Customization Blog Series: Keyboard Shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts are another way of quickly accessing specific ribbon groups or tools. Based on the specific keys assigned, different tools, ribbon group pop-ups or pop-up menus display. These keys are the shortcuts to access the respective tools.

For example, the <Space> key invokes the default ribbon group pop-up which contains further shortcuts for different ribbon groups and tools. Some other examples of keyboard shortcuts are <Q> and <I> (mentioned in the previous blog) which open the quick tools menu. Some shortcuts have child shortcuts which invoke further tools. Like W, the keyboard shortcut for AccuDraw has child shortcuts A, C, E and so on for different AccuDraw rotations.

You can view the complete list of keyboard shortcuts in the view window by pressing F7. (See image below)

You can use the Keyboard Shortcuts dialog (File>Settings>User>Keyboard Shortcuts) to create and manage keyboard shortcuts. (See image below)

Existing keyboard shortcuts can be modified or deleted, and new keyboard shortcuts can be created in the Keyboard Shortcuts dialog. Changes to keyboard shortcuts are saved on an XML file. If you want to configure custom keyboard shortcuts and distribute across a team, then you can do so by configuring them on one machine and then copying the file to other machines.

In the previous blog on Designing a Ribbon Group Pop-up, we learnt how to create and assign a new keyboard shortcut to the newly created pop-up group. We will now see how we can edit an existing keyboard shortcut.

In the existing list of keyboard shortcuts let us change the shortcut Q for quick tools to J and add a child keyboard shortcut to it for Move Parallel tool.

  1. Open the Keyboard Shortcuts dialog (File>Settings>User>Keyboard Shortcuts).
  2. Double-click on ‘Q’ in the Key column and rename it to ‘J’.
  3. Press <Enter>.

    The shortcut changes to J.

  4. Now click the ‘+’ sign next to J.
  5. List of child shortcuts associated with Quick tools is displayed.

    We will add the Move Parallel tool to this list.

  6. Select the Add Child icon.
  7. In the Key column, enter the shortcut key ‘P’.
  8. In the Label column enter Move Parallel.
  9. In the Key-in column enter the key-in ‘move parallel offset’ and press <Enter>.
  10. Click Apply.
    The new child shortcut P is added for the tool Move Parallel. You can now test the new shortcuts. Watch the video below:

Similarly, you can customize any of the existing keyboard shortcuts.

To remove an existing shortcut, select the keyboard shortcut and click delete in the dialog or right-click on the keyboard shortcut and select delete from the pop-up menu.