To start the installation process download the latest plug-in and follow these steps:
First, open MT4 and make sure that you have enabled DLL imports. This is done in the Expert Advisors tab of the MT4’s Options window (you can press CTRL-O to bring up this window in MT4):
Make sure that you have enabled “Allow DLL imports” as presented on the screen above. “Allow automated trading” can also be enabled, but it is not required for the plug-in to work correctly.
The screen above may look different in various MT4 builds, but the “Allow DLL imports” option is present in all of them.
When finished with the above, you’ll need to close MT4 and run the downloaded renko setup program. When you run the setup program you will see a window similar to the following one:
After clicking [Next > ] and accepting the license agreement, you will need to select the installation folder where Renko bars should be installed. This needs to be your MT4 installation folder (not the /experts, /experts/indicators or any other sub-folder). The installed files will automatically be synchronized with your data folder, so no manual file copying is required.
The illustration above is only an example. You’ll need to select your own MT4 program folder, which is where you installed Metatrader and where terminal.exe is located.
When in doubt please read this short guide.
The installation process will begin once you select the destination location, click [ OK ] and pressing [NEXT >].
Once the installation process is complete, you’ll need to activate the software using the “Activate.exe” utility. The activation process is described in the readme file on google drive.
Using the RenkoBarChart plug-in
To use the plug-in, first attach the RenkoBarChart_b574 indicator to a 1M chart of an instrument of your choice (i.e. currency pair, index, etc.). This can do this by dragging the indicator from the Navigator window’s Custom Indicators branch onto the selected M1 chart or by double-clicking the indicator name (RenkoBarChart on the picture below) in the Navigator window.
This action will bring up the following screen, where you can set the plug-in parameters:
The variables and the meaning of their values are described below.
- RenkoBoxSizeInPipsThis variable influences the renko brick size (candle body), which simply means how many pips in size will each candle body measure. The most common settings here are 10 or 5 pips, but you are free to experiment with your own settings.
- OfflineTimeFrameThis variable reflects the offline chart that is used to output the actual renko chart. Remember that the time period value has no meaning here whatsoever as for as the size or duration of individual renko bricks. It only identifies a unique “canvas”, which will be used to display live renko charts.
You can input any value here as long as you do NOT use the standard MT4 time frames (1,5,15,30,60,240,1440, etc.) and you do not use the same values for other instances of this or any other plug-ins. If you want to set up several different renko charts for a single instrument, you must select a unique OfflineTimeFrame for each one.
- useFirstRenkoOffset & FirstRenkoPipOffsetThese variables enable (when useFirstRenkoOffset set to TRUE) or disable (when useFirstRenkoOffset set to FALSE) the first renko brick’s opening tick value (pip offset), which can be overridden by the value of the FirstRenkoPipOffset variable). This pair of parameters is used to define the starting level of the first renko brick on the chart.
For example, if we have 10 pip renko bars and we set:
UseFirstRenkoPipOffset = true FirstRenkoPipOffset = 0.0
All bars will open at 0.0 levels (or 00 levels on 5 decimal quotes as presented in the example below):
EURUSD 10 pip renko chart: ... open 1.40100, close 1.40200 open 1.40200, close 1.40300 open 1.40300, close 1.40400 ...etc.
instead of: … open 1.40113, close 1.40213 open 1.40213, close 1.40313 open 1.40313, close 1.40413 ...
- BarTypeThis value defines the type of renko chart to display and can be set to any of the 3 settings described below:
- Standard RENKO chart – will set the chart to a standard renko brick chart we’re all accustomed to (just renko bricks with no wicks)
- RENKO with wicks – will result in creating a renko chart with visible wicks which will provide more information to the trader than the standard renko bricks do.
- RENKO without the opening price shift on reversals – will result in creating a special chart, which may be useful for backtesting EAs.
This chart type provides complete and true price action information as it does not shift the opening price value of reversal bars.
A parameter for ensuring trading session’s consistency – The Open, High, Low & Close of each session match the daily candle values.
