Shaan Hurley has documented the AutoCAD 2013 (I guess that will be the name!) system requirements on his Between the Lines blog. Notably missing is support for Microsoft Vista. Windows XP is still supported. It should also be noted that AutoCAD 2013 does introduce a new file format, in keeping with the current 3 year pattern.
With regard to last week's post on modifying the PDF sheet display, I've taken another approach and come up with the following lisp code that will allow you to import some or all of the sheets of a multi-sheet PDF all at once. I realize that the built-in PDFATTACH command allows you to place multiple sheets at once, but you can't see the sheets as you place them. This lisp code is also more of a "how-to" for use in larger routines perhaps - and because such, this is raw lisp code with no error checking. Feel free to dress it up and append the header.
Load the lisp file and then type in the command PMP. Select a multi-sheet PDF file, and then enter the number of sheets you want to insert (this should be equal or less than the total number of sheets in the PDF). At this point you can start picking the lower left corner for each sheet until you reach the end.
When you attach a multi-page PDF file as a reference in AutoCAD, you can choose which sheet to display (see below).
But what if you want to change that reference to a different sheet in the PDF file, later on? There is nothing in the Ribbon to do this, and "Page Number" is a read-only property in the Properties Palette. You could detach the reference and add it again with the new sheet number, but the following lisp function is quicker.
The lisp function below allows you to pick the PDF Underlay object on the screen, and then enter a new sheet number. The image on the screen is updated as soon as the command completes. Make sure you choose a valid sheet. If the PDF file contains 9 sheets and you enter 10, then the PDF reference will disappear.
Many moons ago in the AutoCAD world, when you received a command prompt instead of an expected dialog box, you could check the system variables FILEDIA and CMDDIA and make sure they were set to 1. Over the years, CMDDIA has all but been phased out in AutoCAD, although FILEDIA (for FILE DIAlogs) does still apply. Here is a related post on this.
In AutoCAD MAP (and for MAP commands in Civil 3D) however, CMDDIA does still have an effect on many commands. If you run a MAP command and do not get an expected dialog box, check to make sure CMDDIA = 1. This includes command such as MAPCSCREATE, ADEDEFDATA, ADEQUERY, etc. Some other MAP commands such as MAPCLEAN, do not honor this variable and will always display the dialog box.
Below is a simple animation of creating a quick profile in Civil 3D. No, this is not a new feature, but there are new Civil 3D users every day - and if you have never seen or used this feature - this may help you out.
One of the new features you have probably noticed in AutoCAD 2012 is the new command line capabilities. When you start typing something in, AutoCAD automatically starts searching to help you finish the thought. Did you know you can configure how this works?
Run the AUTOCOMPLETE command and take a look at the options.
Autodesk presented a webinar this morning to review the new version of AutoCAD WS 1.4 that is now available for download. If you are not aware of it, AutoCAD WS is a free web and mobile application for viewing and editing DWG files stored in the cloud. The "cloud" in this sense generally refers to storage space allocated to the user by Autodesk, but it was reminded to us that the "cloud" can mean other things such as SharePoint, Buzzsaw, and even your own servers, with the proper setup. It was even hinted that we might see some object enablers appear soon for WS.
Here are links to all of the popular series of Lynn Allen's Tips and Tricks booklets for various releases of AutoCAD.
I have the collection of these and still refer to them when I need to know in what release a particular feature was introduced. But getting to know the new features is what these are all about. Click the thumbnails below to download the version of your choice.
Last month, I wrote an article for the CADSPEED blog describing a great program where Autodesk and Lenovo teamed up to outfit a deserving small business with new hardware, software, and training - at no cost. Yes, you read that right. FREE software, hardware, software, and training. Who? How? When? Why? Check out the article and watch the YouTube videos linked on that page.
So why am I bringing this up again? Because Autodesk and Lenovo are going to do it again! Are you a small business in need of a "Technology Makeover"? Are you running "non-current" Autodesk software? State your case from now until February 23, 2012 on the AutoCAD > Tech Makeover Contest page on Facebook. Your small business could be the next recipient of this awesome deal which includes up to five Lenovo® ThinkStation® workstations and five licenses of the Autodesk® Design Suite software of your choice. Full details and all of the contest rules are available here.
Final winners will be announced on March 22. If you would like to speak with anyone from Autodesk or Lenovo about why they are doing this, leave me a comment and I will put you in touch with the right people.