Installation and Instructions

**Currently runs on Mac only

Windows version coming soon**

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Chord Kerner is an alternate Chord Suffix editor for Finale. Chords Suffixes can be edited directly in your Finale score at any magnification level. You can work in any file, or create a dedicated chord editing file with the Chord Librarian option.

Chord Kerner works in Finale using the JW Lua or the RGP Lua plug-ins.
RGP Lua is recommended, and will support all the features in the Chord Kerner.

If you are familiar with Finale’s native Chord Suffix Editor, the Chord Kerner should mostly be intuitive to use.
(You might skip only need to read the sections: Auto Adjust, Chord Librarian, Auto Kern)

You might even start to experiment with Chord Kerner without reading these instructions.

Nothing you do in Chord Kerner is permanent, unless you save a file or save a Chord Library


Whether you are using RPG Lua (recommended) or JW Lua to run Lua scripts in Finale, you will need to install the Chord Kerner script.

If you are new to Finale and Lua you’ll need to download one of the Lua interfaces below and read up on how it works.

For instructions on installing a script in RGP Lua, click here:

For instructions on installing a script in JW Lua, click here:

For a great Lua tutorial, try Finale Superuser

Being familiar with Finale’s own Chord Suffix Editor

would be helpful before using the Chord Kerner.

You can find a wonderful tutorial on this(and on all things Finale) by visiting Jason Loffredo’s Conquering Finale site


Before launching Chord Kerner, find the chord ID number of the chord you want to edit. Activate the chord tool and right click on the chord you’d like to edit.
Select Edit Chord Definition…
Using the button at the top right of the dialog window, be sure the window is showing the advanced options.
Near the bottom left, you’ll find the Chord Suffix ID number.

If you are editing a number of chords in a Chord Library, you might use Chord Kerner’s Chord Librarian feature to find ID numbers. More on the Chord Librarian later.


If you are running Chord Kerner with JW Lua, make sure the chord you’d like to edit is visible on the screen, and you know its Chord ID number. If you are running Chord Kerner with RGP Lua, you can find a chord to edit while Chord Kerner running.
(Edits can be made to chords that are not visible on the screen, but you won’t see the results!)

Open the Chord Kerner dialog window.
Enter the Chord ID in the top left hand box.
Below that box is the Character box. Each letter/number/symbol in the chord will have a character number.
For example, the suffix min7:
m = 1
i = 2
n = 3
7 = 4
There are some exceptions to this, more on that later.

You will see 15 boxes containing these characters, and a reference to their number.
Enter the character number you’d like to edit in the box, or select the checkbox above the character you’d like to edit.
SMuFL font characters will appear as a question mark in these boxes, but in most cases it’s easy to figure out what the SMuFL characters are supposed to be.

To change the position of a character in a chord suffix, use the Up/Down/Left/Right buttons, or enter a number directly in the H: or V: boxes. (Measured in Finale’s EVPUs)
You should be able to see the changes instantly on the score.


With the Auto Adjust option selected, any horizontal changes you make will adjust the selected character and all the characters to its right.


Font options can be changed for the selected character either by pressing the Font button, or by selecting the options directly in the Chord Kerner dialog. Options like Bold, Italic, and Underline will only work if the font you’re using has those options built into it.
(Currently, changing the font itself must be done using the Font button method)
Choosing ‘Fixed Size’ for any character in a chord suffix will cause the entire chord suffix to be ‘Fixed Size.’


Characters can be changed by typing them directly into a numbered box, or by clicking the Symbol button.
** For music fonts and music symbols, the Symbol button recommenced. Most Music Symbols will not appear in the numbered boxes. This is especially true for SMuFL fonts.


Enter the character number in the Delete box, and press the Delete button. The character will disappear, and any characters to the right will be adjusted horizontally.


Enter a number in the Insert box. The Insert button will insert a character BEFORE this position.
The added character will be a duplicate of the character to its left, which can be quickly changed using the other features of Chord Kerner.

To add a character at the end of a suffix, simply type the new character in the next available box, or use the Insert button to insert a character in the empty box at the end of the chord suffix.

** To add a character using the Symbol button, first add a character as described above, then press the Symbol button and change the new character to something else.


The Auto Kern feature is useful to quickly clean up stray or overlapping characters that might occur after a large edit or font change. The kerning settings are based on the settings of each font, and will often require some manual adjustment to give better ‘Chord Suffix’ appearance.

Auto Kern ‘Character’:
The selected character will line up automatically to the right of the previous character.

Auto Kern ‘Symbol’:
Resets the first character to a horizontal point of 0, and Auto Kerns all other characters.


The Chord Librarian will create a file for you to reference your entire chord suffix library.


Open a file with your chord suffix library, or load your chord library to an empty file.
If you are loading a library, delete all current chord suffixes first to avoid doubles or unwanted chord suffixes.

Enable the Chord Librarian button by clicking the Enable box, then click the Chord Librarian button.

You will now see all your chord suffixes on a score, one chord per measure.
The measure numbers match the Chord Suffixes ID (the chord in measure ‘2’ has an ID number ‘2’)

If you do any editing of the chords in this file, be sure to resave your Chord Suffix Library afterwards via File>Save Library.

Set All Roots To:
The Chord Librarian will populate your score with suffixes, but without any roots.
If you’d like to see how your edited chord suffixes look next to roots, select a root from the ‘Set All Roots To’ popup menu. A selection of chord styles and accidentals are available.
Be aware, if you select Solfeggio or Roman, you’ll need to change the Chord Style back to your preference afterwards, either by choosing it in the ‘Set All Roots’ popup menu, or by going to Chord>Chord Style.

Occasionally Chord Kerner might misbehave, and closing and reopening the dialog window will set things back to normal.

Feel free to contact me with any comments, bugs, dollars, or observations at: