How to Globally Change Text Styles in any Number of DGN Files

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And do it all in one fell swoop

By Rick DeWitt, Axiom Senior Product Manager
CAD standards may be a pain, but they’re a fact of life. So, what do you do when you’re faced with a situation where you have tens, hundreds or maybe even thousands of MicroStation files that use a text style when you don’t want one or that use the wrong text style? For example, let’s say you’ve received a number of DGN files that were translated from AutoCAD. AutoCAD requires that all text have an associated text style. But, in MicroStation, that isn’t a requirement and your CAD standards dictate that text styles aren’t used.

MicroStation Global File Changer

Want a fast and easy way to modify text styles in any number of MicroStation files in batch? With Global File Changer, you can make thousands of different types of changes such as changes to text, level symbology settings, text styles and more. Changes are made in batch and with laser precision to any number of design files you choose.

So now you need to remove the association with the text style, but without affecting the way the text looks and displays in all your MicroStation files. If you’re a glutton for punishment, you could manually go into each file and remove the styles, one by one. But is that really how you want to spend your day? Or, you could use Global File Changer’s new modify text style feature and make those changes automatically to any number of files.

MicroStation Global File Changer, Figure 1

Figure 1. Global File Changer allows you to make global changes to just about anything in a single design file or in hundreds of design files at once, including changing or removing all or specific text styles.

Whenever you’re faced with making bulk changes throughout a set of MicroStation design files, Global File Changer will handle it for you. One of its most important jobs is to get sets of drawings cleaned up to meet standards for submittals. Global File Changer’s newest feature addition gets text styles in drawings updated to meet client standards.

MicroStation Global File Changer, Figure 2

Figure 2. Global File Changer makes it easy to select the text style that you want to use when modifying text elements in batch. By default, the text styles contained in the active master file and the text styles from any active DGN library will be displayed.

An Easy-to-use Solution for Cleaning Up Sets of Drawings
Let’s take a common example of the kind of problem you can solve with this new feature. Translated AutoCAD files always arrive with text sporting text styles since text styles are a requirement for all AutoCAD text. Many MicroStation shops don’t want this. Using Global File Changer’s Modify Text custom command, you can remove all the unwanted AutoCAD text styles, without altering the way the text displays in the MicroStation version of those files. Here’s how easy this is:

  1. Open one of the files that has a text style that you want to use. (You’ll select the rest of the files to process later.)
  2. Load Global File Changer from your Axiom pull-down menu.
  3. Select Custom | Modify text… to open the “Modify Text” dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Click the {Text Style…} button in the “Text Style” section of the dialog box to open the “Select Text Style” dialog box.
  5. Click the text style to highlight it in the dialog box. (See Figure 2.) The “Style (none)” text style represents no text style. For our example, we want to remove the text style, so select “Style (none)”. This choice is particularly useful if the files you want to modify were originally AutoCAD files and you need to remove the text styles, without modifying the way the text itself displays.
  6. As the unwanted text styles could also be associated with text that exists in cells and shared cells, check the options “Text in cells” and “Text in shared cells” in the “Text to Process” section of the “Modify Text” dialog box. (See Figure 3.)
  7. After you’ve chosen the text style and checked which text elements to process, click the {OK} button and you will be prompted to save this list of changes. Save the file with any name and location you want. (This is so you can use it later if you like.)
  8. You will be returned to Global File Changer’s main dialog box. From here, click on the {Select…} button to choose the files you want to process.
  9. Once the files are chosen, simply click the {Start} button to make the changes you wanted to every file you selected, automatically.
  10. Global File Changer is limited only by your imagination. Any command you can type at the MicroStation command prompt can be automatically repeated on any number of design files you choose. It can be used to make thousands of different types of changes — with laser precision — to any number of design files you choose and makes all the changes in batch.

MicroStation Global File Changer, Figure 3

Figure 3. Global File Changer’s power is limited only by your imagination. For instance, if you need to make changes to a large amount of text and would like to do it all at the same time, you can do that with Global File Changer.

That said, here are just a few examples of what Global File Changer can do:

  • Search and replace multiple text or tag values in a series of design files.
  • Move elements between levels easily.
  • Compare design file settings in one file to multiple files at the same time, and report on any settings violations.
  • Update design files settings in a set of files.
  • Replace any or all cells in your design files with a new version of those cells.
  • Flatten 3D files to a specific Z value.
  • Scale a whole series of design files.
  • Scale all the elements in a whole series of design files.
  • Change the master units of a series of design files from feet to meters.
  • Change the global origin of a series of design files.
  • Attach a different cell library to a series of design files.
  • Lock all the elements in a set of design files so that they cannot be changed.
  • Unlock those same elements, all at once.
  • Turn on the display of line weights in a series of design files.
  • Scale each text element in a design file about its center, justification point or lower left.
  • Scale each cell in a design file about its center or insertion point (origin).
  • Lots, lots, lots more.

See the Power of Global File Changer for Yourself. Call Now!
For more information on Global File Changer or to receive a free trial version, contact an Axiom MicroStation Consultant today! Call 727-442-7774 extension 3329, e-mail 3329@AxiomInt.com or visit Axiom on the Web at www.AxiomInt.com now!

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