MacDraft Pro has some powerful reports that allow you to generate dynamic reports for your plans. You can set up the program to create a materials list. First, get organized. Look at your general ideas and notice how many things are duplicated. You might have several brick walls, or stepping stones. You can define walls with their associated studs, drywall, or panelling —whatever comprises you wall. You’ll go in and define that stepping stone, then lay down as many as you want, and your report will reflect the total number. Just remember to define each object the first time you use it, and then using it again gets in down for the total count.
Archive for the ‘2D home design’ Category
Version 7 of Ez-Architect was released on 9-1-2014. If you’ve made your purchase after that date, your key will be for version 7.
Our users often acquire our demo from various download sites. We have made the new version available on as many download sites as possible so that you can download from your favorite(s). However, since the interwebs are what they are, not every site is going to be up to date; Not every site is properly operating when we notify them that there’s a new version; Not every site crawls their associated download vendors’ files often enough to keep their file links up to date. (I could get into the technology of how all of this works. But you really don’t want to hear it. And I don’t much want to write it.) Anyway, we do our best, spend a lot of time getting the info about the new version up “there.” But the process is imperfect.
Maybe you downloaded a demo prior to September first. And now you’re getting around to buying the key. Or you got a copy from your uncle or co-worker. And who knows when they downloaded it. So you installed the demo and liked Ez-Architect. And now you’ve purchased the key and you get the error:
YOUR KEY IS INVALID!
Oh, the humanity. You just spent your hard earned cash. Took the leap and entered your key and you get a shock that makes you lost faith in the joy of software. What could you have done wrong!!! Not you! The seller must have screwed up. They’re selling me keys that don’t work!
Sooooo, who should we blame???
You got the shocking message: YOUR KEY IS INVALID
And if you’re stubborn you got it more than once because you kept trying to enter it hoping the message would change. But alas, same message: YOUR KEY IS INVALID (maybe not in caps).
Here’s a clue, entering an invalid key over and over won’t change it to a key that will work! Ya think?
You may even have a key from an earlier version. I’ll try that, you tell yourself. Same message. No joy.
Well, here it is: it’s not the key that’s invalid. It’s the version that’s incompatible. Version 7 keys work only with Ez-Architect Version 7. Version 6 keys only work with Ez-Architect version 6. Shall I go on?
So, if you get an error, be assuredly sure that the demo version you have installed is Version 7. If not, UNinstall the old version. Download version 7 from here: http://theliquidateher.com/demos.html#eza. Then enter your version 7 key. Oh, by the way, be sure you have only ONE instance of Ez-architect open when you enter your key.
We try to make our programs easy to use. But sometimes you might need a little extra help. We are happy to provide help, but you need to help us help you. Brief messages only confuse us.
The most important thing to remember is to provide LOTS of INFORMATION when you write. Remember, we don’t know what you’re trying to do, or even what software you’re talking about. We do wish to help, but sending messages that don’t give enough information make us clueless. Sending LOTS of information makes providing you with support a pleasure for both of us. (And who doesn’t want more pleasure in their life…)
Emailing cryptic messages like:
A. “my key doesn’t work”
“the program doesn’t work”
For example A, instead of the cryptic message, tell us something like this: I was using Firefox version 579 and visiting this page on your website, e.g. http://theliquidateher.com/ez-architect-update.php#ready. I entered my old key [write out what you entered exactly how you entered it] and I got this message:
[copy and paste the message]
that showed up on this page:
[copy and paste the URL of the page you landed on]
OR if you entered your key into the program, give us the version of the program, the full key data and any messages you got after you entered it.
Yes, I promised.
I promised a couple of posts ago that I’d follow up on the post about Adding a Border to Your Plan.
Today I’ll show you how to take the border we created and make it into a Library Object that you can use and re-use in any plan you create.
