Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 12, No. 43)3 Dec, 2007
This Week's Software Tips
Find a Command
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Great tip, Ralph. This also works in AutoCAD 2008 verticals. For users of older releases, open the Help menu. (Enter ? on the Command line, select Help from the menu, or press the F1 key). Next, select the Index tab to bring up a blank field. Activate it and start typing the command or the description of a command, one letter at a time. The window below displays commands and functions in alphabetical order. What you type acts like a search filter. It may not give you the proper command entry, but you'll find the subject that can lead you to the command.
Faster Map Loading
"I use a lot of aerial images that come from the local county office that are 40-acre squares at a 6" resolution. As you know, these files sizes are quite large. Whether you're loading one or eight of these images, you'll want to try this tip.
"It doesn't matter if the image is loaded in your drawing or attached in an xref. After you insert your image(s) you are referencing, use the Image command, unload the image, and save your working drawing or xref drawing. Now, the next time you or a coworker opens the drawing, it should take the typical amount of time to open because the images don't load. When you need to see the images in the drawing or xref, all you have to do is go to Image and Reload the images. You may have to perform a Regen or Regenall for the images to display. Another good idea would be to place the images on their own layers. While working, and when you don't need the images to display, simply turn off the layer or xrefed layer.
"If you have multiple images loaded and the drawings or sheets are complex, you may want to note which images to load in your drawings or on each sheet. Often you may have different images displayed for different areas or for plotting different sheets.
"Here's another time saver when dealing with large images: If you have a large, high-resolution image, you can make a copy of the image and edit the resolution by 50%, for example. This cuts the file size down significantly and reduces the time you must wait for the image to load. Both images can be attached in your drawing. Load the reduced resolution image for viewing reference and load the higher resolution for printing."
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Good tip! When unloading the image, make sure the Imageframe setting is set to 1 or 2. A setting of 0 turns off the frame, 1 turns it on and allows it to print, and 2 makes the image frame visible in the CAD file, but it won't print. This way, anyone who opens the file will know something is there; they just can't see the image.
Revise All Attribute Blocks
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: That's right! Many users are unaware of this command. Enter the command and select the block. If there is more than one attribute in the block, you have to select the correct one. The Command line displays a list of the possible attributes to edit. After selecting one, type in the new value for the attribute. Another option you have is to change all instances of the block in the drawing (pick Yes), or to change only certain blocks (pick No, then select the ones you want to change).
MicroStation Tip: Deleting a User-Defined Tool
The resources are stored in your user interface directory, by default at Bentley / Workspace / Interfaces / MicroStation. All your custom tools are probably stored in a single file, USTN.M01. To delete the tools, you must use MDL to search for the tools and remove them from the resource file.
Axiom offers many Microstation Tips on its MicroStationTips.com Web site.
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Noran Engineering Offers Year-End Promotion on FEA Software
Opportunities & Honors
Teamcenter 2007 Receives Technologies Award
SpaceClaim Offers the 3D CAD Modification Challenge
MBT Magazine Lists Right Hemisphere in Top 40
AutoCAD Map 3D Training
The Week's New CAD and Related Products
Hardware: D901C PHANTOM-X FSB1333
Hardware: WaterClear Ultra Resin
General Software: eDrawings Professional v6 for CATIA V5
Visualization: DeltaGen v7.5 and Portal v3.5
AEC: PointCloud and PointCloud Pro v3.2
CAM: InventorCAM 2008
Mark Your Calendar
PLM Road Map 2008
Autodesk Technical Evangelist Lynn Allen guides you through a different AutoCAD feature in every edition of her popular "Circles and Lines" tutorial series. For even more AutoCAD how-to, check out Lynn's quick tips in the Cadalyst Video Gallery. Subscribe to Cadalyst's Tips & Tricks Tuesdays free e-newsletter and we'll notify you every time a new video tip is available. All exclusively from Cadalyst!