Installation & Licensing

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*Davidson, Gary
Message 1 of 6 (92 Views)

A2K Plotter Config sharing

92 Views, 5 Replies
11-17-1999 04:02 PM
A2K seems to want all my users to locate their plotter config files in the
same directory tree, and only gives us one choice of where that might be.
Since some users have A2K loaded on C: and others on D:, this is causing
headaches. I'm considering creating three directories on a network share for
storage of: .pc3 files, .ctb files, and .pmp files. I intend to make the
"master" files in each of these directories read-only, but allow users to
create their own "custom" copies in the folders as well when necessary.

Has anyone had experience with this type of setup using NT4.0 Server? I'm
concerned about two (or more) users accessing the same config file at the
same time - file locking - as well as the performance effect that searching
the network for plotter config files may have. At what time are these files
searched for (opening AutoCAD or just when plotting?) and once used, is
there a file lock maintained on them until AutoCAD is closed?

Any input greatly appreciated...
Gary Davidson
gdavi@yahoo.com
*scully, tim
Message 2 of 6 (92 Views)

Re: A2K Plotter Config sharing

11-17-1999 04:36 PM in reply to: *Davidson, Gary
Each user can set an option which tells AutoCAD where to start looking
for PC3 files. This location may
contain subdirectories and shortcuts. Likewise, there is an option for
where AutoCAD looks for CTB/STB
files.

If you want to have a read-only network directory with "master files" it
might be best to make it
accessable to each user by a shortcut from their own read-write
directory.

It is only a good idea to include network shortcuts if your network is
both fast and reliable.
AutoCAD *has* to rescan the list of plotters and plot style tables
whenever you enter a dialog
which uses these (e.g., Plot, Page Setup, Plotstyle, etc.). If AutoCAD
didn't do this, it wouldn't
pick up changes the user might have made from the desktop editors or
wizards.

AutoCAD doesn't apply any special file locking to these files. If they
are read-write, the
last user will win. This is a good argument for making shared
directories read-only and having
the local user's directory read-write.

Gary Davidson wrote:
>
> A2K seems to want all my users to locate their plotter config files in the
> same directory tree, and only gives us one choice of where that might be.
> Since some users have A2K loaded on C: and others on D:, this is causing
> headaches. I'm considering creating three directories on a network share for
> storage of: .pc3 files, .ctb files, and .pmp files. I intend to make the
> "master" files in each of these directories read-only, but allow users to
> create their own "custom" copies in the folders as well when necessary.
>
> Has anyone had experience with this type of setup using NT4.0 Server? I'm
> concerned about two (or more) users accessing the same config file at the
> same time - file locking - as well as the performance effect that searching
> the network for plotter config files may have. At what time are these files
> searched for (opening AutoCAD or just when plotting?) and once used, is
> there a file lock maintained on them until AutoCAD is closed?
>
> Any input greatly appreciated...
> Gary Davidson
> gdavi@yahoo.com
*Johnson, Suzanne
Message 3 of 6 (92 Views)

Re: A2K Plotter Config sharing

11-27-1999 10:40 AM in reply to: *Davidson, Gary
Hi,
We just implemented a2k with Map 3.0. All of our users have a2k loaded
locally and most of the support files are located on a Novell network.
Plotting is (excuse the language) hell. I setup the configuration and found
several disturbing things you may want to note;

*** very important... if you are using HP Designjets or any other driver
that needs to be updated... MAKE SURE EACH USERS WORKSTATION IS UPDATED
PRIOR TO SETTING UP PLOT CONFIGURATIONS. Believe it or not, the plot
configurations are stored in the drawing. I don't know yet how to purge the
plot configuration setup from the drawing file. If the user does not have
access to the plotter queue, and error will appear when you issue the plot
command but you can bypass the error with no other repercussions. If the
user used a pc3 file to plot drawing and it is stored in the drawing that is
opened by anyone, the file is automatically created in the specified pc3
directory. Try deleting a PC3 file in the directory where AutoCAD is
configured to look for them and then open AutoCAD and call up a drawing that
used the pc3 file, it will be automatically created again in the directory!
If someone is carrying a pc3 file that contains the wrong drivers for the
plotter, good luck in purging it. I am working on that now..

