Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Sheet Set Manager shows up blank in AutoCAD

Have you run into a problem in AutoCAD where the Sheet List is empty in Sheet Set Manager?

Empty Sheet Set Manager

Autodesk Support has posted about this problem in this article here.

The solution is to fix a problem in the Windows registry at the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Autodesk\ObjectDBX location. In the article there is a download for it. Another solution is reinstall of AutoCAD. Not sure if repair option will fix it or not though.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

An Introduction to Working with Sheet Sets

If you are new to the Sheet Set Manager and Sheet Sets this tutorial is for you.

CAD applications supporting Sheet Sets are AutoCAD and its verticals, BricsCAD, GstarCAD and NanoCAD Plus/Pro.

This is a Guest Article by Acuity Training.

Sheet Sets are used to provide automation and synchronicity when working with a multiple of drawings. This is particularly important when each of those drawings has multiple layouts.

The Sheet Set Manager is also popular in corporate environments because of its collaborative capabilities. Knowing how to use Sheet Set Manager will save you time and make your life much easier when working on lengthy, complicated projects.

For this tutorial we’re going to look at a simple house drawing I’ve created. Between 2 files, we will use Sheet Set Manager to create different plans. These 2 files have everything we need to make several plans, including a Foundation Plan and an Electrical Plan.

If you would like to download these files to follow along please find them here.

To start we need to split our drawing into several layouts. We start by opening my drawing which is called houseonedone.dwg.

Then use the LAYER command to open up the Layer Properties layer. Turn on any Layers that are off. You can tell which layers are off because there will be a blue lightbulb instead of a yellow lightbulb next to the layer’s name. You can change the color of the lightbulbs by clicking on them.

1

(Figure 1)

Now that all of our Layers are on, we are ready to make our first SheetSet. Type SSM into the command line and hit ENTER. This will bring up the Sheet Set Manager Panel. Open the drop-down and select ‘New Sheet Set…”

2

(Figure 2)

Select ‘Existing drawings’ and then click Next.

3

(Figure 3)

In the next window, name your Sheet Set as “Sheet Set Tutorial” and once again hit Next.

Now the next screen is important. Click “Browse…”. A Windows Explorer applet will open. Use it to navigate your way to the “untouched” folder that was part of the Tutorial download. After selected, click Next, and Finish.

You’ll notice that the Sheet Set we have made is not visible in the Sheet Set Manger Panel. That’s because we have to open it. So once again open the drop-down, and this time click “Open…”

4

(Figure 4)

Now open the dst file we made (Sheet Set Tutorial.dst).

This is what should be visible now in your Sheet Set Manger Panel:

5

(Figure 5)

You’ll note that you can double-click any of the layouts to open it up.

Now that we have our Sheet Set, let’s go to the Layout 1 tab. It looks messy, right? We’re going to clean it up, and then make Layout 1 into our Electric Plan. If you wish to rename it to Electric Plan, you can.

6

(Figure 6)

What we want to do is get rid of all the layers except for Walls, Doors, and Electrics, but we want to do this only on THIS layout.

It’s pretty simple. Double-click the border of the viewport to open it. Then follow these steps.

1. Type LAYFRZ, hit ENTER.

2. Type S, hit ENTER.

3. Type V, hit ENTER.

4. Type V, hit ENTER.

Now you can select whatever layers you want to hide in this viewport. Be sure to get rid of the roof, room names, and anything else that doesn’t belong on an Electrical Plan. Obviously keep switches, outlets, walls, windows, and doors.

This is how mine ended up. When you’re ready to leave the Viewport, double-click the blue border circled in red in Figure 7.

7

(Figure 7)

If you open the Sheet Set Manger Panel again (the command is SSM), you will see that Layout 1 is still named ‘houseonedone - Layout1’ and not ‘Electric Plan’. This is because we made the Sheet Set before renaming the Layout. There’s a simple fix. Right-click it and click on ‘Rename and Renumber…’

8

(Figure 8)

Now this is a pretty important Panel, there’s a lot we can do here. Besides Renaming, we can also Renumber the sheet. For the purpose of this Tutorial, leave it at 3. After you’ve made your changes, click OK to leave the window.

Sheet Set Manager allows you to make subsets of your Sheet Set. We are going to make 2: one will be named ‘Models’ and the other ‘Layouts’. To do this, right-click the Sheet Set name and then click “New Subset…”

9

(Figure 9)

Do this twice, naming one subset ‘Layouts’ and the other one ‘Models’. After that, drag the Electric Plan onto Layouts.

