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Chapter 18. Plotting and Layouts > Changes to Plotting in Release 2000 - Pg. 457

Plotting and Layouts 457 Changes to Plotting in Release 2000 Plotting changed considerably in this release of AutoCAD. If you have ever used plotting in previous versions of AutoCAD, you have probably already noticed that there are many differences. Although this is not meant to be a comprehensive comparison of the differences between previous versions and AutoCAD 2000, this section gives you a few details that might help you make the jump from one version to the other. For more information, AutoCAD has a built-in set of help instructions just for you. The first time you try to plot, AutoCAD asks if you would like to see the Fast Track to Plotting Help. This is help designed specifically for users who are familiar with previous releases. New Plotter Drivers The biggest change from previous releases is the removal of the old ADI drivers. These have been replaced by HDI (Heidi) drivers, as well as by better support of the Windows system drivers. Auto- CAD ships with a few HDI drivers, including one for HPGL/2, but some older plotters (ones that do not emulate HPGL/2 and that do not have Windows system drivers) are no longer supported by AutoCAD. They will work if someone writes an HDI or Windows system driver for them in the future. This lack of backward-compatibility may seem bad at first, but HDI offers many advantages over ADI. First, it allows AutoCAD to have "what-you-see-is-what-you-get" (WYSIWYG for short) display for the first time. This means that, by default, the way that drawing looks while you are editing it is also the way it will look when you print it. Secondly, all the drivers now support features that were previously supported only by high-end third-party ADI drivers. This includes features such as line- end style, line-join style, line fills, and color screening. Of course, some plotters--especially pen plotters--have hardware reasons why they cannot support all the new features, but devices that cannot handle a feature simply ignore it. Thirdly, this version is faster--both printing and plotting speeds are faster with AutoCAD 2000. Finally, the interface for configuring and managing plotters is much simpler. Plotting Configuration AutoCAD Release 14 had three basic components to plotting configuration: the Device Configura- tion, the What to Plot Settings, and the Pen Assignments. These were stored in .pcp files, .pc2 files, and the acadr14.cfg file. When you install AutoCAD, the program optionally reads the existing con- figurations and converts as much as possible to the newer formats. AutoCAD also provides tools for individually importing different aspects of configuration from previous releases. The following information will help you if you ever need to import information on your own. Device Configuration Device Configuration has changed names to Plotter Configuration, and it is now stored in pc3 files. Two new UI components can be used to manage and configure plotters. The Add-A-Plotter wizard enables you to add a plotter simply and easily. The Plotter Configuration Editor enables you to modify the settings of a specific configuration after you have created it. You learned about setting up plotters at the beginning of this chapter. The Add-A-Plotter wizard has the option of importing information from the older pcp and pc2 files, if you need to restore information from previous releases of AutoCAD. Device configuration for Windows system printers also is much easier. Windows system printers now work automatically in AutoCAD, without having to individually configure each one. You need to configure only a system printer if you want to change its default settings when used by AutoCAD.