1) Plot configuration files (pc3) are saved in each drawing. If the
drawing is opened at another location, the pc3 file is created in the users
directory. If the pc3 file already exists in users directory (with the same
filename), it is automatically OVERWRITES the one in the directory with the
one defined in the drawing! That is outrageous! If you point the users to
a network directory, the files will continuously be overwritten each time a
user calls up their drawing containing the same filename for pc3.

2) If the users have different network plot queues, each plotter
configuration will have to be setup on each workstation to ensure that the
network mapping is correct.

3) Decide now whether to introduce your users to either Color Plot Style
Tables (CTB) or Plot Style Tables (STB) filetypes. I chose STB because it
uses both methods of plotting and provides more flexibility. CTB is used to
migrate the "older" forms of plotting into the new environment. You must
decide which style to use because it cannot be changed from one style type
to another style type during the session; even using a MDI and calling up
more than one drawing ... it sticks for the entire session. Try changing
the style type in the OPTIONS and then go to the plot command and look at
the plot style file type.... low and behold it is not dynamically updating
to the new filetype (stb or ctb). That really burns me.

4) The pathing for plotters that are defined in AutoCAD's configuration
CANNOT BE DIRECTED TO USE A NEW PATH AND LOCATION IN A LISP PROGRAM. Try
to define ANOTHER PATH TO THE style tables or plotter configuration files
using the plot command at the command line. Test this by copying the files
from the local directory (plotter) to another directory on the network.
Try running the plot command from the command line "command:-plot" and go
through the prompting and specify for filename the network directory path
and the filename to use. It cannot find the file and will crash your
system. BIG problem

I am still fighting with plotter issues everyday and the users are fearful
and angry... It will take some time to adjust and for autodesk to fix some
of the plotting issues. I would suggest leaving the plot configuration
files and the plot style files on their local machines or you will be
chasing problems all day. Have the users name the PC3 files something
unique such as their username.pc3 and this will identify who's plotter
configuration is being used. These files will soon be all over your system
in the specified path for the plotter configuration and not to mention the
stb or ctb files.

Hope this insight helps you decide what to do...
Regards,

Suzanne Johnson
GIS Software Engineer
*Hurley, Shaan
Message 4 of 6 (92 Views)

Re:

11-27-1999 11:29 AM in reply to: *Davidson, Gary
Suzanne,

The PC3 file not stored in the drawing it is merely referenced by the
drawing. See my comments below indicated by "" and please slow down on
the coffee .

Suzanne Johnson wrote in message
news:81p8dl$pcq1@adesknews2.autodesk.com...
Hi,
We just implemented a2k with Map 3.0. All of our users have a2k loaded
locally and most of the support files are located on a Novell network.
Plotting is (excuse the language) hell. I setup the configuration and found
several disturbing things you may want to note;

*** very important... if you are using HP Designjets or any other driver
that needs to be updated... MAKE SURE EACH USERS WORKSTATION IS UPDATED
PRIOR TO SETTING UP PLOT CONFIGURATIONS. Believe it or not, the plot
configurations are stored in the drawing. I don't know yet how to purge the
plot configuration setup from the drawing file. If the user does not have
access to the plotter queue, and error will appear when you issue the plot
command but you can bypass the error with no other repercussions. If the
user used a pc3 file to plot drawing and it is stored in the drawing that is
opened by anyone, the file is automatically created in the specified pc3
directory. Try deleting a PC3 file in the directory where AutoCAD is
configured to look for them and then open AutoCAD and call up a drawing that
used the pc3 file, it will be automatically created again in the directory!
If someone is carrying a pc3 file that contains the wrong drivers for the
plotter, good luck in purging it. I am working on that now..

1) Plot configuration files (pc3) are saved in each drawing. If the
drawing is opened at another location, the pc3 file is created in the users
directory. If the pc3 file already exists in users directory (with the same
filename), it is automatically OVERWRITES the one in the directory with the
one defined in the drawing! That is outrageous! If you point the users to
a network directory, the files will continuously be overwritten each time a
user calls up their drawing containing the same filename for pc3.

