Save a Drawing
 
 
 

You save drawing files for later use just as you do with other Microsoft Windows applications. You can also set up automatic saving and backup files and save only selected objects.

When you work on a drawing, you should save it frequently. Saving protects you from losing work in the event of a power failure or other unexpected event. If you want to create a new version of a drawing without affecting the original drawing, you can save it under another name.

The file extension for drawing files is .dwg, and unless you change the default file format in which drawings are saved, drawings are saved in the latest drawing file format. This format is optimized for file compression and for use on a network.

The character limit for a DWG file name (including its path) is 256 characters.

NoteIf the FILEDIA system variable is set to 0, the Command prompt version displays instead of a file navigation dialog box.

Save Part of a Drawing File

If you want to create a new drawing file from part of an existing drawing, you use the WBLOCK command. With the command, you can select objects or specify a block definition in your current drawing and save them to a new drawing file. You can also save a description with the new drawing.

Save to a Different Type of Drawing File

You can save a drawing to an earlier version of the drawing format (DWG) or drawing interchange format (DXF), or save a drawing as a template file. Choose the format from Files of Type in the Save Drawing As dialog box.

Save with Visual Fidelity for Annotative Objects

When working with annotative objects, this option allows you to maintain visual fidelity for these objects when they are viewed in AutoCAD 2007 and earlier releases. Visual fidelity is controlled by the SAVEFIDELITY system variable.

If you work primarily in model space, it is recommended that you turn off visual fidelity (set SAVEFIDELITY to 0). However, if you need to exchange drawings with other users, and layout fidelity is most important, then visual fidelity should be turned on (set SAVEFIDELITY to 1).

NoteThe SAVEFIDELITY system variable does not effect saving a drawing to the AutoCAD 2010 drawing or DXF file formats.

Annotative objects may have multiple scale representations. When visual fidelity is on, annotative objects are decomposed and scale representations are saved (in an anonymous block) to separate layers, which are named based on their original layer and appended with a number. If you explode the block in AutoCAD 2007 or earlier releases, and then open the drawing in AutoCAD 2008 or later releases, each scale representation becomes a separate annotative object, each with one annotation scale. It is not recommended that you edit or create objects on these layers when working with a drawing created in AutoCAD 2008 and later releases in AutoCAD 2007 and earlier releases.

When this option is not selected, a single model space representation is displayed on the Model tab. More annotation objects may be displayed on the Model tab depending on the ANNOALLVISIBLE setting. Also, more objects may be displayed in paper space viewports at different sizes than in AutoCAD 2008 and later releases.

Reduce the Time Required to Save a Drawing File

You can reduce the time required to save a drawing file if you specify incremental saves rather than full saves. An incremental save updates only those portions of the saved drawing file that you changed.

When you use incremental saves, drawing files will contain a percentage of potentially wasted space. This percentage increases after each incremental save until it reaches a specified maximum, at which time a full save is performed instead. You can set the incremental save percentage in the Open and Save tab of the Options dialog box or by setting the value of the system variable ISAVEPERCENT. If you set the value of ISAVEPERCENT to 0, all saves are full saves.

To reduce the size of drawing files, it is recommended that you perform a full save (with ISAVEPERCENT set to 0) before transmitting or archiving a drawing.

Work Internationally

If you share drawing files with companies in other countries and regions, the drawing file names might contain characters that are not used in other languages.

If a drawing file is created in a different language version of Windows, the following will occur:

In either case, you will be able to open the drawing file beginning with AutoCAD 2007 or AutoCAD LT 2007 because these products are Unicode-compliant applications.

NoteIf you share drawing files with companies using earlier releases of the product, you can avoid file name issues for Asian languages and languages that use accented characters. In those circumstances, do not use high ASCII values, or values of 80 hexadecimal and above, when creating a file name.

Maintain Compatibility with Large Object Limits

Drawings saved to a legacy drawing file format (AutoCAD 2007 or earlier) do not support objects greater than 256MB. With the AutoCAD 2010 drawing file format, these limitations have been removed allowing you to save objects that are greater in size.

When saving to a legacy drawing file format (AutoCAD 2007 or earlier), the drawing cannot contain large objects; there might be compatibility issues with trying to open the drawing. The LARGEOBJECTSUPPORT system variable controls the large object size limits used and the warning messages displayed when a drawing is saved.

The following explains how object size limits for drawings is determined:

In these situations, the drawing cannot be saved to an AutoCAD 2007 or earlier file format until the issues are resolved. You can resolve the size limits by breaking the drawing or objects up into several drawings or objects.

NoteWhen working with the 64-bit release of AutoCAD, you can work more efficiently with large objects and drawings. However, the drawing files you create might be too large to open with the 32-bit release of AutoCAD.
See Also
To save a drawing
To save a drawing automatically
To save a backup of the previous version every time the drawing is saved
To save selected objects into a new drawing file
To save a block definition as a new drawing file
To maintain visual fidelity for annotative objects
To maintain large object compatibility with legacy drawing file formats
Commands
System Variables