Houdini 20.0 Networks and parameters

Visualizing dependencies

How to display lines and indicators representing channels references between nodes.

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Visualize dependencies in the network editor

You can visualize parameter references from one node to another (for example, an expression using ch to get the value of a parameter on another node) in the network editor. This can be useful to understand dependencies and look for external references when trying to create a self-contained asset.

To...Do this

Show dependencies for all nodes

In the network editor, choose View ▸ Dependency links: for all nodes.

Show dependencies only when nodes are selected

In the network editor, choose View ▸ Dependency links: for selected nodes.

  • References to other nodes in the same network appear as pinkish-brown lines connecting nodes. Reference lines to a node enter the node on the left. Reference lines from a node leave from the right side of the node.

  • References to nodes in other networks appear as clickable indicators showing incoming and outgoing reference counts. Click one of the indicators to open a menu that lets you jump to the referenced/referencing nodes.

Get a list of dependencies for a node

Right-click a node in the network editor and choose View dependencies.

The window shows which parameters of the target are used by other nodes, and which parameters use values from other nodes.

Use the View menu to choose whether to list parameters that depend on this node (Dependents) or references to other node in this node’s parameters (References).

Houdini color-codes the parameter name in the dialog:

Black (normal)

The parameter is referenced/dependent.


Ambiguous. The parameter may be dependent, but the dependency checking isn’t fine-grained enough to tell for sure. For example, dependency checking works at the parameter level, so Houdini might see a dependency on the Translate parameter, but not know if the dependency is in tx, ty, or tz (or all three).


Circular reference. This node references a parameter on another node, and that node references this node.


Ambiguous circular reference.

Networks and parameters


  • Network editor

    How to create, move, copy, and edit nodes.

  • Network navigation

    How to move around the networks and move between networks.

  • Connecting (wiring) nodes

    How to connect nodes to each other to make them work together.

  • Network types and node flags

    Flags represent some state information on the node, such as which node represents the output of the network. Different network types have different flags.

  • Badges

    Badges indicate some status information about a node. They usually appear as a row of icons below the name of the node.

  • Find nodes in a network

    How to use the Find dialog to find nodes based on various criteria.

Editing parameters

Next steps


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