Mastering Customization in DraftSight and Enhancing Your Design Workflow

This blog series highlights everything you need to know about customization in DraftSight. The goal is to empower you to tailor the software to your specific needs and preferences. By mastering customization techniques, you can significantly enhance your productivity and streamline your design workflow.

What are the Benefits of Customization?

DraftSight offers robust customization capabilities that go beyond simply changing colors or rearranging menus. Here’s what you can achieve:

  • Streamlined workflows: Organize toolbars and commands to match your design process, ensuring frequently used functions are readily accessible.
  • Reduced keystrokes: Create aliases for lengthy commands or complex sequences, saving valuable time.
  • Enhanced user experience: Personalize the interface to suit your style and preferences, fostering a more comfortable design environment.
  • Increased efficiency: Automate repetitive tasks with custom commands or Lisp routines, freeing you to focus on creative problem-solving.
  • Improved collaboration: Develop custom toolbars or macros that can be shared with colleagues, promoting consistency and efficiency across your team.

Session 1 DraftSight Customization – Watch Now!

Getting Started: A Roadmap to Customization

This tutorial video series provides a comprehensive guide to DraftSight customization, catering to users of all experience levels:

  • Beginners: Learn the fundamentals of creating profiles, adjusting file locations, and customizing basic settings.
  • Transitioning users: Discover best practices for adapting to DraftSight from other CAD systems, leveraging familiar features with ease.
  • Advanced users: Explore advanced techniques like creating custom commands, writing Lisp routines, and manipulating data within DraftSight.

Key Points to Remember:

  • Back up your profile: Before venturing into customization, create a backup of your current profile as a safety net.
  • Understanding customization options: Distinguish between system-wide changes (file locations) and drawing-specific preferences (drafting styles).
  • Utilize aliases effectively: While aliases offer convenient keyboard shortcuts, they lack the capabilities of Lisp routines for complex tasks.

Demystifying Customization Options

The following sections delve deeper into specific areas of customization:

1. Streamlining File Management and Profile Settings:

  • Create a new profile with a descriptive name for easy identification.
  • Adjust file locations (templates, title blocks) to a readily accessible directory like your public folder.
  • Structure support file search paths efficiently for optimal file retrieval speed.
  • Customize system options, such as auto-save duration and user preferences, to match your workflow.

2. Mastering Aliases and Command Customization:

  • Check for existing aliases before creating new ones to avoid conflicts.
  • Assign shortcuts to frequently used commands, reducing keystrokes.
  • Understand alias limitations – they cannot perform macros or include options.
  • Use Lisp routines for more complex functionality, conditional logic, and error handling.

3. Customizing Toolbars and Commands:

  • Access the customization interface (CUI) to add existing commands to toolbars.
  • Create custom commands for frequently used sequences, streamlining your workflow.
  • Design custom toolbars with specific project needs in mind, grouping related commands for easy access.

4. Understanding Menu Macros vs. API Macros:

  • Menu Macros: Assign sequences to commands, acting as keyboard shortcuts.
  • API Macros: Record actions in a programming language for complex automation.
  • Menu Macros – Simple to create, limited functionality (no options or macros within aliases).
  • API Macros – Complex functionality, require programming knowledge, record sequences in system language.

Choose the macro type that best suits your needs and technical expertise.

5. The Power of Lisp in CAD Customization:

  • Lisp programs seamlessly transfer between CAD systems, ideal for users transitioning from different platforms.
  • Lisp is platform-independent, ensuring routines function across various operating systems (no need for rewriting code).
  • Simple to create both basic and complex routines without compilation, saving time.
  • Write and run programs as plain text files, facilitating rapid testing and implementation.
  • Lisp routines are compact and efficient, enabling sophisticated programming within DraftSight.
  • Capabilities extend beyond aliases and menu macros, including conditional logic, calculations, and user prompts.
  • Utilize online resources and user-friendly text editors (Notepad++) for easy Lisp customization.


By mastering DraftSight customization, you can unlock a world of productivity and efficiency. This blog series equips you with the knowledge and tools to transform DraftSight into a personalized design environment that readily complements your existing workflow.

Remember, customization is an ongoing process, so explore and experiment to discover the techniques that best suit your needs. Stay tuned for upcoming videos that will provide a visual demonstration of these customization concepts.

Did you know? You can take advantage of DraftSight’s free trial and discover how this versatile CAD software can improve your design process.

Proven DWG-file-based CAD at the best value on the market. DraftSight, brought to you by Dassault Systèmes, the 3DEXPERIENCE company, has been trusted by millions of users worldwide. DraftSight provides a familiar, intuitive 2D drafting experience with options for advanced productivity tools, 3D design capabilities, parametric constraints, and flexible licensing options including perpetual licenses and network licenses for organizations with multiple users or sites. DraftSight’s command and file compatibility and support for legacy drawings and data like Dynamic Blocks facilitate a quick transition from AutoCAD with a minimal learning curve. Visit to learn more.