Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Associative Array in AutoCAD 2012

In AutoCAD 2012 The ARRAY command has been largely improved and is now creating a new Associative Array object by default. There are three commands for Rectangular Array, Path Array and Polar Array.

This will probably be a favorite by many and works in both 2D and 3D.


Associativity allows you to quickly propagate changes throughout an array by maintaining relationships between items. Arrays can be associative or non-associative.

  • Associative. Items are contained in a single array object, similar to a block. Edit the array object properties, such as the spacing or number of items. Override item properties or replace an item’s source objects. Edit an item’s source objects to change all items that reference those source objects.
  • Non-associative. Items in the array are created as independent objects. Changes to one item do not affect the other items.

To edit the array properties, use ARRAYEDIT, the Properties palette, Ribbon or grips.

Apply Item Overrides: Ctrl+click items in the array to erase, move, rotate, or scale the selected items without affecting the rest of the array. Reset the array to remove all item overrides.

Replace items: Replace selected items with other objects. Any item overrides are maintained. You can also replace all items that reference the original source objects, rather than selecting individual items.

Edit Source: To edit an item’s source objects, activate an editing state for a selected item. All changes (including the creation of new objects) are instantly applied to all items referencing the same set of source objects. Save or discard your changes to exit the editing state.

There are unfortunately a few bugs still in the new Array command that hopefully soon will be squished either as a hotfix or in AutoCAD 2012 Update 1 (AutoCAD 2012 SP1).

The old AutoCAD array dialog box is gone with only –ARRAY as classic command line command and the ARRAY command is instead working with the command line, properties and the Ribbon. Some might miss the old and faithful but ClassicArray is under development by Steve Johnson at blog nauseam.

There is no LISP API to create and edit the new array object.

What if a drawing with the new Array object is opened in AutoCAD 2011 or older versions? The Associative block is a static anonymous block and all arrayed objects are also anonymous blocks. So you would need to explode twice to get the individual objects back.

Related posts: AutoCAD 2012, Package licenses and prior version support, AutoCAD 2012 VBA Enabler and more under the AutoCAD 2012 label.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Revit 2012 3Dconnexion news

Autodesk’s Revit Architecture 2012, Revit Structure 2012, Revit MEP 2012 and Navisworks 2012 software applications have added native 3D mouse support.

Support for 3Dconnexion devices is improved in AutoCAD 2012. The precision and controllability of 3D mouse movements were further optimized to provide a more superior 2D and 3D navigation experience. In Walk and Fly modes, the navigation speed accelerates as the camera position moves away from the model. With Object mode, a consistent zoom speed is maintained regardless of the model size or position of the camera within the drawing.

3Dconnexion Announces Much Anticipated 3D Mouse Support for Autodesk Revit 2012 Software Applications

3Dconnexion Support Brings Design Productivity and Comfort to the AEC Community

FREMONT, Calif. – March 23, 2011 – 3Dconnexion today announced Autodesk® has added native 3D mouse support in Autodesk Revit® Architecture 2012, Autodesk Revit Structure 2012, and Autodesk MEP® 2012 software applications, bringing the full range of 3D mouse design benefits to Revit users. 3Dconnexion 3D mice complement the intuitive interface and modeling and documentation tools in Revit software, helping to enhance every design workflow stage with increased productivity and comfort.

“We are delighted to introduce 3Dconnexion 3D mouse support in the latest Revit software release, as it has been one of the top requests from customers,” said Nicolas Mangon, building business line director, Autodesk. “We’ve been working closely with 3Dconnexion to ensure the quality of support is what both Revit and 3D mouse users expect, enabling architects to work more freely and efficiently.”

3Dconnexion today also announced 3D mouse support in Autodesk Navisworks 2012 software applications, bringing 3D mouse navigation benefits to model integration, review and analysis. Offering a level of design interaction unattainable with a traditional mouse and keyboard, 3D mice allow Revit and Navisworks users to pan, zoom and rotate simultaneously to deliver superior navigation and more intuitive control, helping to boost productivity and efficiency while aiding user comfort.

