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Scilab Help >> Graphics > figure_operations > clf


Clears and resets a figure or a frame uicontrol


clf reset
clf(numFig, "reset")
clf(figFrameHandle, "reset")



Vector of indices of figures to clear or reset (.figure_id values). By default, the current figure is targeted.


Vector of handles of figures or frame uicontrol to clear or reset. Mixing figures and frames is possible. By default, the current figure is targeted.

Provide this option keyword to reset properties of chosen figures to their default values, in addition to deleting the figures contents.


The clf command can be used to delete all children of a given graphic window, hence clearing it. If the "reset" keyword is used, in addition most of the figure properties are reset to their default values. The detailled changes are now described:

  1. The following default actions are always performed:

    • All visible and invisible axes of each targeted figure or frame are deleted.
    • All menus whose figure.children handles are not hidden are deleted. It is possible to protect them with set(get(0), "ShowHiddenHandles", "off"). This then applies to all opened figures and forthcoming ones. See ShowHiddenHandles.
    • The message in the status bar of each figure is cleared.
    • The event handler of each figure is disabled, but their references are kept .

    Values of all figures properties are unchanged, except .info_message="" and .event_handler_enable="off" that are forced.

  2. "reset": in addition to default actions, "reset" resets most of figures properties to their default values, as specified by gdf(). This applies only to figures.

    • Some properties are never reset: The figure's number .figure_id is kept as is. .toolbar, .menubar, .layout, .layout_options, and .dockable can be set only once and so are never resettable.
    • For docked figures: .figure_position, .figure_size, and .axes_size are unchanged if the parent figure is docked to the Scilab's desktop or to another Scilab interface. Changing their value would change the position or size of the whole block of docked interfaces, not only the targeted figure.

Clearing specific parts of a figure

  • xname("") or gcf().name = "" clears the name of the window, displayed at its very top left corner.
  • gcf().info_message = "" clears the message displayed in the status bar of the current figure.
  • delete(gca()) deletes the current axes in the current window. All other components of the window are kept: other axes (if any), menus, interactive components, figure properties, etc.
  • Deleting only all axes of a figure may be done with c=gcf().children; delete(c(c.type=="Axes")). This keeps all its other components: menus, interactive components, etc.
  • Deleting only menus: c=gcf().children; delete(c(c.type=="uimenu")). This assumes that get(get(0), "ShowHiddenHandles") is "on".


f4 = scf(4);  //creates figure with id==4 and makes it the current one
f4.color_map = jetcolormap(64);
f4.figure_size = [400, 200];
sleep(4000)   // wait and see for 4s
clf(f4, "reset")

f0 = scf(0); //creates figure with id==0 and make it the current one
f0.color_map = hotcolormap(128); // changes color map
t = -%pi:0.3:%pi;

clf        // is clf(gcf(),"clear"). Keeps the current color_map

clf reset  // resets the color_map to the default one with 32 colors

fr = uicontrol("Style", "frame", "Position", [20 20 200 200]);
a = newaxes(fr);

See also

  • figure properties — description of the graphics figure entity properties
  • ShowHiddenHandles — Description of console object properties.
  • xname — change the name of the current graphics window
  • frames — create a Graphic User Interface object
  • menus — Create a menu or a submenu in a figure
  • gcf — Return handle of current graphic window.
  • gdf — Return handle of default figure.
  • colordef — Set the color look-and-feel of a given or of all forthcoming graphic figures
  • delete — delete a graphic entity and its children.
  • close — closes graphic figures, progressionbars or waitbars
  • clc — Clear Command Window
  • clear — kills variables


5.5.0 clf now clears frames as well.
6.0.0 clf('reset') no longer resizes nor moves docked figures.
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Last updated:
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