The PC3 file is not stored in the drawing they are just referenced.
This is a very simple solution. In the Options dialog point all users
machine to the same network directory with the PC3 files. Now place read
only rights on the directory. Now when the user opens the drawing referring
to the PC3 it finds it and that is the end of story as there should be no
reason why AutoCAD is trying to change the PC3 file or recreate one as it is
much more likely your users are doing this. Most CAD managers love this as
they can now update the PC3 files on the network along with plot styles in
one location and the users are unable to change them. I would have given my
left arm for this functionality to share configurations and the drawing to
remember which one it was plotted with when I was a CAD manager 2 years ago.
Also the named page setups are a great item to use. The reason for the
update is
only to get the optimization and functionality in the driver that HP has
done.
The latest version is v4.22
http://www.hp.com/cposupport/prodhome/dsj750c.html .
I am not sure about Novell but at least on a NT network if you update the
server that
has the device and all your stations are using the shared device they will
get the
updated driver automatically.

2) If the users have different network plot queues, each plotter
configuration will have to be setup on each workstation to ensure that the
network mapping is correct.
I would simplify this to make a more standard network plotting queue
thus less of a nightmare for the network administrator for all
applications not just AutoCAD.

3) Decide now whether to introduce your users to either Color Plot Style
Tables (CTB) or Plot Style Tables (STB) file types. I chose STB because it
uses both methods of plotting and provides more flexibility. CTB is used to
migrate the "older" forms of plotting into the new environment. You must
decide which style to use because it cannot be changed from one style type
to another style type during the session; even using a MDI and calling up
more than one drawing ... it sticks for the entire session. Try changing
the style type in the OPTIONS and then go to the plot command and look at
the plot style file type.... low and behold it is not dynamically updating
to the new filetype (stb or ctb). That really burns me.

I am not sure why you did this but I would suggest just staying with
the CTB and if you need to convert and have installed the Migration
Assistance just run CONVERTPSTYLES to go back. Again store the plot styles
in a network directory with read only privileges. As far as the dynamically
updating styles I cannot reproduce this as what occurs is that after you
change the Options setting for default plot style and select apply it is
only active in the next new drawing as the plot style not a dynamic update
of the current drawing.
1) Open drawing A CTB format
2) Change the Option of default plot style to named plot style STB and
press Apply
3) Now drawing A is still CTB format even in the plot dialog
4) Start a new drawing B and it follows the default setting and is named
plot style mode STB
The reason they are not interchangeable is because one plots based on color
and one plots based on the named style. So you could not have a 2 red
circles plot differently in a color based style but you can in named plot
styles and there could be no seamless programmatic method to allow changing
on the fly by entity at this time and it would also be kind of a sub plot
style making things very difficult.

4) The pathing for plotters that are defined in AutoCAD's configuration
CANNOT BE DIRECTED TO USE A NEW PATH AND LOCATION IN A LISP PROGRAM. Try
to define ANOTHER PATH TO THE style tables or plotter configuration files
using the plot command at the command line. Test this by copying the files
from the local directory (plotter) to another directory on the network.
Try running the plot command from the command line "command:-plot" and go
through the prompting and specify for filename the network directory path
and the filename to use. It cannot find the file and will crash your
system. BIG problem

Not sure why you would do something like this but you can change the
support paths many different ways with customization or just in the Options
dialog. I do not receive a crash I just get a notice the file is missing.

I am still fighting with plotter issues everyday and the users are fearful
and angry... It will take some time to adjust and for autodesk to fix some
of the plotting issues. I would suggest leaving the plot configuration
files and the plot style files on their local machines or you will be
chasing problems all day. Have the users name the PC3 files something
unique such as their username.pc3 and this will identify who's plotter
configuration is being used. These files will soon be all over your system
in the specified path for the plotter configuration and not to mention the
stb or ctb files.

It would far easier to just have the plotting support files on the
server with read only rights to prevent overwriting. Then when you need to
change or revise a plot style or plotter configuration for the whole groups
you only go to the one directory on the network. I would suggest taking
some time and going through the plotting documentation especially the "10
steps to plotting" I list a link to below as most people once they overcome
the learning curve actually prefer the AutoCAD 2000 plotting with the
control, more features, and consistency than plotting with previous
releases. I see nothing in your post that requires a fix or maybe it is not
detailed enough as most of your issues are due to not understanding the new
plotting at this point or possibly usability. We have released a Plotting
Update to add some new plotters, update some drivers and fix some bugs.
After going
through my suggestions on the network directory, and reading the 10 steps
document please let me know specifically what you are still unclear on and
I and others in this group will assist.

