The Explorer – Part Four: The Resources tab

So far in our blog series on the Explorer, found within the MicroStation CONNECT Edition, we have done an overview of the Explorer.  We also talked about the capabilities of the File tab, which allows you to display the content of the file such as models, saved views, references, etc.  We then talked about the Items tab, which lists business items contained in a DGN file.  Business data is the real-world information associated with the items represented by the graphics in the model.  Here, in Part Four of the Explorer blog series, we will take a closer look at the Explorer dialog’s Resources tab.
The Explorer dialog Resources tab displays common resources being used by a DGN file. Common resources include DGN library files and the active file. Most of the content in the Explorer dialog Resources tab is read-only.

Right Clicking Categories
Expanding each category within the Resources tab, such as Dimension Styles, Element Templates, Item Type Libraries, Report Definitions, and so on, lists items within that category or further sub-categories.  Here you will discover that there are numerous capabilities when right-clicking on items.   For instance, you can view, manage, and utilize content displayed in the Explorer Resources tab in the following ways:

  • Right-clicking a category — You can select a menu item from the pop-up menu to perform actions on the resource. For example, if you right-click the Dimension Styles category you see Manage, New, Properties, Import and Update From Library. Selecting, Manage, opens, in this case, the Dimension Styles dialog.  Clicking, Update From Library, synchronizes dimension styles in the DGN file to reflect current settings in a configured DGN library.  Clicking Details or Properties opens the Details or Properties dialog (respectively) in which properties of Dimension Styles appear.

  • Right-clicking an item within a category — You can select a menu item from the pop-up menu to perform actions on the selected item. For example, if you right-click a Text Style within the Text Styles category, here you can Place Text utilizing this style, activate the style, copy, rename, delete, and view the details or properties.

In addition, you can Open Library or Open Library in New Session.  By selecting either of these options, it will open the specific Design Library (dgnlib) that hosts those definitions.  So, if you’re someone who keeps the standards for your organization, this provides a direct link to those files to make your updates to the standards when they arise.

Double-Clicking Options

  • Double-clicking a category — Expands or collapses the category
  • Double-clicking an item within a category — Activates the item, if possible. For example, double-clicking on a dimension style or text style will make that the active style

Performing Searches

In the Resources tab – just like we saw in the File tab and Items tab of the Explorer dialog, you can search for objects within the tree. Based on the requirements, you can either perform a Simple search, Criteria search, or an Advanced search. In short:

  • Simple searches allow you to conduct a search based on searched text
  • Criteria searches allow you to create simple queries
  • Advanced searches lets you build complex search conditions that can be saved for later use

Finally, it is worth taking a second to mention some familiar icons shown here:

  • White book for Library Styles
  • Blue book for a local style
  • Blue book with delta symbol represents a local style that differs from the library style
  • and the blue book with a check mark represents a local style that matches the library style

So, the Resources tab provides a great way to display common resources being used by a DGN file as well what is available to utilize from the DGN library files.
Next in Part Five of the Explorer blog series, we will take a look at the Sheet Index tab.  The Sheet Index tab allows you to manage sheet indexing. A sheet index is an organized and named collection of sheet models from one or more design files.