Release Notes: Volume II, 2021

  • Updated

Welcome to the second volume of our product release notes in 2021! We have been working hard to bring you some much requested features. Read along to learn about our new product features and enhancements released January 2021 - February 2021.


Benchling Notebook helps users log their experiments, create template, and capture results against their samples.

Add multiple rows to structured tables

Previously, users were required to drag the end of structured tables down in order to add more rows. Now, users can add multiple rows to tables by double clicking the “drag to add” bar and entering in the number of rows needed. The “Add rows” field will only accept numerical values, up to 499 rows.

Molecular Biology

Benchling Molecular Biology is a cutting-edge in-silico design tool that supports the latest scientific workflows.

Colorblind-friendly alignment map

Alignment map now has greater contrast to provide colorblind-friendly alignment regions.

Previous version of alignment map

New version of alignment map

Registry and Inventory

Benchling Registry and Inventory combine to form an extremely powerful solution for life sciences R&D samples. The Registry can be used to model and log any biological entity, while the Inventory provides an interactive digital window into the physical storage system of your lab.

Aggregate Inventory in entity search

Previously, users had to set up search filters or build custom dashboards to obtain inventory information in aggregate. Now, there is a new column in the entity search listing so users can see available aggregate Inventory at-a-glance. The clickable link redirects the user to a pre-filtered Inventory search so the user can directly access the containers.

Display ingredients and total amount for mixtures in search

Mixture search results now give more visibility into associated amounts and units by including this information alongside the chips of component entities. Mixtures must be configured on the tenant for use.

Concentrations now viewable in Inventory search

In the expanded Inventory view, containers now display concentration when only 1 item is present in the container. Previously behind a feature flag, this now available to all users with Inventory.


Benchling Insights enables users to query, visualize, and share high-quality, structured data that resides in Benchling.

Help documentation in Insights

There are now various places through the UI to access the help documentation for Insights. The link to the documentation should appear in both the main dashboard overflow menu as well as the SQL block menu. This directs to the Insights help documentation.

Expand Insights block vertically

Users can now scroll vertically on dashboard blocks with multiple rows.

Add dashboard from global create

Users can now add a dashboard from the global create menu.

Lab Automation

Benchling Lab Automation enables seamless integration of Benchling to liquid handlers, plate readers, imaging instruments, and more.


Users can now create a new plate layout that performs the reverse of the INTERLEAVE function.


Users can now create a new plate layout that performs the reverse of the PLATE_STAMP layout function.. Instead of going from four small plates (96 well) to a big plate (384 well), users can now also go from a big plate (384 well) to four small plates (96 well).

Accept non-specific schemas for entity creation

Entity creation can now accept non-specific schemas when using SOURCE_CONTENTS.

Find/replace processing step now supported

Users can utilize the FIND_REPLACE processing step in Lab Automation run configurations to find and replace cell contents. Please note that regex characters such as [,],.,(,), will need to be escaped when using the config.

Example script seen below for utilizing FIND_REPLACE to replaces spaces with dash:

Run_id and entry_id synced to result and per-schema result warehouse tables

Run_id was added to per schema warehouse result tables, and warehouse mapping was fixed for entry_id to Lab Automation results. This lets users see associated run id and entry id fields on their results when using warehouse tables in Insights.

Developer Platform

The Benchling developer platform is fundamental to centralizing and standardizing all your R&D data. Benchling’s APIs and Events are built to match the flexibility and speed of modern life science R&D.


The Events system has now been launched. Upgrades to this feature include faster event delivery, improved documentation, and more stable service. For customers with existing Events subscriptions through beta access, no further action is needed. To get started with Events, refer to this guide.

Bulk create integration example

A new example called ‘bulk_create_into_benchling’ demonstrates using bulk-create and long-running tasks in our integration examples github. This script demonstrates how to use the bulk create into Registry entity endpoints, while also using long-running tasks and demonstrating how to handle them.

Platform Security

Updated Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol support

As of February 23, 2021, Benchling no longer supports TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1. Benchling continues to support TLS 1.2 and higher

Bug Fixes

The following bugs were fixed in this release:


  • Unstructured tables now collapse/expand after the table is renamed

  • “Column Data Type” is now shown when hovering on the column name

  • The “Maximize” button on tables has been added again

  • Benchling no longer crashes when copying empty legacy Results tables

  • Bioentity dropdown search now returns Oligos

  • Entries where users have APPEND access will now appear in their calendars

  • Table submission will be disabled if the Labeling option is no longer valid

  • Print selection would not allow you to print one paragraph

  • Resolved crash when submitting tables where computed field values were empty/computing

  • Improved performance of Lab Automation lookups which had been timing out at 2 minutes

  • Resolved crash when a new run (where ‘create’ was not clicked) was copied and pasted and then the user clicked ‘create’ on the pasted run

  • New transfer table was clobbering custom schema field values when adding to an existing container

  • Stopped showing entity schemas in the Registration entity dropdown

  • Results returned for a run are in sample name order instead of ID order


  • Removing aliases no longer result in blank names in filter column selectors

  • Filter values now clear when changing filtered columns

Lab Automation

  • Run now successfully errors when file uploaded contains an invalid link. Previously, runs would not error and record an invalid link as a blank row, which was unexpected. Runs now error when an invalid link is processed in an output file.

Application Platform

  • Redirect "View user activity" link from org page to activity tab

  • Fixed bug so admin dashboard now accurately displays "Last active time" of users

If you’re enjoying using Benchling, refer a friend and we’ll donate $100 to support STEM education! Learn more here.

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