AutoCAD 2015 and AutoCAD LT 2015 Bible

The most comprehensive AutoCAD book around!

Make the command line work the way you want it to

The command line is an essential component of drawing in AutoCAD. Even if you don’t type commands there, you need to look at it for prompts and you probably use it to specify options.

Do you know you can use command line to launch other programs?

The command line is actually a palette window. By […]

Ditch dialog boxes with the command-line form of commands

Did you know that many commands have a variation that lets you execute them solely on the command line? This technique is great for creating script files and AutoLISP routines. For example, you can write a script file to plot your drawings.

The secret is to put a hyphen (-) before the command name. Here’s […]

Print or share a list of layers

Sometimes you need a list of layers to quickly see all the layers and their status in a drawing. You can share it with colleagues. For a simple method, follow these steps:

Type -layer on the command line. Choose the ? option to get a list of layers and press Enter. Press F2 to open […]

Record macros with the Action Recorder

Since AutoCAD 2009, you can record macros for later use. You can include requests for user input and messages to make the macro work interactively.

When you save a macro, it has an ACTM filename extension. You’ll find it in your Support\Actions folder of your AutoCAD installation. You can share ACTM files with others.

Start […]

Quickly Find Files in Support File Search Path

AutoCAD places your support files in all sorts of hard to find places, such as:

C:\Documents and Settings\[username]\Application Data\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2008\R17.1\enu\support\

Moreover, you can have many folders in your support file search path, including those that you add yourself. (To add a folder to the search path, choose Tools>Options and click the File tab of the […]

Save layouts with layout templates

When you create a layout, including viewports, a title block, text, and so on, you can save it as a template to use in the future. If you would sometimes like to use a layout from a different drawing, one that isn’t included in your drawing’s template, and therefore not available to you in your […]

XPlode a block

You can use the EXPLODE command to break up the block into its components, but you don’t have control over layer, color, linetype, and so on. The XPLODE command gives you that control.

Here’s how it works:

Type xplode on the command line. At the Select objects: prompt, select one or more blocks. If you […]

Dealing with gaps

Gaps can be frustrating. You want to hatch an almost-closed object, but it doesn’t work. You may want to join lines, or close an arc or an elliptical arc to remove the gap. Finally, you may want to join polylines. Here are some tips about dealing with gaps.

First, and foremost, if you don’t want […]

Use the command line to launch programs

You may know that you can start certain Windows programs from the command line. These programs are in the acad.pgp file that defines aliases for commands. The first section has aliases for Windows commands.

To edit this file and add more commands, choose Tools > Customize > Edit Program Parameters. Notepad opens the acad.pgp file. […]