- RenderUsing1MhistoryBarsThis variable defines the amount of historical data on the M1 anchor chart, which should be processed in order to build the historical renko chart.
A setting of “0” will result in using all available data on the M1 chart.
- StartFromBarThis variable is used for setting the date & time of the first 1M bar, which will be used to calculate the first historical bar.
The default value of “1970.01.01 00:00” disables the feature.
- RefreshOnHistoryUpdatesThis variable defines whether to update the renko chart when the terminal receives missing M1 historical data for the used instrument.
This is usually needed if you have a poor internet connection with your broker’s MT4 server, or your broker’s server has a lot of downtime.
- RefreshChartOnAskPriceChangeThis variable defines whether to send an update tick to the renko chart on both Ask and Bid price changes (TRUE) or only on Bid price changes (FALSE).
This setting is intended to be used for running an EA directly on the RENKO chart.
You have to decide if your EA needs to recalculate on ASK price changes or will BID price changes be sufficient.
- chartUpdateIntervalThis is an experimental feature designed to lower CPU usage for manual traders, who don’t need to see the charts refresh on each tick (several times per second). The parameter offers the ability to set the update interval in milliseconds. The default value of “0” turns OFF this feature.
- Dynamic Bar Size Setting section
This section consists of 3 variables that automatically control the renko candle body size based on the percentage of the daily ATR value:
- Use ATR to calculate candle body size (true/false)
- ATR period (default value is set to 14)
- Percentage of ATR (candle body size) (0.01 to 1)
Once you set the values described above to the desired settings and press the [ OK ] button you will see the following comment in the lower part of the M1 anchor chart:
Now you need to open the generated offline chart (i.e. USDCAD,M3 – as shown in the comment displayed above) to access the LIVE renko chart. To do this go to the File menu in your MT4 terminal and click on the Open Offline menu item:
This will open the Open Offline Chart window, where you’ll need to locate the appropriate chart on the list (USDCAD,M3 in our example) and click [ OPEN ] to access the RENKO chart in your terminal.
The “offline” chart will start displaying live price action as soon as new quotes are received by MT4 and new RENKO bars will be created as they are formed.
Please note that every time the plug-in is attached (or MT4 terminal is restarted) it will recalculate all historical data so keep this in mind when you set the “RenderUsing1MhistoryBars” to 0 (all of history).
There are two valid ways of backtesting RENKO charts in MT4 – both have been described in separate blog posts:
- Backtesting using completed bar analysis only
- Backtesting using tick data (every tick is backtested and taken into account)
Using the Tick Chart plug-in
To use the TickChart plug-in, simply attach the TickChart_b574 EA to an instrument of your choice (i.e currency pair, index, etc.) and set the TicksPerBar and OfflineTimeFrame parameters accordingly:
- TicksPerBarThis parameter defines the number of ticks that are needed to build up a single candle.
- OfflineTimeFrameThis variable reflects the offline chart that is used to output the actual tick chart. Remember that the time period value has no meaning here whatsoever as for as the size or duration of individual bars. It only identifies a unique “canvas”, which will be used to display live tick charts.
You can input any value here as long as you do NOT use the standard MT4 time frames (1,5,15,30,60,240,1440, etc.) and you do not use the same values for other instances of this or any other plug-ins.
Next, open the offline chart (i.e. GBPUSD,M3 – as defined in your EA settings) to access the LIVE tick chart. This procedure is described in detail in the “Using the RENKO plug-in” section just above.
TickCharts are built on-the-fly, while new ticks are received by The MT4 terminal. Historical tick charts are not available due to the limitations of the MT4 terminal.
Updating the plug-in to the latest version
The plug-in(s) can be easily updated once new plug-in features or bug fixes are released.
To update your plug-in close your MT4 terminal and run the updater program which will automatically check for newer versions, download the new files and patch your existing plug-in installation. If you have multiple MT4 installations on your system, you should update all instances by using the updateRenkoPlugin.bat file, which is located in your MT4 installation folder.