File > New…
Clears the current job and opens a new work-space. The user will be prompted to save any unsaved work.
File > Open
This command lets you open an existing job. These jobs are usually located in the default directory C:\AppliCad\Roof Wizard\User. You may also set the ..\User folder to be on a shared network drive – eg Z:\User.
When you select Open, the Select database and model to read dialog box on the following page, is displayed.
On the left hand side, is the list of database files (.DAB) in the current folder. When you click on a DAB file, the list of models in that DAB is displayed in the right hand list box. Note that you can sort the CAD databases by last modified or alphabetically as well as searching by CAD database name and model name.
When you click on one of the model names, you may get a preview of what that model looks like in the bottom right hand side (if the Show Preview check box was checked when the job was saved). The database file name and the model name is displayed in the status line at the top of the workspace screen.
A database file can contain any number of models you may have one job per database file. Other models are automatically created for each job such as quotation report models and drawing models, which in turn will increase the overall size of the database file over time.
You may also create a database for each of your customers – for example; PorterHomes.dab, then save all job models in that database for that builder. If you do a lot of work for one builder, you may create a huge database very quickly. In such a situation we suggest that you create ‘time indicative’ file names for your database – eg PorterHomesQtr3-2006.dab and all jobs for the third quarter are saved in that database. Jobs or models may then be saved using the street address to uniquely identify each job for that builder or customer.
There are many ways to file your jobs and some thought should be given to your situation before you get too far into it. It is definitely NOT recommended that you save all jobs in a database called JOBS.dab or similar, as some of our customers have been inclined to do. The file becomes very large, very quickly. It slows down the time it takes to load and if it is lost or corrupted, then you run the risk of losing everything.
After you click [OK], the model you have selected opens into the graphics area of the screen and available for you to edit.
File > Open Quote
This option allows you to find and open a job based on your quotation numbers which are created when you save a quotation using Supply and Install or Supply Only. All quotation numbers used are displayed and may be sorted alphabetically or by date or searched by name or part of a name.
File > Open-Thumbnails
This command lets you open an existing job. These jobs are usually located in the default directory C:\AppliCad\Roof Wizard\User as described above with the added feature of previewing each model in the database, similar to the screen shot below.
File > Save
This command automatically saves the current model you are working on. If you have not yet saved the model, you will see the Select Database and Model to Write dialog box.
Here, you enter the database file name or select one from the list. You then need to enter a model name to uniquely identify this job in the database file. Refer notes above.
If you want a preview image to be saved, then check the Save preview check box.
Note: The database name and model name are noted in the status line at the top of the workspace screen. If they are noted as None, then you have not yet saved the model.
File > Save-As
This command is the same as Save except it will always allow you to select a new path, database file and model to save the job in.
File > Merge Model
Uses this command to merge two models into one model. You will be prompted to open a model from the database, then a location point to place it into the currently open model. Follow the prompts carefully.
File > Layout
To simplify the appearance of the software, especially for new users we have the ability to turn some menu options on and off. This aids with instruction and learning.
Simple Converts the menus to a simplified version, leaving off occasionally used or obscure functions, thus simplifying the operation of the software for ease of learning.
Full Converts the menus to the full function menu system
Read-Only This is displayed automatically on installed software that is not registered. It provides the capability to review, edit and print reports and proposals etc. The Read-Only version may installed on any number of PC’s in the office.
Save Values Saves the default settings or variables of the system into the Values.DEF file.
The display of the Status line in the software has been modified to allow for both Simple (standard) and Complex modes. The Complex mode is a return to a previous format, as requested by some of our longer term users who relied on information provided in this display.
To set this, turn on the right hand menu (Menu On on the Pulldown menu), select CAD > Defaults > Switches.
If this is the display you wish to keep, go to File > Layout > Save Values so that thsi will be displayed on restart. Save Values writes all the custom settings that you wish the software to return to – the details are written to a file called Values.def in the ..\User folder.
Complex Status line displayed
File > Search Database
This indexes every CAD database and model in the ..\User folder so that they are more readily found and selected to open.
File > Import
Allows you to import the following external file types.
- XML An RXF format file with XML headers (refer to last section of the manual for details)
- RXF AppliCad Roof eXchange Format files (refer to last section of the manual for details)
- DXF… Universal ASCII CAD file format.
- GRIM… ASCII text file in AppliCad Roof Wizard GRIM format. (refer to last section of the manual for details)
File > Import > XML
This option will import the geometry of a roof saved in the XML format. This typically contains just the roof geometry data and the line type descriptions. Typically geometry is 3D but may be 2D as well. Essentially the XML file format is the same as the AppliCad proprietary RXF format but with XML header information.
Using this command also runs a Tools > Check and Delete Free lines and Points operation before exporting the data.
File > Import > RXF
This option will import the geometry of a roof saved in the AppliCad proprietary RXF format. This typically contains just the roof geometry data and the line type descriptions. Typically geometry is 3D but may be 2D as well. The AppliCad proprietary RXF format is described later in this manual and has been published on the web.
It may be used to exchange 3D roof geometry with external programs and may include roof geometry from companies like Eagleview, Pictometry and Aerialogics who provide aerial measurement services as well as truss frame designers and builders such as Mitek.
Import RXF may also be used to bring 3D roof geometry into old versions of AppliCad software that do not support the version 6.n+ CAD database file format which is NOT backwards compatible.
File > Import > GRIM
This command lets you import job details from an existing GRIM file. For more details and a more complete listing of Key Text Strings, refer to the Appendix to this manual.
After selecting the command File > Import > GRIM, you are then prompted to select a .gri file. The following key text strings are recognised when importing a grim file and described in more detail here.
