Saturday, January 1, 2011

AutoCAD and Windows 7 Tips

Some users with Windows 7 are having issues with slow performance of AutoCAD/LT: since the issues are not universal to all or most it has been hard to fix the one true fix. We have assembled a list of things to try that seem to help many: if you need help we recommend to start at the top of the list and do every one in order until the symptoms stop.

In Windows 7 before you start AutoCAD/LT:
  • Use Windows 7 Classic/Basic Theme (not AERO or Custom Theme). You miss some of the Aero whizz-bang features, like layout preview and other niceties, but overall performance seems better for some users.
  • Win7's Aero Glass option sometimes turned on by your PC/laptop's manufacturer, turn it off for all your power options.
    Note: you can turn Aero visual effects off for individual programs by right-clicking the shortcut, go to properties, then Compatibility Tab... check Disable Visual Themes.
  • Change the default Screen color depth (Windows' Display Settings) from 32-bit to 16-bit: typically found at Windows> Control Panel> Appearance and Personalization> Display> Screen Resolution settings> Advanced Settings>List All Modes.
  • -Start Windows 7 in Diagnostic Mode. If it works here the cause of the problems may be the display or pointer drivers, another driver, a background process (such as an antivirus application).

In AutoCAD/LT:
  • Turn the ribbon off by picking a classic workspace as one extreme effort.
  • Turn off SAVEFIDELITY if you do not know for sure you must and absolutely have it (most users never need it on).
  • Turn off the modeless layer palette: use the old Layer dialog box (set LAYERDLGMODE to 0). This is not an LT option, for LT users you will need to turn off the LAYER palette when not in use.
  • Turn off any and all palette transparency.
  • Turn off SelectionCycling, SC button at bottom of screen
  • Turn off Hardware Acceleration within AutoCAD (not LT), icon on the lower right near workspace and toolbar lock.
  • Set HPDLGMODE variable to 1 and/ or HPQUICKPREVIEW to off.
  • Change ROLLOVERTIPS variable to 0 (off)
  • Set QPMODE variable to 0 (off)
  • Set SHOWLAYERUSAGE variable to 0 (off).
  • Are you using two monitors? Use monitor 1 as your graphics monitor as a test.
  • Update/dowgrade your video card drivers HERE (if any, otherwise try your PC vendor or video card vendor's websites).
  • Autodesk recommended uninstall and reinstall Procedures as a last resort.