Monday, April 2, 2012

Tips and Trick for AutoCAD 2013 - Content Explorer and Autodesk 360

Guest posting by AutoCAD QA Team member Rohit Arora on the AutoCAD 2013 Content Explorer and Autodesk 360, a pact made in heavens (Cloud actually)!
In this “Tips and Tricks” write-up, I’m going to show the self-professed ‘Hackers and Tinkerers’ out there, the benefits of the newly released Autodesk 360 Sync service in AutoCAD 2013, when used in conjunction with the ‘Content Explorer’. Although the ‘Content Explorer’ was released last year, some people may not have taken a serious look at it. Well, after reading this tip, you may want to leverage these two features for your workflow.


1. In order to use this tip, please ensure you have an Autodesk login. Then sign in (or register) by clicking on the ‘Sign In’ button, on the top right corner in AutoCAD.
· Sign In
2. Now open ‘Content Explorer’ by clicking on Explore button under Plugin Ribbon tab or type CONTENTEXPLORER at command prompt. By default you should see two local folders listed under ‘Content Service (Localhost)’: Downloaded Content & Sample. Here, you could also search for content on the Autodesk’s Seek service.
3. Type ONLINEFOLDER in the Command line. If you are successfully logged to Autodesk 360, you should get result as a folder path:
· C:\Users\\AppData\Local\Autodesk\Autodesk Sync\Cloud\
4. Copy-clip this path, shown within quotes, from the Command line editor.
5. In the Content Explorer palette, click on “Add Watched Folder…” button at the bottom.
· Add Watched Folder
6. Under ‘Select Watched Folder’, click on any of the presented folders, say Documents, click OK.
· Select Watched Folder
7. In the next window ‘Edit Watched Folder’, you can edit the Local Path and paste the Autodesk Sync folder you had copied in Step 4. Add a Description and click OK to exit.
· Edit Watched Folder
8. Now in Content Explorer palette, you should see a new folder named as your login for Autodesk 360 service. (e.g. ‘john.doe’). Done!
9. Now you have access to all the goodness of Drawings and Entities inside the drawings from within Content Explorer, all indexed and searchable!! Whoa!
· Content Explorer
10. Doing this allows you to drop Blocks/Layers/Dim-Styles, etc. from your Autodesk 360 drawings into your current drawing. Since all your content is synced to the Autodesk 360 documents, it’s always ready for sharing and collaboration. Off course, if you log out, then you lose this ability, so don’t!
11. So here are a few pointers: Store your office’s CAD standards, Block library or drawing templates in Autodesk 360, and use them anywhere, anytime; all indexed and searchable. If you explore further, Autodesk 360 allows you to access all (drawing) files via the web, and mobile devices using AutoCAD WS.

Best of Luck!

About the author: An architect turned technology professional; Rohit brings in 15 plus years of experience as an AutoCAD user, and the expertise of a CAD and IT Manager to Autodesk, while currently working as the AutoCAD Software QA Engineer.
Thank you for the guest post Rohit.

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