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Dave Morse
Dave Morse
Dave Morse's Blog

In this post I wanted to share with you a discovery I made recently while teaching an Inventor fundamentals class.  I was actually demonstrating the new DWG Underlay functionality, and afterwards, illustrating the annotation tools within Inventor, including the Hole Note tool.  What I received when trying to create a Hole Note was the following error message (see image below): Now for some backdrop on how I got this error.  The workflow you will see here is a valid scenario for bringing in AutoCAD DWG Underlays into Inventor, and then detailing the drawing.  The drawing file was imported into inventor, but the drawing was a Model Space only file, with the geometry to be used, scaled at 2:1. So, the geometry that I was projecting from AutoCAD to use to model my part was double the size.  I used the Direct Edit command with the Scale option to scale the part down by .5 , resulting in a model that was true to scale.  Finally, when detailing the drawing from this model, I tried to use the Hole and Thread note ...

While recently assisting a client with a vault upgrade, we came across an issue that caused a problem when backing up the vault, and I thought it was important enough to write about in order to save you the time and frustration of trying to discover the issue. We had completed the upgrade process from Vault Professional 2015 SP2 to Vault Professional 2017 without any hitches. Our next step was to perform a backup of the vault prior to installing the Vault 2017 Hotfix 1.  We received the following error when attempting the backup: Figure 1: Vault Backup error Access to the path is denied. The path that was being denied was the path listed in the Shared Path location in the Advanced Settings dialog box. We spent time checking the path and verifying that we had proper read/write access to the path in question.  Figure 2: The Share Path is found in Tools > Administration > Advanced Settings. This path was set in the 2015 vault, because it is necessary to configure a shared network folder as a transition area between a ...

Here’s an interesting issue that can start happening when launching any flavor of AutoCAD.   The message comes from the ACInetEngine and states the following: “Could not write to the Internet cache on your computer.”  Following the error message is instructions on what to do to cure the problem, but for some users the problem persists. If you have experienced this problem and have tried the prescription but are still experiencing the issue, try the following additional steps as outlined in the following Autodesk Knowledge Network (AKN) article. Could not write to the Internet cache If you continue to experience the issue after attempting the steps outlined, please contact our support team for assistance.

One of the things that I love about AutoCAD is that most fixes can be easily identified and completed rather quickly.  I recently had a client reach out to me concerning some functionality that was no longer working as expected in their AutoCAD 2010 product.  Both of their issues stemmed around a system variable that had been mysteriously changed. The first problem my client had was a missing Quick Properties palette.  She loved the ability to select an item in AutoCAD, and to use the Quick Properties palette to quickly change the layer, color, linetype (among others).   The solution was to type in QUICKPROPERTIES at the command prompt, and to enable it by changing it to 1.  There are options available within Quick Properties to allow greater functionality that have been developed since 2010, so if you like Quick Properties, be sure to check out Help in AutoCAD to learn all about it. The second problem was that she lost the ability to double-click on her MText in order to edit the text.  We checked the DBLCLKEDIT system variable, which was ...

A vast majority of software installs go without a hitch.  Inventor is no exception.  Occasionally though, installs can appear to go smoothly and it's not until you try to use certain functionality, that you realize that there are some problems.  I recently had a client experience issues when editing one of Inventor 2017's Content Center Family Tables.  Autodesk is aware of the problem and working on a fix.   If you've experienced anything similar, there is a workaround, but let me first describe the problem (Note: I was not able to reproduce the problem, and it may in fact be present due to other programs installed on the system). In this case in point, the user selected the ANSI S I-Beam family and did a Save Copy As, maintaining a Link to the parent family.  Once completed, he then proceeded to edit the newly created family using the Family Table Editor.  This is where things go awry.  By simply trying to modify the part number cells to align with his company standards, the other cells in the table automatically change ...

Vault 2017 Hotfix Installation Fatal Error
I've come across this error twice in the last week while helping clients update their 2017 vaults to the 2017 Hotfix 1.  The error displays during the installation process, and prevents you from completing the install.  This is a permissions issue, and it can still come up regardless of your Admin rights. Autodesk has posted a workaround to enable a successful installation.  See the original article here: Error - Installation Ended Prematurely.