1. Open the Ez-Architect file where you saved the border.
2. Be sure your border (or other object) is selected. If it’s not already grouped, group it and then select it.
3. If you already have a library file with your own custom objects, that’s good. You can add this new border object to it. If not, go to Options/Library/Create New Library and create a new library file. Depending on the permissions on your computer, you may need to change permissions for the Library directory if you want to add your own file there. This can be done. Otherwise, just put your custom library file in your My Documents directory, or with your other Ez-Architect data files. Your Library file will be an *.aal file. Your Ez-Architect files are *.aad files.
4. Next select the object. (Read 2, above again if you haven’t grouped it).
5. Go to Options/Library/Add Object to Library…
6. The default Library directory will open. If you have placed your new library file there, find it and click. If your *.aal file is somewhere else, then navigate to it and then click the file.
7. To make sure your border is now in your library file, go to Options/Library/Manage Library.
8. When the Manage Library dialog opens, click Open, navigate to your library file via the file dialog and then open it.
9. You’ll see your border as an object in the library. You can use the Rename option to give it a name. Then save.
10. To use your border, click the Library icon Tool and draw a rectangle, the Library file dialog will open where you can select your library file (or navigate to where you saved it). Click to open.
11. Double click the library object. Click done, and it will be placed in your drawing. Drag it so it’s the size you want.
We’ve had a couple of incidents where users have had some trouble registering Ez-Architect.
Did you see something like this?
There are reasons and solutions (not reasons and excuses…). First, solutions:
- Check to see what version of Ez-Architect you are using. Go to Help/About. This will operate whether you’re using the demo or have an older registered version.
- If you have a version prior to 6.0, you should not be seeing anything like the message, above. If you do see this and you’re trying to register an old version, contact us and tell us about it. We’ll find it very interesting… and strange. And then we’ll encourage you to upgrade to version 6.
- If you have version 6.0 or 6.1, you’ll need to download version 6.2 (see why below). You can do this here: Ez-Architect 6.2 demo download
- Be sure to uninstall any previous version.
- Install version 6.2
- enter your key.
- Ez-Architect should be in full operating mode.
Upgrading from 6.1 to 6.2 if you’ve already Registered
You might be wondering how to get the latest and greatest and what will happen if you’ve already registered.
This is not a problem. If you’d like to upgrade to version 6.2 from 6.0 or 6.1 and you’ve already successfully registered, follow the instructions above (Solution A). But skip step 6. Your software will automatically be in full version (not demo) mode.
Why no re-registration? Because you have registered your computer. So even if you uninstall Ez-Architect, and reinstall Ez-Architect at this version level, you will be automatically registered for the newer version. That’s also why you can’t use the same key on a second computer. AND it’s why we make 2nd and 3rd key options available at a very reasonable cost ($2 bucks) when you make your original purchase. So you can use Ez-Architect on more than one computer. You just have to use the 2 or 3 key option when you purchase (or send us green rectangles after the fact). See this page for more info about getting extra keys after your original purchase:
But I digress.
Why the message?
I promised an explanation of the message for those of you who care; And more explanation for those who are asking ‘why, if I was able to register version 6.1 a couple of months ago, why can’t I register 6.1 with a new key on a different computer?’
When you register Ez-Architect, it contacts a special server that records your email address and Ez-Architect key. A few months ago, we switched to a new server and so Version 6.2 of Ez-Architect was set to contact the new server. Earlier versions were set to contact the old server, which alas, is no longer there. So if you try to register version 6.1, it cannot do it, and you get the friendly message above when you try.
There is one other possible reason that you might see the message above: Sometimes your firewall will block you from connecting with our server. If this happens, please try to set your firewall to allow the connection and try again. If it’s still a problem contact us and we’ll assist you.
And there you have it!
In some circumstances, depending on what you are drawing, you might want to add a border. In fact, you might want a standard border for all of your plans, kind of like a logo or a way for your customers/clients/friends to quickly identify that the work they’re looking at is from you. Almost like a trade mark or identifier.
There is no specific border tool in Ez-Architect. But there are plenty of tools included that make creating a border easy enough. You can even create a border and save it as a library object so you can use it over and over. You can create several different borders for different types of projects.
You can easily come up with a way to create your border. I’ll just give a couple of simple examples. (I’ve drawn these smaller than a full page so they’d capture more easily.)
