MicroStation Tip: Mouse Mechanics

Written by Bob Mecham.


Mouse functionality has been greatly expanded by the inclusion of useful tools assigned to the typical two button mouse with wheel. The wheel is now referred to as “XButton 1” and, by default, is the pan drag command. Button assignments are now stored as a file that can be saved by the user. The default name for this file is default.btnmenu. Mouse buttons are assigned as follows:

Data <D> – Used to select commands, icons, pull-down menus, etc. The data button is also used to accept or confirm a command or tentative snap.

XButton 1 <M> – Used as the pan view command in the active view.

Reset <R> – Used to release a current operation or reset a command.

Tentative <T> – Used as a tool for temporarily selecting a location or element.

Default Button Assignments for a Three-Button Mouse

Default Button Assignments for a Three-Button Mouse

Default Button Assignments for a Two-Button Mouse

Default Button Assignments for a Two-Button Mouse

Left Button “Data”

Left Button "Data"

Click: Accept or identify

Shift + Click: Pan view

Ctrl + Click: Continue a selection

Alt + Click: Match attributes from an element

Drag:  Define a start and stop of a selection area, fence or element

Shift + Ctrl: Temporarily disable AccuSnap

Shift + Ctrl + Drag: Element selection overlap block

Double-click: Edit Text


Right button “Reset”

Right Button "Reset"

Click: Accept or identify

Click and Hold: Call the MicroStation context sensitive menu on the cursor

Shift + Click: Call the View pop-up control located on the cursor

Ctrl + Click: Call Main toolbar located on the cursor

Alt + Click: Call the Element quick info located on the cursor

Shift + Ctrl: Call Task Navigation toolbar located on the cursor


Wheel “XButton 1”

Wheel "XButton 1"

Click: Pan view

Click and Hold: Pan view

Double-click: Fit view

Shift + Click: Rotate view; target is reference point (3D tool only)

Ctrl + Click: Rotate view; camera is reference point (3D tool only)

Alt + Click: Set rotate view; target is reference point (3D tool only)

Roll: Zoom in/out

Shift + Roll: Pan with zoom

Ctrl + Roll: Walk forwards/backwards

Alt + Roll: Pan left/right


Left and Right button “Chord”

Left and Right button "Chord"

Click: Tentative point

Shift + Click: Call pop-up located on the cursor

Ctrl + Click: Set AccuDraw origin





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2 comments on “MicroStation Tip: Mouse Mechanics

  1. Dave Reply

    Great article, thank you.
    How from within the Button Assignments dialog or the default.btnmenu file do you define the functions associated to “Click and Hold” actions? It seems you can only define a button to an action which I believe only assigns your “Click” actions.

  2. Bob Mecham Reply

    Hi Dave looks like your are right. I can’t seem to find a way to change how the Click and Hold buttons are used. There is Workspace > Preferences > Input > Reset Pop-up Menu -> Right click and hold and just Right click but I dont think that is going to help you.

    Maybe there is something you can do with the Windows driver for the mouse setting.


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