Join Jeff Bartels for an in-depth discussion in this video Synchronizing settings, part of AutoCAD 2009: 2D Drafting Techniques.
The first thing I would like to do before we get started is to synchronize our AutoCAD environments. This will help ensure that what you see me do on my screen will work the same way on your screen. Now take a look at my screen for a second. I'm working with a default AutoCAD installation. What you see is exactly what you see right out of the box after the program is installed. So my screen may look a little bit different than yours. The goal in this session is to set up our systems such that they are reasonably identical. So I'm going to be asking you to make some changes such that your setup matches mine, and I believe in the do-no-harm principal, so at each point along the way I'm going to give you an opportunity to save your current settings. Let's start with the workspace. A workspace is a saved collection of tools that we see on our screen. If you would like to save your current workspace, you can come down and click on this gear and we can come up and select Save Current As and we can give our current workspace a name. I'm going to call this my original workspace and I'll click Save.
If you have done that, at any point in the future if you would like to restore this workspace, you could simply come down and click the gear and select it from the list. Now the workspace we are going to be using in this title is a stock default workspace that gets installed with AutoCAD. I'm going to come up and select 2D Drafting & Annotation. Now at this point our screens should look reasonably identical. Now that we have taken care of our workspace, let's take care of our settings. I'm going to do that by opening a drawing. I'm going to come up and click my Open icon, and then we are going to look inside the chapter_01 folder inside our exercise_files directory and I'm going to open up this first drawing, 01_silt-fence-detail. Now I'm using this drawing merely as a tool to demonstrate some of our settings that we'll be changing.
To adjust the settings in AutoCAD, we are going to bring up our Options dialog box. To get there I'm going to right- click, and I'll come down and select Options from the menu. The Options dialog box is a place where we can go to adjust literally hundreds of settings that control the way AutoCAD works. Now I'm going to be asking to make some changes to your settings, so once again I'm going to give you an opportunity to save the current setup. Wouldn't it be nice if we could take all of the settings that we see on all these tabs and save them with a given name? Well that's what this Profiles tab is for. If I click this I could see a listing of all of my saved profiles.
Now a profile is just a collection of saved settings. If you would like to save the contents of your Options dialog box, you can simply come over and click the Add to List button. And we'll give this profile a name. I'm going to call this my original settings, and we'll click Apply and close. At any point in the future if you would like to restore your current settings, you can simply come back to the Profiles tab, select your profile and you can click Set Current. Now since I'm going to making some changes, I'm going to select the unnamed profile, and let's go to the Display tab first.
The first change I would like to make is in regards to our tooltips. I'm going to come down and change my Number of seconds to delay to 10. This controls the amount of time it takes for my extended tooltips to pop up on screen. If we set this to 10 seconds we don't have to worry about these guys popping up all the time. Next I'm going to come down and click the Colors button. This brings up a dialog box that allows me to control the color properties of many of my AutoCAD interface items. The one I would like to change is my model space background, and that happens to be the one that's selected by default. So I'm going to come over to the Color flyout and click and I'm going to set this to Black. If our model space background color is black, we get a much better contrast between our layer colors. I'm going to click Apply and close. We can see that change happen in our AutoCAD environment and then I'm going to click OK.
Let's zoom in on this drawing. We'll center this a little bit on screen. Notice as I move my cursor over this geometry, anything my cursor passes over highlights on screen. Now this can be confusing especially if you are working in a large detailed drawing. I would like to make a change to this setting. So let's bring back up our Options. I'm going to right-click, we'll come down and select Options again, and we're going to go to the Selection tab. I am going to come over to the Selection Preview area and I'm going to remove the check from When no command is active. From now on my entities will only highlight when I'm within an active command. I'm going to come down and make one more setting. I'm going to click the Visual Effects Setting button.
This area controls how our objects are highlighted on screen. I'm going to set this for Thicken. This way when I'm in an active command and I hover over an entity it will just get a little bit brighter on my screen. I don't have to worry about getting the extra dashes. Let's click OK. Now the last adjustment I would like to make is on our User Preferences tab. From here I would like you to come down and click your Right-click Customization button. And I want you to make sure that these guys are all set to Shortcut Menu, Shortcut Menu, Shortcut Menu. Now these happen to be the default settings, so if you have never gone into this dialog box before, your settings already match mine. Let's click Apply and Close and I'll click OK.
If I move over my geometry now, we can see that it does not pop up on my screen. With our settings now taken care of, we can be certain that your AutoCAD should now function just like my AutoCAD, and we're ready to take a look at the tutorials. Let's get started.
- Creating boundaries and calculating areas
- Producing gradient fill hatch
- Matching properties
- Dividing and measuring line work
- Finding parallels and extensions
- Making selections based on criteria
- Filtering layers
- Applying new skills using practical examples