FAQ

AutoCAD® plugin for calculating total lengths and areas of polylines

MeteorSpec exists in two versions and both of them are available to download from Autodesk Exchange Apps.

Installation and activation for AutoCAD 2012 and later

If you install Meteor Spec application from the Autodesk Exchange, then process of installation is very simple.  Installation will be executed independently of, whether AutoCAD or any other Autodesk vertical product is running during the installation or not. For AutoCAD versions 2012 and later, installation process will be ended at this step. You only will need to start any command of Meteor Spec and to activate the plugin.

Activation:  At the first start of Meteor Spec it will be offered to you to confirm the License Agreement. You must accept this agreement to start using the program.

For activation of the paid version of the program you should enter the registration code you received.

Installation and activation for AutoCAD 2005 – 2011

The installer that ran when you downloaded this application from Autodesk Exchange has already installed Meteor Spec. To continue installation and activation it is necessary to load the Meteor Spec starting file into AutoCAD:

  • Start AutoCAD and use AutoCAD’s appload command by typing “appload” or picking Tools->Load Application from main menu,
  • Then browse mtr-spec-start.vlx file located in Meteor Spec program folder. (The location of this file is shown in the Help chapter „Autoload“),
  • Then press “Load” button and close the appload dialog.

Activation:  At the first start of Meteor Spec it will be offered to you to confirm the License Agreement. You must accept this agreement to start using the program.

For activation of the paid version of the program you should enter the registration code you received.

In addition for AutoCAD 2005 – 2011, during activation the startap record will be added in the Startup Suite list and application support path will be added in the Support Path list.  Changes to the autoload setting do not take effect until you close and restart AutoCAD.

See also Meteor Spec Help chapter „Autoload“.

Can I create a network model in Paper Space?

Network models can be created either in Model Space, or in Paper Space, at any layout tab of the drawing. To calculate objects specifications, the program searches for objects in current space, and, if the current space is the Paper Space, then the search is undertaken only by the current layout tab.  A single drawing can comprise any number of engineering network models that are independent of each other and located at different layout tabs.

If network is created in Model Space, is it possible to make a calculation through active Viewport from Paper Space?

If the Model Space is active in a drawing before initiating the calculation command, objects are searched only throughout the Model Space, and object specification table is drawn within the Model Space, too. Here, it does not matter at all which method you use to access the Model Space: whether you are on Model Tab, or work within the Model Space through active Viewport from the Paper Space. Also, via the active Viewport, you can fully access the program objects that are located within the Model Space to view, assign, modify or copy their data.

Should I always specify an object name?

The object name is an optional property of the object. It not accounted for anyhow during object specifications calculations. Yet, we highly recommend assigning names to model objects to control data further on, as well as to make possible project modifications, and, correspondingly, its networks model, in a more convenient manner. It sounds logical for the object name to match the name or the number of the span, or the element on the scheme or the plan, simulated.

The plan of a building and an engineering network were created in scale: 1 AutoCAD unit = 1 mm. Can I calculate water pipeline network in meters?

You have at least two options:

1. You can create a separate Drawing only for Meteor Spec objects, the Drawing must comprise the work layer of the program. A plan of a building and its engineering networks plans should be attached to the Drawing as external references. External references insertion scale should be set 1:1000. Now you can simulate the water pipeline in a building consisting of spans with the pipes of different types and diameters right within the Model Space of your drawing. Here, polylines length will be equivalent to the pipes spans length in meters.

2. You may create a water pipeline model right within the Drawing – the water pipeline network plan. To do so, one needs to create a new layout tab in it with new Viewport on it with view of the network plan and with scale 1:1000. Now you may simulate water pipeline network right on the new layout tab within the Paper Space. Here, polylines length also equals the pipes spans length in meters.

(Tip: Do not forget to lock created Viewport. Display locked=Yes)

Can Meteor Spec work with 3D objects?

Meteor Spec works with lightweight polylines which are two-dimensional objects. But to simulate three-dimensional elements of engineering networks within object data, there exists “Additional length” property. Here, you may input the length of spans that have expanse by Z-coordinate in the object simulated.

Can I edit Data Library files directly, without using the built-in editor?

Yes.  You can open a data file in any ANSI text editor. Data library files must be created by rules of ini files. Section name corresponds to the name of group, the section body is a list of types in this group. You can copy between files separate types or groups (sections) entirely, to create new groups and types, and so on.

Do not change the section named [METEOR_SPEC], because the program uses this section for it’s own needs. A data file must contain only ANSI symbols and does not support UNICODE.

If you edit the data file directly while AutoCAD is running, to changes to take affect in program, do the following:  save and close the modified file data, open the “Edit Data Library” window and click OK button.

We recommend to make a backup copy of your data before manual editing.