eliminating large space between staves on last page of score

• Aug 16, 2021 - 15:59

I went under style, put in new parameters on space between grand staves, but then when I closed the page it didn't change the score. Any ideas on how to eliminate large space between staves?
This is for a composition contest, so I don't feel I can show the work. Can anyone still help with a fix?


Format > Style > Page > Disable vertical alignment of pages
Or append a vertical frame and size it (disable its autosize first)
Or use a spacer

By far the best answer - especially if this is for a competition! - is, don't have fewer systems on the last page than other pages. A bunch of blank space on the last page looks unprofessional whether it's distributed between staves or all bunched at the top and/or bottom.. Simply figure out where to add breaks to balance things out better so all your pages are more equally full.

If you have further questions, please attach the score so we can understand and assist better.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

We kind of do have settings that should control this, but they broken in 3.6.2 with vertical justification enabled, that's why the hack of disabling it "works", but breaks everything else about score layout and thus isn't recommended.

There can indeed be some special situations where empty space at the bottom of the last page of a score might make sense, but when entering music for a competition, it's usually important to obey the typical standards unless there is a very special reason not to.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

I'm not sure how many, but in particular, it's the "Max. system distance" under the "Enable vertical justification of staves" that should be controlling this, but fails to. The band-aid workaround of disabling vertical justification allows the corresponding version of this setting in the the "Disable..." section to work correctly - and the default of 15 sp is pretty reasonable. But of course, now vertical justification is disabled, and all the other pages will likely suffer for it (unless it's a score of just one or two staves in which case it won't matter much).

If the bug were fixed, then simply setting 15 sp in the "Enable..." section would work, and I'd also be arguing that perhaps the default should be lowered from the current 32 sp. Or even, at some point, made to be more of a sliding scale that expresses the max distance not in terms of sp but as a percentage of the system height, so you can have 32 sp between two systems of a string quartet, say, but not piano.

This is, to me, one of the three or four bugs in 3.6.2 most worth having a 3.6.3 to fix, except that as far as I know there is no single;e PR that fixes this without introducing a lot of other unnecessary (for this purpose) changes. As I recall, there was a PR created for master to deal with this while also doing a more significant (and thus risky) refactoring, and it was merged as-is for the 3.x branch. But my impression is, the actual fix should have been was a one-liner, something about that value being multiplied by some sort of scaling factor inappropriately.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Max staff distance plays a role if this is a score for more than a single instrument indeed, but we don't actually know this right now (or do we?). But, max staff distance does work correctly regardless of the justification setting, as far as I know.

To be honest, the rush of PR's merged just after the release 3.6.2 was a bit too much for me to keep up with, so I'm not always sure which fixed which issues, which were originally developed for master and which were truly intended for 3.x, etc. The PR you mention does seem to include code dealing with max system distance, but it also fixes an issue with spacers that I remember confirming at one point but as far as I can tell doesn't actually exist on 3.6.2. So perhaps there were two different branches for the spacer fix and the one got merged for 3.6.2 but the other is here the code for the max system distance fix was added to? Kind of hard to say.

But I believe the relevant lines actually needed to fix the max system distance are the ones that add "/ _factor" to calculations involving maxActualSpacing.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Right, except everything else in the PR seems not relevant to this and questionable as to purpose - there doesn't seem to be a specific issue that those changes address. Might have been something on Trello? I remember there being an issue with spacers at the bottom of pages in 3.6.1 or 3.6.0 or maybe the RC or beta, but as far as I can tell spacers work correctly in 3.6.2. So I'd be very nervous about seeing this PR as is included in any prospective 3.6.3 without a better understanding of what is actually going on.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Indeed, there have been a bunch of different PR's - some merged pre-3.6.2, some merged after; some for 3.x, others for master - that touch on some aspect of this. And it's not always clear which PR's are for which issues specifically. But as far as I can tell, not one single PR that address the issue of max system distance being misinterpreted without also including unrelated code that may or may not actually be relevant for 3.6.2.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Understood, but still, 3.6.2 passed mtests and vtests too and yet is clearly broken in this respect :-). To me risk management is crucial. There is a known serious issue with max system distance that has, I believe, a simple and safe fix. I'd very much favor seeing an update that included that fix on the very short list of known serious issues with known safe fixes. Code I don't understand the purpose of, no way would I support including.

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