When faced with tons of drawings and data, we all want to have some kind of useful tool that can deal with them altogether and that’s why people use batch commands and utilities a lot.

When we copy and paste drawings containing blocks with the same names as the ones in the current drawings, the pasted blocks will be replaced by the blocks in the current drawings and therefore the pasted drawings will be different. The best way to solve this problem is to let these blocks have the same definitions. But this is hard to do and there will still be blocks with same names but different definitions. In this case, we need to use Rename.

If there are too many blocks with the same names, it would be troublesome to find the ones with different definitions, we might as well rename them all. The following paragraphs are to introduce some ways to rename blocks.

Basic operations in renaming blocks

The basic operations in renaming a block is simple, just enter REN and press Enter to open the dialog box, and select the category that you want to rename on the left, select the items that you want to modify on the right of the dialog box, and then enter a new name, as shown in the following picture.

The styles and properties that need to be renamed on the left are likely to make drawings different after Copy and Paste. Renaming one block or style is simple but batch rename is another thing and the key lies in how to batch select and define styles or blocks, OK, let me take renaming blocks as an example.

How to batch select and rename blocks?

1.Tips for multiple selections

When selecting block names, we could directly select them in the list or enter names in the input box. When selecting in the list, we can use multiple selections with SHIFT and CTRL keys: press SHIFT to select several continuous blocks in the list and press CTRL to select more blocks in the list — which is also the tips in WINDOWS. After this, the block name shows ”Multiple”, as shown in the following picture.

Another way is to use wildcard characters * and ? to select: * stands for multiple characters while ? stands for one character. As shown in the following picture.

* and ? could also be put in the middle or before according to the properties of the block names.

2. Batch rename with new names

Wildcard characters * and ? are also needed in order to replace the old names in bulk.

If you select several of them from the list and the block name shows “Multiple”, which means the old block names have nothing in common. In this case, you can only rename the blocks by entering * instead of the old block names, but you can insert letters before or after *. The following takes the example of inserting A + before *.

If we need to enter wildcard characters in the Old Name box to select multiple items, then the wildcard characters entered in the Old Name box need to correspond to the ones in the Rename To box while the other characters can be replaced by new characters, for example, use cha* instead of chair* ,as shown in the following picture.

We could use several wildcard characters for the name, for example, we could use H?* to select all the blocks whose first character is H and the third character is A, but how to use this method depends on the properties of the blocks and the way you want to rename them.

The above are some tips for batch rename blocks, if you have better ways, please feel free to comment and share your experience with us, we’d love to hear from you.

In daily drawing work, I don’t recommend renaming all the blocks before Copy and Paste, because blocks in the drawing will multiply after several Copy and Paste. If we can control the block names, then we should try to avoid blocks with the same names but different definitions.

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