PAC4SWX Main dialog

PAC4SWX is a tool to print and convert SolidWorks drawing. With PAC4SWX you can choose multiple drawings from your filesystem and print or convert all sheets of all drawings in one step. PAC4SWX will take care of the different sheet sizes.

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Summary

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Main dialog

The main dialog is divided in for section. From top to bottom:

  1. Menubar
  2. Toolbar
  3. Files and directory favorites
  4. PAC-list
  5. Sorting, Pre- and postfix, filter
  6. Command area

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Menubar

In this area you can access all main functions of PAC4SWX from the menus. You can also access these functions with keyboard shortcuts. The shortcuts are shown behind the menu entries.

The most used functions can also be accessed from the toolbar or in the command area, but some of the functions are only availible at the menus so be sure to browse at least one time through the various menus.

Menu File

  • New
    The active PAC-list will be deleted and you can begin with a new, blank one.
  • Open
    You can choose a PAC-list from a standard "open" dialog. This list must be saved previously with PAC4SWX.
  • Save as ...
    The active PAC-list will be saved to a file for later usage 
  • Exit
    Exit PAC4SWX
Menu Edit

  • Add all selected
    Adds all selected files from the filelistbox to PAC-list
  • Add all
    All files from the filelistbox are added to the PAC-list
  • Remove selected from list
    All selected entries are removed from the PAC-list
  • Remove all from list
    All entries are removed from the list and you can begin with a new, blank list
     
  • Open drawings view-only
    This setting can be used as a toogle. If the setting is checked drawings are opened in view-only mode. Huge drawings can be opened and printed much faster. This won't work for conversion (SolidWorks limitation) ATTENTION: drawing may be out-of-date if opened view-only
  • Open drawings read-only
    This setting can be used as a toogle. If the setting is checked drawings are opened in read-only mode.
  • Print/convert active drawing
    This setting can be used as a toogle. If the setting is checked all functions and commands will use the active SolidWorks document (hopefully a drawing) as input, if unchecked the PAC-list will be processed.
     
  • Print
    Prints all sheets of all drawings in the PAC-list with the choosen settings
  • TIFF convert
    Generates TIFF-files for all sheets of all drawings in the PAC-list with the choosen settings
  • DXF convert
    Generates DXF-files for all sheets of all drawings in the PAC-list with the choosen settings
  • DWG convert
    Generates DWG-files for all sheets of all drawings in the PAC-list with the choosen settings
  • 3D export
    Generates export files for all models in the PAC-list with the choosen settings
  • EDrawings export
    Generates eDrawing files for all documents in the PAC-list with the choosen settings
  • Export as filetype
    Generates files for all documents in the PAC-list with the choosen settings. To save as PDF SolidWorks 2004 must be installed, however if installed, you can also save as PDF in prior versions.
  • Run macro
    For every document in the PAC-list the active costum macro is started (see run macro dialog). PAC4SWX opens the document, run the macro and the closes the document.
Menu Options

Restart SolidWorks every ...

  • Show drawings
    If set the filelistbox will show drawing (filter *.drw und *.slddrw)
  • Show models
    If set the filelistbox will show models (filter *.prt, *.asm, *.sldprt and *.sldasm)
  • Show prebiew mitmap
    If set the preview bitmap window is shown and displays a preview of the selected SolidWorks document
  • access PAC-list from bottom to top
    The PAC-list will be accessed from bottom to top. This is useful if the selected printer(s) prints the drawing face-down
  • Always use display style "High quality"
    Id set PAC4SWX will convert all drawing views to "high quality" prior to print, convert, saving or running a macro (in SolidWorks 2003 all FastHLR views are converted to standard).
     
  • Suppress warnings
    If set PAC4SWX tries to suppress all warning- and error dialogs from SolidWorks when printing or saving. ATTENTION: it is strongly recommended not to activate this setting.
     
  • Close SolidWorks after processing list
    If set SolidWorks will be closed if the complete list is processed. If there are unsaved documents SolidWorks will ask to save them.
    This option is useful to free the license of SolidWorks after an unattended job is completed
  • Restart SolidWorks every ...
    SolidWorks and Windows only frees the memory if SolidWorks is closed. This may result in a memory overflow if you want to process huge lists of drawings.
    To avoid this kind of overflow PAC4SWX can close and restart SolidWorks. Set the number of drawings in the submenu (the number means drawings within one list job) 
    ... never
    SolidWorks is not closed and restarted
    ... every 50 (100, 250, 500) drawings
    SolidWorks will be closed and restarted after 50 (100, 250, 500) documents processed in this job. Which number is the best depends on the size and complexity of your documents, your amount of memory and the used Windows version.
     
