DzinEye

User Library - Suggestions?

Recommended Posts

I've been hacking along forever just throwing things into the User Library folder... and finally want to start a proper User library.
Before I start, wondering if anyone has any advice/suggestions that would benefit me before I get going with it.


One thing I dislike about Chiefs library items is the naming scheme... e.g.; Instead of 'Green chair', White chair' etc.,, I prefer 'Chair_Green.  Am I going to have problems if I depart from Chiefs naming scheme?  Suggestions for what to do if I copy a Chief item and rename it in my library for keeping track and updating that item when Chief updates?  
E.g.: I would like to take my favorite items whole cloth from Chief and add them to my user library for easier access.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Try to keep a similar format as the Core Catalogs so that as things are customized and accumulated you will know where to find them since we can't change the core catalog.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, Chopsaw said:

Try to keep a similar format as the Core Catalogs so that as things are customized and accumulated you will know where to find them since we can't change the core catalog.

Thank you.  If you know, is there a way to copy the folder format without having to create it from scratch?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, DzinEye said:

I've been hacking along forever just throwing things into the User Library folder... and finally want to start a proper User library.
Before I start, wondering if anyone has and advice/suggestions that would benefit me before I get going with it.

 

Add search attributes as you go. I also personally like to name in ALL CAPS to distinguish my symbols. I make duplicate symbols and store in multiple places that would be common to my workflow i.e. wet location LED in BATHROOM folder and LIGHTING folder. I add the last date the symbol was updated to comments in the symbol. Helps me keep up with symbols that contain macros or custom fields.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Renerabbitt said:

Add search attributes as you go. I also personally like to name in ALL CAPS to distinguish my symbols. I make duplicate symbols and store in multiple places that would be common to my workflow i.e. wet location LED in BATHROOM folder and LIGHTING folder. I add the last date the symbol was updated to comments in the symbol. Helps me keep up with symbols that contain macros or custom fields.


All great advice Rab

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Renerabbitt said:

Add search attributes as you go. I also personally like to name in ALL CAPS to distinguish my symbols. I make duplicate symbols and store in multiple places that would be common to my workflow i.e. wet location LED in BATHROOM folder and LIGHTING folder. I add the last date the symbol was updated to comments in the symbol. Helps me keep up with symbols that contain macros or custom fields.

Thank you Rene.  Good info!
BTW...I added the following detail to my original question which if you have any insight on, would appreciate your feedback..>
"One thing I dislike about Chiefs library items is the naming scheme... e.g.; Instead of 'Green chair', White chair' etc.,, I prefer 'Chair_Green.  Am I going to have problems if I depart from Chiefs naming scheme?  Suggestions for what to do if I copy a Chief item and rename it in my library for keeping track and updating that item when Chief updates? "
E.g.: I would like to take my favorite items whole cloth from Chief and add them to my user library for easier access.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, DzinEye said:

Thank you.  If you know, is there a way to copy the folder format without having to create it from scratch?

 

Sorry not that I am aware of.  It would be nice to just be able to copy and edit a Core Catalog item and have it stay in it's original folder with some sort of an indicator that it has been modified.

 

I would just start with the main structure of folders and add sub folders as required as there will likely be lot you will never need.

 

Go with a naming scheme that is consistent and you will remember. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can copy any folder in the core or manufacturer libraries that you want by right-clicking on it in the library browser.  You can then paste it into your user library as a full copy of the original items or as shortcuts to the original items.

 

You can also add your own search attributes to any library object in any folder.

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Alaskan_Son said:


All great advice Rab

Thank you kind sir.

34 minutes ago, DzinEye said:

Thank you Rene.  Good info!
BTW...I added the following detail to my original question which if you have any insight on, would appreciate your feedback..>
"One thing I dislike about Chiefs library items is the naming scheme... e.g.; Instead of 'Green chair', White chair' etc.,, I prefer 'Chair_Green.  Am I going to have problems if I depart from Chiefs naming scheme?  Suggestions for what to do if I copy a Chief item and rename it in my library for keeping track and updating that item when Chief updates? "
E.g.: I would like to take my favorite items whole cloth from Chief and add them to my user library for easier access.

I personally use my Library 90% of the time I am designing or drafting. I periodically update symbols in my library from Chief's updated items.I would say that I am well outside of the norm in this regard. I tend to improve Chiefs symbols substantially, and catered to my workflow. So even if Chief updates its symbols they are still of lesser value to me than my own modified version. 

 

I have 5 naming conventions I use throughout the several-100K files I store outside of chief that I carry to inside of my library. They change dependent on the level of importance in the sort order.

"/" indicates a folder level. 

  • /(date)-(version/stage)/(name) i.e. /200330-DRVA/MOSSWOOD.plan
  • /(date)-(version/stage)-(name) i.e. /200330-DRVA-MOSSWOOD.pdf
  • /(classification)-(name) i.e. /Door-Green
  • /(class)/(classification)/(name) i.e. /Doors/Green/2868-LH-OUT.calibz
  • /name+folder of assets of the same name i.e. Door-Green.calibz and Door-Green/Diffuse, Roughness, AO, Sketchup file etc.

Keep in mind that my best laid plans for naming conventions tend to get modified every 5 years or so. Also my actual filing system is far more complicated when you consider storing assets that comprise symbols/jobs/materials/photos etc.

 

I would encourage users to spend some time setting up filters. It makes a huge difference.