First start with a simple hollow rectangle. See the fill pattern with the dash in it at the upper left. That’s your empty fill “color.”
Next, change the rectangle’s line thickness by selecting the rectangle and then clicking on the thickest line icon. Then right-click on a color in the color palette. (Be sure the rectangle is still selected before right-clicking on the color.)
Note, the fill is still empty, but now your corner color indicator shows up in blue. You’ve made the simplest border of all!
Next I make an arc pie.
Then I rotate it.
And next, I duplicate it 3 times.
Now the fun begins. First group the new object. (Forget about the old rectangle. No one needs that any more…)
Then duplicate it again. You can experiment with difference offsets to make it interesting. I settled on 60″ to come up with this. It’s just duplicated 3 times. The first object plus the 3 dupes. Be sure to use the duplicate tool (it’s shown in the icon bar to the left of the border) so that you have perfectly spaced duplicates. If you don’t use the tool, you’ll have to carefully place them individually which is a silly exercise, if you ask me. (You didn’t, I know.)
I experimented with a variety of fills for this pattern. But I like the dynamics of how it looks “empty.” Fills made it look flat. But you can certainly experiment, and depending on what object shape you begin with, a fill pattern may be just what you need for your own unique border. Fill the pattern if you wish and then continue to group and duplicate it until you have a complete border. You’ll have to rotate it a couple of times, too.
Here’s the complete border. After positioning everything, I did group it. I didn’t want any of the segments to go astray.
One more thing (as Colombo was wont to say). Be sure to place the border on its own Ez-Architect layer. That way it won’t interfere with other objects in your drawing, nor they with it.
Next time, we’ll look at saving it as a library object that you can bring into any new plan.
I was born to cause you great confusion I suppose.
Ez-Architect was updated this week to version 6.2. Notice I said updated, not upgraded. There is only one eensy, weensy thing changed. And you can’t even see it. Not really.
But it might affect you.
How can that be? I say, how can it not? We only do the things in Ez-Architect that affect you, even though we might do them for our own convenience (or perhaps for our amusement). And it affords us this great opportunity to tell you about it. So that you can read and hope that it never matters to you. It’s one of those kinds of things. I’m going to explain this in as complicated a way as I can so that if it ever does matter to you, you can refer back here and scratch your head again (vigorously)!
How’mi doing so far with saying nothing at all useful?
Okay, here goes.
The change in Ez-Architect 6.2 is only about the server Ez-Architect connects to when you register. If you’re not familiar with servers, they’re just powerful (hopefully) computers that live in a big server farm somewhere with lots of other servers and they serve up websites, store stuff when you register (like your serial number/PIN code), etc. Not going to say more than that here (look it up if you care). Anyway Ez-Architect 6 connected to server A and Ez-Architect 6.2 connects to server B.
Now if you’ve already downloaded version 6 (I don’t know if there was ever a version 6.1) and already registered all of your serial numbers and you never get a new computer, and your hard drive never breaks down, and you have no desire to upgrade to yet another version of Windows, you can ignore this whole post. (Yes. I know that’s kind of like saying …the NSA respects your privacy…)
If, however, you ever need to reinstall Ez-Architect, for whatever reason, you’ll probably want to read on.
First, you might want to check your Help/About menu to see what version you have. What version you already have can matter, just a little, and it’s about how carefully you should read on.
Now a few of you have already gone through this with me:
“I got a new computer/OS/drive and now I can’t register my Ez-Architect serial number. It tells me it’s already in use.”
When this happens We have to contact the “keeper-of-the-keys” and request them to unlock your serial number so you can register again. This has worked for everyone so far with version 6. So far so good.
Now, let’s say you have version 6 and you dutifully saved it to a DVD or CD so you would ALWAYS have a copy of what you purchased (following my excellent instructions in our welcome email). But next week or next month or even next year it’s reinstall time (for whatever reason).
So you reinstall Ez-Architect (ver 6) and try to register again. And we ask the “keeper-of-the-keys” to unlock your key. Wellllllll, that would have worked until last Thursday. And even if the keeper unlocks your key, your version 6 will not connect to the new server.
