Profiles and workspaces both give you control over your drawing environment. Profiles (AutoCAD 2000 onward) save environmental settings such as user options, drafting settings, default search paths, template file locations, and printer defaults. They also include user interface elements such as menus, palettes, and toolbars. Workspaces, introduced in AutoCAD 2007, control the display of menus, toolbars, and palettes in the drawing area. Workspaces are intended to be task specific, so, for example, you might create one workspace for drawing and another for dimensioning.
If you haven’t ever created a new profile, you are probably using the default AutoCAD profile: UNNAMEDPROFILE. If your workspace is already set up the way you like it and you have no need for additional profiles, you can continue to use the default profile rather than create a new one.
To create a new profile, select Options from the Tools menu and display the Profiles tab. The current profile appears at the top of the tab. Select Add to List and assign a name and description, if desired.
Caption: Select the Add to List button to create a new profile.
Once you’ve created a profile, set up AutoCAD the way you want it. Open the toolbars you most often use, set pickbox size, colors, etc.
Note also that any changes you make to AutoCAD settings, options, etc. are automatically saved to the profile that is current.
You can export your profile to a secure storage location not on your workstation (flash drive, CD, etc). Select Options from the Tools menu, then select the Profiles tab. The Export button at right creates an ARG file.
Caption: Remember to export your profiles so you have them handy in case you need to reinstall AutoCAD or move to a new workstation.
If anything happens to your workstation or you need to reinstall AutoCAD, you can restore your work environment easily. Return to the Profiles tab of the Options command and select Import Profile.
The Reset button resets the values in the selected profile to the system default settings.
If you use more than one profile, you can create desktop shortcuts that open AutoCAD with a specific profile current. Right-click on an AutoCAD desktop icon and select Properties from the shortcut menu that appears. In the Shortcut tab under Properties, add /p currentprofile (where currentprofile is the name of the profile you want to use) after the directoryspecified in the Target window. For example, the following makes a profile called newuser current:
"c:\Program Files\AutoCAD2007\acad.exe"/p newuser