 

Also, maybe of interest to anyone here that designs for several different municipal/county requirements, you can make a separate user library for separate jurisdictions. So that if I am designing in California my windows all carry macros with specific energy code requirements.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Renerabbitt said:

I personally use my Library 90% of the time I am designing or drafting. I periodically update symbols in my library from Chief's updated items.I would say that I am well outside of the norm in this regard. I tend to improve Chiefs symbols substantially, and catered to my workflow. So even if Chief updates its symbols they are still of lesser value to me than my own modified version. 

This too (90% use of own library) is essentially my goal in finally setting up a proper library.  I'm so tired of skimming through hundreds of Chief items I will probably never use to find what I want...though I realize setting up filters is what I need to do to better use Chiefs library, I would like to make some changes to many of the things (like gloss and direction of flooring for instance), so I'm intent on getting this library right.
Alas, sounds like there's no magic bullet to keeping things updated when Chief updates library items.


Out of curiosity if you don't mind, what percentage of your customized library items will not work when a new version of Chief comes out?
 

Really appreciate your info! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
39 minutes ago, Dermot said:

You can copy any folder in the core or manufacturer libraries that you want by right-clicking on it in the library browser.  You can then paste it into your user library as a full copy of the original items or as shortcuts to the original items.

 

You can also add your own search attributes to any library object in any folder.

 

 

Thank you Dermot!  
Any feedback on keeping these items updated for new Chief versions, especially if I modify their names?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I typically haven't had problems with custom symbols when Chief updates.  What I found helpful for me in setting up my User Library items, was to have my library item folders on my hard drive match the folder structure in my User Library.  I tend not to have many project specific items, so I have a single "Chief Library" folder that has main folders for Backdrops, Bonus Libraries, Color Themes, Images, Manufacturer Libraries, Misc Calibz (usually downloads from helpful Chief users that have a mix of items that don't quite fit in a single folder so I toss it in there until I sort it out) and Textures.  Then if I find something online that I want to add to my library, I put the original file into the proper subfolder on my hard drive to start with, then create the new item from within Chief. 

 

Very infrequently, but it does happen, I have had to recreate my User Library from scratch and a few times I did it as a test, so by keeping the hard drive folder structure a match to what I want my User Library to be, if something ever happens and I need to recreate it, it will be much easier.  It also makes it easier if I want to compare original images of some type, Stucco, for example, to see which images have the highest quality or most detail if I am cleaning out, update or sorting my files, when they are all in the same folder.  Within various Texture folders, such as Stucco, I tend to sort by color families with subfolders such as Beige Stuccos, Brown Stuccos, Dark Stuccos, Gold Stuccos, Grey Stuccos, Light Stuccos, Reddish Stuccos, Other Stuccos.  

 

I also keep copies of the various bonus calibz and manufacturer libraries, because those sometimes get updated or changed, and I still want to use some item from an older catalog, so having the original still allows me to add it to my user library even if Chief no longer has it as part of their main offerings.  As others mentioned, I try to keep the symbols part of my user library basically matching the structure of Chiefs Core Library since over time I have gotten used to it.  I also copy my user library every year or so, and label it with a date, so if I ever need to go back to something, I can. 

 

Definitely worth checking what other people do, thinking about how you use it, and taking time to set up a good system. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 is there a way to copy the folder format without having to create it from scratch?

 

I have been requesting since X4 introduced the current library system

 

that Chief allows us to mimic the website folder system

I was told by a staffer that it was a good idea but too late for X4

 

I guess its time has not come yet :(

 

I have also requested to be able to download catalogs as a batch

rather than have to do them one-by-one

 

still no joy :(

 

Lew

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I try to limit needing to drill down or to click around multiple places. To that end, like others, the majority of my work is in the user library. Things I do

  • I rarely copy an entire folder from elsewhere. The ones I do have are things like lines, fills, walls; items that rarely change and I likely want  most of the folder.
  • limit nesting of subolders as much as possible-one level cuts down on rummaging.
  • Since most of my work is remodel and interiors I have a lot of categories that others might not have and those are where I need to go most often. So there is a folder "structure" with the typical sub-folders for working on that-doors, walls, window etc. I could see doing the reverse if I were doing mostly new construction; having the interior related folders as subfolders to keep them out of the way until needed.

When the majority of my work was for the public I took to setting up a folder per project. All the possible options for the job, likely to change, were kept. As much as possible all defaults were specified from that folder. If something changed it was added there before being set as a new default. When changing defaults Chief will always head to that folder first. Any symbols created or adjusted for the project are also kept there to speed up using "replace from library" since it's at the top of the list.

 

Nowadays most of my work is for a few clients so a slight change was needed to that. There is a folder for each client that has a few subfolders for what they use most and client specific custom symbols. Then another folder per project.
Make those folders go to the top of the list by renaming them with spaces at the front of the name. (F2, home, space, space).

I use "import defaults" often for clients and this helps. The original defaults were set from one of these folders, when making changes in the defaults DBX Chief automatically opens to that folder, even if that folder was renamed.

I make or alter a lot of symbols. Since we can't specify what folder those go to when adding to the library they always end up at the bottom of the user library. I always have a folder (or a few) with a name starting with Z. I can quickly clear out what is not categorized yet into that folder and can also get to the bottom of the list quickly by selecting any User folder and typing "Z" (just make sure it is not set to rename before typing damhikt :)

Last and perhaps most important is avoid letting things get out of hand. I'm in the process of clearing, cleaning and re-arranging a bit of a mess caused by custom symbols and it takes forever to sort those.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now

  • Member Statistics

    28628
    Total Members
    9156
    Most Online
    ProfNaki
    Newest Member
    ProfNaki
    Joined