Helpful Links:
Keep your AutoCAD 2000 Support Assistance up to date at:
http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/asa2000.htm

AutoCAD Product Support main page:
http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/index.htm

General AutoCAD 2000 Tech. Solutions:
http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/techsol2.htm

AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Technical Solutions:
http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/2000pp.htm

10 Steps to Plotting in AutoCAD 2000
http://www.autodesk.com/support/filelib/acad2000/plot10st.htm

Online AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Tutorials
http://www.autodesk.com/support/tutorial/acad2000/index.htm

AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Update
http://www.autodesk.com/support/filelib/acad2000/plotupdt.htm

Autodesk e-Beta web page
http://betaprograms.autodesk.com/betaweb.htm

AutoCAD 2000 Express Tools Download
http://www.autodesk.com/expresstools

Autodesk Discussion Groups:
http://www.autodesk.com/support/discsgrp/acad.htm

Autodesk Discussion Group searching:
http://www.autodesk.com/support/discsgrp/advsrch.htm

Sincerely,

Shaan Hurley
Autodesk Beta Programs
http://betaprograms.autodesk.com

Hope this insight helps you decide what to do...
Regards,

Suzanne Johnson
GIS Software Engineer
*Davidson, Gary
Message 5 of 6 (92 Views)

Re:

11-30-1999 08:53 AM in reply to: *Davidson, Gary
Shaan...
Thanks for your responses to Suzanne's comments. I only have one concern
about setting up the shared plot styles the way you've suggested. Although
we have one or two office-wide "standard" plot styles for our Xerox 8830,
these plot styles only work well for drawings we've created in house. My
users are constantly faced with the challenge of plotting drawings from
consultants and clients, and trying to set up plot styles on their own for
temporary use. We also do quite a bit of presentation work and plot styles
are consistently being tinkered with to achieve the look du' jour. Typically
this involves editing our standard.ctb file and saving it with another name
for use with that particular plot.

By placing the shared plot styles in a network folder which is read-only, my
users will then not be able to make any adjustments to the plot style files
unless they have admin rights in that directory. They also could not create
any new .ctb files in that directory.

My suggested solution would be to go ahead and place the "standard" plot
styles in a network folder that's given read-write access, but make the
standard plot style files themselves read-only. This insures that the
standards will be available to all, they cannot be overwritten, and this
will still allow users to add and edit customized .ctb files on the fly.
Additionally, all users will be able to find all .ctb files created so there
should never be one missing. The only downside I see is an eventual
abundance of .ctb files in the directory. Do you know any other reasons this
scheme wouldn't work well?

Could this scheme also work with the pc3 files so users can all share the
same pc3 files, and create new ones when needed? (Seems this could all be
avoided if A2K would just allow a second directory to be searched for ctb
and pc3 files - one local and one shared)

Thanks...(and please keep up the efforts on that XES8830 driver update)
Gary Davidson
gdavi@yahoo.com