One of my capacities (along with all of our technical specialists) here at Applied Software, is to help our clients with technical support for their Autodesk Software.  One of the most frequent issues we help to solve are installation errors.  With the myriad of OS and other software installs and configurations, coupled with the different approaches of security by IT departments and contractors, the installation support topics are widely varied, and can be very unique.  One of the more time consuming tasks is tracking down the root causes through the manual analyzing of the installation log files. In a recent case, I discovered a new tool distributed by Autodesk, which is purpose built to automatically analyze installation log files in 30 seconds or less, and provide a suggested solution.  How awesome!  This tool can be used by those of you who like to take on the challenge of solving these errors yourselves, or you may be asked to run the analysis and provide the results to one of our technical specialists.  In either case, I've provided the link below to ...

In this post, we will explore the steps to creating a custom Revision Scheme and applying it to an existing Revision Scheme Definition.  Make note, we are not going to define a new Revision Scheme, but are creating a new Scheme Format only, and applying that to an existing definition.  To start, click on the Tools tab > Administration > Vault Settings. In the Vault Settings dialog box, select the Behaviors tab > Revisions...  button.  In the Revision Scheme Definitions dialog box, first select the Standard Numeric Format (or whichever definition Scheme Format you want to change). Next, select the Edit… button at the top of the dialog box.  In the next dialog box, you can make modifications to Standard Numeric Format, such as the Definition Name, Description, Category assignment, and Scheme Values.  Select the Scheme Format button on the right, and be sure to highlight Numeric. For this example, Click Copy… In the List Scheme Format dialog box, rename the scheme (ex: Tooling).  The list of Scheme Values is listed on the left. In this example, we are going to ...

The testing of new functionality in Fusion 360 is really quite simple, and available to everyone.  So, you might be wondering how to get signed up and get your hands on this technology.  Well, it's really not complicated at all, you just need to turn on the functionality that you want to test.  If you are interested in any or all of the Preview Functionality, just follow the steps below to get access. In Fusion 360, click the drop-down box to the right of your log in, and click Preferences. In the Preferences dialog box, select Preview from the navigation pane on the left. In the Preview section, you will see available functionality.  Simply select the functionality you wish to use, and then clicking OK.   If this is the first time you have selected a functionality to preview, you will be presented with a terms and conditions dialog.  Simply click on Sign me up. Don't forget, this is your opportunity to participate in the future development of the ...

  Before adding AutoCAD files to Autodesk Vault, you might want to change a setting.  One of the default settings for creating visualization files in Vault is to NOT include Model Space views.  This setting can help keep the amount of visualization files generated down to a minimum, and is especially nice if you rely solely on your Layouts for previewing documents.  However, if you need to be able to see the Model Space content as well, then you will want to change the setting.  Let's take a look at how to change it.  Before we begin changing the setting, let's take a look at the Preview tab of a file and take notice there is not a Model Space Preview (there are only 2 Previews, and they are layouts). To change the setting, first, go to Tools, then Administration, then Vault Settings In the Vault Settings dialog, select the Visualization tab, then the Options... button in the Publish Options section. In the Publish Options dialog box, from the drop-down list, ...

This post is part 2 on my 2-part series on Installing, enabling, and configuring Vault Project Sync.  In part 1, I outlined how to install and enable Project Sync inside of Vault Professional.  In this post, I will be detailing how to configure Project Sync to work with Autodesk Buzzsaw.  (I mentioned Vault Administrator permissions are needed during Step 2 - Enable Project Sync, in the part 1 post, but I need to emphasize that all the steps outlined in both blog posts need to be performed by a Vault Administrator). In order for Project Sync to communicate with your Buzzsaw site, there are two elements that need to be configured.  As outlined in part 1, free access to Buzzsaw is one of the benefits to purchasing Vault Professional on maintenance, so the first step is to create a Buzzsaw site for your organization.  The steps below outline the process to verifying your access, creating your site, and user credentials. First, log in to your Autodesk Account, and click on the Management link at the top of ...