“The decision to integrate 3D mouse support in Autodesk Revit 2012 software applications, some of the leading BIM applications, is an important landmark in our quest to bring superior 3D navigation to this community,” said Dieter Neujahr, president of 3Dconnexion. “3Dconnexion 3D mice have become the standard for navigation in 3D design software and we look forward to supporting the performance needs of today’s design professionals whatever industry they work in.”

Revit offers a comprehensive level of support for 3Dconnexion’s 3D mice, with an enhanced workflow at every step of the design process, including:

  • 3D Modeling: Leveraging a two-handed workflow with a 3D mouse and traditional mouse results in intuitive and precise 3D navigation and a more fluid, productive design process
  • Conceptual Design & Review: Leveraging the superior navigation features of 3D mice, architects are able to easily visualize a building or model at the beginning of a project for a more tangible connection to a design, as well as aid in the earlier detection of design flaws
  • Client Presentation: 3D mice help clients visualize a project with cinematic-like motions and smooth transitions from one perspective to another, giving the viewer a sense of being in the actual space
  • User Interface: An intuitive navigation bar features options for controlling the view, including navigation modes, keeping the scene upright, center tool, and 3Dconnexion driver control panel
  • 2D and 3D Navigation: When working in 3D, users can quickly switch between object and walk/fly camera modes within the conceptual design, 3D model or client presentation; in 2D, designers can continue editing while working in detail sheets and section views with easy pan and zoom functionality
  • Button Mapping: 3Dconnexion’s Professional Series products feature programmable function keys for instant access to commonly used application commands, and QuickView Navigation keys for one-touch access to specific views

The entire 3Dconnexion product line is compatible with Revit and Navisworks 2012, including the Professional Series with the SpacePilot PRO (MSRP $399) and SpaceExplorer™ (MSRP $299), and the Standard Series with the SpaceNavigator (MSRP $99) and SpaceNavigator for Notebooks (MSRP $129). For additional information, visit www.3Dconnexion.com.

About 3Dconnexion, A Logitech Company
3Dconnexion, a wholly owned subsidiary of Logitech (SIX: LOGN) (Nasdaq: LOGI), is the leading provider of 3D mice for 3D design and visualization. 3Dconnexion devices support today’s most popular and powerful 3D applications by offering users a more intuitive and natural way to interact with computer-generated 3D content. 3Dconnexion’s award-winning 3D mice serve a wide variety of industries and are used by 3D designers, animators and artists worldwide. 3Dconnexion is headquartered in Fremont, Calif. with European headquarters in Munich, Germany and offices worldwide. For more information, visit www.3Dconnexion.com. You may also connect with 3Dconnexion on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/3Dconnexion) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/3Dconnexion).

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Earth Hour 2011

One thing that can be done before Earth Hour is to review your Windows 7 settings.

Enter Power in the Start search field.

and then on Power Options

Then select the preferred plan.

If needed change plan settings.

If there is a clear sky during Earth Hour why not take a look at the sky that probably will show more stars than normal.

Friday, March 25, 2011

AutoCAD 2012 VBA Enabler

Autodesk will continue to “unofficially” support VBA in its 2012 products, thus VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) is still available and as a separate installer.

The Express Tools command REVERT still requires VBA.

Trying to click on Installation Help, System Requirements or Readme does not work.

At least the actual installation works. If you have AutoCAD 2012 verticals like AutoCAD Architecture 2012, AutoCAD MEP 2012, AutoCAD Electrical 2012, AutoCAD Map 3D 2012, and AutoCAD Mechanical 2012, and AutoCAD Structural Detailing 2012 or AutoCAD Civil 3D 2012 the installer will install for all of them.

Software developers are strongly encouraged by Autodesk to base all future Microsoft Windows based development for AutoCAD based products on the Microsoft .NET Framework (VB .NET, C#, managed C++ etc).

If Autodesk’s future versions (AutoCAD 2013?) still will be able to run VBA or not only future can tell but don’t hold your breath.

JTB World offers fee based porting of LISP or VBA applications to .NET.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

What graphic card is best for AutoCAD 2012?

