Monday, October 28, 2013

How to disable Edge Swipe by showing all Elan Smart-Pad options

Do you have a touchpad and look for how to change settings and cannot find them? I was wondering how to disable the edge swipe from the right gesture that opens up the Charms bar in Windows 8.1.

First thing is that this gesture is no Windows 8.1 function. It is something that comes with the touchpad driver.

By default not all options for Elan Smart-Pad might show up. It might be limited to only a few and I could not find anything. If you have another driver the Right Edge Swipe might be available too.

But there is a solution how to show everything. Note that not all options might work with the laptop or machine you’re using and that might be the reason they are invisible by default. I found however that several of the hidden options did work on my machine.

First merge this SmartPadDisplayActivateAllOptions.reg file by double click on the file and accept the questions.

You can also open up the Registry Editor and go to:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Elantech\SmartPadDisplay
There set value data to 1 on all value names and they will be enabled and show up.

Then open up Mouse Properties and on the ELAN tab click on Options.

Now all options will be seen.

All One-finger options: Tapping, Clicking, Button, Drag and Drop, Edge Scroll, Edge Zoon, Edge Swipe, Corner Tap Zone and Edge Swipe.

 

Multi-finger options: Zooming, Clicking, Scrolling, Rotation, Edge Swipe, Swipe Page, Fast Keys, Three-Finger Press, Three finger swipe, Four finger swipe, Magnifier Glass and Grab.

   

Additional options: PalmTracking, Sensitivity, Smart Motion, Slow Motion, Inertia, SmarArea, TP Rejection, Device Control, Gesture Effect, Free Typing and Multi-Finger Function.

I find that Slow Motion is great to use when there is a need to move the cursor with better precision.

 

After having edited the options and closed the window only the default options will be seen again so if you want to see all options repeat the registry hack again.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Where is my AutoCAD Palette and how can I restore it?

I got this question and wanted to share the solution.

I am missing my sheet set manager window. I wanted to ask if you had any tips on getting it to return. Type SSM, command line acts like its visible but its not. I feel like its minimized somewhere but I cant find it. Any pointers would be greatly appreciated.

Examples of windows or palettes that can disappear (usually outside the visible area of the screen) are Sheet Set Manager (SSM), Design Feed, Tool Palette, Layer Properties Manager, DesignCenter (ADC), External References (Xref ESW), Markup Set Manager, Visual Styles Manager, command line, Quickcalc, Object Properties (OPM), Drawing Recovery Manager, Block Authoring Palette, Parameters Manager. You can fix or edit the coordinates of these in either FixedProfile.aws or Profile.aws files. These files are XML files and can be edited in an XML editor or Notepad.

You can also delete the file as AutoCAD will create a new one with the default settings next time AutoCAD is run.

Only edit this file when AutoCAD is not running. Make a backup of it just in case.
%APPDATA%\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2014\R19.1\enu\Support\Profiles\FixedProfile.aws
or

%APPDATA%\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2014\R19.1\enu\Support\Profiles\<Profile>\Profile.aws

AutoCAD 2014\R19.1\enu are parts of the path that is different depending on AutoCAD version, vertical and language.

<Profile> is the name of the AutoCAD profile. Default is “Unnamed Profile”.

Wondering what %APPDATA% is?
In XP: C:\Documents and Settings\%username%\Application Data
In Vista/W7/W8/W8.1: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Roaming

Here is an example of a small part of what it might look like in the aws file:

<Tool CLSID="{BEBBB318-2898-4C03-ADA2-360DC6B7AA69}">
    <CAdUiDockControlBar Orientation="-1" AllowDocking="1">
        <FloatInfo Left="44" Top="208" Width="230" Height="384"/><DockInfo Left="0" Top="0" Width="0" Height="0" MRUDockID="0"/></CAdUiDockControlBar>
    <CAdUiPaletteSet ActivePaletteIndex="0" TitleBarLocation="0" AutoRollup="1" Name="Sheet Set Manager" Style="46" Opacity="100" RolloverOpacity="100" Visible="1"/>

And it is quite obvious that the location of the palette is determined by Left and Top values.

Tawfik mentioned in a comment also another solution. Start a command that shows the palette in question, hold down Alt and press Space, then press M and finally use the arrows to move the palette.

See also Clear sticky Sheet Sets from Recent Documents List in AutoCAD and Palette Auto-hide Speed as AutoCAD app

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

AutoCAD 2014 for Mac and AutoCAD LT 2014 for Mac

AutoCAD 2014 for Mac and AutoCAD LT 2014 for Mac were released October 22, 2013.

