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Multiline Text and System Variables in AutoCAD

October 8, 2017

For this post I wanted to share some tricks that I use when using Mtext in AutoCAD. There are a few system variables that I use frequently and have come up in my workflow over the past several weeks.

Do you miss that toolbar that was shown above MTEXT in a previous version of AutoCAD? You can get that back with the MTEXTTOOLBAR system variable. The MTEXTTOOLBAR (shown below) system variable controls the display of the Text Formatting toolbar. I like to have this set to 1 which will display the toolbar directly above your mtext for quick formatting.

The settings for the MTEXTTOOLBAR are as follows:

0:  The Text Formatting toolbar is never displayed. The contextual Ribbon (shown below) will show up no matter what setting you use for this variable.

1:    The Text Formatting toolbar is displayed upon selection of an MTEXT object.

2:   The Text Formatting toolbar does not display when the ribbon is on.

Next up is how we edit and view text when double clicking the mtext object. Have you ever double clicked an MTEXT object and the text appear very large or off the screen?  Well, this is where the MTEXTFIXED variable comes in handy.  The MTEXTFIXED system variable sets the display size and orientation of multiline text in a specified text editor.

0 or 1: Displays the In-Place Text Editor and the text within it at the size, position, and rotation of the multiline text object in the drawing.

2: Displays the In-Place Text Editor and the text within it at the size, position, and rotation of the multiline text object in the drawing. Text that would otherwise be difficult to read (if it is very small, very large, or is rotated) is displayed at a legible size and is oriented horizontally so that you can easily read and edit it.

The last one is just a little fun. Do you want your text to default to your name or something else you think sounds cool? The MTJIGSTRING system variable sets the content of the sample text displayed at the cursor location when the MTEXT command is started.

Type MTJIGSTRING at the command prompt and enter your desired text. For this example I used CADproTips.

The next time you launch the Mtext command the text string is displayed in the current text size and font. You can enter any string of up to ten letters or numbers or enter a period (.) to display no sample text.

Those are just a few system variables to help you control how you use and work with Multiline text in AutoCAD. The following video will show you how to go through the steps in editing these system variables.

Less than one month away and I will see some of you in Las Vegas at Autodesk University 2017. I am helping several friends out in the lab this year with Civil 3D and AutoCAD classes. I am looking forward to helping and being a part of this awesome event.

Until next month, Sam


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