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  1. #1
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    Default Reference file control panel

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    Is there one in autocad 2016? I just want to switch reference file on and off to see which ones I need to keep. Microstation had this excellent feature at least as far back as 1994. Has autocad caught up yet?

  2. #2
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    Are you talking about the Reference Manager palette?



    Or the external reference manager?



    Both have been there for 15+ years.

    You can also select the Xref, and then right-click and make your desired changes there.

    Last edited by rkmcswain; 5th May 2017 at 08:27 pm. Reason: Add one more option
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  3. #3
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    Default Not Sure

    In microstation there is a feature that allows you to pull in a file to be used as a background. The file is referenced in but does not add to the size of the drawing since it is a separate file. I thought AutoCAD had a similar feature.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bustr View Post
    In microstation there is a feature that allows you to pull in a file to be used as a background. The file is referenced in but does not add to the size of the drawing since it is a separate file. I thought AutoCAD had a similar feature.
    That is the way xrefs work in AutoCad, unless you Bind them to the dwg file, only the image of the xref is in the drawing, not the file data.

    To turn them on and off, you simply open the xref manager, in one of two ways.

    1. Click on an xref and then click on the External References tile on the contextual ribbon tab that comes up, or

    2. type XREF. Then select your desired xref file name, right click. Then click Unload to turn that reference off, and Reload to turn it on. Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy.

    OR, you can select an xref image, open Properties, and toggle SHOW UNDERLAY to No, or Yes. Even easier. and faster. Note that this one does not unload the xref image.

    Neither method changes or moves the xref in any way, but UNLOAD makes it unselectable. reload puts it back in the same place. SHOW > No, leaves the reference image selectable but invisible.
    Last edited by Dana W; 6th May 2017 at 03:47 pm.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bustr View Post
    In microstation there is a feature that allows you to pull in a file to be used as a background. The file is referenced in but does not add to the size of the drawing since it is a separate file. I thought AutoCAD had a similar feature.
    Yes, what you are describing is called an External Reference, or XREF for short, in AutoCAD. This has been around since 1990.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bustr View Post
    Has autocad caught up yet?
    Have you caught up yet?
    Drafting is a breeze.

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    Microstation has added support for layer names, TTF fonts, xrefs and enough to put it where AutoCAD Light was a quarter century ago. Still no support for lisp like most CAD software.

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