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Customize Your Keys
Tip# 3236 By Leonid Nemirovsky On 19-Jul-2009
Rated By 1 users
Categories : PGP File
Software type : AutoCAD 2010
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Customizing your keyboard will help expand its capabilities.

Leonid Nemirovsky (visit his Better Than Nothing AutoLISP web site) sends us a tip on customizing your keyboard to better run AutoCAD. As he's mentioned in previous tips, Len loves his programmable Logitech G15 gamer keyboard for working in AutoCAD. But sometimes his drafting and modeling work takes him away from his own work station. "Here is a tip for expanding the capabilities of a regular keyboard," he says. "If you do not use (or can give up) the numbers from your keyboard's number keypad, you can assign hot key commands (and/or LISP routines or macros) and Shift key functions directly to the numeric keypad."

  • Open the CUI (or CUIX in AutoCAD 2010) and create a new command with your favorite macro or LISP. Expand the Keyboard Shortcuts menu item. Drag the command to Shortcut Keys.
  • Select the command. A Properties window will open on the right. In the Access menu, in the Keys area, click the ellipses (the three dots in a row) to activate the Shortcut Keys window. Here is where you will create your new keyboard shortcut.
  • Press one of the numeric pad’s keys (1, 2, 3 … 0). If your keyboard is set to lowercase (caps lock off) you will have assigned NUMPAD1 (or 2, 3….). If the keyboard is set to uppercase (caps lock on) you will have Shift+NUMPAD1 assigned as the shortcut.

Notes from Cadalyst Tip Patrol: The ability to customize AutoCAD is one reason it works so well. There are some limits as to what you can use for keystrokes, but generally any combination will work. Don't confuse this process with PGP file shortcuts. Shortcuts in the PGP file require you to press Enter after you type in your shortcut. Keyboard shortcuts work automatically and instantly. For example, a typical keyboard shortcut is Ctrl+C to copy items. In AutoCAD, typing in C (out of the box) and pressing Enter will invoke the Copy command. However, you could reprogram AutoCAD to start the AutoCAD Copy command when you press Ctrl+C. You can also reprogram the function keys.

When programming the keys In your number keypad, using the Shift key as a combination might give you problems because they could conflict with existing Windows-based Shift + number pad shortcuts, of which there are several. But you can use the Alt or Ctrl key with the number pad. For almost any other key on your keyboard you can use the Shift+Ctrl+Alt combo. If you hate accidentally hitting the F1 key when pressing the Escape key, you can reprogram F1 to invoke AutoCAD's Cancel command instead. (Watch Lynn Allen's tip on this subject in Cadalyst's Video Gallery. Search for "Use the F1 Key to Escape.")


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