Shaan Hurley wrote in message
news:81pbh0$pdh4@adesknews2.autodesk.com...
> Suzanne,
>
> The PC3 file not stored in the drawing it is merely referenced by the
> drawing. See my comments below indicated by "" and please slow down
on
> the coffee .
>
> Suzanne Johnson wrote in message
> news:81p8dl$pcq1@adesknews2.autodesk.com...
> Hi,
> We just implemented a2k with Map 3.0. All of our users have a2k loaded
> locally and most of the support files are located on a Novell network.
> Plotting is (excuse the language) hell. I setup the configuration and
found
> several disturbing things you may want to note;
>
> *** very important... if you are using HP Designjets or any other driver
> that needs to be updated... MAKE SURE EACH USERS WORKSTATION IS UPDATED
> PRIOR TO SETTING UP PLOT CONFIGURATIONS. Believe it or not, the plot
> configurations are stored in the drawing. I don't know yet how to purge
the
> plot configuration setup from the drawing file. If the user does not have
> access to the plotter queue, and error will appear when you issue the plot
> command but you can bypass the error with no other repercussions. If the
> user used a pc3 file to plot drawing and it is stored in the drawing that
is
> opened by anyone, the file is automatically created in the specified pc3
> directory. Try deleting a PC3 file in the directory where AutoCAD is
> configured to look for them and then open AutoCAD and call up a drawing
that
> used the pc3 file, it will be automatically created again in the
directory!
> If someone is carrying a pc3 file that contains the wrong drivers for the
> plotter, good luck in purging it. I am working on that now..
>
> 1) Plot configuration files (pc3) are saved in each drawing. If the
> drawing is opened at another location, the pc3 file is created in the
users
> directory. If the pc3 file already exists in users directory (with the
same
> filename), it is automatically OVERWRITES the one in the directory with
the
> one defined in the drawing! That is outrageous! If you point the users
to
> a network directory, the files will continuously be overwritten each time
a
> user calls up their drawing containing the same filename for pc3.
>
> The PC3 file is not stored in the drawing they are just referenced.
> This is a very simple solution. In the Options dialog point all users
> machine to the same network directory with the PC3 files. Now place read
> only rights on the directory. Now when the user opens the drawing
referring
> to the PC3 it finds it and that is the end of story as there should be no
> reason why AutoCAD is trying to change the PC3 file or recreate one as it
is
> much more likely your users are doing this. Most CAD managers love this as
> they can now update the PC3 files on the network along with plot styles in
> one location and the users are unable to change them. I would have given
my
> left arm for this functionality to share configurations and the drawing to
> remember which one it was plotted with when I was a CAD manager 2 years
ago.
> Also the named page setups are a great item to use. The reason for the
> update is
> only to get the optimization and functionality in the driver that HP has
> done.
> The latest version is v4.22
> http://www.hp.com/cposupport/prodhome/dsj750c.html .
> I am not sure about Novell but at least on a NT network if you update the
> server that
> has the device and all your stations are using the shared device they will
> get the
> updated driver automatically.
>
> 2) If the users have different network plot queues, each plotter
> configuration will have to be setup on each workstation to ensure that the
> network mapping is correct.
> I would simplify this to make a more standard network plotting queue
> thus less of a nightmare for the network administrator for all
> applications not just AutoCAD.
>
>
> 3) Decide now whether to introduce your users to either Color Plot Style
> Tables (CTB) or Plot Style Tables (STB) file types. I chose STB because
it
> uses both methods of plotting and provides more flexibility. CTB is used
to
> migrate the "older" forms of plotting into the new environment. You must
> decide which style to use because it cannot be changed from one style type
> to another style type during the session; even using a MDI and calling up
> more than one drawing ... it sticks for the entire session. Try changing
> the style type in the OPTIONS and then go to the plot command and look at
> the plot style file type.... low and behold it is not dynamically
updating
> to the new filetype (stb or ctb). That really burns me.
>
> I am not sure why you did this but I would suggest just staying with
> the CTB and if you need to convert and have installed the Migration
> Assistance just run CONVERTPSTYLES to go back. Again store the plot styles
> in a network directory with read only privileges. As far as the
dynamically
> updating styles I cannot reproduce this as what occurs is that after you
> change the Options setting for default plot style and select apply it is
