Advanced File Link Settings
 
 
 
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Application Menu References File Link Manager File Link Manager dialog Files panel Reload a linked DWG/DXF file with Show Reload turned on. File Link Settings: DWG Files dialog Advanced panel

Application Menu References File Link Manager File Link Manager dialog Presets panel Select an existing DWG/DXF preset and click Modify. File Link Settings: DWG Files dialog Advanced panel

Application Menu References File Link Manager File Link Manager dialog Presets panel Create a new DWG/DXF preset. Select the newly created preset and click Modify File Link Settings: DWG Files dialog Advanced panel

Utilities panel Utilities rollout More button File Link Manager File Link Manger dialog Files panel Reload a linked DWG/DXF file with Show Reload turned on. File Link Settings: DWG Files dialog Advanced panel

Utilities panel Utilities rollout More button File Link Manager File Link Manager dialog Presets panel Highlight an existing DWG/DXF preset and click Modify. File Link Settings: DWG Files dialog Advanced panel

Utilities panel Utilities rollout More button File Link Manager File Link Manager dialog Presets panel Create a new DWG/DXF preset. Highlight the newly created preset and click Modify File Link Settings: DWG Files dialog Advanced panel

The Advanced panel of the File Link Settings: DWG Files dialog controls how 3ds Max derives AutoCAD primitives and whether 3ds Max uses the scene material definitions when linking to or reloading the AutoCAD drawing. It also lets you selectively reload your scene, so that you reload only specific objects, not the entire file.

Interface

Derive AutoCAD primitives by:

Lists the options for deriving objects from the linked DWG file. This setting is available only when modifying a preset.

NoteThis applies only to standard AutoCAD primitives. Specialized objects, such as those from AutoCAD Architecture, are handled differently.
TipFor best results, use the Layer, Blocks as Node Hierarchy or Entity, Blocks as Node Hierarchy options, except in special circumstances.

There are six options to choose from:

  • Layer, Blocks as Node HierarchyLinked objects on a given layer in the AutoCAD drawing that aren't in blocks are combined into a single Editable Mesh or Editable Spline object in 3ds Max. The name of each linked object is based on the AutoCAD object's layer. The linked object name has a “Layer:” prefix and is followed by the layer name. For example, all AutoCAD objects residing on the layer Walls become part of the Editable Mesh named Layer:Walls after they are linked in 3ds Max.

    Each block is linked separately as a hierarchy, with the block itself as the parent object and its constituent parts as child objects. The child objects of the block are combined by layer.

    TipThis is usually the best option for file linking. It preserves all ADT information, and generally maintains the same granularity as you would expect in AutoCAD.
  • Layer, Blocks as Node Hierarchy, Split by MaterialThis works the same as the Layer, Blocks as Node Hierarchy option, with the following additional functionalities: The combination of non-block objects by layer, followed by material and support for multiple materials assigned to ACIS solid and polymesh geometry.
    • Non-block object layer combination:

    For example, take an AutoCAD file with six objects in layer A: three have a Brick material and three have a Stone material. Using this option, this file would be linked to in the form of two objects, or nodes, one containing the Brick material and the other with the Stone material.

    Each block is linked to separately as a hierarchy, with the block itself as the parent object and its constituent parts as child objects. The child objects of the block are combined by layer.

    • Multiple material support

    On import, ACIS solids and polymesh geometry can support multiple materials. For polymesh geometry, one material is supported per face. For an ACIS solid, if the solid has more than one material associated with it, a multi/sub object material is created that contains the materials used. If the solid has only one material associated with it, a standard/architectural material is assigned instead.

    NoteMultiple material support for ACIS solids applies to DWG files imported or file linked from Revit Architecture 2008 or AutoCAD Architecture (formerly Architectural Desktop or ADT) 2008 and later.
    NoteThis derivation method is intended for use with AutoCAD 2007 (and later) format files. Using this method with DWG files created with previous versions of AutoCAD could result in data loss.
  • Entity, Blocks as Node HierarchyEvery linked object not in a block is represented as a separate object in the 3ds Max scene, without regard to layers. The nodes are then placed on scene layers that correspond to the drawing layers. Each block is imported separately as a hierarchy, with the block itself as the parent object and its constituent parts as child objects. The child objects of the block are combined by layer.

    One benefit of this option is that you can apply instanced animation controllers to block subcomponents and thus, by transforming a single member, transform all members at once. For example, in a scene containing a conference table with six chairs around it, you could move all of the chairs simultaneously by moving a single chair.

    Another advantage is that all geometry is instanced, so edited UVs and normals and other modifications need be done only once.

    NoteThis derivation method might cause unreliable material propagation when importing drawings containing dynamic blocks. Materials might propagate to some block instances and not to others.
    WarningThis option has the potential to create an enormous number of objects in your scene.

    Multiple materials per object are supported with this option, if needed. If the object is an ACIS solid, and has more than one material associated with it, a multi/sub object material is created containing the materials that can be edited in the Materials Editor. If the solid has only one material associated with it, a standard/architectural material is assigned instead. If the object is polymesh geometry, one material per face is supported.