If you want help to pick out a graphic card for Autodesk products like AutoCAD 2012, Invertor 2012 or Revit 2012 head over to the updated autodesk.com/graphics-hardware site and you can find out cards from AMD, INTEL, Matrox, NVIDIA, Parallels and WMware. Find certified and recommended card models as well as the drivers.


Without A Net describes it more.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

AutoCAD 2012

AutoCAD 2012 is released now.

Most everyone will find something useful in this release. Many will upgrade just for the performance enhancements. Others might wait because of bugs or that this release does not give enough value to be worth deploying. Can I recommend it? I do recommend everyone to take a look at AutoCAD 2012 and see what it’s all about and decide for themselves.

“Install from download or DVD” the system requirements says. USB memory stick installation was the big thing during the Autodesk 2012 Webcast so I would expect it to be mentioned. Of course you can install it from a USB memory stick as well.

From Autodesk’s site comparing different AutoCAD versions there are some incorrect details. AutoCAD-Complete Command Entry is not completely new for AutoCAD 2012 but it is improved a lot. Before you had to press Tab.

Delete Duplicate Objects (OVERKILL) is not new but it is improved with increased performance and functionality and is now a core command instead of an Express Tool command.

Project Snap was the labs name but now it’s called Autodesk Content Explorer.

Here’s from the press release:

What’s New in AutoCAD 2012 Products

Users of the AutoCAD 2012 products gain several new productivity tools, helping them to slash drafting, detailing and design revision time. Parametric drawing tools automatically define persistent relationships between objects; extended associative array functionality enables creating an array of objects along a path; and PDF publish and import improvements help users clearly communicate with clients. More robust 3D modeling tools improve surfacing and conceptual design functionality, while enhanced design and documentation tools help users to read and edit multiple file formats, streamlining the documentation process to improve accuracy and accelerate design time. Other enhancements provide faster start times, faster commands and overall improved product performance, together with a premium graphics and visual experience.

With direct access to AutoCAD WS web and mobile applications from within the AutoCAD 2012 products and the Autodesk Design Suite editions, users can view, edit and share their designs with anyone, anywhere from a web browser or mobile device. The AutoCAD WS mobile application is currently available for Apple iOS devices, including iPad and iPhone.

Highlights of the AutoCAD 2012 Products

AutoCAD LT drafting and detailing software is the professional choice for data compatibility, reliability and 2D drafting productivity. With AutoCAD LT 2012, incremental improvements, support for hardware acceleration and overall performance enhancements can add up to bigger productivity gains. Key new features include:

  • Associative array can save valuable rework time when creating conceptual designs or finished documentation by establishing and maintaining a set of relationships between arrayed objects, such as windows on a building or trusses on a bridge.
  • Multifunctional grips help make editing faster and easier by enabling direct manipulation. The power and efficiency of multifunctional grips has been extended to lines, arcs, elliptical arcs, dimensions and multileaders, in addition to polylines and hatch objects. Simply hover over a grip to see the relevant commands and options.
  • Sheet Set Manager organizes drawing sheets, reduces steps to publish, automatically creates layout views, links sheet set information into title blocks and plot stamps, and performs tasks across a sheet set, so everything is in a convenient place.
  • AutoComplete commands provide a list of matching command names, system variables, and command aliases when users type in the command line.

AutoCAD 2012 includes all the improvements to AutoCAD LT 2012, along with new and expanded workflows for conceptual design, model documentation and reality capture. In addition to a wide range of timesaving enhancements, AutoCAD 2012 delivers powerful tools for performing 3D design more easily, streamlining time-consuming documentation workflows and helping drive projects to completion faster.

Enhancements include:

  • Model documentation tools enable users to import models from a wide variety of CAD applications (including Autodesk Inventor, Solidworks, CATIA, NX and Rhino), and quickly develop intelligent documentation for those designs.
  • Autodesk Inventor Fusion software for 3D conceptual design is now included with AutoCAD 2012. Inventor Fusion unites the power and control of parametric, history-based modeling with the ease of use and productivity advantages of direct, history-free modeling. The integration between AutoCAD and Inventor Fusion facilitates faster transfers between the applications, as well as with other 3D CAD environments.
  • Point cloud support for up to 2 billion points enables users to quickly visualize scanned objects directly in their modeling workspace, bringing 3D scans to life and helping to streamline time-consuming renovation and restoration projects.

