Ableton Live Insider Tips – Options.txt Part 1 (Video Tutorial) – Secret Feature

Ableton Live is a complex software with lots of hidden features. In my new series "Ableton Live Insider Tips" I will show you features that a lot of users, no matter how advanced, don't know about. I'm kicking the series off with a handful of tutorials about the Options.txt file that allows you to add even more functionality to Live. This first part introduces you to the command ShowDeviceSlots.

Download the Options.txt file with the commands from all the video tutorials (Right-click and choose Save Link as) Don't forget to only keep either -NoAutoArming or -EnableArmOnSelection as they conflict with each other.

Questions or suggestions? Then simply leave me a comment below.

Continue to Ableton Live Insider Tips - Options.txt Part 2.

By |2017-12-15T19:39:48+00:00February 4th, 2013|Ableton Live Tutorials|37 Comments

About the Author:

Madeleine Bloom is a musician, producer, multi-instrumentalist and singer from Berlin. She studied Electroacoustic Music at the Franz Liszt Conservatory. In the last few years she's worked as a technical support for Ableton and has helped countless people with her in-depth knowledge of Ableton Live, various other music apps as well as audio engineering.


  1. Tonwelle February 7, 2013 at 21:46 - Reply

    Das ist ein absolut cooler Tip! Man fragt sich wirklich, warum die Funktion derart versteckt wurde. Sie weckt natürlich schon wieder Begehrlichkeiten ;-) Leider noch dieser kleine Bug, der hoffentlich noch bis zur Release entfernt wird.
    Im Video übrigens super erklärt wie es geht!

    • Madeleine February 8, 2013 at 10:23 - Reply

      Die Funktion gibt es schon mindestens seit Live 8. Bezweifle daher, dass sie offiziell eingebaut wird.

  2. Chris February 9, 2013 at 05:04 - Reply

    Thanks for your tips. Very helpful stuff. Hope you are getting enough rest :)

    • Madeleine February 9, 2013 at 15:36 - Reply

      You’re welcome. Not so much rest lately, but that’s okay for a while.

  3. Ruslan March 11, 2013 at 13:02 - Reply

    Excellent! Very useful feature. Thanks!

  4. Janek March 13, 2013 at 22:28 - Reply

    cooler hinweis, vielen dank!

  5. john March 14, 2013 at 07:56 - Reply

    great videos. thank you.

  6. Daniel March 15, 2013 at 08:50 - Reply

    Oops… I found it. Sorry

  7. Daniel March 15, 2013 at 08:57 - Reply

    My sonic bloom profile doesn’t let me have a photo…. :(

    haha just joking… SOME ONE GET ME OUT OF THE U.S.!
    …they have brainwashed me.

  8. Daniel March 15, 2013 at 09:04 - Reply

    I don’t quite understand the .alt for go menu in mountain lion

  9. Daniel March 16, 2013 at 14:32 - Reply

    Thanks for the heads up!
    I kept trying to do this while under “save…” on text edit.
    I saved to desktop and found library, works great!
    This is such a huge workflow helper for me!
    Never have to flip flop back and forth between channels again!


  10. Gregory April 8, 2013 at 04:18 - Reply

    how do i access the folder to place the option.txt file on an Imac Os version 10.8.3 running Ableton Live 9 suite?

  11. ProfLogik April 8, 2013 at 04:30 - Reply

    nevermind…..figured it out :)

  12. grooverb May 2, 2013 at 22:31 - Reply

    Hi Madeleine

    If I do the populate option.txt can I get rid of Automap, and will the novation stuff still work?

    Hope you’re well

    • Madeleine May 3, 2013 at 09:51 - Reply

      It only autopopulates the plug-in parameters, but they’re not automatically mapped to your controller because of it.