  • Set print options
    Opens the printer configuration dialog
  • Set TIFF options
    Opens the TIFF options dialog
  • Set DXF/DWG options
    Opens DXF/DWG options dialog
  • Set 3D export options
    Opens 3D export options dialog
  • eDrawings options
    Opens EDrawings options dialog
  • Set filetype export options
    Opens filetype export options dialog
  • Set run macro options
    Opens run macro dialog
     
  • Set filter for sheetnames
    Opens filter settings dialog
  • Apply filter for sheetnames
    If you want PAC4SWX to use the filter settings check this option
  • Set pre/postfix
    Opens dialog for pre- postfix settings
  • Use pre/postfix
    If you want PAC4SWX to use the active pre- postfix set check this option
     
  • Language
    In the submenu you can choose a language (german, english and user defined). The language is set immediatly without the need to restart the program.
  • Always on top
    If set the main dialog will be on top of all other windows
  • Save settings (user)
    All settings (including printer settings, TIFF, DXF and DWG options) are stored in the user registry 
  • Save settings to file
    All settings (including printer settings, TIFF, DXF and DWG options) are stored in a file
  • Load settings from file
    All settings (including printer settings, TIFF, DXF and DWG options) are read from a file
Menu Help

  • Content
    Shows the helpfile
  • ReadMe
    Opens the ReadMe-textfile
  • Changes
    Opens the Changes-textfile
  • Limintations
    Opens the Limitations-textfile
  • License info
    Opens the Lizenz-textfile
  • REG info
    Opens the Register-textfile
  • Order info
    Opens the Order-textfile
  • Register
    Opens the registration dialog. Hier you can enter the registration informations.
  • About PAC4SWX
    Opens a little short-info-dialog about PAC4SWX. Here you find the version number as well as the link to the Online-support-page and mail adress 

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Toolbar

The toolbar has 4 segments, which provides faster access for the most used functions and command. These are from left to right:

  1. File - New
  2. File - Open
  3. File - Save as ...
     
  4. Edit - Add all selected
  5. Edit - Add all
  6. Edit - Remove selected from list
  7. Edit - Remove all from list
     
  8. Edit - Print
  9. Edit - TIFF convert
  10. Edit - DXF convert
  11. Edit - DWG convert
  12. Edit - 3D export
  13. Edit - EDrawings export
  14. Edit - Export as filetype
  15. Edit - Run macro
     
  16. Options - Set print options
  17. Options - Set TIFF options
  18. Options - Set DXF option
  19. Options - Set DWG options
  20. Options - Set 3D export options
  21. Options - EDrawings options
  22. Options - Set filetype export options
  23. Options - run macro options
     
  24. Options - Show preview bitmap

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Files and directory favorites

This part of the main dialog is used to generate the PAC-list with its explorer-like interface. In the left area you see a dropdown for the drivelist, a box to choose the directory and the filelistbox. Choose the drive and directory, where the drawings are stored which you want to print or convert.

To the right of the filelistbox there are for little command buttons. From top to bottom they have the function:

  1. Add all selected
  2. Add all
  3. Remove selected from PAC-list
  4. Remove all from PAC-list

You can choose several files in the filelistbox (windows like with SHIFT-click and CTRL-click). You can add a single file with a doubleclick to the PAC-list. If you want to add all the files just hit the second button.

Usually all new entries are added at the end of the PAC-list. If you want to add one or more files before an existing entry you only have to select this entry in the PAC-list. A selected entry has a gray frame. To get rid of a selection (to add new entries at the end of the list) right click anywhere in PAC-list.

Below the filelistbox you can set or unset a filter, so only drawing (*.drw and *.slddrw) will show up in the filelist.

For easy and quick access of frequently used folders PAC4SWX has a favorite management

Directory favorites

Click this button right to the drive box to access the directory favorites menu
  • Directory favorites
    Just the caption
     
    In the next paragraph of the menu all active favorites are displayed. To change to the folder of a favorite just click it from the menu. If the folder for that favorite doesn't exist anymore the favorite will automatically be removed from the list. All entries are sorted in alphabetic order.
     
