Prior to AutoCAD 2000, paper space viewports could only be rectangular. If you needed to crop or trim portions of your viewport, you had to get creative and use multiple rectangular viewports or maybe another creative trick. But ever since the spring of 1999 we have been able to create viewports just about any shape imaginable.

Many people like to create their viewports on a dedicated "no print" layer so that the viewport edges do not print. This is easy with rectangular viewports because there is only one object present, the viewport itself. However, non-rectagular viewports are always defined with TWO objects. One is the viewport and the other is the object used to define the shape of the viewport. Refer to the table below for how the layer assignment is determined when creating non-rectangular viewports. Read more about Non-rectangular viewports

Depending on what discipline you work in, you may or may not have the need to work with User Defined Coordinate Systems. By default, a new empty AutoCAD drawing starts out in the World Coordinate System (WCS) by which all objects are defined. You are free to define any other User Coordinate System (UCS) at any time.

If you have ever tried to copy an item from one drawing to another and the copy does not come in where you think it should, you might be dealing with a different UCS in each drawing. That is why it is important to leave the UCSICON visible so that you can easily tell at least some initial indicators about the UCS.

The two UCS icons above each represent WCS.
The difference is explained below.

In recent versions of AutoCAD Map and Civil 3D, you have the ability to drag and drop ESRI .SHP (shape) files into your drawing editor. This method is extremely fast and in most cases a better solution as opposed to using the MAPIMPORT command. If you need to annotate the shape file with any of the attached data then for speed this method wins hands down, period.

There is one potential downside however. The FDO Map annotation are special dynamic entities and not regular AutoCAD text/mtext. You cannot use traditional AutoCAD commands to move, resize, scale, or edit this annotation in any way. What if you need true AutoCAD text or mtext instead of this Map Annotation? Read more about AutoCAD Map FDO Annotation to AutoCAD text

Our reseller Total CAD Systems held an informative event on 06/10/2014 in Houston. There were breakout sessions in the morning covering the new 2015 features in Infrastructure Systems, Digital Prototyping, and Building Systems. Check out the twitter feed from the #DiveInto2015 event. Read more about 2015 Autodesk event recap #DiveInto2015

Autodesk has released Service Pack 1 for AutoCAD 2015.

Be sure to read the download page and the readme file (English only).

This Service Pack can be applied to AutoCAD 2015 and AutoCAD LT 2015 installed as a standalone application as well as AutoCAD 2015 and AutoCAD LT 2015 installed from the following suites or bundled products.

  • Autodesk AutoCAD Design Suite 2015
  • Autodesk AutoCAD Inventor LT Suite 2015
  • Autodesk AutoCAD Revit LT Suite 2015
  • Autodesk AutoCAD with Advance Steel 2015
  • Autodesk Building Design Suite 2015
  • Autodesk Factory Design Suite 2015
  • Autodesk Infrastructure Design Suite 2015
  • Autodesk Plant Design Suite 2015
  • Autodesk Product Design Suite 2015
Read more about AutoCAD 2015 Service Pack 1 is now available

I have downloaded and used 5 or more apps from AE
36% (9 votes)
I have downloaded and used less than 5 apps from AE
36% (9 votes)
I have never downloaded or used an app from AE
24% (6 votes)
What is the Autodesk Exchange App Store (AE)?
4% (1 vote)
Total votes: 25

Are you familier with the Autodesk Exchange App store? Tell us what you think about it and the apps available there. Read more about Autodesk Exchange App Store (AE) - are you a customer?

Many years ago, programs started using splash screens to give you something to look at while the program was loading. Now days many programs load so quickly that trying to display a splash screen would probably cause the program load time to take longer. We recently tested AutoCAD 2015 with and without the splash screen and startup time without the splash screen is cut roughly in half (from 19 seconds to 9 seconds). If you want to try this for yourself, follow the steps below. Read more about AutoCAD startup with no splash screen

When you drag+drop a DWG file onto a tool palette, the program knows what to do and creates a tool to insert that drawing file as a block (or optionally an xref). Depending on your needs however, an unfortunate side effect is that the full path of that DWG file is saved in the tool palette. If you are a single user or in a small office this probably is not a problem. If a user is not paying attention and creates this tool from a local drive or from a temporary location, he/she will find that the tool will stop working and/or point to the wrong block some day.

For larger office environments, if you move these drawings to a new server then there is no easy way to fix or change the paths. Autodesk has a KB article on this where they explain a workaround. It is a back-door method of manually editing the files that make up the tool palettes. Read more about Relative Paths in tool palettes

One of the things you might want to migrate to a new computer, new version, etc. is the items in your Places Bar, the sidebar on the left of File Dialogs in AutoCAD.

file selection dialog in AutoCAD

These locations are stored in the AutoCAD profile, but we can narrow that down a bit more in case you only want to retrieve these shortcuts without grabbing the entire profile. Read more about Migrating custom Places Bar entries



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