10

(Figure 10)

There is another layout in the houseonedone file named Layout 2. We can make it into a floor plan, getting rid of Layers using the method previously discussed in this tutorial.

The ceiling fans and white lines are on the same layer as the text, and while we want to get rid of them, we want to keep the text. So move them to a different layer. Selecting all ceiling fans at once is pretty simple. You click on one, right-click, and then choose “Select Similar…” Then, move them to a new layer, or one of the electric ones.

Note: If you like, you can get rid of the grid by pressing Ctrl-G.

11

(Figure 11)

After Leaving the Viewport, and opening the Sheet Set Manger Panel, you will notice that the Floor Plan Layout isn’t shown. Drag in onto the Layouts subset. You may have to rename and renumber it to your liking.

Now double click on ‘finalversionoffoundation - Arch D (2)’ to open that layout. This is our Foundation Plan. Do all the renaming and renumbering necessary, and then drag it onto the Layouts subset.

After that, you can delete the other foundation Layout from SSM, titled ‘finalversionoffoundation - Arch D”. To delete sheets, you can’t just click them and press the delete key. You have to click, right-click, and choose “Remove Sheet”.

Once all of that is done Sheet Set Manger Panel should look like this:

12

(Figure 12)

Without getting too much into fields and title blocks, which is an entire tutorial in and of itself, we can have the pages numbered very easily and they will also update automatically based on any changes. We can also have automatic naming.

Click on your Foundation Plan Layout in the Sheet Set Manger Panel. It has a Title Block, but for the purpose of our tutorial, we will ignore this.

Type MTEXT, hit enter, click on an empty space above the viewport, type ‘Sheet Number:’ and then click the Fields icon in the Text Editor Tab of the Ribbon.

13

(Figure 13)

Pick the options circled in Figure 14.

14

(Figure 14)

After clicking OK, a 1 in a gray box will show up next to what we typed. Hit ENTER, and click the Fields icon again. Use Figure 15 this time to make your selections.

15

(Figure 15)

You may need to play around with the text to make it look right. However, after setting up the fields, if there are any number or name changes, all you have to do is type REGEN and hit Enter and it will automatically update.

16

(Figure 16)

You can get as fancy as you want with fields and Title Blocks. The options are limitless.

This was a very brief introduction to the use of Sheet Set Manager. Hopefully by using what you learned here you will be able to get started with the basics.

One final tip for working with Sheet Sets. Hovering over a Sheet in the Sheet Set Manager Panel will show all sorts of great information about the sheet, including live updates of who is working on it at that moment.

Hope you enjoyed the tutorial. See also the AutoCAD course for Architects with some free chapters.

JTB World also has several apps that further helps working with Sheet Sets.

Monday, May 28, 2018

JTB XClipClean 2.4 released

JTB XClipClean 2.4 has been released and fixes 3 problems.

  • Fixed loading problem that could happen in some older AutoCAD versions.
  • Fixed a problem when run on some non-English AutoCAD that either made it not work or show some unexpected dialog boxes for each clipped block.
  • Fixed installer to request to be run as administrator.

If you are using clipped xrefs or blocks you may find this app useful.

Kitchen with the xclip boundary visible

JTB XClipClean is an Xclip-cutter app for AutoCAD to clean up xrefs or blocks that been clipped so that the information that is outside the clip is removed. This is useful when you need to remove hidden geometry and minimize DWG file size.

AutoCAD allows blocks and xrefs to be clipped using the XCLIP command. Sometimes for different reasons you have to clean up the blocks or xrefs that have been clipped. JTB XClipClean can help you with that by deleting and trimming geometry that is outside the xclip boundary.

Revit does not handle xclipped blocks and xrefs so XClipClean can be useful to run on drawings before taking them into Revit.

Friday, May 25, 2018

AutoCAD 2019 User Data Hotfix - GDPR

AutoCAD 2019 User Data Hotfix can be downloaded here.

“To improve user data privacy in compliance with GDPR requirements, we’re providing this hotfix to eliminate the transmission of user serial numbers when using an Autodesk program to access an Autodesk download site.”

