Unselectable Viewport – unclipping a viewport with a deleted boundary

So you have an unselectable viewport?

This could be a symptom of several conditions.

  1. The viewport itself is on an off layer. This will show the content but no boundary so the viewport cannot be selected and moved etc. Check whether the viewport layer is off by turnign all layers on and unfreezing all layers. This should then reveal the boundary.
  2. The viewport has been put on Defpoints, which when combined with Layer 0 being off will display the viewport boundary but it will be unselectable. This is why Defpoints should not be used for any user geometry.
  3. Lastly and this is what I encountered today which is the first time for me is that someone has clipped the viewport and then deleted the clipping boundary. This gives a viewport that is completely unselectable by the mouse. However it can be selected using Quickselect, see below for the method to remove this viewport.

Unclipping a clipped viewport that has had its boundary delelted!

Firstly we need to create a rectangle, this is needed for a later step.

Then run Quickselect (its on the “Home” tab under the “Utilities” group),

Quick select location
Quick select location

and then select “Viewports” from the dropdown box at the top. Then go to the bottom box and select “Select All”.

Select all viewports
Quick select all viewports

Once all the Viewports are selected and if there are other viewports you want to keep, use the shift key to de-select the ones that have borders leaving only the one that has no boundary.

Then go to the layout tab and select “Clip”, and select the rectangle you created at step one. This will clip the old viewport to the rectangle.

View port clip
Viewport clip

You can now either delete the viewport and rectangle or move and edit the viewport as required.

I would however suggest deleting the viewport and rectangle as this issue could happen again and create a new viewport using the layout tab new rectangular viewport option.

Hollow Dimensions

My colleague asks me today, “why are my dimensions hollow and not filled?” I thought, maybe FILLMODE is not set. But that was OK.

It turns out that this can be caused by non-flat or “elevated” drawings. I.e. 2D drawings that extend into 3D space. Usually caused by UCS not being rotated properly and it being skewed into 3D space.

The solution is to change the UCS in the modelspace or paperspace viewport so it is flat and things should be back to normal!

Annoying Auto Zooming Viewports

Today I noticed that one of drawing I opened automatically zoomed the viewport to extents when double clicking in the viewport. This is extremely annoying, particularly if I wanted to pan after setting the scale.

The solution is that a variable was set wrong.

In order to fix this it is fairly simple (though if you have many viewports time consuming – see here for a LISP that might help with many viewports).

  • First lock the viewport using properties
  • Then double click in viewport
  • Then type UCSFOLLOW
  • Set UCSFOLLOW to 0
  • Click back to paperspace
  • Unlock viewport


Rotate Viewport

One of my colleagues was asking how do I rotate a view in a specific viewport. I was all over this, and was like there are several ways, however the way I use is to use UCSFOLLOW, then rotate the UCS, turn off UCSFOLLOW and voila view rotated in viewport that is different to that of the model space.

Another colleague was like why don’t you rotate the viewport itself, that would be easier?

I was like, viewports don’t rotate? He rotated the viewport and wow! The view inside followed. This works for any angle!

The system variable that controls this is VPROTATEASSOC which has been in AutoCAD since 2010!