AutoCAD Architecture 2012 software now offers faster startup and drawing load times for more immediate access to tools and large drawing navigation. A new corner windows capability makes it easy to add a single window in the corner intersection of two walls.

AutoCAD MEP 2012 mechanical, electrical, and plumbing software offers enhanced native productivity and utilities tools that make it easier to access dynamic and interactive 3D modeling for building system design. New Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) support from within AutoCAD MEP helps users manage and share data with others throughout the design process.

AutoCAD Electrical 2012 control design software expands its support for international standards, and new tutorial material and an intuitive user interface makes it even easier to save time, reduce errors, and create innovative electrical control designs.

AutoCAD Mechanical 2012 design and drafting software now enables editing 3D models from nearly any source with Inventor Fusion and intelligent drawing view creation with a new model documentation feature. It also includes enhanced bill of materials migration, performance and collaboration improvements designed to help make users more productive while allowing them to maintain existing workflows.

AutoCAD users now have access to product information and customer support through Autodesk’s new Autodesk Exchange site (http://exchange.autodesk.com). The Autodesk Exchange site hosts training, tips, advanced techniques, expert advice and other tools about AutoCAD products, using the AutoCAD 2012 user interface, and more. This site will be the destination for all AutoCAD Help Content, helping users to be more productive with resources all in one place.

More will be added to future blog posts and on the AutoCAD 2012 page.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Automation of Surveying

I remember how in early 1990s I was creating programs to import and export coordinates from AutoCAD to a total station and how it was used to locate the holes to be done for chair foundations in a large public hall.

The image is showing aerial LIDAR surveying from a paraplane operated by a Scandinavian Laser Surveying company.

What about those in the surveying trade?

Houston Neal over at Software Advice says:

“Surveying is going through a technological renaissance. The increased adoption of machine guidance systems has renewed the importance of the surveying trade. This technology calls for a highly-trained workforce, and surveyors are the most qualified for this job. But to get in on the action, surveyors need to learn to use this technology and re-brand themselves.”

“In addition to getting training, surveyors need to brand themselves as machine control experts. Contractors, land engineers and surveyors are all vying for this title and no one has proved themselves in the role yet. Land surveyors are the most qualified for the job, so they should position themselves accordingly. And to support this claim, they need only point to the existing state laws that require surveyors to be part of the machine control setup process.”

Read the whole article at Automation of Surveying Creates Disruption and Opportunities

Thursday, March 17, 2011

AutoCAD XLINE Offset

In AUGIWorld March 2011 I learned about the this XLINE trick in AutoCAD by Beth Powell.

“From the command line you can type “O” for Offset or choose it
from the drop-down menu of your dynamic input. It works just
like the Offset command in your modify tools. Let’s say you have
a rectangle. If you use the Modify version of the Offset command
it will offset the entire rectangle. But if you use a construction line
offset you can offset only one side.”

Command: XLINE
Specify a point or [Hor/Ver/Ang/Bisect/Offset]: O

Specify offset distance or [Through] <190.9883>: Specify second point:
Select a line object:
Specify side to offset:
Select a line object:

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Package licenses and prior version support

Soon time for more Autodesk 2012 products to be released like AutoCAD 2012 and license file updates are needed.

Package features are having the suffix “_F” as in the AutoCAD package feature 64300ACD_F and in the license file it is easy to see what features/components it consists of.

PACKAGE 64300ACD_F adskflex 1.000 COMPONENTS="85730ACD_2012_0F \
85536ACD_2011_0F 71200ACD_2010_0F 57600ACD_2009_0F"

When reporting on usage of AutoCAD in JTB FlexReport use the package feature to see any of the usage of all included versions.

In the above case AutoCAD package feature 64300ACD_F will include usage of either of the versions from 2009 up to 2012. But in JTB FlexReport historical usage will of course include older versions if they were in the package before a license file change.

It is also possible to select multiple versions and aggregate their usage in JTB FlexReport but best practice and easiest is to use the package feature.

