Create Screen Menus

Screen menus provide a legacy interface for displaying menus in a palette. You create and edit screen menus in the Customize User Interface (CUI) Editor.

By default, the screen menu is disabled. You turn on the screen menu display in the Options dialog box, Display tab. In addition, the MENUCTL system variable controls whether the screen menu is updated as you enter commands at the command prompt.

NoteFuture releases of the product might not support screen menus.

In the Customize User Interface (CUI) Editor, each screen menu consists of several menu lines, which define the screen submenus. You assign a submenu to a screen menu by dragging it to the screen menu in the Customize In pane. You assign a command to a menu by dragging it from the Command List pane to the numbered line in the menu. Unassigned lines are left empty in the menu.

Edit Screen Menu Properties

You can modify screen menu properties, as shown in the following table.

Properties for screen menus

Properties pane item




Sets the name of the menu.



Text that describes the element; does not appear in the user interface.


Start line

Sets the start line of the screen menu submenu.


Number of lines

Sets the number of lines in a screen submenu.



Specifies the alias for the screen menu. “Collection” is displayed if multiple definitions are assigned to this alias. Click the [] button to open the Aliases dialog box.


For the AutoCAD screen menu, which is the root menu, the aliases in the Aliases box are Screen (which represents the beginning of the screen menu) and S (which represents the submenu section label). Line assignments for other menus define the order of the options on the menu. For example, the File menu on Line 3 in the tree view of the AutoCAD screen menu is in the third position on the AutoCAD screen menu.

The submenu names in the tree view correspond to the name of the first submenu item. For example, the New submenu contains commands such as OPEN, QSAVE, and SAVEAS—in addition to NEW. The Aliases box for these submenus defines which menu contains them and the Start Line box specifies their position on that menu. The New submenu is displayed in position 3 on the File screen menu. Therefore, in the Properties pane, its start line is 3. When you double-click Aliases to display the Aliases dialog box, you can see that its menu assignment is 01_FILE.

You can designate which menu items are always displayed by controlling the start line settings. For example, since the New submenu is set to start on line 3, the menu items on lines 1 and 2 of the AutoCAD screen menu (the AutoCAD and **** menu options) continue to display when the New submenu is displayed.

Similarly, you can set a menu to mask or show menu options on other menus by using blank lines. For example, there are only 22 lines (including blank lines) defined for the New submenu. Therefore, the Assist and Last submenus on lines 25 and 26 of the AutoCAD screen menu continue to be displayed when the New submenu is selected. An option on line 22, however, would be hidden.

See Also
To display the screen menu
To set screen menus to reflect the current command
To add commands to the screen menu
To create a submenu on a screen menu
System Variables
Command Modifiers