On-screen keyboard display

good morning to the forum, as you can see from the attached image, one day I don’t know what to have touched, the on-screen keyboard looks like this…
with a key pressed, without being able to choose the portion of it to be played with the PC keyboard, I also tried to reinstall cantabile 4, in the hope that everything would return to normal, unfortunately this was not the case,
Does anyone have any idea what could have happened?
The SW is installed on a portable PC with O.S. Windows 7x64
thanks for your attention.

Hi Franco,

Right click on the onscreen keyboard and uncheck the “Compact Mode” and the keyboard will return to full size keys.


Hi Dave, thanks for the reply, I was hoping your suggestion would solve it, unfortunately I don’t know why, as you can see from the image when I right click on the on screen keyboard, the curtain that opens doesn’t allow me to uncheck the box compact mode, but only two options including capture keyboard, and show MIDI note numbers
very strange thing,
however the version of cantabile is 4054, I don’t know if this could be important
anyway thanks

Surely Dave’s solution is the right one, however I would like to know if the same result can be achieved via another route?

Hi Frank,

Sorry to see your troubles. You could try to install the latest version but if that fails the only route I know to go is to edit the settings file for the compact settings. If you go that route, close Cantabile & open the settings .json file in a text editor and do a search for “compact”. It sould bring 2 entries, one for normal view and one for live view. You can change it’s value there to true or false. Save the settings file and restart Cantabile and it should be fixed.


Hi Dave,
excuse my ignorance, but where do I find that .JSON file in which directory is it? Once found do I have to open it in a text file?
Thank you

Hi Frank,

open options and go to the Diagnostics tab and the button to open the settings folder is there.

select the settings.json file and open it for editing in Notepad.

When editing files of this type you should save backup copies in case something goes wrong. If you are new to doing this I recommend you wait till @brad has an opportunity to respond.

If edited properly it does work.


Hi Dave,
I tried to change the keyboardcompactmode entry, from True to False, then I saved then I closed and reopened cantabile but nothing changed, maybe I did something wrong in the procedure, I replaced the settings.json file with the backup, what I don’t understand it’s why if you right-click on the on-screen keyboard, the curtain opens with four options and mine opens with only two options without the possibility of changing the keyboard mode…
thank you for the assistance you have given me,
let’s try to wait for @brad to show up…
I also installed a newer version, the stable 4056 but nothing changed!

Hi Dave,

Noticed in your screen shot a right-click context menu for Bulk Rename Here. Where did you get that from?



I have to right click right on top of lower right of the on screen keyboard (where it says Ch 1) to get the context menu that allows me to choose or unchoose “compact keyboard”

It’s very capable.


Sounds good Frank, I’m curious myself as to what’s up. :slight_smile:


I was thinking of giving it a try:
copy the setting folder from the cantabile that I installed on PC Desktop which works fine, and replace with this the one of cantabile on PC Laptop…

hi Dave,
may I know which version of cantabile do you have installed on your PC/ Mac?

Hi Dave,
I compared your Screenshot, and I saw that in addition to compactmode false, there was also above compactmodesize 30,
then i made these two changes on my settings.json,
I closed Cantabile and then I also closed the Settings folder saving the changes made, then compactmode from true to false, and compactmodesize from 53 to 30,
so I reopened Cantabile and everything went back to normal…
it always remains to understand why you can do the compaction of the keyboard with a simple right click on it!
anyway thanks again and see you next time (hope not) problem!


Hi Frank,



Great work Frank, I’m glad it’s sorted. I still would like to know why it quit working…


I remember that I was fumbling to play a VST with the keyboard of the PC, and probably in a clumsy way I touched something that caused the compactmode of the onscreenkeyboard…but I don’t know exactly what I did!
the strange fact that continues to haunt me is that this cannot have happened with a right click on the lower right corner… due to the fact that on Camtabile I only have the two options: Capture Keyboard, and MIDI note numbers, what this too is very strange because evidently I was able to change the status of the onscrrenkeyboard, but there is nothing to bring it back to the extended mode!
I’ll try to download and install your version 4059 even if it says it’s still experimental, how are you? Does it cause problems?

no problems here with 4059


I’ve had a look at this and I think the problem might be related to running Cantabile Lite - which doesn’t support the compact keyboard (because they’re not much point with key range indicators). I think what’s happened is you’ve enabled the compact keyboard while running as Solo or Performer and then switched to Lite and Cantabile has remembered the compact keyboard mode, but taken away the ability to turn it off.

I’ll get this fixed, but in the meantime you should be able to switch to the trial version (if it’s still active), right click to disable compact mode and then switch back to Lite.

Failing that the above mentioned approach of editing the JSON file will work, however you need to save the JSON file after shutting down Cantabile. If you save while Cantabile is running, Cantabile will overwrite your changes when it shuts down.