More tips from the Vectorworks KnowledgeBase

If you’re after tips on getting the most from Vectorworks, here’s the latest from the Vectorworks Knowledgebase. This week: backing up preferences, disabling the Mac OS X firewall, exporting files, and more…

Backing Up Vectorworks Preferences

Backing up your User Preferences is as easy as following these four steps:


1) Once you have your desired preferences and workspace changes, quit  Vectorworks.
2) Navigate to the Settings’ folder in ‘My Computer > C: > Documents and Settings > (YourUsername) > Application Data > Nemetschek > Vectorworks’
3) Copy the folder named after the version of Vectorworks you are using. For example in Vectorworks 2011, the folder is simply named 2011
4) Save this folder somewhere safe, for your future use.

Follow the same instructions but with a different navigational path:

‘My Computer > C: > Users > (YourUsername) > AppData > Roaming > Nemetschek > Vectorworks’

MAC OSX 10.5 & OSX 10.6

Follow the same instructions but with a different navigational path:

‘Mac OSX > Users > (YourUsername) > Library >Application Support > Vectorworks’

Content taken from Vectorworks KnowledgeBase.
Disabling the Mac OS X Firewall in OS X 10.5 and 10.6:

Another quick but handy tip:

“To disable the built-in firewall on OS X, go to Apple > System Preferences:
Vectorworks 2011 - Disabling Mac OS X Firewall 1

Click Security on the System Preferences dialogue box and under Firewall, click Stop to disable the firewall. Normally this will only need to be disabled during the installation or updating of Vectorworks, not for using it on a regular basis after installation.”

Vectorworks 2011 - Disabling Mac OS X Firewall 2
Content taken from Vectorworks KnowledgeBase.
Exporting Files

The ‘File > Export’ command exports Vectorworks files into several different file formats (including previous versions of Vectorworks) making it possible to import them into other software programs.

nb. Vectorworks exports to a new file, leaving the original file intact.

Vectorworks KnowledgeBase offer this guide to the different file formats:

DWG and DXF files can be read by other CAD programs (such as AutoCAD). In addition, they can be printed by service bureaus and opened in rendering programs. The Vectorworks translator exports DWG/DXF files for AutoCAD versions 2010,2007/2008/2009, 2004/2005/2006, 2000/2000i/2002, 14/LT98/LT97, 13/ LT95, and 12. Use the latest version possible for best results.

Saves all records of a particular format as a file that can be used in a database program, such as FileMaker Pro and Microsoft Access. The Vectorworks program provides a variety of formats to select from when exporting records as a database, including comma-delimited, tab-delimited, merge, DIF, and SYLK.

EPSF (Encapsulated PostScript Format) files can be read by many graphics and desktop-publishing programs. The Vectorworks translator exports EPSF files in Illustrator 88 format. EPSFs contain all drawing elements except colour bitmaps. The Vectorworks program exports these files with high resolution and full accuracy. ‘Image>Files>Exports’ the file as an image file in formats like JPEG, Photoshop, BMP, and others. The image can then be imported into other applications or used in web pages.

Export PDF – (Requires Design Series)
This command is only available on the Macintosh when Quartz Imaging is enabled. It exports the current file to a PDF document in the specified location. There are additional PDF options available for users of the Vectorworks Design Series products on both Macintosh and Windows.

Export PICT
This command is available on the Macintosh when Quartz Imaging is disabled. It exports a vector image of the current file in the specified location .Metafile. Export graphics files in Metafile format for inclusion in virtually any Windows program, including AutoCAD and word processing programs. There are two versions of Metafiles: standard (pre-Windows 95) and enhanced. The Vectorworks program supports the enhanced version.

QuickTime VR Object – (Requires Renderworks)
Creates a QuickTime Virtual Reality object file.

QuickTime VR Panorama – (Requires Renderworks)
Creates a QuickTime Virtual Reality panorama file.

Writes out the current file as a series of VectorScript commands. These commands can then be used as part of a VectorScript script or as a guide for learning .Worksheet. Worksheet files can be read by spreadsheet programs, such as Microsoft Excel, as well as by some word processing programs. Export all rows or only selected rows of a worksheet. Because many of these programs have different format requirements, there are a variety of formats to select from when exporting files as a worksheet, including comma-delimited, tab-delimited, merge, DIF, and SYLK.

Cinema 4D – 3D Only (Requires Renderworks)
Exports 3D objects in the unified view (Vectorworks Design Series required) or active layer to the .c4d format, for use in CINEMA 4D. Vectorworks layers are exported as container objects in the CINEMA 4D scene hierarchy. Vectorworks classes become CINEMA 4D layers, allowing visibility to be controlled across the scene. Layer names, object names, and object types are preserved. An additional command, Send to CINEMA 4D (3D only) is available from the File menu. When CINEMA 4D is already installed, exports the file (3D objects only) to .c4d format, launches the CINEMA 4D application, and opens the file. During export, the Send to CINEMA 4D dialog box opens. Select whether to create a new scene or merge into the current scene.

Parasolid X_T
Exports 3D objects to the Parasolid X_T format.

Exports 3D curves, surfaces, and solids to IGES format.

Creates a SAT file for exporting ACIS 3D solids. The Export Solids as Trimmed Surfaces option exports a solid as several different ACIS ‘bodies’ (for example, a cube exports as six ACIS bodies). If this option is deselected, a solid is exported as a single body.

Simple Vectorscript
Creates an exported Vectorscript designed to be easy to import into programs like Strata Software products.

Export Stereo Lithography
Exports all visible 3D surfaces and solids in the current layer into an STL-formatted file. Export 2008, 2009, 2010 saves a copy of the file in a format that can be opened and manipulated in an older version of the Vectorworks program.”

Content taken from Vectorworks KnowledgeBase.
Render Bitmap

Scroll to the bottom for a short video by Vectorworks that demonstrates how to use the Render Bitmap tool so that you can enjoy render previews (that are printable and exportable) without leaving the Viewport.

Content taken from Vectorworks KnowledgeBase.

If you have any more queries about Vectorworks, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email or, if you want to share any of your own tips with other Vectorworks users, feel free to post them as comments below.

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