with up and down keys.
  • Expand and collapse with left and right keys, hold shift to apply recursively.
  • Box select with click and drag.
  • Range selection with shift click, extend selection with ctrl click, and range select without deselecting with ctrl shift click.
  • Expand arrow click and drag to expand or collapse multiple.
  • Sub elements shown as icon row can now be selected.
  • Object selection with eyedropper now works in the outliner.
  • Filter option to show hidden objects.
  • F2 to rename active outliner element.
  • Parent drag and drop for multiple objects.
  • Icons for constraints, vertex groups and sequencer.

File Browser

New File Browser design in Vertical List view
Thumbnail view

The file browser was redesigned.

  • Opens as floating window with more standard layout.
  • Popovers for view and filter options.
  • File operation options display in the sidebar. Depending on the operation the File Browser will execute, the sidebar is opened or closed by default.
  • Vertical list view with interactive column header.
  • Reworked display of date and file size text.
  • New and updated icons.
  • Deleting files will now move them to the system trash.
  • Some settings of the dialog are saved in the preferences, so reopening it will have them remembered.
  • Preferences option allows using the File Browser in full-screen layout.

Mouse and keyboard interaction is also more consistent and powerful. For details, see section.

Batch Rename

2 81 batch rename.png

Where you could previously rename the active item with F2, you can now also batch rename all selected items with Ctrl F2.

  • Find & replace, with regular expressions
  • Set, prefix or suffix
  • Strip characters
  • Change capitalization


  • Option to use OS-Key for emulate middle mouse button. (d596a6368)
  • Option to show temporary File Browser in full-screen layout (Interface » Temporary Windows » File Browser). (f5bbaf55ac3d)
  • Option for the render result location was moved from the scene, to the Preferences (Interface » Temporary Windows » Render In). (cac756a92aae)
  • Option for view rotation sensitivity. (e82b7f15270e)
  • Option for Auto Handle Smoothing mode. (aabd8701e985)
  • Annotation Simplify option got removed. (317033a1be2a)
  • "Enabled Add-ons Only" option 078d02f55743
  • Auto-saving:
    • Option is disabled when factory settings have been loaded.
    • "*" suffix is added to Save Preferences button when changes were made.
  • Themes:
    • File Browser Custom Folder Color


Default Keymap

3D View:

  • Ctrl.: Toggle origin editing
  • Poly Build Tool:
    • LMB Template-LMB.pngDrag: On boundary edge, extrude quad and move with cursor; on vertices tweak position
    • CtrlLMB Template-LMB.png: Add geometry
    • ⇧ ShiftLMB Template-LMB.png: Delete elements
  • Shear Tool:
    • LMB Template-LMB.pngTweak north/south: Y axis shear (else X axis shear)
  • Sculpt Mode:
    • A: Mask edit pie menu
    • ⇧ ShiftA: Mask expand from active index
    • ⇧ ShiftAltA: Mask expand from active index, curvature mode
    • CtrlR: Voxel remesh
    • CtrlAltR: Quadriflow remesh

File Browser:

  • N: Toggle operator options sidebar
  • LMB Template-LMB.png: Select item, or deselect on empty space
  • LMB Template-LMB.pngDouble-click: Open
  • CtrlLMB Template-LMB.png: Add to selection
  • ⇧ ShiftLMB Template-LMB.png: Add to selection and fill in-between items
  • RMB Template-RMB.png: Context Menu
  • LMB Template-LMB.pngTweak: Box-select
  • F2: Rename

Grease Pencil:

  • ⇧ ShiftI: Add blank frame
  • ⇧ ShiftX, ⇧ ShiftDel: Delete all active frames
  • CtrlAltE: Interpolate
  • ⇧ ShiftCtrlE: Interpolate Sequence
  • AltH: Unhide
  • H: Hide selected
  • ⇧ ShiftH: Hide unselected
  • LMB Template-LMB.png: Create stroke material
  • ⇧ ShiftLMB Template-LMB.png: Create fill material
  • CtrlLMB Template-LMB.png: Create stroke and fill material

Text Editor:

  • Ctrl/: Toggle comments
  • CtrlG: Find selected text

Video Sequencer:

  • 2 NumPad, 4 NumPad, 8 NumPad: Zoom 1:2, 1:4, 1:8 respectively
  • Ctrl2 NumPad, Ctrl4 NumPad, Ctrl8 NumPad: Zoom 2:1, 4:1, 8:1 respectively
  • [, ]: Select left/right of Playhead.

Industry Compatible Keymap

For this keymap, an issue was fixed that made element mode keys break when customising the keymap with additional shortcuts.


  • Context Menus for Info and Console Editors. (41f8f08e5188)
  • Only hide locked transform manipulator axes for matching spaces. (1857aa32bd3b)
  • Changed the default drawing method of Vector sockets. They are now drawn expanded using a column layout. (26911ba1)
  • All selected elements are now properly moved when dragging keys and markers in the Dopesheet & Timeline, as well as strips in the Video Sequence Editor & NLA Editor. Previously this only worked in the node editors.
    The Graph Editor is still missing this functionality, but will be added in the next release.