Project Sync is a functionality that is available in Vault Professional, and allows a company to easily share and synchronize specific data to project team members who reside outside of the network firewall of the hosted Vault.  When you subscribe to Vault Professional or if you already own it with a maintenance plan, one of the benefits is free access to Autodesk Buzzsaw.  Within Vault, Project Sync is used to configure which data is shared, and when synchronization occurs with your Buzzsaw site.  Users can access project data from local workstations, the cloud, and mobile devices. "Ok, so how do I get this cool functionality?", you ask.  Well, that's what this post is all about, so let's get started. Step 1 - Installation Project Sync is not installed by default when installing the Vault Professional (Client), so it must specifically be enabled during the install.  In the setup dialog, select Project Sync in the configuration window to have it installed.  If you've already installed Vault without also selecting Project Sync, you can modify the installation through the Windows Control Panel. ...

The Vault Administrator is responsible for maintaining the health of the Vault.  The Vault's health is a crucial element to proper data management and happy, stress free, vault use.  Having said that, the Vault Administrator is usually being hammered from all sides doing many other functions and helping many people with their IT and design needs.  The best way to maintain the health of your vault is to automate those administrative tasks with batch file routines that are run on a scheduled basis using your windows task scheduler. The Connectivity.ADMSConsole.exe command can be used in conjunction with command line options to back up or restore a vault.  It can also Migrate data after installing a Hot Fix or an Update, Purge file versions, and Re-index File Properties (just to name a few).  The list of scripts for the Command Line Server Console can be found here. Once you familiarize yourself with the Command Line options, you need to create batch files for the routines that you want to run on a scheduled basis.  Finally, establish your Vault Zen by automating the ...

Recently, I had a customer contact our support team in regards to a behavior after installing release 2017. He was having issues with his mouse lagging while panning and zooming and using Inventor generally.  He had been using 2016 without any issues. A quick search yielded a result on the Autodesk Inventor Troubleshooting site. I figured I would write about this, since it has the potential to be a common problem for users who also have Vault installed. In short, the fix (until Autodesk is able to produce a patch) is to disable the My Home tab in inventor. From the Tools tab, select Application Options.   In the General tab, the My Home option has been moved to the bottom right of the dialog.  Un-check the box as displayed below.  Click OK to dismiss the dialog box. The My Home tab is the cause, as it periodically checks the vault server to ensure that the vault status for each thumbnail preview is correct.  According to the article, this is the designed behavior but it is supposed to take place on ...

I had a client recently ask me how to get his browser node to show up as the default file name. You too, may be wondering how to do this.  To begin, let's define what we're talking about. The browser node name (located at the top of the browser window) is by default, named the same as the the file when it is saved.       To change it back to the original filename, simply click slowly twice on the node and it will activate the node in the type over mode. Simply backspace and hit the Enter key. This will delete the current name and then replace it with Filename. If that doesn't work, you may have to press the Spacebar and then Enter. In an assembly file, you may have the individual parts and subassemblies renamed.  There is a Productivity tool which will help users rename all of the nodes at once. Here's how: On the Assemble tab of the Ribbon > Productivity panel, select the drop-down arrow and select Rename Browser Nodes. In the Rename Browser Nodes dialog box, select from the ...

A360 keeps all of the file versions of your Fusion 360 designs, allowing you to recall or promote older versions to be the current working version. Did you know that you could save archive files to your local computer for safe keeping? Copying and moving files and folders between projects is also now supported. In this post, we'll explore how to move and copy files between project folders, and we'll also look at archiving Fusion 360 design files. Copying Files The ability to copy a Fusion Design file to another project location is now straight forward. In A360, simply click on the Project folder you want to access. Click on the Data tab, and then hover your mouse over the file that you want to copy, or select the checkbox next to the file. [caption id="attachment_9490" align="aligncenter" width="600"] The A360 Dashboard. The Data tab holds all of the design files for the specified project folder.[/caption] If you hover over the file in the list, you can click on the Actions icon. In the drop-down list select Copy. [caption id="attachment_9495" align="aligncenter" width="600"] By hovering over ...

