MicroStation Tip: Selecting your DWG Version

Written by Rod Wing

When you install MicroStation the AutoCAD Real DWG library is also installed.  The Real DWG library allows MicroStation to work with AutoCAD drawings in their native format and to be recognized as genuine Autodesk dwg files when opened in AutoCAD. The chart below shows the versions of Real DWG supported by the MicroStation V8i (SELECTseries) releases.

RealDWG Chart

 

Note that Real DWG 2010 is not supported by MicroStation V8i (SELECTseries 3). There is a conflict with the library that does not allow for this mode.

 

The default operation in MicroStation is to work the latest Real DWG version. That means by default MicroStation V8i (SELECTseries 3) will open all DWG files using Real DWG 2013 compatibility. Any earlier version DWG files will be automatically upgraded to the 2013 format. This can present a problem when your client is running an earlier version of AutoCAD. To remedy this set the MS_REALDWG_VERSION configuration variable to the required DWG compatibility mode.

In the example below MicroStation is being set to use Real DWG 2009 compatibility.

REAL_DWG_VERSION

 

MicroStation will not be able to open any DWG files newer than the version specified by the MS_REALDWG_VERSION variable.

 

 

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Rod Wing

Rod Wing

Rod joined EnvisionCAD in March 2007 and has nearly three decades of experience working in the CADD industry. He led the IT evaluations of Bentley InRoads and AutoDesk Civil 3D at Wisconsin DOT in their overall CAiCE replacement evaluation. He also led the MicroStation V7 to V8 upgrade effort at Wisconsin DOT which included updating not only the CADD standards to accommodate the changes in the file format but also updating legacy MDL and macros to work in the new environment. Rod received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin in Cartography and a Master of Science in Geographic and Cartographic Sciences from George Mason University. Rod has extensive experience in CADD as well as the areas of GIS, cartography, plotting, scanning, raster editing/manipulation, publishing, and file/data translations. In all of these areas, he has produced custom tools and developed workflows to enhance productivity between diverse sets of applications. He instructs MicroStation classes ranging from fundamentals to advanced applications.

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