> only active in the next new drawing as the plot style not a dynamic update
> of the current drawing.
> 1) Open drawing A CTB format
> 2) Change the Option of default plot style to named plot style STB and
> press Apply
> 3) Now drawing A is still CTB format even in the plot dialog
> 4) Start a new drawing B and it follows the default setting and is named
> plot style mode STB
> The reason they are not interchangeable is because one plots based on
color
> and one plots based on the named style. So you could not have a 2 red
> circles plot differently in a color based style but you can in named plot
> styles and there could be no seamless programmatic method to allow
changing
> on the fly by entity at this time and it would also be kind of a sub plot
> style making things very difficult.
>
> 4) The pathing for plotters that are defined in AutoCAD's configuration
> CANNOT BE DIRECTED TO USE A NEW PATH AND LOCATION IN A LISP PROGRAM. Try
> to define ANOTHER PATH TO THE style tables or plotter configuration files
> using the plot command at the command line. Test this by copying the
files
> from the local directory (plotter) to another directory on the network.
> Try running the plot command from the command line "command:-plot" and go
> through the prompting and specify for filename the network directory path
> and the filename to use. It cannot find the file and will crash your
> system. BIG problem
>
> Not sure why you would do something like this but you can change the
> support paths many different ways with customization or just in the
Options
> dialog. I do not receive a crash I just get a notice the file is missing.
>
> I am still fighting with plotter issues everyday and the users are fearful
> and angry... It will take some time to adjust and for autodesk to fix
some
> of the plotting issues. I would suggest leaving the plot configuration
> files and the plot style files on their local machines or you will be
> chasing problems all day. Have the users name the PC3 files something
> unique such as their username.pc3 and this will identify who's plotter
> configuration is being used. These files will soon be all over your
system
> in the specified path for the plotter configuration and not to mention the
> stb or ctb files.
>
> It would far easier to just have the plotting support files on the
> server with read only rights to prevent overwriting. Then when you need to
> change or revise a plot style or plotter configuration for the whole
groups
> you only go to the one directory on the network. I would suggest taking
> some time and going through the plotting documentation especially the "10
> steps to plotting" I list a link to below as most people once they
overcome
> the learning curve actually prefer the AutoCAD 2000 plotting with the
> control, more features, and consistency than plotting with previous
> releases. I see nothing in your post that requires a fix or maybe it is
not
> detailed enough as most of your issues are due to not understanding the
new
> plotting at this point or possibly usability. We have released a Plotting
> Update to add some new plotters, update some drivers and fix some bugs.
> After going
> through my suggestions on the network directory, and reading the 10 steps
> document please let me know specifically what you are still unclear on
and
> I and others in this group will assist.
>
> Helpful Links:
> Keep your AutoCAD 2000 Support Assistance up to date at:
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/asa2000.htm
>
> AutoCAD Product Support main page:
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/index.htm
>
> General AutoCAD 2000 Tech. Solutions:
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/techsol2.htm
>
> AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Technical Solutions:
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/2000pp.htm
>
> 10 Steps to Plotting in AutoCAD 2000
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/filelib/acad2000/plot10st.htm
>
> Online AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Tutorials
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/tutorial/acad2000/index.htm
>
> AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Update
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/filelib/acad2000/plotupdt.htm
>
> Autodesk e-Beta web page
> http://betaprograms.autodesk.com/betaweb.htm
>
> AutoCAD 2000 Express Tools Download
> http://www.autodesk.com/expresstools
>
> Autodesk Discussion Groups:
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/discsgrp/acad.htm
>
> Autodesk Discussion Group searching:
> http://www.autodesk.com/support/discsgrp/advsrch.htm
>
>
> Sincerely,
>
> Shaan Hurley
> Autodesk Beta Programs
> http://betaprograms.autodesk.com
>
>
> Hope this insight helps you decide what to do...
> Regards,
>
> Suzanne Johnson
> GIS Software Engineer
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
*Hurley, Shaan
Message 6 of 6 (92 Views)

