Need help enhancing some Visio files from a previous author?

Greetings Experts,

The background of what I'm trying to do is, I am a Technical Author who has just started a new job and I have inherited some files from the previous author. I'm using Visio. He used a lot of screen shots with labels that point to various parts of the user interface when a particular step in a task is made. There are currently two separate lines, one in red and one in white, the white is used to show up when the line goes over the user interface which is a dark gray, the theory being I guess that if it were black it would get lost visually against the user interface. He has labels that go with these lines that are labelled step 1, 2, 3 etc.

Currently the two lines are sperate, which means a lot of fiddling about when I have to move them. I'd like them to be grouped together, preferably with a drop shadow that would look nicer. Also I'd like a way to snap the 1,2,3 lables to a grid so that they all line up and look neat - I'm currently having to do this by eye.

It's just all taking a lot of time fiddling about and I'm thinking there's got to be a better way that looks better visually too. I can send a screen shot but not sure how to do it on here, it wouldn't let me when I posted the question.

I'm hoping I've described this well, if not please let me know if you need further clarification. I think if I sent you a screen shot it would help convey what I mean better.


Clare MillerchipAsked:
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Jose Gabriel Ortega CastroCEOCommented:
Hi Clare, you can just add the screenshot as a file:

The process is:
 (Attach file) / Chose File / Upload File / "Clic on Embed"
you will get something like this:

[embed=file 1307474]

Open in new window

that's where it will put the image.
Scott HelmersVisio Consultant, Trainer, Author, and DeveloperCommented:
A couple of suggestions even before you upload a screenshot:

1) Are you familiar with the Align functions in Visio? If you select two or more shapes (arrows in your case), click the Align button on the Home tab for the usual choices, i.e., Top, Center, Bottom, etc.  BTW, the same align options are available on the right-click Mini Toolbar -- saves the need to mouse up to the Home tab.

2) You can group two or more shapes so that you can subsequently move them together. Select the shapes, then type Ctrl+G, or right-click and select Group>Group.

3) As an alternative to aligning and grouping shapes, you can glue shapes to a horizontal or vertical guide. Create a guide by clicking the ruler at the top or left of the page and then drag and drop a guide. Position the guide and then you should be able to glue one or more arrows to the guide. After that, move the guide and the glued shapes will move with it.

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Clare MillerchipAuthor Commented:
Hi Scott,

Thanks for your reply. Both of your suggestions have worked, thank you so much. This will save me so much time :-)

Clare MillerchipAuthor Commented:
I learnt that you can group elements together by selecting them and clicking CTRL + G. Also that you can align labels by dragging the ruler from the top of the window to the position you want the elements aligned to and they will then snap to this ruler.
Scott HelmersVisio Consultant, Trainer, Author, and DeveloperCommented:
I'm glad my answer was helpful. If you or your company subscribe to LinkedIn Learning, you might find helpful tips in the courses I offer there:
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