Similar GDPR hotfixes are available for other products and versions. Currently I found these:

AutoCAD Architecture and AutoCAD Mechanical 2017 User ID Hotfix

AutoCAD Architecture 2016 User ID Hotfix

Monday, May 14, 2018

AutoCAD 2019.0.1 Update Draw Order Hotfix

AutoCAD 2019 has got a hotfix that addresses an issue with Draw Order not functioning correctly after switching layouts.

Download it from Autodesk Knowledge Network here. There is no installation, just replacement of the file acdb23.dll with file version 23.0.61.1. The version I replaced it with was 23.61.0.

Monday, April 30, 2018

JTB FlexReport 11.1 released

JTB FlexReport 11.1 is released. There are a few new features as well as a bunch of bug fixes. See the version history for details.

The upgrade is free of charge for customers with active maintenance. If the maintenance has expired please contact us to renew.

Free trial of JTB FlexReport is available.

Do you wonder what JTB FlexReport is? JTB FlexReport is a license usage report tool for applications licensed using FlexNet, IBM LUM, DSLS, SPLM, Sentinel,  LM-X, RLM among others. Track usage over time, hours used and much more.

Friday, April 20, 2018

AutoCAD and Controlled folder access

“One or more objects in this drawing cannot be saved to the specified format. The operation was not completed and no file was created.” is an AutoCAD Message that might not be so helpful. In my case I tried to save the drawing to a specific folder.

AutoCAD Message

If you get this message check if you in Windows 10 have activated Controlled folder access. Either turn it off or allow AutoCAD (acad.exe) through Controlled folder access.

Controlled folder access

There can be a lot of other reasons for seeing this message. Here’s what can be found on the Autodesk Knowledge Network:

Causes:
This error can have multiple causes:
  • Corrupt drawing.
  • Corrupt user profile.
  • Low free disk space.
  • File server issues.
  • Missing drive (such as a USB drive that is no longer connected).
  • Proxy objects (objects created by third-party applications or other Autodesk applications) that are not recognized by AutoCAD.
  • The DACH Extension is installed (AutoCAD Civil 3D) and "empty" surfaces and the "DTM Dreiecksbeschriftung" function is present.
  • Network adapter settings
Solution:
Enable full saves instead of incremental saves in AutoCAD
On the command line in AutoCAD, type ISAVEPERCENT and set the value to 0 (zero).
Corrupt drawing / low free disk space
  • Use the AUDIT command to repair your drawing. This should allow it to be saved.
  • Use SAVEAS or WBLOCK to create a new file.
  • If the drawing immediately shows the error when you save without making changes in the drawing, insert the drawing into a new drawing created from the acad.dwt template.
Corrupt AutoCAD User Profile
Reset AutoCAD (see How to reset AutoCAD to defaults).
Corrupt Windows User Profile
Login as another user and try again. If this works an administrator has to reset the Windows User profile
File Server issues
If this error occurs when you are saving drawing files inside file management software, set AutoCAD and the file management software to both run as administrator and disable User Account Control in Windows.
Proxy objects
Enable recognition for proxy objects by setting the following variables to 1: ​Use the command -EXPORTTOAUTOCAD to create a new file that only contains AutoCAD-native objects. Then use that new file going forward.
Remove the German DACH Extension
See Error: "DGM-Beschriftung Wird neu erstellt" Civil 3D 2016.
Windows Search service
Check the folders that contain your drawings to see if they can be indexed by the Windows Search service (right-click > Properties > Advanced). Make sure Windows is not indexing the folders. On occasion, the indexing repeatedly causes this error with AutoCAD drawings.
Network adapter settings
Disable the TCP Offload setting in your network adapter. For instructions on this, consult the manufacturer of your Ethernet adapter. 

Thursday, April 19, 2018

JTB BatchAttEdit 2.1 - Batch Attribute Editor for AutoCAD

JTB BatchAttEdit 2.1 has been released. We have added support for AutoCAD 2019, editing multiline attribute and editing of field codes in attributes. Field codes are being used by Sheet Set Manager as well as if you have manually added fields to attributes.

This batch attribute editor app for AutoCAD collects attributes in all blocks of specified name patterns in multiple drawings and display in a wide spreadsheet. Then you can edit attribute texts as easy as working with Excel. Once done, click "Apply Attribute Changes" to update values to drawings.

This makes it a great app to for example edit title block attributes across many drawings instead of having to do it one drawing at a time.

