I usually am able to render successfully to the c:\tmp folder, but when I came into work today, I rendered out the image on my work laptop, and everything seems to work, but I'm not getting an output to the tmp directory.

Does anyone know how to make this work?

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    $\begingroup$ Are you trying to render an animation or a still image? $\endgroup$
    – CharlesL
    Commented Feb 4, 2014 at 23:46
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    $\begingroup$ Your File Explorer window shows 'Windows...tmp', are you sure you are looking in the right place? There should be a folder called tmp in the root of C:\ drive. $\endgroup$
    – Mike Pan
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 0:03
  • $\begingroup$ If any of the answers presented helped you, please remember to upvote them and mark one as Accepted. $\endgroup$
    – Keavon
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 1:37
  • $\begingroup$ @Keavon, understood. Ive been on SE for awhile, just a noob here :) $\endgroup$
    – jakc
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 2:08
  • $\begingroup$ No problem. Welcome to Blender.SE :) $\endgroup$
    – Keavon
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 2:12

2 Answers 2


As an extension of Keavon's answer, Blender does not write still renders to the hard drive by default in the GUI. Command line renders are written to the hard drive automatically, and there is an addon which adds this functionality in the GUI. (see this post).

There are a few ways to work around this:

  • Render a one frame animation as in Keavon's answer.

  • Save the image manually from the UV/Image editor after the render is complete (press F3 with the cursor in the image editor, or select the option from the header):

    enter image description here

    For 2.8 Use the Image Editor, and select Image > Save As (or press Shift+S)

    enter image description here

    You will be taken to the File Browser with options to set the format and location of the saved image:

    enter image description here

  • Render by running bpy.ops.render.render(write_still=True) in the Python Console. The render will be written to the output path.

  • Use a File Output node as mentioned by Matt:

    enter image description here

    This will create a file /tmp/test.png. Note that the File output node has format and output path settings in the Properties region (N) which are separate from the scene settings.

  • $\begingroup$ There is also a contrib addon that will autosave still renders - wiki page $\endgroup$
    – sambler
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 5:27
  • $\begingroup$ @sambler I already mentioned it (though I forgot the link). Thanks :) $\endgroup$
    – gandalf3
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 6:48
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    $\begingroup$ Will adding a file output node also solve this problem, or do you still have to manually save a single frame render? $\endgroup$
    – Matt
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 15:31
  • $\begingroup$ @Matt Good point. Yes, a file output will autosave still renders. $\endgroup$
    – gandalf3
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 20:08

It sounds like you're rendering a preview, not the image.

If you already rendered your image, push F3 to save it as originally suggested in Gandalf's answer.

However, if you want to render it and get a file without having to touch it later, follow these steps:

I suggest you first set your output directory to your desktop or another non-temporary place:

Output directory

To start,
Set your animation length to 1 frame long, like this:

Animation Length

Now make sure you have the proper image file output format selected, like PNG:

PNG file format

Now hit CtrlF12 to render the "animation" (which is actually the one frame) or click Render > Render Animation:

Render Animation

After your single frame finishes rendering, you will have the image on your desktop or wherever you set the output.

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    $\begingroup$ Thanks - Render animation does work. But, really, I just want to render single images. $\endgroup$
    – jakc
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 1:08
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    $\begingroup$ @Simon You can save the still manually with F3, see my answer. $\endgroup$
    – gandalf3
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 1:16

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