AutoCAD 2007/2008/2009

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Distinguished Contributor
thatcadguy
Posts: 856
Registered: ‎04-27-2007
Message 1 of 7 (88 Views)

Data links

88 Views, 6 Replies
03-05-2008 03:24 PM
They're fixed in '09 right? I'm so tired of AutoCAD locking up or displaying an empty rectangle when I try to link a less than dead simple excel sheet. It seems it can't handle merged cells at all.
Distinguished Contributor
daveea
Posts: 382
Registered: ‎12-09-2005
Message 2 of 7 (88 Views)

Re: Data links

03-05-2008 03:47 PM in reply to: thatcadguy
ok, all curious here. if i create an XLS with merged cells, save the file, create a datalink, point to the XLS and use TABLE to use the datalink and create the table, the merged cells come in fine. i'm not doubting anything here, but can you post an XLS that misbehaves?

-dave
Distinguished Contributor
thatcadguy
Posts: 856
Registered: ‎04-27-2007
Message 3 of 7 (88 Views)

Re: Data links

03-05-2008 04:29 PM in reply to: thatcadguy
There's this one...
*Gehenna
Message 4 of 7 (88 Views)

Re: Data links

03-05-2008 06:30 PM in reply to: thatcadguy
thatcadguy wrote:
> They're fixed in '09 right? I'm so tired of AutoCAD locking up or displaying an empty rectangle when I try to link a less than dead simple excel sheet. It seems it can't handle merged cells at all.
>
Works here. All cells ok per Excel worksheet.
Distinguished Contributor
daveea
Posts: 382
Registered: ‎12-09-2005
Message 5 of 7 (88 Views)

Re: Data links

03-06-2008 08:37 AM in reply to: thatcadguy
all four worksheets are coming in beautifully on this end. a few things to check:

1. what version of Excel are you running? we're on 2003 sp3

2. when i first received the XLS, i saved it as a new file and worked with it. i haven't worked with your original (that preserves whatever format you're working in).

3. i used 2 methods to import the sheets:

a. i copied cells to the clipboard and used Paste Special / AutoCAD Entity which sets up an automatic link (it worked)
b. i created a new datalink using DATALINK and then used the TABLE command to create the TABLE using that link with Link Entire Sheet, Link to a Named Range and Link to Range modes (all three modes worked)

a few things to try (not intended as regular processes but to diagnose the problem):
1. take one worksheet and make it into one XLS file by itself instead of an XLS file holding 4 worksheets. does it behave?
2. copy/paste Print_Area (or any other named range) and use Paste Special/ AutoCAD entities mode. does it behave?
3. i'm attaching the saved version of the spreadsheet i worked with. it is a 2003 SP3 version. does it behave?

-dave
Distinguished Contributor
thatcadguy
Posts: 856
Registered: ‎04-27-2007
Message 6 of 7 (88 Views)

Re: Data links

03-06-2008 10:00 AM in reply to: thatcadguy
We're on 2002 SP3. The one you attached seems to exhibit the same behavior as my own.

Perhaps I should've been a little clearer: it will insert the entire sheet fine, but if you try to specify a range, it just shows a black rectangle, most of the time.

I reiterate that AutoCAD can't handle merged cells correctly. For instance, the bottom right cell of the first worksheet happens to be A33, but if you specify A1:A33, it just shows a blank rectangle. I see now that you must specify the actual row and column that the corner of that cell ends at, in this case, A1:smileysurprised:33.

Besides that, it doesn't do that good of a job of inserting it to begin with; the old spanner lisp makes it look twice as good and that thing is archaic. There aren't enough advanced options, there needs to be an option to suppress certain lines in the table, since it takes the liberty of changing every cell wall into a line, even if it's not a solid line in the excel spreadsheet.
Distinguished Contributor
daveea
Posts: 382
Registered: ‎12-09-2005
Message 7 of 7 (88 Views)

Re: Data links

03-06-2008 10:11 AM in reply to: thatcadguy
i see what you're saying now. also, i was able to reproduce your black rectangle when i used your named range off your original file (i'll be beating on that one for a while -- good catch), but when i used literal cell values (A1:smileysurprised:33) for your ranges (which i've been recommending at all my classes) everything behaved fine.

there's definitely room for improvement in AutoCAD's linking functionality ... but it's pretty much on par with the way development went, pace-wise, when paperspace first came out. these things take some time to cook and streamline according to user feedback.

2009 promises some excellent evolutions and refinements and stabilizations on this technology... especially along the lines of format translation handling. no question there.

but wow did it come a long way from 2007.. and if you're on 2009 beta then you know why folks are starting to take this featureset so seriously now.

the impact is gonna be huge.

-dave
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