JTB BatchAttEdit

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

JTB Sheet Set Publish 2.0 with AutoCAD 2019 support

JTB Sheet Set Publish 2.0 comes with support for AutoCAD 2019 as well as some bug fixes and minor UI changes.

JTB Sheet Set Publish is an app for AutoCAD that publishes sheets in Sheet Sets to files like PDF and DWF. The files created are named as you want based on a naming formula that you specify. Use date fields and/or sheet properties of your choice to build up the output filename.

Example after publishing subsets to separate folders:

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

JTB XClipClean 2.3 released to support AutoCAD 2019

JTB XClipClean 2.3 has been released. It comes with AutoCAD 2019 support as well as some bug fixes.

JTB World’s XClipClean is an Xclip-cutter app for AutoCAD to clean up xrefs or blocks that been clipped so that the information that is outside the clip is removed. This is useful when you need to remove hidden geometry and minimize DWG file size.

AutoCAD allows blocks and xrefs to be clipped using the XCLIP command. Sometimes for different reasons you have to clean up the blocks or xrefs that have been clipped. JTB XClipClean can help you with that by deleting and trimming geometry that is outside the xclip boundary.

Kitchen with the xclip boundary visible

Revit does not handle xclipped blocks and xrefs so XClipClean can be useful to run on drawings before taking them into Revit.

Friday, April 13, 2018

EduFinder 1.1 released

Our app EduFinder for AutoCAD is updated again after a few years when AutoCAD had the API needed removed. With AutoCAD 2019 it is back again. To quickly find drawings with the watermark use our app EduFinder.

Here’s what Autodesk tells about the reintroduction of an education watermark for AutoCAD 2019 and AutoCAD 2019 vertical products licensed by student and educators through the Autodesk Education Community.

1. What is changing for AutoCAD 2019 and AutoCAD 2019 vertical products obtained through the Autodesk Education Community?
Autodesk® AutoCAD® 2019 and Autodesk® AutoCAD® 2019-vertical products licensed by students, educators and mentors or competitors in an Autodesk sponsored design competition through the Autodesk® Education Community will produce an education watermark. This change does not apply to multi-user or network software deployed by educational institutions.

2. What AutoCAD 2019 products contain the watermark?
Autodesk® AutoCAD®
Autodesk® AutoCAD® Architecture
Autodesk® AutoCAD® Civil 3D
Autodesk® AutoCAD® Electrical
Autodesk® AutoCAD® for Mac
Autodesk® AutoCAD LT®
Autodesk® AutoCAD® LT for Mac
Autodesk® AutoCAD® Map 3D
Autodesk® AutoCAD® Mechanical
Autodesk® AutoCAD® MEP
Autodesk® AutoCAD® Plant 3D

3. Why has a watermark been reintroduced to AutoCAD 2019 and AutoCAD 2019 vertical products?
The education watermark will support the legitimate use of Autodesk® free education licenses and help ensure students and educators continue to access the same full-product functionality as industry professionals worldwide.

4. Is this a global change?
Yes, this applies to all education licences issued to students and educators for AutoCAD 2019 and AutoCAD 2019 vertical products in all languages.

5. When will the watermark be displayed?
When plotting, or doing a plot preview of a drawing that was created using AutoCAD 2019 and/or AutoCAD 2019 vertical products licensed by students and educators through the Autodesk Education Community, a subtle education watermark will be displayed. A watermark is not displayed on drawings created using multi-user or network educational institution licenses.

6. What does the watermark look like?
When plotting or doing a plot preview of a drawing created using AutoCAD 2019 or an AutoCAD 2019 vertical product licensed by students or educators through the Autodesk Education Community, users will see this watermark:

7. What in-product notification informs users of the watermark?
When using a version of AutoCAD 2019 that displays an education watermark to open a drawing that was created using a commercial license of AutoCAD, the following task dialog is displayed:

When using a commercial license of AutoCAD to open a drawing that was created using a version AutoCAD 2019 that displays the education watermark, the following task dialog is displayed:

8. Does the education watermark display when another Autodesk software product is used to open a drawing?
The AutoCAD 2019 products listed will produce the watermark, and it will persist in other products that consume AutoCAD drawings containing the watermark.

9. Will I see a warning dialog box when opening a drawing created using a version of AutoCAD 2019 and/or AutoCAD 2019 vertical product that displays the watermark in another Autodesk software product?
No. The warning dialog box only appears in AutoCAD based products.