  13. grooverb May 3, 2013 at 19:04 - Reply

    Cheers Madeleine

  14. […] you haven’t checked out Options.txt Part 1, have a look. It explains all the basics. On to Ableton Live Insider Tips – Options.txt Part […]

  15. SnoopyovertheHills October 20, 2013 at 14:35 - Reply

    hey ich finde unter preferences keinen ableton ordner, kann es sein, dass der versteckt ist??

    • Madeleine October 20, 2013 at 17:50 - Reply

      Soweit ich weiß, kann nur die gesamte Library auf OS X versteckt sein (10.7., 10.8.). Allerdings solltest Du, wenn Du in Library > Preferences schon bist, auch alle Unterordner sehen können.

      Kann es sein, dass Du unter unter Macintosh HD nachschaust? Es sollte aber die Library unter Deinem Benutzernamen sein.

  16. miguel January 30, 2014 at 16:32 - Reply

    hi madeleine,
    first of all thanks so much for sharing your tips, i wish i was in berlin and could make it to your courses.
    I have done all your steps, at first i could t find the library when i ask to save but i finally managed to make an alias and save it. Now , when i open Live 9.1 there is a window for each command.
    the option file [ option text ] contains an unknown option -ShowDeviceSlots which will be ignored.
    then after this message Live opens up but without that icon you mention and not options to see the slot,etc.. is it ´cos i am using live 9.1???
    thanks very much

  17. miguel January 30, 2014 at 16:59 - Reply

    Madeleine i got it;-) it wasn t using plain text!! working now!!!

  18. Books review September 4, 2014 at 15:21 - Reply

    Admiring the commitment you put into your website and in depth information you provide.
    It’s awesome to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same out of date rehashed information. Great read!

    I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.

  19. Mariam February 5, 2015 at 15:43 - Reply

    Thank you so much for your tutorials! I’m a musician from Argentina and it was really hard to find information like this.
    Do you have any idea how i can map a note or cc from my keyboard controller to move between tracks? i’ve search for days and can’t find a way around this!
    Thank you, Mariam

    • Madeleine February 5, 2015 at 22:25 - Reply

      The only way to do this is with MIDI remote scripts, afaik. They’re written in Python.

  20. […] Ableton Live Insider Tips – Options.txt Part 1 (Video Tutorial) @ Sonicbloom  […]

  21. René August 19, 2015 at 22:48 - Reply

    Thank you for sharing your videos about option.txt. so useful and I’m so grateful!!!!

    I saw all 7 videos and have to say i was sadden there weren’t anymore. Do you know where can I find more?

    On video 3 about the -NoVstStartupScan can you explain in more detail what is the pros and cons of this option.

    Thank you again Madeleine. tschüss


    • Madeleine Bloom August 24, 2015 at 09:49 - Reply

      Live scans all plug-ins at every launch. If you have a lot of VSTs installed, this can mean that Live will take quite a while to start. So if you didn’t install any new plug-ins, there’s no need to scan. Once you install new ones, you can always go to the Preferences > File/Folder and hit Rescan for the plug-ins.

  22. George November 13, 2015 at 01:23 - Reply

    Am sooo in love ! Thank you !!!

  23. Charles Coublon May 8, 2016 at 01:54 - Reply

    Please where do i save the options.txt file on windows

    • Madeleine Bloom May 8, 2016 at 13:47 - Reply

      It’s all explained in the video. I’m not sure about the latest versions of Windows though as I’ve never worked on them. You need to find the Preferences folder for the latest version of Live and save it there.

  24. Charles Coublon May 8, 2016 at 20:22 - Reply

    Please, how do i use VST Plugins in rewire mode on Live to Cubase

  25. Charles Coublon May 8, 2016 at 20:25 - Reply

    I tried looking for where to scan but i could not see the option to scan for VST plugins on Live preferences

  26. […] out the tutorial Options.txt Part 1 for all the basics. Go on to the last one: Ableton Live Insider Tips – Options.txt Part […]

  27. […] the basics are explained in Options.txt Part 1. Continue to Ableton Live Insider Tips – Options.txt Part […]

Leave A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.