From Autodesk Knowledge base:

Understanding package licenses and prior version support

You received an Autodesk license file containing a PACKAGE increment allowing for prior version support and you would like to understand more about package licenses and how to use them.

Autodesk package licenses are a benefit to Subscription customers that provides a set number of licenses for four different versions of your software: the current version, plus the three previous versions of the same product. Running an instance of any one of these versions consumes one license in the package. Running more than one version, even on the same machine, will consume more than one license in the package.

For example, if you have a package license for two seats of AutoCAD 2012, the following scenarios can be expected:

  • You can install and run AutoCAD 2012, 2011, 2010, and 2009.
  • Two computers, each running AutoCAD 2012, will consume two licenses. No licenses will be available for other users.
  • One computer, running AutoCAD 2012 and AutoCAD 2011 simultaneously, will consume two licenses. No licenses will be available for other users.
  • One computer, running three instances of AutoCAD 2009 will consume only one license. One license will still be available for other users.

Package License FAQ:

Q: Can I configure which products or product versions are licensed in a package?

A: No. Package license files come with the current version and three previous versions of the same product only. It is not possible to configure the products included in the package in any way.

Q: How do package licenses work with regard to borrowing and cascading?

A: License borrowing, options files and license cascading work the same for package license files as they do for regular license files. When you configure an options file, use the feature codes of the individual product versions contained within the package. For example, if you want to reserve 5 licenses of AutoCAD in an options file, you will need four separate RESERVE statements, one for the feature code that corresponds to each version.

Q: What happens if I get a new Package License file.

A: A new license file will supersede an older license file.

Q: Can I combine package license files?

A: Package license files may be combined as usual with license files for different products (see the solution, Combining Autodesk® license files, for more details) however you cannot package license files with non-package license files for product versions contained in the package. Doing so will disable the older license INCREMENT for the product and only the package license count will be available. For example, do not combine an AutoCAD 2012 package license file with a regular license file for AutoCAD 2011, 2010 or 2009.


The following is an example of a package license file for AutoCAD 2012:
SERVER myserver 12345678abcd
VENDOR adskflex port=2080
PACKAGE 64300ACD_F adskflex 1.000 COMPONENTS="85730ACD_2012_0F \
85536ACD_2011_0F 71200ACD_2010_0F 57600ACD_2009_0F" \
D7D7 3F0F 6725 B01B 2E1B B7DB CC2E B13B 57C6 4069 F07A 8B10 \
D066 015C B7B7 F254 23B8 8C90 2B05 95D8 6977 4573 9FE8 3778 \
E2B0 3E3C 37D7 9A25" SIGN2="0941 23D1 7440 CFA3 FEAF A59F FF0A \
991D 9B96 7828 E4D9 4599 EFED 67AB 64AF 1E5C C7F8 25F0 31E5 \
C80F 1F34 EEE6 8482 8FB8 3D4A 9C7A 4E76 5EDA 0257 37D9"
INCREMENT 64300ACD_F adskflex 1.000 permanent 10 \
SN=321-12345678 SIGN="0C5A D542 CF18 C438 650D 53D1 2A0D EA18 \
B396 7C09 E502 41BD 8DD1 7D3E 5853 1266 FDA5 1E8B C19C 37AE \
3112 9CAC 8C08 9849 20B1 560C A102 67DE 7EB8 4CFD" SIGN2="1D37 \
164F B2D0 8364 96CC 1DD5 8782 C2D4 CA78 1D91 7DCC BE9F C116 \
0922 579C 12ED 8F0E ABBC 83FA 6C4A 3236 6683 858A 921F 6D35 \
9C23 40FC 4F36 8A4D 3F34"
INCREMENT PLIST adskflex 1.000 permanent 1 \
_2009_0F:78200RAV-S_2009_0F;M09:68900NAVREV_2009_1F:78200RAV-S_2009_0F \
3557 66ED 932C EF2D 97FF 709E CC0E DD8B D03E 3583 171E 35C3 \
9C59 047A DC7E 200D 2FFB 97D8 E5A6 47DE 3A52 BFC2 B27C 37BF \
4E77" SIGN2="1DBB D46E 7B99 7EAE 0638 0333 656E 1EFE D4BB ABEF \
63FD A04D 4238 B385 ECB5 1E60 E70B FD8E 7C59 828D DD65 464A \
EA4B 7472 35F8 6DC3 3762 9BAB 3966 33E9"

Autodesk Subscription Use of Previous Version FAQ (PDF):

Q: What is use of “Previous Version”?