AutoCAD 2014 for Mac

Retina display support is of course a much welcome news. The right side of the image shows what it look like now compared to before on the left side.

AutoCAD 2014 for Mac Retina display support

Autodesk 360 Sync for your drawings and design files. On a Mac, Autodesk 360 support only includes file sync.

AutoCAD 2014 for Mac drawing sync

Compress, store, and distribute CAD for Mac files with “Package Drawing” that is similar to eTransmit as it is called in AutoCAD for Windows.

AutoCAD 2014 for Mac package drawing

Other news are Autodesk Exchange Apps, Secure load (enhances software security and helps prevent loading and running “unauthorized or malicious” AutoLISP applications), it’s now possible to set a default save-as version for your drawings in OPTIONS, ZeroDocWindow option in General tab, FIND command fixes, usability enhancements, including a new online help homepage, a reworked welcome screen, a print dialogue preview button, detailed print dialog panel expanded by default and of course support for OS X Mavericks.

The online Help Search is not working yet. (UPDATE. I have been contacted by Autodesk and informed about that the issue with the Help Search has been solved.)
http://docs.autodesk.com/ACDMAC/2014/ENU/index.html

A lot of AutoLISP documentation updates have been made. More on Lee’s blog post.

Function Listing (by Name and Feature) - Provides you with access to AutoLISP functions not only by alphabetic names but also by feature classification.

AutoLISP Developer's Topic Map - Listing of all essential topics in one page.

Gone is the separate Windows and Mac AutoLISP documentation, the function reference topics now call out what platform they are supported on.

New Commands

The following commands were added:

ETRANSMIT Packages a set of drawings and dependency files into one unit for sharing.

-ETRANSMIT From the Command line, packages a set of files for sharing.

ONLINESHARE Designates who can access the current drawing from Autodesk 360.

ONLINEOPENFOLDER Opens your local Autodesk 360 folder in Finder.

Changed Commands

The following commands were changed:

PLOT Plots a drawing to a plotter, printer, or file.

OPTIONS Customizes the program settings

WELCOMESCREEN Displays the Welcome window when you start the program.

NEWSHEETSET Creates a new project data (DST) file that manages drawing layouts, file paths, and project information.

FIND Finds the text that you specify, and can optionally replace it with other text.

New System Variables

The following system variables were added:

ONLINEUSERNAME Displays the username that is used to log into the Autodesk 360 account.

ONLINEDOCMODE Indicates whether a copies of your drawings and linked files are uploaded automatically to Autodesk 360.

ONLINEFOLDER Displays the location of your local Autodesk 360 folder in Finder.

SECURELOAD Controls whether AutoCAD loads executable files based on their location.

TRUSTEDDOMAINS Specifies the domains from which AutoCAD has permission to load and execute files that contain code.

TRUSTEDPATHS Specifies the folders from which AutoCAD has permission to load and execute files that contain code.

ONLINEUSERID Displays the ID associated with the Autodesk 360 backend system.

The feature comparison chart shows the differences between AutoCAD and AutoCAD for Mac.

The 30 day trial of Autodesk AutoCAD 2014 for Mac is now available at http://www.autodesk.com/products/autodesk-autocad/free-trial

If you have AutoCAD 2014 (for Windows) or the AutoCAD Design Suite your serial numbers works for the Mac version of AutoCAD 2014.

Customers can purchase AutoCAD 2014 for Mac or AutoCAD LT 2014 for Mac from the Autodesk Store, through CDW and Amazon, or from a local Value-Added Reseller.

AutoCAD for Mac is available worldwide in English and French.

AutoCAD 360, optimized for iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display, will also be available on the App Store. On the new iPad, AutoCAD 360 opens files faster, and rendering and selection is also twice as fast.

Monday, October 21, 2013

AutoCAD app DimNotes 1.3 released

JTB World’s AutoCAD app DimNotes 1.3 has been released. The news are an added option to preset location and replace settings for each note individually as well as added option to use or not use space when the location is before or after. This makes it even quicker to add noted or comments to AutoCAD dimensions.

The note can be added Above, After with space, After without space, Before with space, Before without space or Below existing text. There is also an option "Replace" to completely replace the text so the associative dimension text is removed if the text is <>.

