Conditiona¿l Layer Lock & Readonly for AutoCad

Hallo All,

We are using AutoCad 2012. Our company have more than 32 disciplines. For any projects the drawings are prepared with many disciplines. Civil does the civil drawing portions, water does the water pipeline portion, electrical does the electrical cable layout portions etc. etc. Each departments have their own set of layers in the drawing.

Now the problem is civil can accidentally modify the entities of electrical departments / utility departments. Though we lock the other disciplines layers programmetrically, but user can unlock the other disciplines layers easily if he wish to. Can we make those other disciplines layers read only? So that users can draw / modify in his own discipline layers but can not do that in other disciplines layer. But he can refer those layers / copy entities from those layers if he wish to? Some sort of xref type of thing is required, but we can not use xrefs as we work in a single drawing and our custom drawing management system is integrated with this type of file system accross the offices.

Any idea? Please help.


Soumen Roy
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without the use of xrefs the only way to lock the users out of certain layers is to continue with using additional custom programming to lock those layers and not to allow the users to manually unlock those layers without asking for permission first.

this can become very problematic as the custom program will need to constantly run in the background to constantly check the layers to make sure that those certain layers have not been unlocked by the user.
Soumen-RoyAuthor Commented:
Yes silverkorn,

Use of reactor, more precisely object reactor may do the required job. but it may lead to fatal error for large drawings as I faced earlier. also for large drawings reactor may increase drawing size drastically. any other way?
if the drawings are that large you should really take another look at implementing XREF's into the workflow. This will solve your problem of allowing read only access.

You can also list and copy items from an xref into your current drawing by using the XLIST and NCOPY commands.
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Soumen-RoyAuthor Commented:

Hope I may user xref. But as I told, I can not use that as our custom drawing management software do not supporting that. There are nearly 2200 users who are using that software. I can not modify that software quickly.

then your only option to keep the layers locked is to have your macro/program run at regular intervals or upon certain application events (such as the unlocking of certain layers or before the save process)

unfortunately at this time AutoCAD does not have the capability to prevent a user from unlocking a layer without the addition of custom programming.

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Soumen-RoyAuthor Commented:
Thanx. I have user layer filter and layer based reactor to achieve this. Thanx for you suggestion.

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