A: Subscription customers are entitled to use certain Previous Versions of Autodesk products concurrently with the most current release if they meet certain conditions.

Q: What Previous Versions are eligible?

A: For most products, Subscription customers may use versions previous to the current release, subject to availability. Availability can be found on the on the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”. To access this list, Contract Managers and Software coordinators can refer to Subscription Center at www.autodesk.com/subscriptionlogin. Once logged in click on the Subscription Administration link on the left navigation.

Q: What if the product is not on the Previous Version Eligible Product List?

A: For products not on the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”, the Subscription customer may still be allowed to use of a Previous Version if the customer legally owned it, and, in those instances, only up to the number of licenses originally owned.

Q: How many additional licenses am I granted with this Previous Version benefit?

A: Autodesk is not granting any additional licenses. Under this benefit, the Subscription customer may  use any combination of the current version and its eligible Previous Versions as listed on the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use” up to the total number of licenses of the product currently under Subscription. For example: If the company has licenses for five seats of a current product, each of the five users can run their choice of version of the current and eligible Previous Versions in any combination up to five seats.

Q: Is there any difference in the Previous Version benefit based on deployment type (i.e.,
standalone or network)?

A: The Previous Version benefit applies to both standalone and network deployments although the process for accessing the Subscription benefit may differ with deployment type. For more information Contract Manager and/or the Software Coordinators can refer to Subscription Center at www.autodesk.com/subscriptionlogin. Once logged in click on the Subscription Administration link on the left navigation.

Q: If a Subscription customer has a network license, how do they access Previous Versions?

A: A current network license file will be generated for products under Subscription to provide access to the current version plus prior versions stated on the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”. For more information and to generate a network license file visit registeronce.autodesk.com .

Q: What happens if I have a standalone license?

A: Subscription customers with a current standalone license will also have access to the Previous Versions in accordance to the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”; the customer will need a serial number for each version they wish to activate. Customers may request a serial number for activation with help from the step‐by‐step guide on the Subscription Center.

Q: Do Previous Version benefits apply to products that have been upgraded to a different product?

A: No. Once the Subscription customer upgrades to a different product Previous Version use benefits only apply to Previous Versions of the customer’s new product. Subscription customers will have access to Previous Versions that are in the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”

Q: Does Previous Version benefit apply to Education and Commercial licenses?

A: All applicable products are defined in the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”.

Q: Does the Home Use benefit apply for Previous Versions?

A: Yes. Home Use is allowed for all products on the “Eligible Product List for Home Use”, for prior versions allowed for home use refer to the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”.

Q: Can a Subscription Customer us their Previous Version on a different computer than the one their current release is installed on?

A: Please refer to the legal terms and conditions for product usage.

Q: Will Autodesk provide product support for Previous Version?

A: Autodesk will provide product support for products on the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”.

Q: Will the Subscription Customer be able to access Previous Versions for their Suite?

A: With the first shipment of a Suite, the component products of the Suite (if included on the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”) are available for Previous Version use. When the next version of the Suite ships the prior version of the Suite may become a Previous Version and be listed on the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use”, with the earlier versions of component products of the Suite potentially remaining on the “Eligible Product List for Previous Version Use” as Previous Versions for the Suite. Eventually, all Previous Versions for a Suite will be earlier releases of that Suite rather than earlier releases of component products of that Suite.

Q: How will network licenses for Suites differ from individual product network licenses?