Location option Replace can be used to add both before and after the dimension. Say the existing dimension text is 28 and the note is (<>) the result will be (28). Even notes using control codes, Text Symbols and Special Characters like
\A0;<> {\H1.5x;}\A2;\H0.71x;%%p0.1 can be used with this result: 28 ±0.1.

Some examples with notes added before, after below or above.

DimNotes can also be downloaded and installed as an app from the Autodesk Exchange Apps site. Purchase is optionally available through this site as well as here.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Windows 8.1 AutoCAD Model Documentation Hotfix for 64-bit and more

Windows 8.1 is now available for all. I’ve used first the preview and recently the “RTM” and if you have Windows 8 I see no reason to not update. Here’s how to Update to Windows 8.1 from Windows 8. If you hesitated to update to Windows 8 before I think you really should consider Windows 8.1. I now prefer Windows 8.1 over any earlier Windows version and even without a touch screen I don’t miss the old Start menu especially after the Start button return in Windows 8.1.

There is one annoying bug I have after installing Windows 8.1 though. Windows Live Writer + Windows 8.1 paste/undo bug. Possibly related to the new Internet Explorer 11.

What about Autodesk products and Windows 8.1?

Model Documentation Hotfix for 64-bit Windows 8.1. This hotfix for AutoCAD and AutoCAD verticals fixes Model Documentation and IMPORT command related issues on 64-bit Windows 8.1. Download at DL22443084

Inventor Unexpectedly Exits on Startup on Windows 8.1. Windows reports: "The application was unable to start correctly (0xc0000142). Click OK to close the application." See solution at TS22238097

And finally another recent update from Autodesk: Cumulative Hotfix 2 for Autodesk Vault 2014 Service Pack 1 Download at DL22258964

  1. When two DWGs are referencing the same part number, and one of them is checked out, performing an Assign Item on the other would cause an error 1455.
  2. Resolved an issue that could result in preventing a server background task from running.
  3. Files checked into Vault, in a folder containing a single quote, would result in an 'Unknown Server Error' when selecting Data Cards from the Inventor Vault ribbon menu.
  4. Logging into ADMS with Windows Authentication and selecting the Administration option would result in the error 'Object reference not set to an instance of an object'.

How about software from JTB World? So far I’m not aware of any issues related to Windows 8.1

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Catenary for AutoCAD trial as AutoCAD app

JTBCatenary is now available as a trial on Autodesk Exchange Apps. When installed it is available in AutoCAD on the plug-ins tab.

The Catenary app for AutoCAD from JTB World makes it easy to create or draw a catenary curve as a polyline by specifying the start and end point and the length and optionally a diameter (width). This can be useful for drawing a freely hanging cable, hose, chain, transmission line, anchor line (anchor rode), cord, rope, string, suspension bridge cable, arch, hawser, wire or the like.

Catenary curves

Feel free to visit JTBCatenary and download the trial.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Palette Auto-hide Speed as AutoCAD app

Palette Auto-hide Speed for AutoCAD is now available as a free AutoCAD app at Autodesk Exchange Apps. The app is available for AutoCAD 2012 and newer including verticals.

With this freeware app you will be able to change the time it takes to show/hide or roll-up/roll-out the palette windows in AutoCAD. You can see the effect with palettes like Tool Palette, Command Line, Properties, Quickcalc, Design Feed, Layer Properties Manager, External References, Sheet Set Manager (SSM), Markup Set Manager, DesignCenter, Drawing Recovery Manager, Block Authoring Palette, Parameters Manager and Visual Styles Manager set to auto-hide.

If you are interested in other useful AutoCAD apps or plug-ins take a look at Batch Publish for AutoCAD, DimensionPatrol, TransTips, OffsetInXref, HTools Menu for AutoCAD, UnitCAD for AutoCAD or HVACPAC.

JTB World can also help to create any custom applications that you need for AutoCAD, AutoCAD Architecture, Revit as well as BricsCAD and other DWG CAD applications supporting AutoLISP or .NET.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

How to know what service pack is installed for AutoCAD

The easiest way to see if and what service pack is installed for AutoCAD or any vertical is to check the About dialog box. Either use the ABOUT command or select About from this dropdown at the top right of AutoCAD.

And in the About dialog box the Product Version will be seen showing in this case:
Product Version: I.108.0.0, AutoCAD 2014 SP1

To find out which service packs have been applied to your Autodesk software, you can also use the Windows control panel for uninstalling and changing programs.