File > Export
These functions allow for the exporting of the respective file formats so that the geometry and other details created by AppliCad software may be distributed and shared with other interested parties.
- XML An RXF format file with XML headers (refer to last section of the manual for details)
- RXF AppliCad Roof eXchange Format files
- DXF… Universal ASCII CAD file format.
- GRIM… ASCII text GRIM format file generated by Roof Wizard
The Export XML code only exports roof and wall planes, so gable planes and ceiling planes are ignored. However, many other attributes about the roof geometry, line attributes, notes and fixtures are included. Details of source document and job database etc can be added via the appropriate export Output Options dialog box.
File > Export >XML
An RXF format file with XML headers and footers that are required to setup the file for input to certain systems.
XML Name – The name of the XML file to be output.
XML File Format – Changes the output format of the XML File – see below:
AppliCad Enhanced Format varies from AppliCad Standard Format in only one area. That being that dimensions are included in AppliCad Enhanced Format when output, but they are not included for AppliCad Standard Format.
Symbility Format is exactly the same as AppliCad Standard Format, with the one exception that only points, lines and planes making up the Roof/Wall model will be output. Any lines not directly attached to a roof or wall plane will not be output.
Chouinard Format – A format of the XML file specifically for the Chouinard Bros Roofing business in Canada.
Xactimate Format varies from the AppliCad Standard Format in the following areas:
- “<SKETCH_IMPORT xmlns://xsi=…” used in the header instead of “<APPLICAD_EXPORT xmlns:xsi=…”,
- No “<REFERENCE FILE=” output
- No “<DATABASE FILE=” output
- No “<NOTES>” output
- No “<NORTHORIENTATION=” output
- No holes allowed in plane output
- AutoCAD-style Orientation of FACE ORIENTATION, 0 degrees is along X-Axis of CPL and angles counter-clockwise.
- No “SIZEUOM” “PITCHUOM” “TYPE” “MAT=” or “SIZE=” output.
- “FASCIA”, “FASCIA-ONLY” and “GUTTER-ONLY” lines output as “EAVE”
- “GABLE”, “FASCIA-GABLE” lines output as “RAKE”
- “APRON” lines output as “FLASH”
- “STEP”, “TUCK-UNDER” lines output as “STEPFLASH”
- “User1 lines output as “PARAPET”
- “HIP”, “RIDGE” lines output as “RIDGE”
Reference File – Allows the user to specify a file that the XML file was created from. This option was provided to allow modellers to input the reference file such as a PDF or Image File that the model was created from.
Database Name – The name of the AppliCad Database file containing the reference data being output for the XML file.
Model Name – The name of the Model within the AppliCad Database containing the reference data being output for the XML file.
Delete Free Lines and Points – Determines whether to remove free lines and points from the model prior to export.
Additional Notes – Allows the user to specify additional notes to be included in the XML output. These notes will not be exported for the Xactimate format.
File > Export > RXF AppliCad Roof eXchange Format files
Export RXF is a very handy way of reconstructing 3D geometry that might have become corrupted for any reason at all (you find this out by using the Tools > Check Model function). This can be used to send AppliCad 3D roof geometry back to old versions of Applicad software that do not support the version 6.n+ CAD database file format.
RXF Output File Name – The name of the RXF file to create when exporting. The ellipsis button at the end of the file name […] can be used to browse the operating system for the appropriate output folder and file name.
Elements to Output – A toggle value between [Roof Elements] or [All Elements]. If All Elements is selected, all points, lines and planes will be included in the RXF output. If Roof Elements is selected, only points, lines and planes defining roof and wall elements (lines and planes) will be output.
Pack Model before Export – Setting this option to Yes will ensure that multiple points in the model sharing the same geometric location (x,y,z) will be combined into a single point. This option can simplify the output by ensuring minimal number of points are output to re-construct the model.
Delete Free Points – Setting this option to [Yes] will ensure any points in the model that are not being used to define a line or plane surface will be removed. Again, this serves to simplify the output by reducing the number of points output to only those that are required to reconstruct the model.
Be aware that it only exports the roof geometry, that is the points, lines and planes and their respective indeifying ‘tags’ for type such as ‘ridge’, ‘valley’ etc. Any other job details such as materials, costs, customer details etc that are saved with a regular CAD database (DAB) file, are not exported via RXF. This means that it cannot be used to import any other detail but the roof and wall geometry using Import RXF.
Indeed, RXF is the only export function that supports the entity tags, none of the other export utilities exports none graphical data of this type.
Takes you into the Sub-Figure menu.
- Open… Allows you to open an existing subfigure from a Database.
- Save As… Allows you to save a sub-figure into a Database.
- Merge Allows you to merge a sub-figure into the current model.
Works the same as File > Open etc described above, except that it is only applicable to Sub-Figures. Sub-Figures are CAD entities that can be managed as one entity. For example if you had lots of HVAC units to install on a roof, you might draw them in 3D and then make then into a Sub-Figure so that they can be placed as a single item. In an architectural sense, this applies to things like windows and doors etc.
AppliCad uses this process extensively and in particular with what we call Fixtures. Refer to that section of this manual.
Recovers a job that has been ‘auto-saved’ to a Crash-File.
This allows you to go back to the latest saved ‘Crash’ file. The software may be set to save your work every set number of operations (default is 50). After you complete 50 operations, a file is saved called Crash1.CRA and alternatively Crash2.CRA (incase the first one is corrupted). If your system crashes or drops out for any reason (power outage for example), you can go back to the latest crash file, ths minimising the amount of ork that you might have lost. As soon as you read the crash file, and decide that it is the most recent, don’t forget to do a File > Save.
Quits out of the software. If a model is not saved, you will be prompted to do so.