A: Subscription customers will receive network licenses that provide access to applicable versions for all eligible suites and individual products. In an effort to offer prior version entitlement for Suites that did not exist in prior release years, these Suite licenses will provide access to individual component products that are included with the current Suite offering. This component level management exists for products included with a Suite that existed as an individual product in any or all three prior release years. Upon its fourth release year, all prior version entitlement will be managed at the Suite level. This implementation drives two deviations from individual product behavior over the first three releases of a Suite.
The difference is in how license seats are consumed. For release years that are managed at the suite level a single license will be pulled regardless of how many applications are run within the same release year that are included in the suite when run concurrently at the same workstation. Running applications across multiple release years will result in a license pull for each release year. For the prior versions managed at the component level, each component product will pull a license when run concurrently on the same workstation. You may run as many sessions of the same release year of a specific component product and only consume a single license.
For example, if you have Autodesk Design Suite Premium 2012 on subscription and a user starts AutoCAD 2012 and 3ds Max Design 2012 on the same workstation at the same time, only one license is consumed. If the user starts AutoCAD 2010 and 3ds Max Design 2010 on the same workstation at the same time, two licenses are consumed. If AutoCAD 2012, 2011 and 2010 are run together, three licenses are consumed.

Q: How it will be different for prior version entitlements of Suites and individual products?

A: The difference is how prior version entitlements of suites and individual products interact. If you have a Subscription network license file on the same license server as a one or more component product license files you will have to have to obtain license files for all products on the same day in order to realize your full prior version entitlement. This only applies to prior version release years managed at the component level.

For example, if you have a 100 seat license for Autodesk Design Suite Premium 2012 on subscription and are also managing a 20 seat license of AutoCAD also under subscription and 5 seats of 3ds MAX 2010 which is not on subscription on the same license server. If the license file creation dates are first for the Suite, second for AutoCAD and last for 3ds MAX then up to 5 users could access 3dsMAX 2010, 20 users could access AutoCAD 2011, 2010 or 2009. Up to 120 users could access AutoCAD 2012 and 100 could access other xxx Suite programs. If all three license files are generated on the same day the following availability will apply. Up to120 users could run their choice of AutoCAD 2012, 2011, 2010 or 2009 and up to 105 users could run 3ds MAX 2010. Up to 100 seats of all other xxx Suite products could be run.

Q: How does the Subscription Customer request a Previous Version license?

A: As a Contract Manager or a Software Coordinator of a Subscription contract they can go to the Contract Administration of Subscription Center, where they will find all Previous Version information and step by step instructions for activation.

Q: How long does Previous Version use last?

A: The Subscription customer may exercise the Previous Version use rights specified in the Subscription terms and conditions for a given Autodesk product so long as that product remains on Subscription. Please see question 19, below, for a discussion of what happens when a customer’s Subscription lapses.

Q: Will the Subscription Customer be able to get physical media for Previous Version license?

A: Yes. CD or DVD for eligible Previous Versions is available through the global media replacement site through subscription center from the download tab.

Q: What will happen to the Subscription Customers Previous Version use if they allow their Subscription to lapse?

A: The Previous Version use rights set forth in the Subscription Terms and Conditions cease when Subscription lapses. This means that the customer may no longer have multiple releases (i.e., Previous Versions and the current release) of a given product concurrently installed, and must immediately reduce the quantity of Autodesk software products installed to the quantity that the customer has licensed. Under the applicable Autodesk software license, this means that the customer may elect to uninstall all but the most current release, or alternately all but one of the Previous Versions. Thereafter, if the customer elects to install an newer release (called and “Upgrade”) of the software product, the provisions of the applicable Autodesk software license agreement will apply and will require that the customer uninstall the earlier release within a stated period of time after their installation of the newer release. If the customer desires to resume using
that prior release, their Subscription will need to be re‐instated so that they can do so as a Previous Version under the Subscription terms and conditions. The customer will need to contact their Autodesk Authorized Reseller or Autodesk Sales Rep for next steps.

Q: What will happen to a customers packaged network license if they allow their Subscription membership to lapse?

A: What will happen to a customers packaged network license if they allow their Subscription membership to lapse?

Q: Where to go for more Previous Version information?

A: For more information regarding Previous Version use please login to Subscription Center at www.autodesk.com/subscriptionlogin. Once logged in click on the Subscription Administration link on the left navigation.

See also:

Network license news in AutoCAD 2009

Package license file introduced with AutoCAD 2009

Prior version support and license usage of Autodesk 2012 Suite products

Monday, March 14, 2011

Windows 7 installation partition failure and easy solution

The error is: Setup was unable to create a new system partition or locate an existing system partition. See the setup log files for more information.

