DWF Technical Evangelist, Brian Pene documented some tips on using custom symbols with Autodesk Design Review.To start the process of inserting custom symbols using Autodesk Design Review, your symbol geometry must be block data in a DWG file to complete the steps that follow. Once you have multiple symbols/blocks on a layout in a DWG, there are 6 steps to publish your symbol libraries from AutoCAD to DWF for import to Autodesk Design Review’s custom symbol library. You create a DWF file from a DWG from any AutoCAD product via the publish command.
- From the publish dialog, click Publish Options button.
- From the Publish Options dialog, select to "Include" Block information (in the next step, you'll set up a block template file).
- In this step you can create or load a Block template file to publish your Block/Symbol libraries to DWF. To create a new Block template, select "Create…" from the Block template file menu option to display the Publish Block template dialog where you can save your Block template files for loading into your DWF publish option settings.
- From the Publish Block Template dialog, click the "Scan for Blocks" button to display and filter blocks available in the Block source drawings field set. You can also add or scan from multiple "Block source drawings" and block definitions. Once you've scanned for Blocks, a list of them will display in the "Block data to Publish" field sets. You can select the blocks you wish to publish and click the "Save" button.
- Back in the Publish options Dialog, with the new Block template file loaded and click OK.
- Now from the Publish dialog, click Publish button to publish your block library to DWF. You can also save the list of sheets (to a DSD file) by clicking the Save icon. This DSD file can then be loaded in the publish dialog, to remember your Publish settings and options for the next time you wish to update and publish your symbol libraries.
Subject Matter Expert, Jason Pratt of Autodesk Collaboration Services Sales devised a trick to compare two versions of an AutoCAD drawing using the Autodesk Design Review custom symbols feature. Let's say you have two versions of the same drawing: V1.DWG and V2.DWG.
- You use the steps above to create a custom symbol from V1.DWG.
- You load V2.DWG into AutoCAD. You use publish to generate V2.DWF.
- You load V2.DWF into Autodesk Design Review. You insert the custom symbol (created from V1.DWG). You save the DWF file with the markup as V2.DWF.
- You load V2.DWG into AutoCAD. You use the Markup Manager to load V2.DWF. AutoCAD permits you to toggle visibility between the drawing and the markup. This allows you to visually compare the two versions, since the drawing is V2.DWG and the markup is actually an image of V1.DWG.
Try doing that with a plot file! DWF really does go beyond the paper.