Autodesk Batch Save Utility - Easy Scripting Automation Productivity

One of the top concerns organizations have today is how to attain greater levels of productivity (doing things faster, more efficient).  In may cases, the need for special tools, software or custom automation is the answer, in other cases, the tools needed to accomplish a task are already available and on hand.   The problem is, most people are unaware that some of these productivity tools are available, and as such, they go unutilized.

One such underutilized productivity tool is the Autodesk Batch Save Utility.

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This utility is installed under the “Autodesk” folder along with things like InfraWorks and SSA.

Based on the program title, it seems straightforward in that it will batch save files.  

On the surface you might think….. Ok, that’s a “nice to have” tool, but it’s not too exciting.

I suspect that due to the utility’s name, it doesn’t get the credit it deserves.

In addition to simply saving files, it also gives the user the ability to run a Script file as part of the process.  There are also several options you can use to filter the files being processed.

Script files are a very basic form of automation that really doesn’t require programming experience, and in fact, is in the most basic sense, is simply a matter automating the entering lines of text (commands and variable responses) that you would input at the AutoCAD command line.  There are some syntax details to be aware of, but it’s not rocket science.  And Yes, if you want to, you can include LISP functions in the Script. 

Again, think of it as a series of steps you would manually enter at the command line.

In this example, in addition to saving a folder of files, I also want to purge the file to clear out unused layers, blocks, etc.  While there are other ways to do this, I chose this example to illustrate how easy it is to put the script together and run it on a folder of files.

To start with, I opened a blank Notepad file, and also opened Civil 3D and a sample drawing file of the type of drawings I wanted to edit, and literally entered the commands and variables at the AutoCAD command line, then copied those entries into Notepad.  Once I verified that the command sequence would work, I saved the Notepad text document as a .SCR file.

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Next, I chose the folder of files I wanted to process, picked the filter (Skip Drawings) options, navigated to the .SCR file and press “Start”.

When it has finished, I recommend viewing the LOG file to see how things worked.  If you’re really interested in what happened with each file, you can also open each file’s .LOG file too.

In conclusion, without having to learn any programming language, you can easily create a bit of simple, but powerful automation and process a ton of files quickly.  Easy productivity!

About the Author

Kevin Breslin

Professional Services Director, Civil <br> Kevin began working in the civil engineering and survey industry in 1985 and has continually built on this foundation to become an expert in civil design and infrastructure data management software. He has been involved in every aspect of the industry from field surveying to transportation systems, as well as managing a CAD design group within a civil engineering firm. <br> Kevin's passion for technology combined with his unique insights to the business processes of engineering firms makes him an accomplished leader for the infrastructure solutions team.

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