Re:

11-30-1999 09:07 AM in reply to: *Davidson, Gary
Gary,

Good point, I agree to setting the read-only permissions at file level as an
option.

Sincerely,

Shaan Hurley
Autodesk Beta Programs
http://betaprograms.autodesk.com

Gary Davidson wrote in message
news:820var$9nt16@adesknews2.autodesk.com...
> Shaan...
> Thanks for your responses to Suzanne's comments. I only have one concern
> about setting up the shared plot styles the way you've suggested. Although
> we have one or two office-wide "standard" plot styles for our Xerox 8830,
> these plot styles only work well for drawings we've created in house. My
> users are constantly faced with the challenge of plotting drawings from
> consultants and clients, and trying to set up plot styles on their own for
> temporary use. We also do quite a bit of presentation work and plot styles
> are consistently being tinkered with to achieve the look du' jour.
Typically
> this involves editing our standard.ctb file and saving it with another
name
> for use with that particular plot.
>
> By placing the shared plot styles in a network folder which is read-only,
my
> users will then not be able to make any adjustments to the plot style
files
> unless they have admin rights in that directory. They also could not
create
> any new .ctb files in that directory.
>
> My suggested solution would be to go ahead and place the "standard" plot
> styles in a network folder that's given read-write access, but make the
> standard plot style files themselves read-only. This insures that the
> standards will be available to all, they cannot be overwritten, and this
> will still allow users to add and edit customized .ctb files on the fly.
> Additionally, all users will be able to find all .ctb files created so
there
> should never be one missing. The only downside I see is an eventual
> abundance of .ctb files in the directory. Do you know any other reasons
this
> scheme wouldn't work well?
>
> Could this scheme also work with the pc3 files so users can all share the
> same pc3 files, and create new ones when needed? (Seems this could all be
> avoided if A2K would just allow a second directory to be searched for ctb
> and pc3 files - one local and one shared)
>
> Thanks...(and please keep up the efforts on that XES8830 driver update)
> Gary Davidson
> gdavi@yahoo.com
>
> Shaan Hurley wrote in message
> news:81pbh0$pdh4@adesknews2.autodesk.com...
> > Suzanne,
> >
> > The PC3 file not stored in the drawing it is merely referenced by the
> > drawing. See my comments below indicated by "" and please slow down
> on
> > the coffee .
> >
> > Suzanne Johnson wrote in message
> > news:81p8dl$pcq1@adesknews2.autodesk.com...
> > Hi,
> > We just implemented a2k with Map 3.0. All of our users have a2k loaded
> > locally and most of the support files are located on a Novell network.
> > Plotting is (excuse the language) hell. I setup the configuration and
> found
> > several disturbing things you may want to note;
> >
> > *** very important... if you are using HP Designjets or any other
driver
> > that needs to be updated... MAKE SURE EACH USERS WORKSTATION IS UPDATED
> > PRIOR TO SETTING UP PLOT CONFIGURATIONS. Believe it or not, the plot
> > configurations are stored in the drawing. I don't know yet how to purge
> the
> > plot configuration setup from the drawing file. If the user does not
have
> > access to the plotter queue, and error will appear when you issue the
plot
> > command but you can bypass the error with no other repercussions. If
the
> > user used a pc3 file to plot drawing and it is stored in the drawing
that
> is
> > opened by anyone, the file is automatically created in the specified pc3
> > directory. Try deleting a PC3 file in the directory where AutoCAD is
> > configured to look for them and then open AutoCAD and call up a drawing
> that
> > used the pc3 file, it will be automatically created again in the
> directory!
> > If someone is carrying a pc3 file that contains the wrong drivers for
the
> > plotter, good luck in purging it. I am working on that now..
> >
> > 1) Plot configuration files (pc3) are saved in each drawing. If the
> > drawing is opened at another location, the pc3 file is created in the
> users
> > directory. If the pc3 file already exists in users directory (with the
> same
> > filename), it is automatically OVERWRITES the one in the directory with
> the
> > one defined in the drawing! That is outrageous! If you point the users
> to
> > a network directory, the files will continuously be overwritten each
time
> a
> > user calls up their drawing containing the same filename for pc3.
> >
> > The PC3 file is not stored in the drawing they are just
referenced.
> > This is a very simple solution. In the Options dialog point all users
> > machine to the same network directory with the PC3 files. Now place read
> > only rights on the directory. Now when the user opens the drawing
> referring
> > to the PC3 it finds it and that is the end of story as there should be
no
> > reason why AutoCAD is trying to change the PC3 file or recreate one as
it
> is
> > much more likely your users are doing this. Most CAD managers love this
as
> > they can now update the PC3 files on the network along with plot styles
in
> > one location and the users are unable to change them. I would have
given
> my
> > left arm for this functionality to share configurations and the drawing
to
> > remember which one it was plotted with when I was a CAD manager 2 years
> ago.
> > Also the named page setups are a great item to use. The reason for the
> > update is
> > only to get the optimization and functionality in the driver that HP has
> > done.
> > The latest version is v4.22
> > http://www.hp.com/cposupport/prodhome/dsj750c.html .
> > I am not sure about Novell but at least on a NT network if you update
the
> > server that
> > has the device and all your stations are using the shared device they
will
> > get the
> > updated driver automatically.
> >
> > 2) If the users have different network plot queues, each plotter
> > configuration will have to be setup on each workstation to ensure that
the
> > network mapping is correct.
> > I would simplify this to make a more standard network plotting
queue
> > thus less of a nightmare for the network administrator for all
> > applications not just AutoCAD.
> >
> >