  • For Windows XP, click the Windows Start menu Control Panel Add/Remove Programs Show Updates.
  • For Windows 7, click the Windows Start menu Control Panel Programs and Features View Installed Updates.
  • For Windows 8, right-click the Windows Start screen (or use the swipe up gesture from the bottom edge while on the Start screen). Click All Apps Windows System Control Panel Programs and Features Uninstall a Program View Installed Updates.
    Alternatively open File Explorer and on the Computer ribbon tab click on Uninstall or change a program followed by View installed updates.
  • For Windows 8.1, right-click on the Windows Start menu Control Panel Programs Programs and Features View installed updates.
    Alternatively open File Explorer and on the Computer ribbon tab click on Uninstall or change a program followed by View installed updates.

Another way is to use _Vernum, an undocumented system variable that has been around for long and could be used to identify the product version and if a service pack is installed or not. Programmers and CAD managers have often used this in AutoLISP code.

_Vernum for AutoCAD 2014 without SP1 is I.18.0.0 (UNICODE)

_Vernum for AutoCAD 2014 after installation is I.108.0.0 (UNICODE)

But what if having AutoCAD Architecture 2014 installed side by side? If AutoCAD 2014 SP1 is installed and AutoCAD Architecture 2014 has no SP1 installed _Vernum will show I.108.0.0 (UNICODE).

Once up on a time the _Vernum for verticals were different but because the verticals since AutoCAD 2013 are installed in the same place as vanilla AutoCAD _Vernum can not be used to reliably identify if a service pack is installed or not. For a better way read further.

Other related tips to figure out info about the installed product and finally the solution.

Command: ACADVER
ACADVER = "19.1s (LMS Tech)" (read only)

Command: UILOCALE
UILOCALE = "en-US" (read only)
The above is a new system variable in AutoCAD 2014.

(getvar 'PRODUCT)
Result: "AutoCAD"

(vla-get-caption (vlax-get-acad-object))
Result: "Autodesk AutoCAD 2014 - NOT FOR RESALE - [Drawing1.dwg]"

(vl-registry-read (strcat "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\\" (vlax-machine-product-key)) "ProductName")
Result: "AutoCAD 2014 - English"

(vl-registry-read (strcat "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\\" (vlax-machine-product-key)) "ProductNameGlob")
Result: "AutoCAD 2014"

(vl-registry-read (strcat "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\\" (vlax-machine-product-key)) "Release")
Result: "19.1.18.0"
The above will show the release number without the service pack added.

This will only work for AutoCAD 2013 or newer:

(setq reg (strcat "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\\" (vlax-machine-product-key)))
(setq LocaleidLen (strlen (vl-registry-read reg "Localeid")))
(setq reg (strcat (substr reg 1 (- (strlen reg) LocaleidLen 1)) "\\Service Packs"))
(setq reg (strcat reg "\\" (car (vl-registry-descendents reg))))
(setq PatchTitle (vl-registry-read reg "PatchTitle"))
(setq Release (vl-registry-read reg "Release"))
Result example for AutoCAD:
PatchTitle="AutoCAD 2014 SP1" and Release="19.1.108.0"
Result example for AutoCAD Architecture:
PatchTitle="AutoCAD Architecture 2014 SP 1" and Release="7.5.106.0"

This last example shows the programmers way to get what service pack is installed for the current AutoCAD product.

Monday, October 14, 2013

AutoCAD Architecture 2014 Service Pack 1

AutoCAD Architecture 2014 Service Pack 1 Download at DL22420526

Problems Reported with the Customer Error Reporting Utility

As a result of detailed information from customers who used the Customer Error Reporting Utility, a number of problems were identified and fixed in AutoCAD Architecture 2014 SP 1. Updates have been made in the following commands and features:

Project Navigator

  • Closing AutoCAD Architecture while the Project Navigator is open may cause occasional crashes.

Object Viewer

  • Crash when saving an image in the object viewer while the steering wheel is enabled.

Schedule Table

  • Modifying text height appearance in schedule tables results to a crash.

The following defects have been fixed:

Boolean Operation

  • Some objects may disappear after performing Boolean operations such as cleaning up, inserting a window, modifying a roof line, and so on.

Corner Window

  • Elevations or sections of corner window styles may display incorrectly.

Elevation Label

  • Elevation labels may not reflect the current elevation location. As a work around, use AecElevationLabelClearCache command to fix the elevation labels with incorrect elevation location values.

Object Viewer

  • Some visual styles do not work in the object viewer.

Section

  • Generated sections may not display all lines.

WebDAV

  • Failure to create projects on WebDAV servers.