Sooooo, what you have to do is download version 6.2, install it, try to connect to the new server, whereby you will get a message that your key is already in use, so you’ll have to request that it be unlocked.
This will all work: download and install Version 6.2, request that we unlock your key at the new server if you get an error message (you will) when you try to register, then when we notify you that your key’s unlocked, register again.
So you might want to download version 6.2 right away and never have to think about this again (except if you get a new computer/drive/OS). But then you’ll all be plaguing me to get your keys unlocked so you can register the new version.
But hey, I’m here to serve. Just go ahead on it.
How’s that for an opening title? Here’s what’s been added to the newest version of Ez-Architect:
NEW FEATURES for Version 8:
- Rotation of imported bitmaps
- All the toolbars can be floated and moved around
- A new View menu that controls tool bar visibility and floating and unfloating tool bars
- A new item in the Preferences dialog sets up whether tool bars float on start-up
- Updated manual
- Printing in landscape mode on A3 size paper has been improved
- Textures being added to objects can be rotated after selecting them
- You can now input text with one click, which will set a text area about 20 characters long and one line in depth; and you can still set a text area by dragging with the mouse as before
- A Door Tool—this new door tool allows you to cut doors in existing walls
- Object Properties dialog now lets you rotate textures
NEW FEATURES for Version 7:
- Ability to add textures to objects
- Eyedropper Tool
- Ability to change order in which layers display (9 layers are available)
- Drag and Drop objects from the library
- Updated manual
- Solid dimension arrow option as well as hollow dimension arrow for dimension lines
- Fractional feet and inches and fractional inches problems fixed
- Area display fixed
- File import default fixed
- Object Properties dialog now lets you change the size of objects by percent
- A3-size paper printing fixed
- Drawing size fixed
- Registration simplified and fixed
NEW FEATURES for Version 6:
- DXF file import and export (2D only)
- Continuous wall and hollow wall tools which support auto-dimension lines, constrained (0, 45, 90, 135, 180, 225, 270, 315 degrees) and unconstrained (any angle) angles; continuous hollow wall tool draws continuous, colored or patterned hollow walls AT ANY ANGLE that scale up and down fine while the continuous wall tool draws continuous, 3-pixel-wide walls AT ANY ANGLE
- Option to maintain height and width ratio when changing sizes in the Object Info dialog
- Can import graphic files directly at their original size from the Import item in the File menu
- Updated manual
- Better wall scaling
FEATURES for Version 5 (originally published in 2009):
- Four dozen colored patterns
- Auto-dimension lines for lines and rectangles
- Drawing method 2 mouse clicks without dragging has been added as an option along with conventional drag-and-click method
- Printable reports containing all objects, their name, sizes and angles
- Colors have been added to pattern editing and you may add your own permanently to the palette
- PDF file export
- wmf file export
- Fractional Inches and Fractional Feet and Inches can now be selected as Drawing Units
- Right click brings up Edit menu display
- Red lines in rulers that follow cursor
- Expanded Preferences dialog
- Preview feature in File Menu allows viewing unopened plans as thumbnails
- Program opens with all settings the same as last session
Some features of this home design program that make your floor plans easier are the duplicate tool for automatically placing rows or columns of boards, studs, trees, plywood, joists or whatever exactly where you need them—spaced on-center like you need them when you design your own home. And there’s a layering system for keeping upper stories, electrical, and plumbing schematics separate. On the other hand, if you just want to create simple floor plans without any complications or layers or construction detail, this is the home design program for you!
Don’t forget to try Ez-Architect 6. You can download the demo here:
Try out the new features to see if you can’t live without them.
If you’re already an Ez-Architect 4 or 5 owner, you can upgrade from here (You’ll need your Ez-Architect 4 or 5 key and your email address to get our super special upgrade price.): <this is not a frown-y face>
If you’ve tried the demo and fallen in love and you’re a new buyer, you can purchase from here:
What features are you fond of in the new version?
What features would you like to see in future versions? (If you don’t tell us, we won’t know what you need…)