AutoCAD: External References cause slow performance

March 25, 2022 Jeff Arbogast


AutoCAD: External References cause slow performance.


  • Take a long time to open files.
  • When attempting to edit a file is very slow.
  • External References Manager takes a long time to open.
  • Slow performance while working in the file.


  • External References cannot be found.
  • Corrupted User Files.
  • Number of SHX Font files are missing.
  • Corrupted Text Style.
  • Missing or invalid Add-A-Plotter or Add-A-Style ink files.
  • Large number of External References.


Possible solutions

  • Verify and fix any missing paths to External References.
  • Change SAVETIME Variable to 1.
  • Review document on External References Performance.

  • Check your Text files to make sure all of the fonts are available (If not change them to a good font file).
  • Move all file locally and test the performance compared to the Server.
  • Change Variables XLOADCTL & DEMANDLOAD system variables to 0.
  • Open each External Reference and optimize the file.

  • Try binding the External References and test performance (Try this in a copy of the original).
  • Fix the missing Add-A-Plotter-Wizard and Add-A-Style-Wizard icons.

About the Author

Jeff Arbogast

Manufacturing Solution Center Team Lead<br><br>Jeff is responsible for manufacturing Technical Support for both internal staff and customers. In addition to the daily activities of the support center, he helps write for the National Support Center blog, and has written online classes for the IMAGINiT training on demand site.

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