CreateDialog[DefaultButton[], Modal -> True]

creates a modal Dialog, one which needs to be closed before the front-end becomes available for further interaction.

Very useful. However

CreateDialog[DefaultButton[], Modal -> True, WindowFrame -> "ThinFrame"]

creates a Dialog which is not modal despite the Modal option being given.

Why does this happen? What really determines that a dialog is modal?

keywords: FrontEnd, block, Dialog, Window, WindowFrame

Reported to WRI. Will keep you informed.

[CASE:2559336] Feedback/ Dialogs documentation status:

[...] I have forwarded a report of this to the appropriate people in our development team with the information you provided and included your contact information. [...] I have included a comment about modifying the documentation to give more explanation, as well. [...]


1 Answer 1


What really makes Dialog a model dialog is:

WindowFrame -> "ModalDialog" 


WindowFrame -> "MovableModalDialog"

So be careful when changing WindowFrame with the expectation that your dialog will remain modal.

Funny proof is that the following:

CreateDialog[DefaultButton[], WindowFrame -> "ModalDialog", Modal -> False]

is a modal dialog.

I think this is useful info. The Mathematica tutorials and guides concerning Dialog do not say anything about this matter.

  • $\begingroup$ I indeed urge you to report this as a defect in the documentation. $\endgroup$
    – m_goldberg
    Feb 26, 2015 at 16:36
  • $\begingroup$ @m_goldberg done $\endgroup$
    – Kuba
    Feb 26, 2015 at 18:05
  • $\begingroup$ +1 Looks like either a bug or a design oversight $\endgroup$ Feb 26, 2015 at 22:16

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