  • Add to favorites
    The active path (drive and folder) are added to the favorite list
  • Delete from favorites
    PAC4SWX looks whether the active path (drive and folder) is in the favorites list. If yes, the entry is removed. I.e.: to easyly remove a single entry from the favorites list first browse to that directory by clicking on the favorite and then hit the "Delete from favorites" menu
  • Clear favorite list
    Removes all favorites from list
     
  • Load favorites
    The favorite list, which is stored in the registry, is loaded. Note: all existing favorites are removed before the stored ones are loaded.
  • Save favorites
    Saves all favorites to registry (user dependend)

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PAC-list

The huge list at the right side of the main dialog is the PAC-list. All files in the PAC-list are listed with their path. The list is not sorted so you can choose the sequence by yourself. To remove a single entry you may doubleclick it, to remove one or several entries you can select them (using SHIFT-click or CTRL-click) and choose the third command button. To clear the list you may hit the last button or open a new list. The background color is turned red if "Suppress all warnings" is set.

You may also add files to the list by drag and drop them from a filemanager (like Explorer). The filenames added by dragdrop are always added to the end of the list.

Below the PAC-list you can set or unset the option to process the list from bottom to top. This is useful if the printer(s) you choose for output prints face-down to have the correct sequence of paper sheets.

Above the PAC-list you can check/uncheck the toggle to work on the active SolidWorks document (should be a drawing) instead of the PAC-list. This gives a great One-click-print without the hassle to choose the correct printer, fiddle with linewidth and so on for each sheet in a drawing. It's also usefull to quickly generate a set of DXF or TIFF from your drawing. There are also checkboxes for view-only and read-only mode (like in Edit menu), which gives a visual feedback when set.

Below the PAC-list you can check whether to access the list from bottom to top. Also you can activate the option to convert all drawing views on every sheet of a drawing to "high quality" (instead of draft quality) prior to process the document. Unlike SolidWorks 2004 printing PAC4SWX will do this for all kind of actions, like printing, converting (as TIFF), saving (like PDF or eDrawings) or running macros. This function is also useful for SolidWorks 2003, where the views, which are set to FastHLR are converted to "standard" quality.

Also below the PAC-list are two numbers showing how many entries are in the PAC-list and how many of them are selected. So 3/13 means 3 selected from 13 total.

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Sorting, Pre-a dn postfix, filter

To the right of the PAC-list there are command buttons for sorting the list. From top to bottum the buttons will perform a specific task:

In the center area to the right is the button to bring up the dialog for pre- and postfix setting and a checkbox which indicates ehrthrt the pre/postfix should be applied (checked) or not (unchecked). Next to the checkbox is a number showing the active set of pre/postfixes.

In the lower right is the button to bring up the filter setting dialog box and another checkbox which indicates whether the filter settings should be applied (checked) or not (unchecked). Next to the checkbox is a number showing the active set of filters.

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Command area

In the command area you have access to the most used functions and commands. The buttons with letters will trigger the action, those with the icons will open the options dialogs. The functions are arranged in three areas, in every area there is one or more functions availible. These areas and functions from left to right are:

A - drawing area
  1. Edit - Print
  2. Options - Set printer options 
  3. Edit - TIFF convert
  4. Options - Set TIFF options
  5. Edit - DXF convert
  6. Edit - DWG convert
  7. Options - Set DXF/DWG options

B - model area

  1. Edit - 3D export
  2. Options - Set 3D export options

C - all document types area

  1. Edit - eDrawings export
  2. Options - Set eDrawings export options
  3. Edit - Export as filetype
  4. Options - Set filetype export options
  5. dit - Run macro
  6. Options - Set run macro options

To the right is the option to suppress all warning and error dialogs from SolidWorks. This may be useful (i.e. if you want to export eDrawings from models and want to get rid of the configurations dialog), however is is strongly recommended not to activate this setting.

To the lower right there are some statistic information, how long PAC4SWX is working and how many drawings and sheets have been printed or converted. The smilie shows the actual regsitration status.

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Any questions and hints? Mail to Stefan Berlitz. Last change  Freitag, 10. Juni 2011 08:52