    NoteMultiple material support for ACIS solids applies on the DWG files imported or file linked from Revit Architecture 2008 or AutoCAD Architecture (formerly Architectural Desktop or ADT) 2007 and later.
  • LayerLinked objects are combined in 3ds Max according to their layer. Objects in each of the associated application's layers are combined into one object, with the exception of blocks, each of which is represented as an individual VIZBlock (not a hierarchy). Multiple inserts of the same block are represented using instances in the scene. Material assignments are lost but material IDs are preserved.
  • ColorLinked AutoCAD objects are combined in 3ds Max according to their color. All objects of the same color are combined into one object, with the exception of blocks, each of which is represented as an individual VIZBlock (not a hierarchy). Multiple inserts of the same block are represented using instances in the scene. Material assignments are lost but material IDs are preserved.
    NoteBlocks can contain objects with different colors. However, when sorting, 3ds Max considers only the color of the block itself. Also, 3ds Max objects can only display one color, unless a material is applied.
  • EntityProvides a one-to-one correspondence between AutoCAD objects and 3ds Max objects. For each linked object or block in the imported file, the File Link Manager creates an independent object or VIZBlock, respectively, in the scene. Material assignments are lost but material IDs are preserved.
    WarningThis option has the potential to create an enormous number of objects in your scene.
    NoteWhen working with drawings exported from Revit, it is recommended that you do not use this setting.
  • One ObjectAll linked objects are combined into a single VIZBlock. Material assignments are lost but material IDs are preserved.
Select Layers to Include

Displays the Select Layers dialog, which you use to choose layers to import from the linked file. Available only when reloading a linked file.

TipExcluding unnecessary objects from linking can improve the performance of the reload operation.
Create Helper at Drawing Origin

When on, 3ds Max inserts the user coordinate system icon as an origin point helper. 3ds Max places this helper at the world origin of the linked file. It's a reference point for all the geometry of the linked file. After attaching, the helper is selected, allowing you to easily move, rotate, or scale all the geometry that was just added to the scene. Each linked file gets a unique helper object.

This setting is available only when modifying a preset.

Use Extrude Modifier to Represent Thickness

When on, linked objects with thickness receive an Extrude modifier to represent the thickness value. You can then access the parameters of this modifier and change the height segments, capping options, and height value.

When off, objects with thickness (and closed capped objects) are converted directly to a mesh.

This setting is available only when modifying a preset, and not using the Derive option Layer, Blocks as Node Hierarchy.

Create One Scene Object for Each ADT Object

AutoCAD Architecture (formerly Architectural Desktop or ADT) objects are linked as a single object instead of being separated into their constituent components. This means that if you link an AutoCAD Architecture door object, the door is represented as one object instead of three. Turning on this switch make linking faster and the scene size is smaller.

This setting is available only when modifying a preset.

NoteThis switch presents several modeling concerns that you need to be aware of.
  • Material assignments from AutoCAD Architecture are not translated during the file link process.
  • If you want to assign materials to these objects, use Multi/Sub-Object materials.
  • Depending on the Texture Mapping option you choose, UVW coordinates are translated correctly.
Use Scene Material Definitions

When on, 3ds Max checks the current scene for any currently used materials with the exact same name as a material name in the linked DWG file. If a match is found, File Link does not translate the drawing’s material, but instead uses the material defined in the scene.

When off, the File Link Manager always uses the material definitions contained in the DWG file, and will overwrite scene materials with the same name, regardless of which objects the material is applied to. All material definitions stored in the DWG file are reloaded (even when using a selective reload). If you make changes to a linked material, in 3ds Max, then reload, those changes will be lost (if the switch is off).

If Use Scene Material Assignments on Reload is on at the same time as Use Scene Material Definitions, standard/architectural materials, material assignments, and face material IDs are left as they are.

If Use Scene Material Assignments on Reload is off at the same time as Use Scene Material Definitions, only the material assignments and face material IDs are updated and standard/architectural materials are not translated.

TipWhen reloading a file, most of the materials from the DWG file will have already been created in the scene by 3ds Max; they may not need to be re-translated. If you want to update a scene material with the definition contained in the drawing, turn this switch off.
NoteMaterial name comparison is case-sensitive.
Use Scene Material Assignments on Reload

When on, linked objects with a material already assigned to them in the 3ds Max scene will not have that material assignment changed. This is the case regardless of whether the material was assigned automatically by the File Link Manager or manually by the user.

When off, linked objects have their material assignment “coordinated” with the drawing, so that the two are in sync.

If Use Scene Material Definitions is on at the same time as Use Scene Material Assignments on Reload, standard/architectural materials and material assignments are left unchanged.

If Use Scene Material Definitions is off while Use Scene Material Assignments on Reload is on, only standard/architectural materials are retranslated. Any material assignments and Face Material IDs are left unchanged, so Multi/Sub object materials are not retranslated but some sub-materials may have changed.

Selective Reload

Lets you perform a partial reload of your linked file. Use a partial reload when you know what has changed in the linked file, and want to speed up the time it takes to reload the geometry.

The following options are available:

  • Selected in SceneReloads only the objects currently selected in your scene.
  • Selected in ListReloads only the objects that you choose from a named list. This list is defined by clicking Linked Objects.
Linked Objects

Allows you to reload only objects that you choose from a named list. The list is created from the objects linked in the file. When you click Linked Objects, the Select Linked Object dialog is displayed.