The Fastest Way to Set Your Favorite Object Snaps

7 Jun, 2015

We work with object snaps (osnaps) all day long — why not master the art of setting them at lightning speed?  Join Cadalyst contributing editor and Autodesk Evangelist Lynn Allen as she shows you this super shortcut to switching your object snap settings in a jiffy. Snap to it and impress your coworkers!

Video Transcript

Hello there, this is Lynn Allen. Welcome to another AutoCAD tip, courtesy of Cadalyst magazine. I'm coming to you from Phoenix, Arizona. Just finished a presentation today, hence the hotel room. Today I got stuck in the hotel elevator because the elevator engineer failed to check to see if anybody was on the elevator when he decided to work on it. Hello! Not the best day. But my day is going to get a lot better now because I'm going to share with you an AutoCAD tip that I hope you find valuable.

This tip comes from one of my favorite AutoCAD product support people -- Volker. Some of you might know him. He works for Autodesk. He's great, and he does this all the time. He convinced me that I needed to show it to you. Most of us work with objects -- there's no way to use AutoCAD without them unless you are just a terrible drafter, right? Ha, ha.

Most of us set our object snap mode by clicking on the status bar and going in and setting it whatever you want to set it to, correct? For those of us who don't like to make picks and clicks, there's another way of doing it, which is just a little bit faster. If you know your favorite object snap settings, it's really the route to take. So there's a system variable call OSMODE. I want you to see that right now OSMODE is set to 3. I'm going to go into the Help file, and let's take a look at OSMODE.

Now OSMODE has a bunch of settings. And it's very simple. If you like your object snaps mode set to Endpoint and only Endpoint, you would set your OSMODE to 1. If you want it set to Endpoint and Midpoint, then you would set it to 3. You add the numbers together. Endpoint, Midpoint, Center... that's 3+4=7. But you don't have to know all these numbers. There are a lot of them, and the numbers get pretty big. You don't need to know that. You just need to set it manually and then remember the number. Let me show you what I'm talking about.

So OSMODE is set to 3. That was Endpoint and Midpoint, right? Let's go back in here, and let's say we want to set it to Endpoint, Midpoint, Center and Geometric center. Maybe that's my favorite way of setting up my object snaps. Now if I go into OSMODE, you'll see that value is 1031. So if I ever wanted to go back to exact same settings, I can go straight into OSMODE and just type in 1031. So you are just going to remember whatever your favorite numbers are. We like to have different object snaps settings based on what we're doing at any given time.

So if I go back into my object snap settings, let me set it to what I really like -- Endpoint, Midpoint, Center -- and I like Intersection (we all like different things, right?), Extension, and Insertion. So I can set it up the way I like to work the most. Maybe you like to set a whole bunch more up. Then I'm go to take a look at OSMODE. You'll see it said it's 4199. Oh, so I just need to remember 4199 at any point in time to get back to those same settings. Does that make sense? We all like to work differently. Some of us like picks and clicks, some of us just want to key it in as fast as possible. You just need to remember a few of these. It won't be hard to remember like two or three. Then you go straight to them. Impress your friends. Oh, yeah, you're going to be an AutoCAD guru in no time.

Thank you for joining me. Give it a try. Just another way of doing it, and I bet you'll find it's a little bit faster. Try not to get stuck in any elevators. Highly recommended. I will see you back here in two more weeks. Thank you so much for joining me.

Add comment


Re: The Fastest Way to Set Your Favorite Object Snaps
by: coaster
June 9, 2015 - 1:42pm
Great tip! This can also be called from within an command by using the apostrophe 'OSMODE. This way you do not have to exit the command to set your snaps, saving a few steps. You could also, create a button/macro and add it your quick access toolbar 'OSMODE;4199. This can be clicked while in any command to set your snaps to your preferred settings.
Re: The Fastest Way to Set Your Favorite Object Snaps
by: jamesw
June 9, 2015 - 9:02am
If you also open the acad.pgp and define os to call osmode, this becomes and extremely fast and efficient way to change your osnaps.

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