Tips & Tricks — Update your levels to match new V8 standards: Part III.

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By Rick Sewell
In last month’s issue of MicroStation Today, you saw how to update the level table in any number of your design files using a CSV file. The CSV contained level and symbology definitions as they were defined in the source design file of your choice. You now have all of your levels exactly as they were defined in your source design file.

When you update your design file level tables with the CSV file, in most cases you are actually defining new levels. Although you now have perfect levels, more than likely you still have a bunch of elements on the old levels. By “old levels”, we simply mean the levels that you were using before you updated your file(s) with the new perfect levels. So, the next step is to get your elements from the old levels to the new levels.

How to move your elements to their new levels, using only MicroStation
This is the usual method for updating the levels of an individual design file using a CSV file:

  1. Load MicroStation and open a design file that contains both the old and the new levels.
  2. Go to Edit|Select By Attributes.
  3. The “Select By Attributes” dialog box is really handy for selecting a group of elements, based on some commonality.

  4. All of the levels in the file will be listed in the “Select By Attributes” dialog box. Highlight the old level and press the button. This will select all of the elements on the old level.
  5. Close the “Select By Attributes” dialog box.
  6. You will be prompted with an “Alert” dialog box. Press so that the elements you selected stay selected.
  7. Select the “Change Element Attributes” tool from the MicroStation Main toolbar.
  8. Toggle on the “Level:” option and select the new level that you want your elements to be assigned to, from the pull-down menu.
  9. Data-click in the design plane and the selected elements will be assigned to the level you have chosen.

The “Change Element Attributes” dialog box gives you the ability to change selected elements.

This works okay, provided every design file already has the new level in it. However, when you have to process hundreds or thousands of elements in a hundred or more design files (or even just a couple dozen files), you are still talking a heck of a lot of time.

How to move your elements to their new levels, using Global File Changer
This method allows you to move all of the elements from one or more levels to another level in multiple design files in one shot.

  1. Load MicroStation and open a design file that contains both the old and the new levels.
  2. Load Global File Changer from your Axiom pull-down menu.
  3. From the Global File Changer main dialog box choose Custom|Move level.
  4. Global File Changer has a number of custom commands derived directly from customer requests.

    The “Move Level” level command allows you to move all elements from one level to another.

  5. Click to load the “Level Mapping Rule” dialog box.
  6. Click on the button labeled near the field labeled “Move elements from which levels?” and select the old level that you want to move elements from.
  7. Click on the button labeled near the field labeled “To level:” and select the new level that you want to move elements to.
  8. Click to get back to the “Move Level” dialog box. Note: You can repeat steps 5 and 6 to add more old and new level pairs for processing.
  9. When finished, click on the “Move Level” dialog box.
  10. You will be prompted to save the list of level parameters you specified as a TXT file. Navigate to a folder that is convenient for you and specify a name for this TXT file.
  11. Global File Changer allows you to save all of the parameters you set, in a text file, so that you can re-use them over and over again.

  12. Now back at the main Global File Changer dialog box, locate the field labeled “Design Files:” and click . This will bring up the “Choose Files to Process” dialog box.
  13. Type <Ctrl+O> to open the “Browse for files” dialog box. From here you can navigate to and select as many design files as you want. Select to add your selected files to the “Choose Files to Process” dialog box.
  14. The “Choose Files to Process” dialog box allows you to select any number of files to be processed in one run.

  15. Select <OK> to get back to the main Global File Changer dialog box.
  16. Select <Start> to process your files.

The result is multiple design files with elements on their new correctly assigned levels. It is fast and easy. This done in a fraction of the time that it would take using MicroStation alone.

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