One of the new features in Inventor 2016 is the ability to scale your models.  You might be wondering, why didn't Inventor have this ability prior to the 2016 release? Well, it does exist in prior releases of Inventor, but it's just much easier to Scale an object in 2016.  In previous releases of Inventor, a simple Scale command does not exist, but you can achieve the scale by creating a Derived Part.  It takes several steps to accomplish, and is done by creating two files, so it does leave a lot to be desired.  The good news is that Inventor 2016 solves that issue. In this example, I'll be opening a non-native CAD file and then applying the scale to it.  The first step is to open the file that you want to scale. You can choose a single part file or an assembly file.  I'm going to choose an assembly file. From the Open button, change the files of type to either read "All Files" or the specific file type you are looking for. For my example I've selected ...

I was asked by a student last week, what had happened to the AutoCAD Classic Workspace.  He was not a frequent user of AutoCAD, and had recently upgraded to 2016.  I informed him that the workspace beloved by so many had been on the chopping block for a few years before Autodesk finally killed it in the 2015 release of AutoCAD. [caption id="attachment_9393" align="aligncenter" width="473"] Beginning with the 2015 release of AutoCAD, the Classic workspace has been retired.[/caption] This conversation reminded me that it would be a great idea to post how to re-create the AutoCAD Classic Workspace, on my blog.  So here goes... If you are accustomed to using AutoCAD from within the Classic workspace, then it really isn't difficult to re-create.  There are several simple steps that only take about 5 minutes to complete. The first step is to make visible your menu bar. [caption id="attachment_9392" align="aligncenter" width="464"] Click on the down-arrow in the workspace tab. Select Show Menu Bar.[/caption] Next, click on Tools in the Menu Bar, select Toolbars > AutoCAD > , and then select each toolbar that belongs in the ...

Don't you just love surprises? I do (okay, so it really depends on what kind of surprise).  When I logged onto my laptop this morning, I was met with the all-to-familiar Autodesk Application Manager, informing me that there were updates.  When I clicked on the Details button to see what the new update was, I was met with my surprise of the day.  There was a great big splash screen (see below) which stated that "This version of Application Manager has been retired", and that I need to contact my Administrator for more information. Once I click the OK button, Application Manager disappears. [caption id="attachment_9317" align="aligncenter" width="615"] You can avoid contacting your Administrator by manually uninstalling the Application Manager, and installing the new version.[/caption] It turns out that this is a known issue with Autodesk and they are working on a fix (See the link here to the Autodesk Forum thread).  Within the Autodesk Forum thread which is discussing this issue, it is suggested to manually uninstall the Application Manager, and to use the link provided to install the new version. ...

With the recent release of Autodesk's 2016 product line, there has been quite a few enhancements and workflow improvements to Autodesk Inventor.  One of the most easily noticeable is the changes to the My Home screen.  One of my favorite workflow improvements is the ability to visually know the vault status of my Inventor files.  Whether a file is checked out, or if I have a local copy or not, is instantly recognizable and can make a difference in how I go about accessing the file.  You need to be sure that you are logged into the vault to see an accurate status.  Once you are logged in, the status indicators update automatically. [caption id="attachment_9258" align="alignnone" width="600"] Each file has a Vault Status Indicator. Use the Refresh Vault Statuses to update Recent Documents.[/caption] Another great addition to this workflow functionality is the filter list on the left side of Recent Documents.  You have the ability to filter recent documents by Project, by File Types, and by Date Modified.  You can also use Sort By to reorder the preview tiles.  The added ...

As of January 30th, 2015, all current Product Design Suite Subscribers are entitled to Autodesk Fusion 360 as part of their Subscription benefits.  If you've not had a chance to try out Fusion 360, well, now is your chance.  Fusion 360 is the first 3D CAD/CAM tool of its kind.  It allows users to quickly and easily design, engineer, fabricate, collaborate & manage their design ideas in a single, easy to use interface, regardless of OS platform.  Learn more about Fusion 360 by clicking here.  My purpose today, is to advertise the new subscription benefit and show you how to gain access. New and existing Product Design Suite Premium Maintenance or Desktop Subscribers will receive Fusion 360 as part of their Subscription entitlement. New and existing Product Design Suite Ultimate Maintenance or Desktop Subscribers will receive Fusion 360 Ultimate as part of their Subscription entitlement. To access your new benefit, your Contract Manager or Software Coordinator must grant users access to the Fusion 360 benefit. Then, you can log in to Autodesk Account to download your Fusion 360.  Once logged in, click ...