> > 3) Decide now whether to introduce your users to either Color Plot
Style
> > Tables (CTB) or Plot Style Tables (STB) file types. I chose STB because
> it
> > uses both methods of plotting and provides more flexibility. CTB is
used
> to
> > migrate the "older" forms of plotting into the new environment. You
must
> > decide which style to use because it cannot be changed from one style
type
> > to another style type during the session; even using a MDI and calling
up
> > more than one drawing ... it sticks for the entire session. Try
changing
> > the style type in the OPTIONS and then go to the plot command and look
at
> > the plot style file type.... low and behold it is not dynamically
> updating
> > to the new filetype (stb or ctb). That really burns me.
> >
> > I am not sure why you did this but I would suggest just staying
with
> > the CTB and if you need to convert and have installed the Migration
> > Assistance just run CONVERTPSTYLES to go back. Again store the plot
styles
> > in a network directory with read only privileges. As far as the
> dynamically
> > updating styles I cannot reproduce this as what occurs is that after you
> > change the Options setting for default plot style and select apply it is
> > only active in the next new drawing as the plot style not a dynamic
update
> > of the current drawing.
> > 1) Open drawing A CTB format
> > 2) Change the Option of default plot style to named plot style STB and
> > press Apply
> > 3) Now drawing A is still CTB format even in the plot dialog
> > 4) Start a new drawing B and it follows the default setting and is named
> > plot style mode STB
> > The reason they are not interchangeable is because one plots based on
> color
> > and one plots based on the named style. So you could not have a 2 red
> > circles plot differently in a color based style but you can in named
plot
> > styles and there could be no seamless programmatic method to allow
> changing
> > on the fly by entity at this time and it would also be kind of a sub
plot
> > style making things very difficult.
> >
> > 4) The pathing for plotters that are defined in AutoCAD's configuration
> > CANNOT BE DIRECTED TO USE A NEW PATH AND LOCATION IN A LISP PROGRAM.
Try
> > to define ANOTHER PATH TO THE style tables or plotter configuration
files
> > using the plot command at the command line. Test this by copying the
> files
> > from the local directory (plotter) to another directory on the network.
> > Try running the plot command from the command line "command:-plot" and
go
> > through the prompting and specify for filename the network directory
path
> > and the filename to use. It cannot find the file and will crash your
> > system. BIG problem
> >
> > Not sure why you would do something like this but you can change
the
> > support paths many different ways with customization or just in the
> Options
> > dialog. I do not receive a crash I just get a notice the file is
missing.
> >
> > I am still fighting with plotter issues everyday and the users are
fearful
> > and angry... It will take some time to adjust and for autodesk to fix
> some
> > of the plotting issues. I would suggest leaving the plot configuration
> > files and the plot style files on their local machines or you will be
> > chasing problems all day. Have the users name the PC3 files something
> > unique such as their username.pc3 and this will identify who's plotter
> > configuration is being used. These files will soon be all over your
> system
> > in the specified path for the plotter configuration and not to mention
the
> > stb or ctb files.
> >
> > It would far easier to just have the plotting support files on the
> > server with read only rights to prevent overwriting. Then when you need
to
> > change or revise a plot style or plotter configuration for the whole
> groups
> > you only go to the one directory on the network. I would suggest taking
> > some time and going through the plotting documentation especially the
"10
> > steps to plotting" I list a link to below as most people once they
> overcome
> > the learning curve actually prefer the AutoCAD 2000 plotting with the
> > control, more features, and consistency than plotting with previous
> > releases. I see nothing in your post that requires a fix or maybe it is
> not
> > detailed enough as most of your issues are due to not understanding the
> new
> > plotting at this point or possibly usability. We have released a
Plotting
> > Update to add some new plotters, update some drivers and fix some bugs.
> > After going
> > through my suggestions on the network directory, and reading the 10
steps
> > document please let me know specifically what you are still unclear on
> and
> > I and others in this group will assist.
> >
> > Helpful Links:
> > Keep your AutoCAD 2000 Support Assistance up to date at:
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/asa2000.htm
> >
> > AutoCAD Product Support main page:
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/index.htm
> >
> > General AutoCAD 2000 Tech. Solutions:
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/techsol2.htm
> >
> > AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Technical Solutions:
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/autocad/2000pp.htm
> >
> > 10 Steps to Plotting in AutoCAD 2000
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/filelib/acad2000/plot10st.htm
> >
> > Online AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Tutorials
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/tutorial/acad2000/index.htm
> >
> > AutoCAD 2000 Plotting Update
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/filelib/acad2000/plotupdt.htm
> >
> > Autodesk e-Beta web page
> > http://betaprograms.autodesk.com/betaweb.htm
> >
> > AutoCAD 2000 Express Tools Download
> > http://www.autodesk.com/expresstools
> >
> > Autodesk Discussion Groups:
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/discsgrp/acad.htm
> >
> > Autodesk Discussion Group searching:
> > http://www.autodesk.com/support/discsgrp/advsrch.htm
> >
> >
> > Sincerely,
> >
> > Shaan Hurley
> > Autodesk Beta Programs
> > http://betaprograms.autodesk.com
> >
> >
> > Hope this insight helps you decide what to do...
> > Regards,
> >
> > Suzanne Johnson
> > GIS Software Engineer
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
>
>

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