The solution is to unplug any boot devices that are connected via USB like an external hard drive.

If you really want to find the setup log files see here.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Windows Live Writer 400 Bad Request solution

If you get the following error trying to Publish in WLW it is easy to fix:
The server reported an error with the following web address:
400 Bad Request
Invalid category term

The reason is probably that you added some characters in the category that are not accepted like an exclamation. The solution is to remove or change the category.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

How to make MagiCAD network licenses report correctly

Several customers of JTB FlexReport uses the great MagiCAD products from Progman for Building Services (HVAC, piping, plumbing, sprinkler and electrical systems) CAD/BIM work in AutoCAD, AutoCAD Architecture and Revit.

After their latest release 2010.11 I got reports about a FlexNet/FLEXlm problem where only one license was reported in use even though more licenses were used. Example of magicad vendor daemon features involved are magie2, magihp2, magir2, magiree2, magirep2, magirev2, magispr2 and magiv2.

I contacted Progman about this and quickly got this confirmation of the problem and a workaround.

“Yes, we are aware of the error in our licensing, which causes the mentioned “feature”. You are able to get rid of this error by returning and activate their MagiCAD licenses. After this you are able to monitor license usage situation correctly.”

Monday, March 7, 2011

Autodesk Launches 2012 Digital Entertainment Creation Products

Autodesk has started to launch their 2012 products. Here’s from the press release:

Autodesk, Inc. announced new releases of the company’s digital entertainment creation software and middleware. The 2012 versions enable iterative workflows, help users manage complexity and provide new creative tools. Autodesk products have been used to create popular movies like “Black Swan,” chart-topping video games such as “Medal of Honor,” primetime television commercials like the “Bridgestone ‘Carma’” Super Bowl ad and hit television shows such as “Glee.”

All products in the latest Entertainment Creation Suites offer notable new features and enhancements:

  • Autodesk 3ds Max 2012 software delivers a new accelerated graphics core, mRigids for dynamic rigid-body simulations in the viewport and new sculpting and painting enhancements like the Clone brush
  • Autodesk Maya 2012 software provides significant enhancements to the viewport offering full-screen effects, editable motion trails for animation editing in the viewport, as well as new simulation options
  • Autodesk Softimage 2012 software provides new procedural ICE modeling, integrated Syflex cloth simulation, stereoscopic capabilities and multiple core software development kit (SDK) additions
  • Autodesk Mudbox 2012 software delivers enhancements to the painting toolset, innovative new UV and topology-independent workflows, practical posing tools and improved large dataset handling
  • Autodesk MotionBuilder 2012 software provides new in-viewport stereoscopic display and camera rig, a unified interface and solver for Autodesk HumanIK 4.5 or 2012 middleware, as well as new tools for virtual moviemaking

Friday, March 4, 2011

How to Force Outlook PST files to another location

By default Outlook saves PST files in this folder %localappdata%\Microsoft\Outlook\ when running Vista or Windows 7 (%appdata%\Microsoft\Outlook\ for Windows XP).

When it comes to Hotmail and Gmail there is no way from within Outlook to relocate the PST files.

If you for some reason want to move these files Outlook will just recreate them and start downloading your emails again.

But there is a registry hack to force the PST Path. This can either be done before you add the account to Outlook or if you need to move existing PST files. In the later case you need to move the PST files from the default location to the new location as well.

Close Outlook and Locate Outlook in the registry (regedit.exe).

Outlook 2003: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\

Outlook 2007: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook\

Outlook 2010: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\

Then create a new Expandable String Value named ForcePSTPath and as value enter the path where you want the PST files to be.

Now start Outlook and the new path should be used.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Style the Ribbon

The Building Coder shows some fun coding trix to put color and style to the Ribbon in AutoCAD and Revit.

Using the AdWindows.dll assembly, we can access the ribbon control like this:

using Autodesk.Windows;

RibbonControl ribbon = ComponentManager.Ribbon;

As seen below the panel background image, panel headers, tab header font and more can be changed.

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