Have you ever had an irregular edge that you needed to extrude to, but couldn't figure out how to get Inventor to recognize it?  I had a customer recently contact me about how to do this very thing.  In his example, he is trying to get an extrusion to terminate on an irregular volute cut edge.  The problem is, there is no way to terminate the extrusion to this edge.  This is an example where using Replace Face, from the Surface drop-down panel will do the trick. [caption id="attachment_5496" align="alignnone" width="600"] The volute cut-edge is not a selectable entity to extrude to, and therefore poses a challenge for a clean termination face.[/caption] The first step in getting this extrusion to terminate properly on this irregular edge, is to use the Boundary Patch tool.  From the 3D Model tab, and the Surface panel, select Boundary Patch. [caption id="attachment_5497" align="alignnone" width="600"] Use the Boundary Patch tool to create a 3D surface from the volute edges.[/caption] The Boundary Patch dialog will open, prompting you to select edges.  Simply select the edges that will form a closed ...

Autodesk has released the A360 File Viewer, and at first I thought it was hot. I quickly jumped onto the site to test it out.  It currently accepts over 50 file formats, including AutoCAD, Revit and Inventor files.  Since this is an online viewer, there's no software to download and install, and you don't even need to log In to A360.  Exciting, right? I immediately clicked on the "Browse for a file to upload" button and went straight for an Inventor assembly file. [caption id="attachment_5480" align="alignnone" width="600"] You can Drag and Drop files to the viewing window, or use the Browse button. The viewer will "process" the file and display it on screen within the web browser window.[/caption]     [caption id="attachment_5482" align="alignnone" width="600"] This is certainly annoying. Be sure to check this box before selecting your file, or dragging it to the viewer.[/caption]   In the Open dialog you are not able to discover what file types the viewer is capable of viewing. Well, I went ahead and browsed for an assembly file, eager to view it and see what capabilities and features this ...

I recently had a client ask how to remove the Units String from the MASS column in his Parts List. He was working on his Inventor drawing template and wanted to be able to format the column so that the units (lbmass, or kg) doesn't show in each and every row (it is displayed in the header).  In this blog post, I'll demonstrate how to accomplish this. Right click on your Parts List and select Edit Parts List. [caption id="attachment_4684" align="alignnone" width="600"] Hover the mouse over the Parts List. When highlighted, right-click and select Edit Parts List...[/caption] In the Parts List dialog box, right click on the Mass column, then select Format Column... [caption id="attachment_4686" align="alignnone" width="600"] Right-click the column header and select Format Column...[/caption] In the Format Column dialog box, you must first change the selected Radio button from No Value Substitution to Enable Value Substitution.  Once this is done, you must select the MASS property category from the Available Properties in the Parts List Column Chooser, and click OK. [caption id="attachment_4685" align="alignnone" width="600"] Select the Enable Value Substitution radio button. Then select Browse ...

I recently had a client asking how to make the inches marks (") show up in his dimension style in his Inventor drawings, and make his text larger. There's quite a bit of information involved in teaching about the Styles Editor, but I thought I would share just how to do these two things, as I think they are quite popular settings. In order to prevent you from having to make these changes over and over again, you need to make these changes in your template file. First, make sure that you have a project file created for editing your templates, and make sure that you have set the Styles Library to Read/Write. This will ensure that you can save the edits you make to the Style Library (Note: The editing of template files should be done by only one person in order to prevent the unintentional overwriting of desired settings). Next, open the Inventor template drawing (.idw or .dwg). Go to the Manage tab and select Styles Editor, from the Styles and Standards panel. Without getting deep into the different settings ...

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