This Service Pack can be applied to AutoCAD Architecture 2014 installed as a standalone application as well as AutoCAD Architecture 2014 installed from the following Autodesk Design Suites.

Autodesk Building Design Suite 2014
Autodesk Factory Design Suite 2014

AutoCAD MEP 2014 Service Pack 1 Download at DL22421229

The following AutoCAD MEP issues have been fixed:

Cable Tray

  • Sometimes, when the global profile is active, the add grips icon (+ icon) on cable trays appear too far away.

MvPart

  • The part size of some special MvParts do not update correctly when you change their “L” values.

Schedule

  • Some schedule tables do not indicate that they are “out-of-date” when you add duct property sets while AECPSDAUTOATTACH is OFF.

This Service Pack can be applied to AutoCAD MEP 2014 installed as a standalone application as well as AutoCAD MEP 2014 installed from the following Autodesk Design Suites.

  • Autodesk Building Design Suite 2014

Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D 2014 Service Pack 1 Details and download at DL22421170

AutoCAD Electrical 2014 Service Pack 1.1 Details and download at DL22418370

Autodesk AutoCAD Map 3D 2014 Service Pack 1 Details and download at DL22356664

AutoCAD Mechanical 2014 Service Pack 1 Details and download at DL22336321

AutoCAD 2014 Service Pack 1 is included with the above vertical service packs.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

How to Exit Explorer in Windows 8

Here’s how to safely Exit Explorer in Windows 8 or Windows 8.1. Now why would you need to do that? Well there are times when it is useful like for programmers that work with Explorer Shell Extensions like our DWG Columns product to show DWG properties in Explorer.

Hold down Shift and Ctrl, right click on an empty area on the Windows taskbar and click on “Exit Explorer”.

A new feature in the Task Manager is the Restart option for Windows Explorer.

If you don’t see Windows Explorer click on More details at bottom left. If Windows Explorer is selected you will also notice that the End Task button at bottom right changes to Restart.

To start Explorer again, press Ctrl+Shift+Esc to start the Task Manager if it is not already running, and use File > Run new task. Type Explorer in the "Create new task" dialog and press Enter.

Now there is the option to use End task on Windows Explorer but if it is as good and clean as the Exit Explorer or not I don’t know. In earlier Windows versions it was not.

Exit Explorer in Windows Vista and Windows 7

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Batch Publish for AutoCAD 2.0 released

Batch Publish for AutoCAD 2.0 by JTB World has been released on Autodesk Exchange Apps.

This AutoCAD app simplifies the process of publishing (plotting) sets of drawings to DWF and/or PDF.

This plugin can be used with AutoCAD to simplify the process of publishing sets of drawings to DWF and/or PDF. It runs as a command within AutoCAD - as opposed to a separate executable - and uses a separate executable to monitor AutoCAD's health and restart it, as needed. The status of the batch publishing operation is stored to disk, allowing it to pick up from where it left off and also for any failed documents to be retried without starting from scratch. A setting is available to only publish drawings that have been modified since they were last published, making it easier to publish sets of documents on a regular basis.

Batch Publish for AutoCAD trial can be used to see if this app fits your needs and when ready to purchase visit Batch Publish for AutoCAD and you can get a license for 10 USD.

If you are interested in other useful AutoCAD helper functions take a look at DimensionPatrol, TransTips, OffsetInXref, HTools Menu for AutoCAD, UnitCAD for AutoCAD or HVACPAC.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Cloud Sync for AutoCAD Architecture/MEP plug-in preview

The Cloud Sync for AutoCAD Architecture/MEP plug-in is a free technology preview from Autodesk that allows users to manage drawing access on local computer networks and also across cloud storage services (e.g., Autodesk 360, Dropbox, Google Drive, SkyDrive). With this functionality and depending on how a user has elected to set up a given cloud storage service, automatic access to the Internet and automatic sync of a file between a local machine (or network) and the cloud storage service is possible.

The technology preview is available for Autodesk AutoCAD Architecture 2014/2013 or Autodesk AutoCAD MEP 2014/2013 software (English versions only). The technology preview will operate until April 1, 2014.

Right click on a construct, view or sheet and Check Out or Check In.

In the Project Navigator you can see what files are checked out by the current user or by other users.

It’s possible to  revert to previous versions using Rollback to this version in the Check-In History.

If this sounds interesting download it from Autodesk Labs site.

If you handle many sheets our SSMPropEditor can help to update sheet properties on multiple sheets at the same time.


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