10. If a commercial license is used to copy, paste, insert, or reference operations from drawings created using a version of AutoCAD 2019 and/or AutoCAD 2019 vertical products that display the watermark, does the education watermark follow the parent drawing and display on other drawings in the commercial organization?
No. This “spread” behaviour does not occur with AutoCAD 2019 and/or AutoCAD 2019 vertical products.

11. My college lab has AutoCAD 2019 and/or AutoCAD 2019 vertical products installed. I don’t see a watermark when plotting, or doing a plot preview of a drawing I created using the software in the lab. Why not?
AutoCAD 2019 and AutoCAD 2019 vertical products licensed through the Autodesk Education Community by educational institutions and installed on the educational institution’s computers or devices do not contain an education watermark. Only educational licenses for students, educators and Autodesk sponsored design competition competitors and mentors produce the watermark.

12. May I remove the education watermark in AutoCAD 2019 and/or AutoCAD 2019 vertical products?
It is intended that this watermark promotes legitimate use of AutoCAD software licensed by students and educators through the Autodesk Education Community and any action to bypass the watermark is a violation of your license terms.

13. If I download an older version of AutoCAD and/or AutoCAD vertical products from the Autodesk Education Community, does it now produce a watermark?
No. AutoCAD and AutoCAD vertical product releases 2016, 2017, and 2018 available through the Autodesk Education Community do not produce a watermark.

14. Will Autodesk add a watermark to other Autodesk products licensed through the Autodesk Education Community in the future?
To support the legitimate use of Autodesk software licensed through the Education Community and ensure student access to the same software used by industry professionals worldwide, Autodesk is considering this action.

AutoCAD 2019.0.1 Update

AutoCAD 2019.0.1 Update is available.

AutoCAD 2019.0.1 Update

According to the readme:

AutoCAD Updates can be applied to AutoCAD installed as a standalone application and AutoCAD-based toolsets and vertical products. You can install this update in addition to any other applicable updates for the following:

  • AutoCAD 2019
  • AutoCAD Architecture 2019
  • AutoCAD Civil 3D 2019
  • AutoCAD Electrical 2019
  • AutoCAD Map 3D 2019
  • AutoCAD Mechanical 2019
  • AutoCAD MEP 2019
  • AutoCAD Plant 3D 2019
  • Advance Steel 2019

After applying this update, the Product Version or Built On Version in the About box will be listed as P.61.0.0 AutoCAD 2019.0.1. [In Windows Installed Updates the version showing is 23.0.61.0. _VERNUM = "P.61.0.0 (UNICODE)"]

As a result of the detailed information that we received from customers who used the Customer Error Reporting Utility, we were able to identify and fix several defects with the following results:

General

  • Startup crashes after loading a partial CUIX file after resetting settings to default no longer occur.

Several additional defects have been fixed with the following results:

Display

  • The draw order in a block definition is maintained when inserting the block. [This fixed issues with our JTB Steel app.]

Editing

  • When grip editing is in progress and dynamic input is turned on, pressing the Tab key cycles between the full distance, the angle, and the extension distance.

General

  • The Open from Web & Mobile and Save to Web & Mobile buttons on the Quick Access toolbar in 64-bit versions can now be hidden or removed.
  • The division symbol in stacked fractions can now be changed between horizontal and diagonal.
  • The tool palette path can now be changed from the default value without being reset when exiting the Options dialog box.

More can be found about AutoCAD 2019 here.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

RVT Columns for Explorer supports Revit 2019

RVT Columns for Explorer has been updated to handle the new file format of Revit 2019 files. With this app you can see the Revit Build and Revit Version on RTE, RVT, RFA and RFT files in Explorer as well as any products that shows Revit files in dialog boxes like Revit’s Open file dialog box.

Revit 2019 has got a lot of new features worth exploring. How about the ability to drag views out of the Revit application window to secondary monitors?

Revit 2019 on multiple monitors

AutoCAD Architecture 2019 and AutoCAD toolsets released

More of the AutoCAD 2019 toolsets are now released like the Architecture toolset. Right after installing AutoCAD Architecture 2019 I noticed that AutoCAD Architecture 2019.0.1 Update was available. See readme.

What’s new in AutoCAD Architecture 2019? I don’t think there is anything other than what comes as part of vanilla AutoCAD.

See also the blog post about AutoCAD 2019

Some of the latest blog posts

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